How to Clean your Gas Fireplace

Flip a switch, or press a button, and you can enjoy the warmth and coziness of a roaring fire in a gas fireplace. No ash and soot means these clean-burning appliances don’t need as much maintenance as conventional wood-burning fireplaces. 

That said, you’ll still need to maintain your gas fireplace if you want to keep it functioning properly.

Get regular inspections

First, it’s advised that you have your fireplace inspected by a certified gas service provider at least once a year. Gas fireplaces can be expertly cleaned by the technician, who can also look for gas leaks, make sure the fireplace is venting correctly, and spot any potential safety issues.

You can also clean your own gas fireplace in between yearly inspections. 

Dirt, dust, and other residue can accumulate over time, especially if you use your gas fireplace frequently, leading to musty smells or glass doors that appear milky or foggy. 

Here’s how to clean a gas fireplace if the inside or glass of your fireplace appears dirty.:

Over time, the gas logs and burners in your gas fireplace can get dusty and dingy, making it look dirty. In addition, poor ventilation brought on by a blockage can make it challenging for carbon monoxide fumes to leave the house. 

For safest use, your glass enclosure should shut securely. Make sure that the flame quickly lights up a bluish color, which tells you that there are no obstructions in the exhaust vent.

Cleaning frequency

Even though gas fireplaces don’t burn wood or produce smoke, they still need to be cleaned once a month, even when they aren’t in use. 

Cleaning frequently allows you to check the system for damage and prevents dust and dirt from accumulating and damaging mechanisms. 

Use a non-ammonia based glass cleaner to clean the glass enclosure of your gas fireplace.

Tip:  Spend an extra minute checking the batteries in your carbon monoxide detector while performing routine maintenance on your gas fireplace. The test button on most detectors allows for a quick battery check.

First, Turn Off the Gas

Turn off the gas before you do anything. The gas valve next to the fireplace should be completely shut off. Before starting any work, make sure the pilot light is completely out. 

All of the gas will be able to safely exit the piping thanks to this precaution. Check that all of the fireplace’s parts are completely cool before cleaning if it has recently been used.

Tip: Before disassembling the fireplace, think about taking a picture of it to help you remember where everything goes.

Next, clean the fireplace interior

Dust and dirt should be gently brushed off of each log or decorative element using a hand broom or soft paintbrush. Never mist water or cleaners onto the parts of a gas fireplace. While cleaning, look for any cracks, holes, or disproportionate burn marks in each log or piece. Clean the burner unit of debris, and check each vent hole for any accumulation that might obstruct the flow of gas.

Using caution around the grates, decorative stones, and other components, carefully vacuum up any dirt or dust that may be present inside the fireplace. 

Before vacuuming, take care to remove any stones or rocks that are small enough to be sucked up by the vacuum. Replace the logs inside the appliance after lightly dusting them off.

Note: Your gas fireplace’s fake logs and rocks may, over time, fade, wear, or crack. If there are any indications of damage, replace these parts right away. Also, call a professional if you see any indications of excessive moisture, cracked paint, stains, or other damage near your fireplace or chimney.

Polish Glass or Metal

Glass doors on many gas fireplaces are susceptible to clouding from combustion-related particulates. The glass can avoid getting permanently etched with regular cleaning. In addition to making your own cleaning spray with vinegar, you can purchase a fireplace glass cleaner at your neighborhood hardware store.

Spray the cleaning agent on the surface, give it some time to work, and then wipe away the dirt and film with a soft cloth. Never use an abrasive lye- or ammonia-based oven cleaner, or a window glass cleaner.

Use the upholstery brush on the vacuum to clean both sides of any metal screens or mesh curtains you may have to get rid of dust. For glass and metal enclosures, dust can be removed by wiping the edges with a cloth that has been dampened with water.

Check the glass doors’ rubber gaskets for any signs of deterioration or cracking. Replace the gasket if you notice any damage.

Wipe Down the Mantle and Hearth

Dust and soot should be removed from the hearth and mantle. Dust surfaces with a soft cloth and pay close attention to soot removal instructions depending on the type of surfaces you have.

Reassemble the gas fireplace

Replace the outer glass or screens after cleaning the burner, logs, and stones, then once everything has been put back in place, reopen the gas valve.

Check Exterior Vents

Finally, check the exterior vents, looking for signs of animal nests or leaves that are blocking exhaust.

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