• Active since 1995, Hearth.com is THE place on the internet for free information and advice about wood stoves, pellet stoves and other energy saving equipment.

    We strive to provide opinions, articles, discussions and history related to Hearth Products and in a more general sense, energy issues.

    We promote the EFFICIENT, RESPONSIBLE, CLEAN and SAFE use of all fuels, whether renewable or fossil.

saskroller

New Member
Oct 8, 2021
4
Saskatchewan
Hi all. I am looking for some suggestions and/or info on a situation I am dealing with in my home.

I have a Regency freestanding U27-NG1 natural gas fireplace that is about 20 years old. It was direct vented horizontally through my living room wall, through an existing masonry chimney and out to the outside. The problem is, this was never to code. The horizontal pipe was too long. This work was done to the home well before I bought the house, and I discovered this issue about 1 month ago when I was servicing the fireplace for an unrelated reason. Now I don't have a fireplace hooked up in my living room.

The guy I brought in wanted to demo my chimney and the wood covering in order to direct vent horizontally, but that is a big job. My 2-storey home is quite tall. I am hoping to utilize the existing chimney instead of need to do a bunch of exterior construction.

I am wondering if there are models of fireplaces that have a rear direct vent that can be routed vertically using the existing chimney. I am posting here to see if anyone else has had a similar experience. I have also reached out to Regency about fireplace models that meet my needs, and I am waiting to hear back.

Any suggestions or info you folks can provide will be much appreciated.
 

DAKSY

Full Time RVer
Staff member
Dec 2, 2008
9,099
Wherever we're parked
Regency makes Gas Fireplaces that can be Direct Vented thru masonry chimneys.
Without knowing the dimensions of the existing masonry structure, it's difficult
to say what will work.
Why rear vent?
Why not vertical?
Have you considered gas inserts instead of fireplaces/stoves?
 

saskroller

New Member
Oct 8, 2021
4
Saskatchewan
@DAKSY Thanks for the quick response. A little delayed on my reply here but...

I have a chimney but no fireplace. The original owners put in a pellet stove, and I assume built the chimney for it. Are fireplace inserts usable without an existing fireplace to be inserted into? For instance, could I build a wood frame for the insert, and then run the vent pipes into the chimney? Not sure if that's allowed and my online searches aren't giving me much. I have attached some images of my current set up and the chimney from the outside.

My hesitancy on vertical/top vent is that the pipe will need to be bent with an elbow, and as you can see in the pics, I have limited space above the fireplace as I have a mantle on top. It looks like this is the most likely course of action though, since not many freestanding stoves are out there with rear vent that provide enough BTU for my space. This heater will heat a roughly 1400 sq ft downstairs, with the rising heat providing warmth to my upstairs as well.

Any more info, commentary or ideas you have would be appreciated.

IMG_6506.jpg IMG_6507.jpg IMG_6511.jpg
 

saskroller

New Member
Oct 8, 2021
4
Saskatchewan
Bite the bullet, and tear that chimney down. You will be glad you did...
Why tear down the chimney? Just curious why this is the best option, as opposed to running the direct vent through it.
My issue with ripping the chimney out is partly with the extra work it is going to take to cover the exposed part of the house (getting matching siding or equivalent for one). The chimney also carries up and bisects part of the roof, so I would also need to finish that section, take care of drainage and put down some shingles. It all seems like a lot of extra work when I have a functioning chimney. Just filling you in with some details, and would like to hear your thoughts on why ripping out the chimney is the best option. Thanks for the reply!
 

clancey

Minister of Fire
Feb 26, 2021
1,736
Colorado
Saskroller--in my not knowing much opinion here but by looking at your pictures and for safety reasons--I would bite the bullet and tear out the whole thing and sit back and decide how you want to go forward on it..Safety and your peace of mind knowing about the construction will be well worth it in the end..You could have many many choices on a heater at that time...You would not have to worry about fitting it in or back vents or sizes or btu's and the whole like...I have a chimney in a house that was built in 1926 and when I tore the walls out they used "pie plates" to seal up the holes over the years...I almost died from carbon monoxide coming into my house at night time that's why my uneducated suggestion...Why you could get a cup of coffee and a few friends and tear out that non functional dangerous apparatus in a day and seal it up and just sit and enjoy knowing that whatever you decide to put in there is safe and secure for your family and you would totally know the inner workings of it....I second the motion for safety reasons tear it out...old mrs clancey
 
Jan 9, 2017
139
Upstate NY
Why tear down the chimney? Just curious why this is the best option, as opposed to running the direct vent through it.
My issue with ripping the chimney out is partly with the extra work it is going to take to cover the exposed part of the house (getting matching siding or equivalent for one). The chimney also carries up and bisects part of the roof, so I would also need to finish that section, take care of drainage and put down some shingles. It all seems like a lot of extra work when I have a functioning chimney. Just filling you in with some details, and would like to hear your thoughts on why ripping out the chimney is the best option. Thanks for the reply!
The chimney is not centered. The chimney is not needed. You are going to spend a bunch of money anyway, might as well spend a little more and do it right.
I know that is easy for me to say, but it is the truth.
Not saying you couldnt put a liner in the chimney, or make a hole through it for the vent pipe, but it was mine, i would tear it down.