168 Brock St. W.
Uxbridge, ON
Phone: (905) 852-0369
Toll Free: 1-877-489-8880
firebridge.fireplaces@bellnet.ca
       
     
     
       
       
       

Frequently Asked Questions and Glossary of Terms

1. What should I consider when choosing a fireplace to heat my home?

·         Are we looking for ambiance only, or a high efficiency heat source,

·         What square footage do I expect the fireplace to heat, and is there good air flow from one area to another,

·         How much space am I willing to dedicate to the appliance,

·         What fuel source am I looking for – natural gas, propane, wood, electric, ethanol.

2. Should we leave our pilot light on?

It is advisable in colder weather to keep the pilot on so that some heat is maintained in the vent system. This facilitates the start-up of your fireplace in colder months. In warmer months, if you are not using the fireplace, you can turn the pilot light off, but spiders love the smell of gas, and if a spider builds a web in the pilot assembly, a service call will be required to remove it.

3. Can we change our fireplace from a standing pilot system to electronic ignition?

Most gas fireplaces operate with a standing pilot system, much like many furnaces and hot water heaters. Retrofitting existing units with electronic ignitions would require replacement of the valve and pilot system. With most fireplaces, this is not possible due to design restrictions.  Some units can be purchased with electronic ignitions.

4. Can I replace my direct vent fireplace with another manufacturer’s and hook up to the existing vent system?

When replacing an existing unit, it is recommended to change the entire system, so that manufacturers’ warranties can be maintained without question, and all code compliances can be met.  If there is a problem with the unit after installation, the manufacturer will not extend the warranty if other components are used.

 

5. Can I replace the trim or log set from one manufacturer for another’s?

Fireplace components are not universal or interchangeable - especially finishing items such as trims and log sets, which distinguish one manufacturer from another.  If you do replace the component, you will void your manufacturer’s warranty, as well as creating an uncertified and untested situation within your unit.

6. Can I set my fireplace on a timer?

Most modern gas fireplaces can have a wired or remote control unit installed with a timer feature.

7. Can we install drywall up to the fireplace?

Check the specifications of the fireplace you are installing for clearance to combustibles. Drywall is considered a combustible.

8. Can we turn down the heat from the fireplace and still have the flames?

Some units are manufactured to provide ambiance, with little heat being generated, while other units are meant to be a main heat source.  Most flame controls can be raised or lowered depending on your visual choice, but in most cases, high flame means high heat, low flame means low heat.  A unit with tempered glass will radiate less heat than a unit with ceramic glass.

9. If we install a fire pit or a built-in exterior fireplace, how much heat can we expect on our deck or patio?

The amount of heat available will be directly related to the number of BTU’S of the appliance and it’s location.  Windy areas will definitely affect the radiant heat from the units. The radiant heat will take the chill off in the immediate surroundings and add a pleasant aesthetic experience to your exterior space.

10. Can I change the log set in my zero clearance fireplace or fireplace insert?

The logs installed in gas fireplaces cannot be altered, unless the manufacturer has a replacement kit available.   The set-up of the logs is specific to the way the burner has been tested and operates.  Changing the log configuration will removed the certification from the appliance, and is dangerous.


11. My wood burning fireplace smokes. Will a gas log set solve this issue?

First of all you should have the chimney inspected to determine the cause of the smoking issue.  The solution will be depended on the cause. 

12. Can I put a TV above a fireplace?

Radiant heat from the fireplace will affect the television if there is no means of deflecting it away from the wall above.  By installing a mantle over the fireplace, the radiant heat will be directed out into the room, rather than directly onto the bottom of the television.  Recessing the television back from the wall facia will also assist in preventing heat damage.  You should also check the television manufacturer’s owner’s manual for their suggestions.

13. Will putting doors on an open fireplace increase its efficiency?

No.  An open fireplace will always be drawing warm air from the room and exhausting the heat up the chimney, whether the damper is closed or not.  By installing doors on the fireplace, you are reducing the amount of heat loss that is being drawn up the flue, but you are not increasing the fireplaces efficiency.


14. What are the regulations for installing a gas fireplace in a bathroom?

You must make sure that the appliance is bathroom approved.  Each appliance will have it’s own specifications regarding bathroom installations.

15. What are the regulations for installing a gas fireplaces in a bedroom?

You must make sure that the appliance is bedroom approved. 

16. I am looking to replace my existing open gas or wood burning fireplace with a more efficient sealed gas unit. How can I do this without affecting my finishes?

The size of your existing fireplace firebox will determine whether an insert can be placed inside, and depending on which unit you select , what the clearances are for that specific unit to combustibles will then determine whether your finishes will be affected.  Different units have different clearance requirements to combustibles

17. There is a white film on the inside of the glass. Why is it there and how do I remove it?


Glass should be cleaned using gas glass fireplace cleaner, which is meant to remove the deposits on the glass from the gas burning.  This is a common occurance with all gas fireplaces.  Common glass cleaners should not be used as they contain ammonia, which will cause the glass to rainbow and streak.


18. If the power goes out, will my fireplace still work?



Yes. Modern gas fireplaces will operate during a power failure, unless they have been installed with a power vent system, in which case a power supply is required for the unit to vent correctly.


19. Are a fan and thermostat included in the cost of a gas fireplace installation? Can they be installed after the fireplace has been installed?



Most gas appliances are controlled by an on/off switch, which can be upgraded to either a standard wall thermostat or a programmable thermostat.  Remote controls are also available.  Some gas appliances already have blowers installed to distribute the heat from the unit, while others have blower systems available as an option.  To determine the availability we require the manufacturer and the model number.  If they are built to accept a blower, a blower can be installed after the fireplace has been installed, as long as power is available to the unit.

20. Are wood fireplaces allowed to be put into new homes?

Check first with your local building codes, but generally speaking wood fireplaces can be built into new construction, or additions to existing structures.  It is recommended that you purchase these appliances from a dealer who has WETT certification, who will be able to advise you on the proper system to install with the necessary chimney, and have the ability to certify the installation for insurance coverage and mortgage approval.