Annual Gas Fireplace Maintenance

Your gas fireplace can be divided into five main components. Each of these components requires annual maintenance to make sure your fireplace works properly and safely.

1. Vents

The vent system feeds up through a chimney or vent. It must be working properly and without blockages, or you risk the buildup of toxic gases in your home. Although gas fireplaces don't produce soot, dust and debris can get into the vents. Vent caps on the roof can also become damaged, allowing pests inside and increasing the chances of a blockage. Vents and their openings should be inspected and cleaned once a year.

2. Firebox

The main concerns in a gas fireplace firebox aren't soot and creosote, but dust and damage. Everything should be removed from the firebox at least once a year so the interior can be thoroughly cleaned. After cleaning, inspect the firebox for cracks or other damages. Rust may also be an issue requiring repair, particularly if you have a metal firebox. If damage is found, it must be repaired before you use the fireplace.

3. Gas System

It's important to make sure the gas delivery system and burners are working correctly. Your maintenance service can inspect the gas lines for leaks, clean the burner, and test emergency shut-offs to verify that everything is working properly. Valves and fittings will also be inspected and replaced if necessary. Although an annual tune-up is all that is required, always keep an eye on the gas system. If the pilot light burns any color other than blue or if you smell gas, shut down the fireplace until you can have it repaired.

4. Logs

The faux logs in a gas fireplace aren't just for looks. They also properly distribute the heat from the gas. These logs are made of special heat-proof ceramics. They should be dusted and cleaned at least once a year before being returned to the grate. If the logs have chips or cracks, you will need to replace them. A damaged log can shatter when exposed to heat in the fireplace.

5. Doors

Door maintenance depends on the system. The most basic glass doors just need to be cleaned and the hinges lubricated periodically. If your doors are equipped with a heat blower designed to circulate the hot air from the fireplace into the home, then the blower needs to be inspected and tuned up annually.

Contact a fireplace maintenance service for more help with your gas fireplace.