Why You Need to Clean Your Gas Fireplace (and How to Do It)
Photo: Larich (Shutterstock)
A real wood-burning stove has something special: the scent, the crackling and the slow burning of the logs to glowing embers. But they are also tedious and quite dirty. Because of this, many people have chosen to install gas fireplaces instead.
And while they are certainly cleaner – they get rid of the ash and heavy soot that come from burning wood – gas fires aren’t entirely practical. In fact, they need regular maintenance to keep them working as safely and efficiently as possible. Here’s what you should know about cleaning a gas fireplace and why it is necessary.
Why you need to clean your gas fireplace
Unlike their wood-burning counterparts, gas fireplaces do not produce creosote. But regardless of whether they run on propane or natural gas, they can leave deposits that, according to experts, should be cleaned up by Fiddler on the Roof chimney service.
Have your fireplace checked once a year by a licensed gas supplier. Corresponding an article by Jessica Bennett For Better Homes and Gardens, the technician doesn’t just check: they can also thoroughly clean your gas fireplace, check for leaks, make sure the fireplace is properly vented, and identify potential safety issues.
But if you use a gas fireplace regularly, you should clean it more than once a year. Like any other place in a house, the fireplace can get dusty and dirty over time – and if it has glass doors, they can get cloudy and need to be wiped clean.
How to clean a gas fireplace
As with any home repair, safety should come first when working with gas. And while we’re on the subject, if you have a gas fireplace in your house, make sure you also have a working carbon monoxide detector nearby so you know if you ever get a gas leak.
Before you begin, dig up or refer to your fireplace owner’s manual, follow all safety precautions, and follow the cleaning instructions it contains, says Bennett. Next, turn off the pilot light and gas valve and allow the fireplace to cool completely.
Take it apart
Then follow the manufacturer’s instructions to remove the glass panels so that you have access to the inside of the fireplace. Put down an old sheet or towel or rag and put the panes of glass there while you clean, advises Bennet. If it is possible to take out the fake logs, do so too and place them on the same cloth.
Clean the inside
Now is the time to clean the inside of the fireplace. If your guy is into those little decorative stones, take these out too. Then use a vacuum cleaner to vacuum up any dust or dirt that has built up inside, Bennett suggests. Take a soft rag or cloth, dust off the fake logs, and wipe off anything else it could use. Then put the fake logs and decorative stones back in the fireplace.
Clean the glass
If the panes of glass are foggy white rather than crystal clear, Bennett says it’s likely due to the chemical build-up that comes with using a gas fireplace. She also advises using a special glass cleaner for firebacks. Polish off the cleaner with a soft rag, then replace the glass.