Owning a gas log fireplace is very convenient. It’s wonderful being able to turn a fire on with a flip of a switch. A common misconception is that gas logs require no maintenance at all. However, just like a traditional fireplace, gas log fireplaces also need periodic inspection and maintenance. The Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA) suggests having your gas log fireplace inspected at least once a year by a CSIA certified chimney technician. At Leonard & Sons, our CSIA certified gas log experts can show you why gas log maintenance is so important.
Gas log fireplaces are fueled by propane or natural gas. They don’t burn wood, but fire resistant ceramic realistic looking logs are placed in the firebox instead to give the illusion of real logs burning.The reason gas log fireplaces needed to be checked at least once a year is because, although propane and natural gas give off less byproduct than wood burning fireplaces, over time, gas log fireplace vents can also accumulate creosote and need to be cleaned.
There are a lot of other potential maintenance issues that need to be considered when owning a gas log fireplace. The firebox refractory panels should be checked for cracking and holes. Also, you should have all your gas line components (pilot light, burner, gas control knobs, valves, switches, etc…) checked as well. These components all should be checked by a qualified, CSIA certified chimney technician.
One thing that often gets overlooked by gas log owners, however, is the actual gas log, ceramic logs themselves. There are two different types of gas log systems, vented and vent-free. Vent-free gas log ceramic logs are set in place by the manufacturer and should only be moved by a CSIA certified technician. If logs in vent-free systems are not set correctly, flame impingement can take place leading to soot spillage into your home. If you own a vented gas log system, you can clean the logs yourself. You can do this by making sure the logs are cooled and that you pilot light has been shut off. Remove the logs from the fireplace and bring them outside and use a paint brush or broom to brush off any soot. Do not wash the logs with water, because it can give your logs a bleached look that isn’t aesthetically pleasing. If you are unsure whether you own a vented or vent-free gas log system, don’t remove your ceramic logs until it inspected by a CSIA certified technician.
If you own a gas log fireplace, it is just as important to maintain your fireplace as if you owned a wood burning fireplace. We here at Leonard & Sons can help. Call us at 847-658-7659 or schedule an appointment with one of our certified gas log experts today.