Consider Safety First When Installing A Ventless Fireplace

Many homeowners are installing ventless fireplaces as alternate heat sources in the home. The traditional fireplace must have a chimney to vent smoke to the outside. A ventless unit needs no such structure. It is faster and less expensive to install and, when used properly, it is completely safe.

Ventless Fireplace Safety Issues

Some homeowners are reluctant to use a ventless fireplace because they fear an increase in carbon monoxide levels and a decrease in available oxygen. By following the recommended safety precautions, those fears are eliminated.

Fireplace units come in various sizes and the homeowner must match the size to the space available. Precise measurements of the room will help determine what size unit is best for the location.

Some units have an oxygen sensor that constantly monitors the oxygen levels in the room. If the oxygen drops to a certain level, the unit will automatically turn off.

Consumers may be able to find units with a built in carbon monoxide detector. Another option is to install a separate detector somewhere in the room. The detector should have an audible alarm to warm occupants that carbon monoxide levels are too high.

Users should restrict operation to six hours a day. The manufacturers of some units claim their product is safe to use for longer periods but experts recommend against operation past the six-hour limit. Homeowners should buy a fireplace with a timer that shuts the unit down even when left unattended.

Homeowners should use only the ventless fireplace logs intended for use with the unit they purchase. Some units use propane as a fuel source but others use natural gas. Logs are available in different lengths for different size units.

It is possible to modify traditional fireplaces with ventless fireplace inserts. The same safety precautions are necessary, including making sure the unit has a timer and detectors for carbon monoxide and oxygen.