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Gas Fires Article


Welcome to the FireplaceStoreOnline.com article on Gas Fires.



Firstly, thank you for choosing Fireplace Store Online for your gas fire needs.


There are many types of gas fire, control, fuel, gas, chimney / flue, finish, running costs / efficiency & open / glass fronted fires available and this article aims to explain these to you in the clearest way possible.




Types of Gas Fire


There are two main types of gas fire. These are inset and outset. Each of these can then be divided into further sub-categories of conventional flue, balanced flue, power flue and flue-less.



Outset Gas Fires


Outset gas fires are the more traditional and sit on the fireplace hearth.  More recently, some outsets are also wall mounted (see below for example).




outset_1.JPG                          outset_2.JPG



Outset gas fires are ideal for where the depth inside your chimney breast is not large enough to take a inset gas fire.  They also generally have high efficiency and cheaper running costs than the more contemporary inset gas fires.





Inset Gas Fires


Inset gas fires are more contemporary than the outset fire and recess inside your chimney breast, so only the flame effect and frontage is visible.


inset_1.JPG            inset_2.JPG



Inset gas fires are available in numerous depths, from slimline which are up to 13cm deep to full depth which can be up to 31cm deep.  Making your choice, will be dependant on the available depth in your chimney and also the aesthetics of the gas fire.





Gas Fire Control Types



There are 4 different control types available, these are – manual control, slide control, touch control, remote control.  It is important to note, not all options are offered by all manufacturers




Manual Control



Manual control is considered to be the most popular, cost effective and the more traditional.




Slide Control



These are ideal for those people who find it too difficult to bend down to the manual control at the bottom of the fire or those who like to be able to light and control the fire more quickly.



slide_control_1.JPG                                   slide_control_2.JPG





Touch Control / Easy Flame Control



These are ideal for people who find it difficult to bend down, those with arthritis or those who like to be able to light and control the fire more quickly.










Remote Control



There are 3 types of remote control available. These are standard, thermostatic & sequential.








The standard remote control has a permanent pilot on the fire. The control will turn the gas fire on / off and turn it up / down providing the pilot light is already lit.




The thermostatic remote control is programmable to to your own needs. It turns the gas fire on / off, turns the heat up / down and allows you to program on / off times and the temperature at which you would like your room.  This control will allow you to light the pilot.




The sequential remote control is somewhere in between the standard and thermostatic. It allows you to light the pilot, as well as turning the fire on / off and the temperature up / down.





Fuel Types for Gas Fires



The most popular type is coal, however there is a vast array available including pebbles, stones, driftwood & logs.





fuel_types_1.JPG  fuel_types_2.JPG   fuel_types_3.JPG


fuel_types_4.JPG  fuel_types_5.JPG



Gas Type




There are two types of gas used in fires, Natural Gas (NG) and Liquid Petroleum Gas (LPG).



Natural gas is the gas that is piped directly to your house and comes through your gas meter and into your gas appliances.



LPG is bottled gas, which is often found in areas where no natural gas is available or in mobile homes and caravans.  Bottled gas (LPG) comes in many forms, from canisters of all sizes up to large tanks which are placed on your property.


 gas_type_1.JPG           gas_type_2.JPG





Natural Gas and LPG are under different amounts of pressure when connected to the fire and so the fires themselves are not interchangeable and it is really important you select the correct type when you order.




Chimney / Flue Types



For more details information, please see our Chimney article @






Understand Your Chimney


There's nothing more frustrating than setting your heart on a new gas fire only to discover that its not actually suitable for your home. To help you understand which fires are suitable for your home we have prepared a key to classify your chimney - outlined below. When looking through the product pages on this site you will see the same images used to indicate which types of chimney are suitable for that fire.





Brick Built Chimney - Class 1


The classic brick built chimney is suitable for all gas and electric fires and stoves. As these chimneys are deep you can choose a full depth gas fire through to the shallower slimline or electric products.





Pre-fabricated Flue- Class 1 or 2


Pre-fabricated chimneys are suitable for most gas and electric fires and gas stoves. Pre-fabricated chimneys offer a good depth so you can choose from the majority of full depth gas fires and all slimline gas and electric fires.





Pre-Cast Flue - Class 2


This flue is manufactured into rectangular hollow concrete or clay blocks that travel vertically, up through the cavity wall of your property, to a ridge vent or metal flue terminal on the roof. These flues tend to be very shallow in depth, although suitable deeper appliances may be able to be installed with the use of either a spacer kit or deeper rebate on the fireplace.






Power Flue


A power flue is an open fronted gas appliance with an electronically driven fan system either semi recessed or surface mounted on the outside of the wall to expel the flue gases and as such a sound is to be experienced when the fan is turned on. When the fire is not in use, some natural air circulation may occur through the flue terminal, which is quite normal.


There are two types of power flue options available, a rear flue or side flue for left and right applications in instances where it is not possible to rear flue through the chosen wall (conditions apply). It may also be possible to install a deep power flue gas fire for added realism, subject to the depth of rebate on a surround if applicable or if installed with a spacer kit where available.





Balanced Flue


A balanced flue is a glass fronted gas appliance, which is completely sealed from the room into which they are installed and vents directly to an outside wall. Air is drawn in from the outside for combustion purposes through the outer pipe. the inner pipe vents the combustion gases safely away to the outside of the property.


There is no electric supply required; hence no sound or natural draught is experienced as with a power flue appliance. There is also a choice of either outset or inset versions available.




Flue-less Fires


No chimney. No outside wall. No problem.


Flue-less gas fires are ideal for these situations, they have a catalytic converter in them similar to your car that turns the carbon monoxide produced into carbon dioxide.


They often require a minimum room size and also an air brick (additional ventilation) due to the way that they operate.


Please check before purchasing that you have the correct circumstances to install this type of product.


This is only a guide for your information only.


Any fire you choose please get you gas installer to check you have the correct flue type before you purchase the product.



Gas Fire Finishes




Gas fires are available in many finishes. These include :-


  •  Chrome
  •  Brushed Chrome
  •  Brass
  •  Antique Brass
  •  Gold
  •  Black
  •  Anthracite
  •  Silver
  •  Combinations of the above (i.e. brass & black)




Not all manufacturers provide all finishes and more finishes may be available from certain manufacturers.




Running Costs & Efficiency




You will see that most manufacturers show an efficiency percentage for their fires. This percentage shows how much of the gas used in the fire is turned into heat in your room.




So a fire with an efficiency of 50% means that half of the gas used by the fire is turned into heat in your room.




To work out how much it will cost you to run your fire, simply multiply the KW input of the fire by the KW unit cost from your gas bill. So if your gas costs you 4.2p per KW and the fire is 6.9KW input, then you multiply 4.2p x 6.9KW and this gives you 28.98 pence per hour.




Based on this, if you were to run your fire for 4 hours per day, then it would cost £105.77 per year in gas to run it.




Open / Glass Fronted




Open fronted fires are generally less efficient and normally up to circa 60% efficient.  However manufacturers like Flavel have launched new open fronted HE fires with efficiencies up to 71%.  Often open fronted fires are proffered by customers as there is no obstruction or reflection by the glass to the flames.




Glass fronted gas fires have become very popular in recent times due to there generally higher efficiency over open fronted fires.  They are up to circa 94% efficient. They do require slightly more maintenance (cleaning of the glass).  Some people prefer these as the glass protects items from being thrown inside the fire or anything falling out.