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Gas Fireplaces Need Loving Too
Gas fireplaces need an annual inspection, in order to keep up to snuff. This is a very important practice, which many overlook; myself included. Because gas fireplaces burn clean and are very easy to take care of, some assume that this means it doesn’t need cleaning. While it is true that gas fireplaces are both efficient and low maintenance, it’s a known fact that ANY appliance can become a nuisance if neglected. That is why you need an annual inspection of your gas fireplace. By cleaning your fireplace and chimney, you can put your mind at ease when you start your unit this season.
Every fireplace or insert should be cleaned annually. This is due to the hard work a fireplace puts in with each use, when it is heating your home. It‘s best to get your fireplace checked each spring; that way you will have a flawlessly functioning fireplace all year round, but whatever schedule is easiest for you will work for the fireplace too.
Debris and junk and all that gunk
Debris likes to hang out in the vents, in the flue and inside the chimney. This needs to be removed, as it will restrict airflow and might smell bad. Gas fireplace debris includes:
1. Deteriorating logs
Ceramic or faux log inserts can eventually deteriorate with use, clinging to the sides of the insert and getting trapped.
2. Dirty Glass doors or frame
Chipped or scratched glass can become a hazard over time. It can meddle with the heat output of your fireplace, and no one wants that. If this is the case, you will need to get it cleaned or replaced.
The inside and outside of a gas fireplace needs to be cleaned once in a while. Think about it, after all those gorgeous fires it’s bound to get a little dirty in there. It is very important to follow the manufacturer’s instructions, and use approved products for cleaning. Check with your technician, or a local dealer, to see if they offer cleaning services.
Remember: If you have a masonry fireplace with a gas log set insert, inspect the logs with every annual inspection.
What Happens during an inspection?
During an inspection, the technician will first take a look at the exterior. This includes making sure glass is not chipped, cracked, or dirty, and that the framework is holding up sufficiently. While checking for dents or debris, the technician will also look at the interior gas ignition under the log structure and make sure it is lighting flawlessly. They also make sure your log set is not deteriorating in any way. Often times, the face of the unit will to be taken off, so they can inspect the valves and connections underneath your fireplace or insert. They will make sure your fireplace’s heat output is correct, and clean up any residue that has started to block any ports or vents. After a routine check, your technician should make sure you have working carbon monoxide detectors, and that you are aware of any repairs your gas fireplace may need. Certified gas technicians have a wealth of information and will be happy to answer any questions you may have about your fireplace or insert, don’t be afraid to ask.
Just Flow With It.
Safety is always number one when it comes to enjoying a roaring fire in your living space. By having an annual inspection, you ensure that your beautiful fireplace is running at peak efficiency for whenever you need that glowing comfort or extra heat.
Happy Heating!Read more
Doing a lot of entertaining this summer? Is your house generally a hub for your friends and family to gather? If you answered yes to either of these questions you should consider building an outdoor living space that truly is an extension of your home and incorporates the following...Read more
A friend of mine was researching fireplaces. He wanted to replace the old wood burning one that came with his home. He asked me what was the difference between a fireplace and a fireplace insert. I mean they look the same, and they all make fire, so how do you know what you need? At first I didn’t have a good answer. As it turns out, confusion aside, there is a clear difference between these two. But after doing some reading, I was able to help my friend. With any luck, this article will help you figure out what you need and end the much heated (yes, literally) debate as to the difference between a fireplace and a fireplace insert.
When you think of a fireplace, you think of an opening (keyword open) in the wall with a flue above it to remove/vent the smoke. Some fireplaces have glass doors on the front, or a screen making it look closed. Basically, a fireplace is either built one of two ways: masonry or factory built.
Masonry fireplaces are constructed by builders, and are almost always made out of brick. However, some more upscale fireplaces are made of stone and even tile. This connects seamlessly to the flue and chimney in your home as one element.
Factory built fireplaces are a metal box, sometimes made with or without refractory bricks inside to be framed into a house without masonry. They are usually installed in framed walls and encased in non-combustible materials while the home is being built. Nowadays, a lot of new homes have gas fireplaces, but the standard for older homes is usually wood burning.
You can get a fireplace after your home has been built; it just requires a little bit of a renovation. A cavity will have to be created and venting allowed for, either by installing a chimney or applicable venting, or by buying a vent free fireplace (only available in certain states – check your local by-laws).
A fireplace insert can burn gas, wood, or pellets, and is inserted into an existing masonry fireplace; just like a stove can be. If you have a masonry fireplace that needs a facelift, an insert is there to fill the gap and rejuvenate your room. This means that it will exclusively take the place of your masonry fireplace, by connecting the insert to the chimney and flue leading outside. Sure this looks very similar to a fireplace, but it is definitely not the same thing. While you may not see the difference at first glance, there are many styles that make inserts and mason fireplace look very similar. Inserts are a low cost option compared to a complete renovation to install a gas fireplace, or completely replace your existing masonry fireplace. This is yet another reason why Inserts are so versatile. A fashionable choice, inserts can change the ambience of a room from traditional or rustic to contemporary.
Stoves can be installed as freestanding units, and can also be considered inserts because they are sometimes vented out of your existing chimney. You can take a look at our range of wood, gas and pellet stoves here.
Which one is best for you?
|Quick Reference Guide|
|Get a Gas or
|Get an Insert
(Pellet, Gas, Wood or Stove)
|I don’t have any fireplace at all||✔|
|I have an older wood burning fireplace||✔|
|I have an existing gas fireplace||✔|
|I have a chimney but no fireplace||✔||✔|
|I’m having a house built||✔|
|I want to save money||✔|
**This is a quick reference guide.
**Please consult a professional to ensure you get the right product for your home and lifestyle.
As we are in the midst of a hot, hot summer it can be extra hard to stay cool during those muggy days and nights. Sleeping becomes more difficult with the rising temperatures and often just being indoors can be too hot to handle! So what is the best solution? If you have an air conditioner or fan, obviously these can really help to cool your home, but you may need to get more creative if those items alone don’t cut it! Luckily, we have gathered some easy and creative ways to keep cool during this wonderful season and they might just help you enjoy the summer a little bit more:
Keeping Yourself Cool
- Run your wrists under cold water for 5-10 seconds as a time. This will help cool your blood and internal temperatures and can help you regulate yourself to the heat.
- Take a cool or tepid shower right before bed as it can cool your body temperature down before you drift off to sleep. Make sure to keep the water from being too cold as sometimes our body’s will warm up more in response to cold water.
- Wear light and breathable clothing the second the weather starts to heat up. Not only will this keep your body temperature down, it’s a great idea when your going outside as the light colors will reflect the sunshine and keep you cool!
Keeping Your Home Cool
- Keep the curtains and blinds closed while the sun is shining bright outside. This will help keep the temperature in the home lower and block out extra heat that might creep in. When the night falls and the outside air starts to cool, you can re open all your windows and doors to let the new, fresh cold air in. This will really help for sleeping at night as well.
- Sleep with light or no bedding on the bed. You want to really pair down what bedding you sleep on and with during the summer as it can cause restlessness and sleepless nights. Try sleeping with just a single sheet if the temperatures are really hot, this will allow your skin to breathe. For extra hot night, store your pillowcase or sheet in the fridge for a few hours before bed, for an extra cold sleep!
- Take advantage of natural light as long as you can and do your best to keep your indoor lights off. The light bulbs give off a decent amount of heat that may be adding to your hot days and nights in your home. Once it starts to get dark outside, try to run on limited lights to keep your home and yourself cooler.
June 8th - August 31, 2015
Starting June 8th and running through August 31, 2015, Jøtul is partnering with it's North American dealers to implement the third annual Woodstove Changeout Program. With the goal of improving air quality by removing dirty burning non-EPA certified wood-burning appliances from use, and reducing the burning of open fireplaces, Jøtul North America is pleased to offer you the opportunity to save up to $300 off the purchase of a Jøtul wood or gas stove, or fireplace insert. For detailed information on how you can "Get In On The Change", contact Tri-County Brick today!
As part of our National Woodstove Changeout Program we are encouraging our dealers to act as a drop off location for your old non-EPA stove. However in some cases a dealer may not have adequate space for your old stove and may request your drop it off directly at your local recycling center. To find a local recycling center please click here.
Please contact your local participant Jøtul dealer before dropping your old non-EPA wood or gas stove off at a recycling center.
Inspired by federally led changeout programs around the U.S., Jøtul NA is the first manufacturer to implement its own changeout program, encouraging wood stove owners to become more environmentally friendly. Over the last two years more than 2,500 stoves were exchanged during the program throughout North America.
Because EPA-certified wood stoves emit approximately 70 percent less pollution than older conventional stoves, owners who make the change from a non-EPA stove can directly affect local air quality. In addition to being environmentally friendly, EPA-certified stoves can be 50 percent more efficient and burn up to 1/3 less wood than older models.
A portion of the sale of each changed out stove will go to benefit Operation BBQ Relief.
As summer is quickly approaching, the last thing we are thinking about is heating up the house with our fireplace as the sun will do that for us! However, before you shut everything down for the warmer months, it’s important to give your Valor fireplace the maintenance it deserves.Read more