Superior Chimney Services, Inc.

Do I Need to Clean a Gas Fireplace?

Is it necessary to clean gas fireplace in Illinois? It’s intuitive that the dark black buildup of combustion needs to be cleaned from a typical wood burning fireplace, but is it needed to clean a gas fireplace? It’s gas…right? Gas fireplaces do not have a visible buildup of combustion, but should be cleaned at least once a year to prevent serious problems with the fireplace.

Gas vs. Wood Burning Fireplaces

When thinking of the inside of a family home, we think about the most comfortable room: the living room or family room. This is where the family meets, watches movies, and plays board games during rainy days, evenings and family time. It usually has a lofty, cozy couch and a wood burning fireplace. Nothing’s more comforting than falling asleep to the dim light of the fireplace and faint smell of burning wood. Nowadays, we have a close alternative to this old fashioned comfort: the gas fireplace. Gas fireplaces don’t leave much creosote behind, however gas fireplaces should be cleaned once a year, per the CSIA, due to dust, pet hair, insects, and other debris that can build up and cause performance problems. Chimney sweep are primarily for firewall worthiness assurance, cleaning and obstruction free assurance.

Gas fireplaces look similar to wood burning fireplaces, with a live flame. The logs inside the gas fireplace look real, but are not actually burning. Oftentimes, they are made of ceramic. A gas fireplace produces much less heat than a wood burning fireplace, but can retain more heat inside your home based on its type and configuration. Gas fireplaces can be low maintenance and energy friendly alternatives to a wood burning fireplace.

Some Signs to Clean Gas Fireplace

1. Buildup: Although gas fireplaces do not produce as much visible flammable and hazardous buildup, it does produce some corrosive substances and flue gasses that may settle inside your home without you knowing. Burning natural gas leaves a residue that must be cleaned annually. Failing to clean the residue may cause health risks if left untouched.

2. Technical Issues: There may be technical problems that are not visible, such as issues with the burner. Gas fireplaces are usually built to last long term but it’s imperative to check if there are any unnoticed technical issues at least once a year.

3. Gas Leaks: Over time, valves and pipes turn weaker and become corroded. It’s important to inspect these valves, as a gas leak is extremely hazardous. A certified chimney specialist must inspect and determine any damage or future damage to prevent this serious problem.

4. Condensation: Due to the high temperatures in the flue, there’s a buildup of condensation when the fireplace vapors are cooled. Natural gas exhaust also contains a high content of water vapor in emissions. The condensation reacts with byproducts and is acidic and corrosive, and must be cleaned at least once a year to not pose a potential health hazard.

It’s just as important to clean a gas fireplace at least once a year to prevent long term issues that could pose health risks if not cared for. A certified chimney professional from Superior Chimney will inspect and sweep the fireplace and ventilation system. Contact us today to clean gas fireplace at 877-244-6349.

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