Why Does My Gas Fireplace Have Soot?

December 27, 2016

Having a fireplace in your home is something that most people find cozy. From using it for warmth to just as an ascetic piece, it’s a great addition to any home. Newer homes are typically being installed with gas inserts; these inserts if installed properly are much more practical, since they do not require some of the maintenance that is required with a wood burning fireplace. However all fireplaces need to be inspected and cleaned yearly to ensure safety and that the fireplace is still up to code. While wood burning fireplaces do not build up creosote, they do build up gases and soot which can still be as dangerous as creosote.

What’s Causing the Soot Buildup?

Soot buildup can be caused by several different factors, some of the more common ones are:

Ceramic Logs that have been improperly installed or that have shifted can interfere with the flame path causing the gas not burn clean or properly. Ensuring your logs are installed according the manufactures instructions can prevent this issue.

Clogged Ports on the gas burner, which can cause the gas to not burn fully or cleanly, causing a buildup of soot to occur. If you suspect clogged ports, having your ports cleaned according to the manufactures instructions can alleviate this issue.

Improper Airflow can cause excessive buildup of soot. Cleaning the air vents and ensuring they are unobstructed can prevent this issue.

Eventually old age will begin to deteriorate the burner. When this occurs they will begin to emit gas in a different manner then when new and the combustion of the gas can be incorrect causing soot to build. Fire logs can also crack or break causing issues similar to being installed incorrectly.

Your gas regulator needs adjusted or was installed improperly. If you suspect this issue, contact your gas supplier to ensure there is no issue.

All of these issues are either preventable or repairable and should be corrected as soon as they are found. Making sure your gas fireplace is cleaned and inspected can not only prevent soot which can stick to your walls and windows of your fireplace, but prevent safety issues such as carbon monoxide poisoning, and combustion of soot which could cause a chimney fire. To see about getting either your gas or wood burning fireplace inspected feel free to contact us anytime.