Gas Fireplace Safety Tips
We love our fireplaces. In addition to being the centerpieces of ambiance in our homes, they warm our toes and our hearts too. But remember that one of their central functions is to produce fire and heat, so safety is of utmost importance.
We love our gas fireplaces. In addition to being centerpieces of ambiance, they warm our toes and our hearts too. But it’s important to remember that one of their central functions is to produce heat with fire, so safety is of utmost importance.
All gas fireplaces should have a protective screen over the glass. Screens reduce risks of serious burns by creating a barrier that prevents skin from coming into direct contact with the hot glass. Keep in mind, however, that screens can also retain heat, so touching them isn’t advised. All of our Heatilator gas fireplaces, and inserts are outfitted with factory-provided protective safety screens.
Carbon Monoxide Detectors
Carbon monoxide is an odorless, poisonous gas that can be deadly. For safety reasons, every home should have at least one CO detector located in rooms near gas appliances, including fireplaces. On a related note, your home should also have smoke detectors. Be sure to check and replace the batteries or they won’t work!
Have a licensed gas technician or hearth dealer inspect your gas fireplace annually. He or she will check the gas lines, clean the burner and control compartment, and check for condensation. This is an important yearly appointment that shouldn’t be delayed.
When choosing a gas fireplace, opt for a direct vented model. They have sealed combustion systems protect indoor air quality by drawing air from outside the home for the fire, while expelling 100 percent of combustion exhaust and by-products outside the home. In contrast, unvented gas fireplaces (a.k.a. vent-free or ventless) are open systems that compromise indoor air quality by drawing oxygen for the fire from inside the home, while expelling exhaust, carbon monoxide, nitrogen dioxide and moisture) into the home. A video explaining direct vent technology is available here.
We all know the inevitable – chilly fall breezes will be here before we know it. So keep these important things in mind to keep your family safe and your fireplace operating efficiently. More information about gas fireplace safety is available here.