Year after year, sales of gas log fireplaces continue to increase. Homeowners love that they are easy to use, efficient, and have significantly lower maintenance costs than wood burning heating appliances. However, despite the relatively small amount of upkeep gas logs require, they can be damaged or deteriorate over time.
While gas create a clean burning and efficient heat, it can be dangerous if not used correctly. One of the most common problems with gas logs occur when homeowners continue to use them if they are damaged. If this happens, call Lords Chimney; we fix gas logs!
Gas log maintenance
Just like any other heating appliance, gas logs need regular upkeep and maintenance in order to keep working their best. Both the interior and exterior of the fireplace should be cleaned at least twice per year; doing this removes any dust or soot that may accumulate an impact gas log performance. When cleaning the inside of the gas log, use a clean, dry cloth or soft bristled paint brush. Care should be taken not to bump, move, or shift the gas log components as even movements as small as a few millimeters can impact performance.
In addition, the fireplace’s glass or metal exterior can be cleaned as often as needed to removes dust, handprints, or smudges. However, homeowners should try to use specialized cleaners as often as possible, even for the fireplace’s exterior; some commercial cleaners do not react well with the ambient heat from the fireplace.
For all gas log fireplaces, the user’s manual is one of the most invaluable resources a homeowner has. The manual will often have specific information on cleaning, operating, and maintaining your specific fireplace unit. If you think something is wrong with your gas log or have noticed a change in performance, your user’s manual may be able to provide you with troubleshooting questions or tips in order to help you identify the problem,
When do I need a chimney sweep?
While gas logs have much easier maintenance than other heating appliances, many homeowners are still surprised to learn that they still need to have their chimney swept each year! Gas logs can still suffer from the buildup of creosote – especially if they are not regularly swept; likewise, some high efficiency units are at higher risk for water condensation or incomplete combustion.
If at any time you begin to experience usage problems with your gas log, it is important to call a chimney sweep as soon as possible. Things like smoke production, an oddly colored flame, a strong gassy or smoky odor, or staining on your chimney’s exterior are all signs that your gas log may be experiencing a serious problem. If you experience these or any other unusual chimney symptoms, stop using your gas log immediately and call a chimney sweep.
With regular maintenance, your gas log can last for years to come. However, even regular maintenance doesn’t guarantee you won’t have a problem that needs professional attention. When you need your gas log fixed, contact Lords Chimney to have the job done right!
Gas fireplaces continue to grow in popularity due to their energy savings, ease of use, and low maintenance. Gas logs are particularly popular due to their ability to recreate the look and feel of a wood burning fire at the push of a button. While there is significantly less work with a gas fireplace compared to a wood burning one, gas fireplaces still need regular cleaning and upkeep.
Although gas logs do not have ashes or soot to remove after each use, they should be regularly cleaned to maintain efficiency and safety. Cleaning a gas log is an easy process, but special care should be taken to ensure that no fireplace parts or pieces are damaged.
Cleaning your gas log
The interior and exterior portions of your gas log fireplace should be cleaned at least twice a year to prevent an excessive buildup of soot or dust. However, only cleaners that are specially designed for gas fireplaces should be used. Other chemical or homemade cleaning agents may have abrasive qualities on the gas, metal, or ceramic parts of the fireplace. In addition, the chemicals in non-fireplace cleaners may react when the fireplace is relit for use. A specialized cleaner can be purchased at many fireplace retailers.
The exterior glass and metal can be wiped down as often as needed using a clean, damp cloth or other specialized cleaner. The burners, control compartments, and ceramic logs can be gently cleaned with a dry cloth or soft bristled paintbrush. A vacuum may also be used, but can should be taken not to shift or move the gas log or its components.
Before attempting to clean your gas logs, make sure that the gas valve has been completely shut off. Likewise, none of the fireplace components should be warm to the touch from recent use, as the heat may react negatively with the cleaners.
Referencing the manufacturer’s manual is another way to ensure that you are safely and correctly cleaning your fireplace logs and other components. The manual should give detailed instructions on how to safely clean the fireplace with minimal risks.
If you believe you have damaged any of the components of your gas log fireplace during cleaning, contact a professional before using the fireplace again. Even shifting a gas log a few inches can impact both performance and safety.
Do I need a chimney sweep?
Many homeowners are surprised to find that they still need their chimney swept after installing a gas log. Gas appliances still produce small amounts of creosote, which can coat the inside of the flue. In addition, high efficiency modern gas fireplaces are also at risk for incomplete combustion and water condensation.
An improperly sized chimney or flue cannot create sufficient drafting for a gas fireplace, leading to incomplete combustion. When this occurs, gasses such as carbon monoxide may linger in the fireplace. Likewise, accumulating water condensation can be corrosive to the flue lining.
Having a regular chimney cleaning and inspection can help protect your family against any emerging chimney or fireplace issues, as well as ensure that your gas fireplace is still running safely and efficiently. If you have questions about how to clean your gas fireplace or need to schedule a chimney inspection, contact Lord’s Chimney today!