One of the gifts we got for the house this Christmas was gas logs for the fireplace. We had been burning the artificial logs to be able to have a fire and keep the mess to a minimum. The artificial logs were not even close in comparison to a real wood fire, both in the heat given and the look of the fire. I didn’t like burning wood because of the mess. There would be wood splinters from bringing the wood into the house and building the fire. There was also the mess of ashes the day after.

The logs provide a much more realistic fire. The size and color of the flame is good. The amount of heat that is generated is really nice. The logs are rated to generate 34,000BTU’s. That is roughly 1/2 the size of the furnace for the whole house. And to top it off, there is no mess and no fuss. When we want to start the fire, just grab the remote and press on. The setup I choose included 7 logs. I liked the 7 log setup over the 5 log placement. The 7 logs placement had 2 additional logs stacked across the top at an angle. To me this setup provides a much more realistic looking stack of logs. The logs generate so much heat that the stone work surrounding the fireplace absorbs the energy. For a few hours after turning the fireplace off, the stone work continues to throw off heat into the room.

Installing the fireplace took about 8 hours from start to finish. The hardest part of the job was to drill a 1″ hole through the side of the fireplace to run the gas pipe through. Using a hammer drill it took about 3 hours. At one point the bit grabbed the brick and spun the drill. The 1″ drill bit was bent out of shape when the bit grabbed. I had to use a 2lb hammer to coax the bit back into a straight shape. Running the pipe was time consuming, but it was physically and mentally easy. The pre cut sections of black gas pipe from Home Depot really makes the job easy.

The one unexpected task was that I had to relocate the thermostat for the forced hot-air furnace. The thermostat was in the family room with the fireplace. When we had the fireplace turned on, the family room temperature quickly rose to about 77 degrees. This caused the rest of the house to not have heat. I had to run a new thermostat wire to the other end of the hallway down by the bedrooms and remount the thermostat. Since relocating it we haven’t had an issue with the heat being balanced.