HOW TO CONVERT WOOD FIREPLACES INTO GAS FIREPLACES
Converting wood fireplaces into gas is a great idea, and it will make life easier for you and require less maintenance than wood fireplaces. Conversion of wood fireplaces into gas fireplaces is a very straightforward step that professionals should do by following rules and regulations. This procedure takes two to three days to complete. Below is the article; we will provide a complete guide to help convert wood fireplaces to gas; keep reading for a comprehensive overview of what must be done.
Benefits of a Gas Fireplace
Gas fireplaces are more convenient to use than wood fireplaces. They won't need to be wood constantly thrown into the burn. They will save the wood cost and difficulty of continually having wood ready. Operating gas fireplaces is much easy with the flip of a switch; however, the wood-fireplaces need a lot of work to get the fire running. Even wood fireplaces are the leading cause of pollution and are less efficient; they cost more money to operate. Gas logs are easy to maintain and do not require much cleaning like wood fireplaces. But they need the cleaning of propane gas built-up and chimney cleaning annually if you use vented gas logs. Wood fireplaces create a mess that should be cleaned by cleaning the fire box and ash.
How to Convert from Wood to Gas
Here we will discuss the complete steps of converting wood fireplaces into gas ones. First, you need a chimney inspection by a licensed sweep who will confirm that your chimney is in good condition or has any issues. This may also include cleaning ash or creosote built-up and making any repairs. After this, when you get a clear idea and the current state of your fireplace setup, you can start discussing conversion options.
Gas Line Connection Options
You first need to appropriately install a propane gas line and then connect it to your fireplace. Many gas insert options exist, but a few can be installed into the fireplace.It's not recommended or compulsory to place ventless gas logs in installed fireplaces since they void the warranty and are unsafe for those with respiratory issues.
In the fireplace opening, traditional gas inserts fit, and surround decorative logs, need the chimney to be lined with stainless steel liner for safety measures. If you have the correct size of gas inserts, then it can be easily installed into an existing wood fireplace. Inserts are sealed combustion units that are used to drag air from outside, and they are also used to exhaust gases and moisture.
Direct Vent Gas Insert
Direct-vent gas inserts contain in a sealed firebox and venting system. They need a vertical, collinear venting system with two pipes installed next to each other. Both two tubes have their functions. One pipe is used to pull in fresh air from outside, which also creates combustion, and the other is used to eliminate combustion by-products. This will generate a convection loop, a steady flow of heat, and pull the cool air by convection air intake at the bottom of the firebox. The air circulates before being released into the home as hot air. Blowers speed up this air circulation process, and a heat dump system can also be installed by pulling air from the fireplace and then converting it into another room in the house. A direct venting system is suitable for people suffering from respiratory issues, and they operate with up to 85% efficiency and protect indoor air quality.
Vent-Free Gas Inserts
Vent-free gas inserts are also a good option that saves money, and you don't need a chimney system. They have a separate firebox that can fit into the existing fireplace, or you can install a new gas log unit. This type of gas insert burns at 100% efficiency, which removes the need for a chimney and does not create any mess.
Vented Gas Logs
Here is another type of gas log: vented gas logs that provide the realistic illusion that actual flames are present. Consuming on the glowing ember bed mimics the natural log burning. Although vented gas logs are best, they produce little heat as they require the chimney damper to be open at all times, which loses the heat, and if you don't open the damper, your house will be full of carbon dioxide. Gas logs are a form of ceramic fibre or refractory cement mixture that can tolerate the high temperature that fireplaces create. Moreover, steel reinforcement rods are placed inside logs to protect them from cracking and breaking. On the other hand, refractory cement logs are durable and can withstand high temperatures for a long time.
Ventless Gas Logs
Ventless gas logs are also great as they burn at 100% efficiency and have a smokeless flame. These are the best to consider as they do not produce smoke and don't need any venting system. This means there is no heat escape, and much heat is made. However, they do not produce high flames as in the vented system. Still, condensation typically appears on windows since ventless gas logs produce water vapor, which can eventually lead to mildew growth. Leaving a window open near the fireplace is recommended. Ventless gas logs also enrich any odors in the air, just like air fresheners, scented candles, and perfumes.
Coaxial or Collinear Venting
Coaxial is the most common venting type and comprises both flexible and rigid pipes. The vent and intake pipe share the same axis. Airflow with the pipes precludes heat allocation nearby the structure. The vent and intake liners run corresponding to one another for collinear venting. The materials are two aluminum chimney liners.
Control Switch Options
Here we will provide you with some switch options for your gas fireplace.
Match lit is affordable and easily managed; you need a match or lighter to start a gas. They are available for vented gas log systems that use natural gas.
These valves use a thermopile, which generates a large millivolt current that allows connection for a hand-held remote, timer, wall switch, or thermostat. The result is a readily controllable fireplace.
Modified Safety Pilot Kits
Modified safety pilot kits have a motor that permits remote or variable control to quickly turn the fireplace on and off.
An electronic valve features a gas-valve switch, wall switch, or remote control to control the fireplace. Most have a battery-operated system.
8. Testing and Inspection:
Once the installation is complete, the gas technician will perform thorough testing and inspections. They will check for gas leaks, ensure proper ventilation, and test the fireplace's functionality. This step is essential to ensure the safety and efficiency of your newly converted gas fireplace.
Converting your wood fireplace into a gas fireplace is an excellent choice for those seeking convenience, efficiency, and cleanliness. However, involving professionals throughout the process is crucial to ensure a safe and successful conversion. Following the steps outlined in this guide and relying on expert guidance, you can enjoy the warmth and comfort of a gas fireplace while bidding farewell to the hassles associated with wood-burning fireplaces