Practical steps to Installing a Gas Fireplace

Its quite easy to install a gas fireplace in your home, just that you’d need to be armed with correct techniques and know-how on how to go about installing a Gas Fireplace. Don’t worry about installing a chimney. You don’t need one. You simply vent the fireplace out the side of the house. Once the fireplace is installed, you just flip a switch to start a roaring fire. We’d be giving you 5 easy steps on how to do that in the paragraphs below. Follow through to every instruction and you’d have yourself a fine gas fireplace by the end of this short article.

Before starting out your intended action on Installing a Gas Fireplace, you’d need to;

1. Pick a location for the fireplace

 Be sure to consider a variety of factors when deciding where your fireplace should go. The fireplace should enhance the design and character of the room but it should also be placed where installation of a gas line, an electrical circuit, and an exhaust pipe will be most convenient if at all possible.

It is usually easiest to install a standalone gas fireplace on an exterior wall, as the venting pipe can go straight out the wall. Also, remember that the pipe will need to go between studs, so you should take that into consideration when picking an exact location.

2. Order your gas fireplace

There are many styles to choose from. It may be helpful to go to a fireplace showroom so that you can see all the different styles that are available to you.

It may be easiest to order all the parts you will need for your exhaust piping when ordering your fireplace. This will include pipe between the fireplace and the wall, a wall-pass-through, and exterior pieces for the pipe.

3. Build or purchase a platform for the fireplace

Installing a Gas Fireplace
Gas Fireplace Insert Frame

The actual fireplace unit is fairly small and it is dangerous to have it sit directly on the floor. To get the fireplace off the floor, you will need to build a platform. Use materials that match the décor of the room but that will create a non-combustible surface for the fireplace to sit on. This could include masonry or ceramic tiles for example.

Fireplace companies may have pre-made platforms for you to purchase. It may be most convenient to order a platform when you order your fireplace.

Be sure to consult any manufacturer’s instructions regarding how the platform should be installed and what it can be made from.

You will also need to allow for any clearance around the fireplace that is required by the manufacturer’s instructions. This will probably include clearances from combustible surfaces in the room and positioning so that the exhaust pipe can be appropriately installed.

Here are 8 easy and very practical steps to Installing a Gas Fireplace. We begin!

Step 1: Place the fireplace in its final position. When you have found the spot in the room where you want to place the fireplace and placed the platform, set the fireplace on top of the platform. Make sure that it has the clearance it needs from any combustible materials and that its position looks good in the room.

Step 2: Install the exhaust piping at the top, or back, of the stove. Attach as much as you can up to the section that goes through the wall. This will allow you to figure out where the hole through your wall should go exactly.

You will begin by attaching a straight pipe to the starting collar on top of the fireplace using stove cement. Different types of fireplaces require different gaskets to completely attach the pipe to the collar. Be sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions for this step.

Once you are able to determine where the hole for the exhaust pipe will go, use a pencil to trace a circle around the pipe at the wall. Then move the fireplace platform and the fireplace out of the way so you can have easier access the wall when cutting the hole.

Practical steps to Installing a Gas Fireplace

Step 3: Cut the hole for the direct venting system. This hole should be the size of the wall-pass-through that came with you ordered with your stove. The pass-through is designed to keep all heat away from combustible wall materials, making it a very important part of keeping the risk of fire damage at a minimum.

Before just cutting all the way through your wall, make sure that there are no electrical lines or pipes in the area you are cutting out. Use a drywall saw to carefully cut a square hole around the tracing you made. Remove the drywall so that you can see into the wall, making sure all utilities are clear from the area.

Drill a hole from the inside through the outside wall to show you where the corners are on the outside of the wall. If your wall-pass-through is square, it’s easiest to drill a small hole at each corner.

On the outside wall, use the appropriate tools based on your materials to complete the hole you started on the inside.

Step 4:  Frame the inside edges of the opening with lumber. The framing you insert will create a base on which the pass-through can be attached. Follow manufacturer’s instructions when determining materials and size to make the finished hole.

Step 5: Insert the wall-pass-through. Inside the house, put high-temperature caulk on the inside surfaces of the hole you created. Install the wall-pass-through by pushing it into the hole, which will press it into the caulk and make a seal around the pass-through. Then screw it into place.

Step 6: Complete the direct venting system. Install all remaining piping inside and outside of the house.

Place the stove back onto the platform and secure all piping between the stove and the wall-pass-through, always following the manufacturer’s instructions.

Use high-temperature caulk to seal the area around the pipe and the fire stop.

Outside, install the exterior fire stop and drip cap using appropriate tools for your type of exterior wall.

Step 7:  Hire licensed contractors to install and connect the gas line and electricity. Depending on where you placed your fireplace, you may need to run new electrical outlets and you will almost certainly need to run a new gas line. Unless you are qualified to handle these steps yourself, hire a licensed contractor to complete them.

Step 8: Build an optional frame around your fireplace. While many gas fireplaces do not need a mantle or frame around them, some will. A decorated lumber frame, including surrounds, mantel, hearth, and any wood decorations you want, will help the fireplace and surrounding area to match the rest of the room.

Remember to follow the manufacturer’s recommendations for maintaining space between the fireplace and the frame. This is very important!

As of now, you should have yourself a nice, warm fireplace. Switch it on and it blazes to life, filling your room with clean warmth!

Installing a Gas Fireplace Cost

The direct-vent fireplace and vent parts we purchased cost us about $1,800. For $650 more, our fireplace dealer would have installed the fireplace, not including the gas and electric hookups or any interior finishing. The materials for the wood framing, drywall and stucco coating cost an additional $175. Hire a plumber to run the gas line during the framing process and connect it to the fireplace ($250 to $500).

Recommended Tools for Installing a Gas Fireplace.

Now heading out to the store to get your tools, we decided that you’ll need a circular saw and a drill. A power mitre box is handy but not necessary for cutting the angles on the framing parts. You’ll need a tin snip for cutting the metal corner bead, a collection of taping knives (2-in., 4-in., 6-in. and 12-in.) and a mud pan for applying the joint compound and texture.

Also Read Electric Fireplace vs Gas Fireplace: Which is Preferable and Why 2019

What are the Advantages of a Gas Fireplace?

1. Constant Heat

Unlike a log fireplace, a natural fireplace has a constant heat supply.

2. Energy Savings

A natural gas fireplace can save at least 25% on your energy bill

3. Easy to Work

A gas fireplace can be turned on and off with the flip of a switch, unlike a wood-burning fireplace that can burn out without notice.

4. Very safe.

The environment benefits nicely from a natural gas fireplace because there are no fumes or particles that are being released into the air or in your home.

5. Stylish

There are numerous designs and styles in natural gas fireplaces that can add value to your home and look beautiful at the same time. From natural-looking logs to beautiful grates, gas fireplace design has come a long way.

6. No Chimney

A gas fireplace usually has a venting system which means they do not need a chimney.

7. Some of them have warmers

There are gas fireplace models that have a blower already built-in which helps to circulate the warm air throughout the home and not just in one area where the unit is placed.

8. Availability of a remote

There are manufacturers that produce natural gas fireplaces with a remote control similar to a TV remote making it easy to operate for anyone in the family.

9. Costing of installation

The cost of installing a natural fireplace is often cheaper than a wood burning fireplace and can be easily installed by either a Do-It-Yourselfer or a professional.

10. No Storage

Because a natural gas fireplace runs on gas, it is metered into the home by the local gas company. This is easier for the homeowner who doesn’t have to worry about storing natural gas at home or on the premises.

15. No Creosote

Unlike a wood-burning fireplace that needs to be cleaned along with the chimney due to a build-up of creosote, a natural fireplace does not.

16. Ease of use.

Ease of use is greatly increased because you will not have to chop or haul firewood.

17. Safety and clean fire

The fire is clean and there are no stray sparks that could cause problems.

Frequently Asked Questions on installing a gas fireplace.

Do l need a vent for a gas fireplace?

Ventless fireplaces fueled by gas or propane rely on indoor air for combustion, and they exhaust a low level of their combustion gases into the room in which they’re located. A chimney or flue isn’t necessary. … In fact, ventless fireplaces generally are just for aesthetics and supplemental space heating.

How much does it cost to install a gas fireplace?

Installation and finishing typically add $2,500. To save a bit, we’d advice you to switch to a simpler surround and mantle, and get a direct-vent fireplace so you don’t need a chimney. Hiring a professional to install a gas line or a connection to a propane tank adds about $1,000. Total rough cost should be $3,500.

Can you install a gas fireplace anywhere?

As long as you have a natural gas connection or propane availability, you can install a gas fireplace almost anywhere in your home—under a window, in either an outside or inside wall, at wainscot or floor level, in a corner or even in the center of a room.

How much do fireplace inserts cost?

Inserts heat 1,000-3,000 sq. ft., depending on their size. You’ll want to size your insert to the square footage you need to heat. Plan with a round figure of  $3,000-$4,000, which includes installation and a chimney liner

What is the difference between a gas fireplace and a gas insert?

A fireplace insert can burn gas, wood, or pellets, and is inserted into an existing masonry fireplace; just like a stove can be. … While you may not see the difference at first glance, there are many styles that make inserts and mason fireplace look very similar.

Can a gas fireplace be installed on an interior wall?

A direct-vent gas fireplace doesn’t need a chimney. Rather, you can run a special vent to the outside through an exterior wall.

Do you need a chimney for a direct vent gas fireplace?

A Direct Vent Gas Fireplace does not require a chimney and can vent horizontally out a sidewall or vertically through a roof. Direct Vent Fireplaces have a completely enclosed chamber that is extremely efficient, drawing in air for combustion from the outside and expelling gases to the outside as well.

How long do gas fireplaces last?

A well maintained vented log set with ceramic logs will last a very long time, in some cases 10 or more years. A well maintained ventless log set with ceramic logs can also last a long time, but, if heavily used, will begin to wear in 3-5 years

Can I add a blower to my gas fireplace?

Your best bet is to simply add a blower to your fireplace or install a direct vent insert. However, before you decide to add a blower to your actual fireplace you must make sure your fireplace will support it, not all fireplaces were able to support blowers.

Are fumes from gas fireplace harmful?

Gas fireplaces are generally considered cleaner than traditional wood-burning fireplaces, but they can also pollute indoor air quality if not properly vented. Toxic gasses emitted include deadly carbon monoxide and nitrogen dioxide, a gas particularly harmful to those with asthma. Please consider your health when picking out a gas fireplace. Maintenance is very key too.

Do gas fireplaces always smell?

It’s natural to be worried when you smell gas in the home, but in this case, the odds are that the condition is harmless. In fact, a faint gas smell is an unavoidable consequence of using gas fireplace logs. … As the name implies, ventless gas fireplaces don’t require an open chimney to operate.

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