Gas log sets are a great way to add the gorgeous look and warmth of a roaring fire to your home without any of the hassle and mess of a real wood fireplace. The only question is which gas log set can best meet your needs?
The question can be answered based on whether or not you have an existing fireplace and whether you intend to use the gas fireplace to actually help heat your home. Based on these considerations, and others like whether or not you wish to have a safety pilot, you can decide upon the gas log fireplace that helps make your home as cozy as you have always hoped.
Vented gas log fireplaces are intended to be used in existing fireplaces with working flues and dampers. Converting your existing fireplace to a gas log setup is relatively quick and affordable, and it produces great results. You will need to run a few tests to ensure that your installation is adequately vented, and you will still need to perform maintenance like occasional chimney cleaning, but the results speak for themselves in the form of large, active and beautiful flames.
The only catch is that these flames are mostly aesthetic. Since the heat from a typical vented gas log setup rises up through the flue rather than radiating outwards, the flames will be more for aesthetic looks than providing heat.
Vent-free gas log fireplaces require installation of a new firebox or significant modification of your existing fireplace. However, they require marginally less maintenance to operate. The conditions of the gas fireplace must be checked periodically to ensure proper, complete combustion, however.
In addition to the advantages of having a self-contained apparatus, vent-free gas log sets have another advantage in that they radiate their heat outwardly to the room. Sets can produce up to 39,000 BTUs of heat with a high 99.9% efficiency rate, making them one of the best choices for heating up a home.
Another consideration with your gas log fireplace is whether or not you want to light the flames manually every time or wish to activate the flames via a push-button safety pilot valves. Higher end millivolt safety pilot valves add even more convenience and control, allowing you to connect the fireplace to a thermostat or activate it remotely. Some remote-controlled fireplaces allow for further control of flame height and temperature, whereas others serve as a remote switch with only on/off functionality.
Consider the features you would like to have in addition to the quality of the simulated wood and the appearance of the flame when choosing your gas log set. Regardless of the set you choose, you are certain to have a more beautiful, inviting and clean home when it is improved with the addition of an attractive gas fireplace.