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Q&A venting non-vented logs

Post in 'Questions and Answers' started by QandA, Jun 17, 2007.

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  1. QandA

    QandA New Member Staff Member

    Joined:
    Nov 27, 2012
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    Question:

    Our house is heated with a 2-zone heat pump (rather cool pump!) system. Thank goodness the past few winters have been mild. Even with the mild winters, the family room stays quite cool. It is about 400+ sq. ft. with a cathedral ceiling and has a large stone fireplace which we use on weekends to keep it warm. The fireplace has a fresh air vent under the firebox and the damper opening can be varied as opposed to being either opened or closed. My dilemma is this...my 84 year old mother-in-law stays with us on weekends and most of the day is in the family room. We would like to install gas logs but my husband is concerned about fumes/odors. His mother is somewhat asthmatic. Since the fireplace has a fresh air supply, can we use unvented logs and slightly open the chimney damper to allow any fumes to escape through the chimney without losing too much heat? I have not found a local dealer who knows anything about partially vented logs. An insert would be ideal, but the stone face of the fireplace is stacked stone, so there is no way to seal it. A custom insert would probably be needed and would be very expensive.



    Answer:

    Vent Free logs may not be good for the indoor air quality. And if you open the damper, you'll be placing most of the heat up the chimney. Sort of a tough situation...if the smell goes up the chimney, so does most of the BTU's and also some of the sir you already paid to heat in the room.

    You could use a small gas "hearth stove" which fit in or in front of the fireplace and vented up it. These look nice and heat well. Also, an insert might not be too bad..some of the panel can be custom made for a small up-charge.

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