We live in coastal NH and renovated out house a couple of years ago.
The one thing we miss from our old house is the fireplace and wood
stove. Without going into the difficulties of putting in a real
fireplace/chiminey in this house I have come to the conclusion that a
nice solution might be a gas fireplace.
My undertanding is that these are, or can be, ventless so I would not
have to worry about an external chimney. My fantasy would be to build
a stone wall in the middle of the wall with the fireplace in it and
hang the LCD screen above the mantle. The house was originally a
1920's bungalow and this is the original part of it, thus it has only
2x4 walls. So I don't know if weight would be a factor. I think I
could get this done for less then 5k.
Any advice on this idea? Things I might run into as roadblocks? What
should I look for when looking at gas fireplaces?
I like ventless, myself, but with cautions. Check your local laws
and insurance regs for the sizing requirements. For peace of mind,
install a CO/Explosive gas detector in the room.
I think you'll find that isn't isn't a good idea to put your TV over a
fireplace. Though not terribly extreme if sized right, there will
be more than the normal swings of temperature there; a tendency to
create a dusty draft; and a higher-than-normal humidity level. None
of which is good for a TV.
Thank you for the replies. Here is a picture of the house I am
My concern is the hight of the back roof. I want the fireplace to be
between the 2 side windows in the front room (lower peak). I haven't
checked yet, but I assume they will want the hight to be above the
second peak. You can see what that would look like. Not to mention
this is in an historic district and I would have to go through a lot
of hoops to make it happen, if it would.
But a totally interior solution would be somewhat painless, except to
my wallet. As for the danger, keep in mind this is an occasional
aesthetic use thing, not really a heat source. It would never be left
on overnight or unattended.
If it is just for aesthetics, then build a pocket wall to slide the
electric fireplace [they make them as realistic looking as gas] out
from in front of your TV, or vice-versa. Or build the TV into a
fireplace setting and run a fireplace video when you want ambiance.
OTOH- I think it is prudent for anyone who lives in the great
northeast to have a heat source ready for when the electricity goes
On Mon, 28 Jun 2010 12:36:24 -0700 (PDT), jtpr wrote:
Aside from all else that's been said, assuming that attending the fire
mitigates the CO danger is dangerous. Often the first symptom of CO
poisoning is passing out. At that point it's hard to do anything about it.
I'll defer to others as to the actual CO danger from a ventless heater, but
if you're in the least concerned about CO, being in attendance will not
protect you. In such a case you should use a CO detector or eliminate the
We have a real fireplace with ventless gas (propane) logs. Ventless logs put
out a lot more heat and are a lot more efficient than those designed to be
vented. Ours put out 35kBTU/hr, which is enough to heat the house if we lose
electricity. We use heat pumps for our primary heat, so this is a big
When we lived in Vermont we had a wood stove for backup and for those nights
when it was -25F. Fortunately we don't get those here in Alabama. ;-)
*Not* a good idea. Heat and electronics don't go well together. Also,
mantles tend to be too high for TVs anyway. It may look good in a magazine
but it doesn't work.
It was close to $1500 just for our logs, installed. The fireplace was already
there and plumbed outside.
They work well and are very efficient. I use one in my shop and it has been
Leave it as a fantasy. That is too high for a screen and you'll regret it
after while. There as some guides as to screen size and mounting height for
best viewing so check them out.
Saw the picture. Nice house. Looks well kept.
I'm not a fan of ventless. Basically you're breathing the conbustion
products. How well do you trust that you gas is 100% gas and nothing
else slips in?
You can install a vented fireplace that vents directly out a rear
wall. It does not have to go up. I have one at our lake house. The
vent is on the outside wall behind it. Funny thing is they built a
fake chimney above it. For curb appeal I guess. It also has a tv
space above it. It is a bit high but it's not too bad. Helps if you
have the fireplace directly at the floor level rather than up on a
For me, the issue is safety. The only CO monitor to buy is one that has a
constant digital readout. This will tell you if you have 5 parts or 205
parts. The screamers only scream when they reach threshold levels. With
the constant display models, you can fine tune a bit by opening a window, or
making a draft. A dumb thing to do when you are trying to heat, but some
fireplaces are just not very good at venting.
I have seen fireplace pipes where there are two pipes, one inside another.
One brings in fresh air, the other takes out combusted air. I don't believe
they give off a lot of radiant heat, but some do have blowers that catch
some of it.
Do your homework so you aren't installing a safety hazard, or something that
is going to cost 3x to yank and fix right. Do it once, do it right.
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A fool shows his annoyance at once, but a prudent man overlooks an insult.
If your house is real tight and you have condensation on the windows
now in winter it will get worse since Gas releases alot of moisture.
In a tight house you can make air unhealthy from combustion
byproducts. In some areas of Canada unvented heaters are outlawed and
thats what you will have , an unvented heater. I would get a stove
that can run gas and wood and vent it, and forget the LCD its a dumb
idea , you will cook the tv to an early death, and its to high for
proper viewing. Tvs should be eye level in the middle of screen where
you sit, not 6-7 ft up where you strain your head to see it. You are
thinking all about looks, not practicality and useage.
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