Maintenance for a Gas Fireplace
October 26, 2009
A gas fireplace offers you the peace of mind and safety of having an instant control of the on off feature. You can enjoy an evening around the fire without worrying about smoldering wood when its time for bed. There are a few seasonal maintenance items to consider, ensuring your furnace is in good working order for the heating season.
If you are moving into a new home with a brand new gas fireplace, be sure to totally clean out all drywall dust and other contaminants in the air as this can damage fan, motor and burners. Plus it may give off an odor for an extended period of time. Be sure your HVAC contractor has done this and ask for a maintenance schedule.
- Ensure that fans and passage ways are unobstructed.
- Keep combustibles well away from front fireplace.
- Teach your children to always stay well away from glass on the fireplace. Once your fireplace has been turned off the glass remains very hot before cooling off.
- Never try to clean glass when unit is hot.
- Install a carbon monoxide detector on the level that the fireplace is on.
- Keep external wall vents clear of garden overgrowth and snow.
- All gas fireplaces require cleaning of the glass and burners: Recommended once yearly always refer to your owners manual keep handy, for trouble shooting solutions to clean the glass. All gas fireplaces will form a white milky residue on the glass. Always turn pilot off when opening the glass. Use a recommended gas fireplace glass cleaner, do not use abrasive or regular window cleaner.
- Vacuum out air circulation passage ways with a soft paint brush carefully brush off any carbon (black) off logs and burner.
- Be very careful to replace logs in the exact position according to owners manual. Failure to do this will cause excessive carbon build up , slow starts and even sudden burst of combustion.
- All gas fireplaces upon startup, cold to hot will condensate this will burn off slowly usually within the first 5 minutes. Another reason for keeping class clean is if your fireplace has this white milky film, it will actually burn its way into the glass and will not be able to be cleaned, thus you will have to purchase new glass. All high efficient fireplaces use a ceramic glass. This glass will radiate 4 times more heat than tempered glass, and will withstand much higher temperatures but is very expensive to replace.
- Any gold plated trim that may be on your fireplace, use a damp cloth to clean. If you get your fingerprints on this, the oils from your fingers will actually burn into the gold and will then have to be replaced.
- Make sure upon replacing the glass after cleaning, you are aligned and all door seals and fasteners are tight. If the gasketing material that seal unit to glass is worn , turn off fireplace and replace gasketing. The purpose of a direct vent fireplace is to be as air tight as possible, to not use any air from the room and get its air supply from outside. Do not use any parts from other manufacturers, each manufacturer has tested their units to strict standards, use only their replacement parts. Refer to the owners manual, if you do not have owners manual, the rating plate with make, model and serial number is usually installed beneath fireplace floor or open louvers at bottom of fireplace most manuals are readily available on line from manufacturers site.
Article provided by Hearth and Home Fireplace
a certified member of Shell Busey's HouseSmart.
Contact Shell Busey’s HouseSmart Home Services to find a reputable Fireplace Service Technician in your Area across Western Canada 1-888-266-8806 or in Greater Vancouver contact 604-542-2236.