A word of warning when switching from a gas fireplace to a wood stove | MK Fireplaces

From: MKFireplaces
Published: Thu Jan 21 2010

More and more people are taking matters into their own hands and renovating and refurbishing their homes. However, there is a point where you need to call in the professionals when you are dealing with gas.

Its not just a case of pulling out the old gas fireplace and replacing it with a nice new shiny wood stove.

Mark says there is always the possibility of working with a qualified Gas Safe engineer, where the ambitious DIY builder can do most of the removal and building work but leave the closing off the gas supply and the technical removal of the gas fire and installation of the woodburner to the fireplace consultants to ensure the job is done as economically as possible yet safe and complying with current regulations.

Things like to cap off "at a safe distance" to the gas line (or remove the line) from the new installation and make sure the cap does not leak. This should only be done by a Gas Safe registered engineer.

Many gas fireplaces are what are referred to as ZERO Clearance. The fireplace itself is insulated only needing 2" - 4" of clearance from a combustible surface (walls, floor).

The installer needs to ensure the necessary clearances from the walls (typically 18" - 36" depending on the stove and heat shields) and a non - combustible for the stove to sit on (suggest 1" - 1 1/2" thick "Bluestone" or Vermont slate).

Gas appliances, such as an old fireplace, use a different type of chimney to that required by a wood stove/fireplace (wood stove/wood fireplace chimneys operate at higher temperatures than gas chimneys and are subjected to substantially more corrosive elements than a gas type chimney). It is more than likely the existing gas fire has a metal chimney (or liner if it is in a masonry chimney) designed for a gas fireplace..

At this point it is vital a qualified Gas Safe engineer should check the chimney to see what type it is. Plan on replacing the chimney/liner.
Always take the advice of a qualified chimneysweep he may suggested using NYLON brushes for cleaning the chimney instead of the metal wire type. The wire type can scratch the inside of the chimney, sometimes very badly. Creosote, and their associated acids collect in these scratches and corrode the chimney from the inside.

Remember when you come to sell your house you will need to produce documentation for your HIPs pack, You may need to show a HETAS Certificate for your sold fuel burner installation. Some insurance companies also require annual chimneysweep certificates.

MKFireplaces have over 15 years experience as fireplace consultants and are also Gas Safe Registered. They offer a free site survey to clients within a 20 mile radius of Milton Keynes. www.mkfireplaces.co.uk
Tel: 01908 566944

MK Fireplaces uses only Gas Safe registered and HETAS qualified engineers and installers.

Company: MKFireplaces
Contact Name: Mark Lloyd
Contact Email: info@mkfireplaces.co.uk
Contact Phone: 01908 566944

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