Are Ventless Gas Fireplaces Safe?

Posted by Fire Pit Plaza on

You may be shopping around or deciding if you want to add a fireplace to your home and you've seen the option to buy a ventless gas fireplace.

But, what exactly is a ventless gas fireplace? What makes a ventless gas fireplace different from other fireplace options? More importantly, is a ventless gas fireplace safe?

ventless gas fireplace

What is a ventless gas fireplace?

A ventless gas fireplace does not have a chimney or a vent. A ventless gas fireplace has become a popular option for homeowners because it is less expensive to install if you do not already have a vent for a fireplace in your home.

There are also wall-mounted and table top options to give you versatility on where to place this ventless fireplace in your home.

Since you are burning gas instead of wood, you can create a source of heat that is "smokeless" and does not require the same type ventilation as a wood burning fireplace.

The process of "perfect combustion" occurs when you are using a ventless gas fireplace and burning gas. This means that molecules of oxygen combine with methane and its carbon and hydrogen.

When this occurs, there are some byproducts created including water vapor and carbon dioxide. 

Is a ventless gas fireplace safe?

Because of the way gas burns, a ventless gas fireplace should be a safe option. When your ventless gas fireplace is running right and performing "perfect combustion", there is not too much of a safety concern.

However, if that combustion is not occurring in its perfect state - in an incomplete state, there can be some safety concerns to be aware of. Incomplete combustion can cause dangerous byproducts of carbon monoxide.

Most carbon monoxide detectors will not trigger because of a ventless gas fireplace because the release is too low.

To prevent this, you must always make sure your ventless gas fireplace is running in great condition so that incomplete combustion does not occur.

The most common reason why incomplete combustion occurs is because of lack of oxygen. Ventless gas fireplaces come with oxygen depletion sensors to monitor levels of oxygen to ensure you don't face safety hazards.

If there is too little oxygen available, the sensor will be triggered and your ventless gas fireplace will not turn on or run to prevent a hazardous situation and release of carbon monoxide.

Further Safety Tips for Ventless Gas Fireplaces

Manufacturer guidelines for your ventless gas fireplace will include more safety tips for your particular model, but there are some general rules of thumb to follow for safety.

Ventless gas fireplaces should never be installed in bedroom or rooms that do not have a sufficient amount of square footage.

You should also not run your ventless gas fireplace for more than two hours at a time.

Make sure you to follow these guidelines if you choose to install a ventless gas fireplace and any other specific tips mentioned in your user's manual. 

For more peace of mind, you can install a low-level carbon monoxide detector near your ventless fireplace, but the most important tip is not to run your fireplace for over two hours.

If you have any other questions on purchasing a ventless gas fireplace, contact us and we'd be happy to help! 

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