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The Ventless Gas Fireplace: Heating Alternatives with Flare

ventless gas fireplace

Ventless Gas Fireplace

If you’re looking to heat a single room in a unique way that is aesthetically pleasing, a ventless gas fireplace could be just what you’re looking for.  Ventless fireplaces are unique because they don’t require a chimney, flue or external venting ducts.  These types of fireplaces make excellent choices for those who rent apartments or do not want to engage in costly renovations to install a ventilation system in their home.  This makes them cheaper than traditional fireplaces be they gas or wood burning.

Instead, ventless fireplaces use natural gas or propane for fuel and vents along with the gas (oxygen) from the air inside your roon.  This makes for a unique alternative source of heat for your house especially in a living room that gets chilly night.  But even more so than heating your room, a ventless gas fireplace brings an aura of coziness, luxury and elegance to your home.

A vent free gas fireplace comes in many colors and styles to match any home decoration or motif that you have going on.  The only thing that you need to install your ventless fireplace is a propane tank line to supply your fireplace with fuel.  Alternatively, you can use natural gas from your city’s supply line, a choice that is gaining in popularity as more and more new apartment buildings are equipped with this type of line.

Choosing a ventless gas fireplace

The key to choosing the right ventless gas fireplace for your home needs is doing a little bit of thinking before you make your purchase.  You must consider how you’re going to use the unit as a primary function.  If you’re just going to be using the fireplace as a light source or for aesthetic values, you won’t need a high BTU source.  BTUs tell you how much energy your fireplace will consume and in turn how much heat your room will receive.

If your primary function in purchasing a vent free natural gas fireplace is for heating, you’ll have to take into consideration the size of your room.  Since BTUs are actually used to determine heat (rather than light which is why you wouldn’t need a high BTU count in the former scenario), a larger room will need more BTUs and a smaller room will only require less.

Dangers of using a free standing gas fireplace

A word of caution here: do not ever install a high output BTU natural ventless fireplace in a small room thinking that it will heat faster or more efficiently; it will not.  Instead, it will create a dangerous situation that could result in serious injury or death.

That’s because even though ventless fireplaces are called ‘ventless,’ there is no such thing as something being truly ventless.  A better term for it would be a free standing gas fireplace.  This is because any flame that doesn’t have a vent simply extinguishes itself; without oxygen, fire dies.

So, what you’re really dealing with when you get a vent free gas fireplace is ductless technology for the flame.  What this means is they actually vent out into the room which is what makes the air volume (and thus, size of the room as compared to BTU output) so important.  If you get the wrong sized BTU for your room, there is a chance of carbon monoxide poisoning, depletion of oxygen and increased humidity in the air (which increases mold, mildew and allergies).

This is why it is so important to measure the room that you plan to use the ventless gas fireplace in.  Be sure to measure the length, width and height.  Then, check on the manufacturer’s recommendation for each unit’s BTU output to see if that fireplace is right for your room’s size.  You may need to convert to square footage (width X length) or cubic square feet (length X width X height).

Also never use a ventless gas fireplace in a bedroom.  If you fall asleep and use up too much of the room air you might end up with CO (carbon monoxide) poisoning if you wake up.

General Price Ranges

While it’s hard to pinpoint down an actual price range for ventless gas fireplaces due to the large volume and variety on the market, it’s safe to say that the lower end models aren’t going to provide you with as much aesthetic beauty or longevity as the higher end models.  As with everything in life, you get what you pay for.

With that said, you can expect to pay anywhere from $150 to $2,500 for a free standing gas fireplace.  Of course, if you want a better look, you’ll have to pay a little more.  For example, some models come with vent free gas fireplace logs which give you an authentic look and feel to your fireplace.

General Uses for Savings

Unlike some other fireplaces in which the heat is mostly vented out, because ventless technology uses the air within the house, many people find that they can combine the free standing gas fireplace with their HVAC unit to reduce costs.  The way that this can work is by setting your ventless gas fireplace on and then using a house fan to run the heat throughout the apartment.  Customers have reported setting the heat thermostat in the house up to a full 10 degrees lower when their ventless gas fireplace is running.

This is important because not only are ventless gas fireplaces cheaper to run than costly boiler and heating units, but it also gives you more control over your climate.  For example, if you only need it warmer in one or two rooms, the way that you set your fans up with your fireplace can just heat those rooms, saving you even more money on heating bills.  Alternatively, imagine not having to crank up the heat 10 more degrees each day and you can see how economically feasible the vent free natural gas fire escape is.

This is a really useful video that explains a lot about vent free gas fireplaces.  I recommend you take a look.  It’s just under 5 minutes long and well worth it if you re considering a vent free gas fireplace.

Read more about fireplaces and learn before you buy at Hot Fireplace Reviews.

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