Fireplace converted to gas - can I burn wood?

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FarmSun

New Member
Aug 11, 2022
14
Santa Barbara
Hello All,

Brand new to the forum - looks like I found a great place! I'm obsessed with burning wood, in the house and out of the house (safely). I just got a 1/4 cord of seasoned oak to burn in my firepit in the backyard.

Here's my question. The fireplace in my home was converted by a previous occupant from wood to gas. I really don't like the gas burning experience - sounds like a helicopter and makes me feel like I'm on cocaine. (at least, what I imagine that's like)

Can I simply pull out the fake logs and burn wood on the grate? The logs are not all stuck together - I could pull them all out - and then it has the propane burner beneath the gate kinda buried in small rocks. See pics.

I realize that the nice rocks underneath would get covered in ash etc. I think what I would do is clear them out and probably cover the propane burner with slate or something if posible to protect it (I'm renting, so would want to restore it as much as possible later).

I would think that whoever converted it (a professional company) just left the vent/flu the same? (or no?) ..

Thanks in advance for helping me out.

L

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begreen

Mooderator
Staff member
Nov 18, 2005
96,479
South Puget Sound, WA
We can not say from a distance whether the fireplace and chimney are safe to burn wood. This will need a proper eyes-on-site inspection by a qualified professional. It should also be cleared first with the landlord. The home may not be insured for a wood-burning fireplace.
 

vbu

Burning Hunk
Mar 3, 2019
157
MS
If I'm reading this right you're wanting to cover up the propane burner, and burn wood over top of this? Sounds like a bad situation waiting to happen.
 

bholler

Chimney sweep
Staff member
Jan 14, 2014
30,288
central pa
Hello All,

Brand new to the forum - looks like I found a great place! I'm obsessed with burning wood, in the house and out of the house (safely). I just got a 1/4 cord of seasoned oak to burn in my firepit in the backyard.

Here's my question. The fireplace in my home was converted by a previous occupant from wood to gas. I really don't like the gas burning experience - sounds like a helicopter and makes me feel like I'm on cocaine. (at least, what I imagine that's like)

Can I simply pull out the fake logs and burn wood on the grate? The logs are not all stuck together - I could pull them all out - and then it has the propane burner beneath the gate kinda buried in small rocks. See pics.

I realize that the nice rocks underneath would get covered in ash etc. I think what I would do is clear them out and probably cover the propane burner with slate or something if posible to protect it (I'm renting, so would want to restore it as much as possible later).

I would think that whoever converted it (a professional company) just left the vent/flu the same? (or no?) ..

Thanks in advance for helping me out.

L

View attachment 297774 View attachment 297775 View attachment 297776 View attachment 297777
It is possible but you need a full inspection and all of the gas components and gas line will need to be removed.
 

FarmSun

New Member
Aug 11, 2022
14
Santa Barbara
We can not say from a distance whether the fireplace and chimney are safe to burn wood. This will need a proper eyes-on-site inspection by a qualified professional. It should also be cleared first with the landlord. The home may not be insured for a wood-burning fireplace.
Got it. Thanks.

If I'm reading this right you're wanting to cover up the propane burner, and burn wood over top of this? Sounds like a bad situation waiting to happen.
Ok
 

FarmSun

New Member
Aug 11, 2022
14
Santa Barbara
It is possible but you need a full inspection and all of the gas components and gas line will need to be removed.
Got it. Why would the gas line need to be removed? I was at a retreat center once that had a propane burner beneath the wood in a fireplace. We used it to get the wood burning, and then turned it off. I suppose I assumed that this was normal since I was a kid and it was a retreat center (IE legitimate). Based on comments in this thread, it seems mixing propane and wood is not a good idea? ..
 

FarmSun

New Member
Aug 11, 2022
14
Santa Barbara
PS I think I will try to contact the company that did the conversion and see if they did anything to the chimney etc. Does anyone know if they typically alter the chimney when doing a gas conversion? .. My guess is they might permanently fix the flue open, since it needs to be vented as a gas fire (?) ..
 

begreen

Mooderator
Staff member
Nov 18, 2005
96,479
South Puget Sound, WA
The fireplace may have been converted to gas for a number of reasons. Convenience, ease of use, and less mess may have been the reason. Or it may have performed poorly as a fireplace. But safety might also have been a concern, especially if the chimney interior is degrading. It will take a full inspection of the chimney and fireplace to determine if it can return to wood service in its current condition after the gas line has been capped and turned off.