How Much Does it Cost to Convert a Wood Fireplace to Gas?
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Converting a wood fireplace to a gas fireplace is usually done for environmental concerns. Because it is in its natural form and requires little processing, natural gas is considered to be the most environment-friendly fossil fuel around. Not only is the natural gas environmentally friendly, but a gas fireplace also eliminates the need for wood. Although artificial logs can be purchased, most people use wood from trees that have been cut down locally, a growing concern for environmentalists. Environmental concerns are not the only reason for converting a wood fireplace to gas, however; there are also convenience reasons. Rather than having to take the time to get the fire started, keep it lit, and then cleaning up after, you can simply have a fire at the push of a button. When finished, turn off the gas and there is no clean up needed – much quicker and easier than a wood fireplace.
How much does it cost?
- According to Bromwellsthefireplacepeople.com, the cost of conversion depends on the type of gas fireplace you are going to install, and this could range anywhere from $500 to as much as $10,000.
- A gas log kit or vented gas logs could cost from $200 per set or $750 to $1,500 with installation. Add about $400 or more for the decorative branded ones.
- Vent-free gas logs go for about $200 at the least to about $700 for designer logs, or approximately $850 to $2,000 including the installation cost.
- A top-vented gas fireplace ranges from $600 to$3,500.
- Another option is the direct vent gas fireplace that cost from $850 up to more than $5,000 without installation.
- The most expensive type would be a gas insert fireplace that is placed inside the existing wood fireplace. This will cost $2,000 to $10,000 according to Hearth & Home of Syracuse Inc.
What is going to be included?
- The process of converting a wood fireplace can be very dangerous if you do not know what you are doing. Using the existing fireplace location, a gas line will be installed. All connections will be secured and a starter will be installed.
- Although the chimney will not be removed, it will be closed off so that no air flow is possible.
What are the extra costs?
- All types of gas fireplaces require that a gas line be installed from the meter or utility room. The cost for the line starts at $700 and rises depending on how far it must be run. To find a contractor in your area that can help with this sort of job, HomeAdvisor.com can help you find the lowest quotes.
- Installation costs vary for each type of fireplace. Generally, it will cost around $450 for gas log kits or $300 to $1,200 for top-vented ones.
- Pipes need to be added to a chimney or through a hole in the wall behind or above the existing wood fireplace to convert it. Cost of this service will depend on gas and electricity available in the home.
- A gas fireplace insert will also need the vent kit which will cost about $350 to $400.
- Tight-fitting glass doors need to be installed with gas logs fireplaces to keep the heat inside. Some cost as little as $700, but really airtight doors could reach about $1,700 making the cost of switching to gas logs reach $2,500.
Factors that influence the price:
- Aside from the type of fireplace, other factors that make the price vary are efficiency, heating capacity, and BTU’s.
- All types of gas fireplaces will have different prices for variations in size, style, accessories, and the length of gas line.
- Installation cost varies according to location, the choice of product, level of difficulty of the installation process, and additional accessories purchased. These accessories may include items such as remote controls, wall switches, blowers, and wall thermostats. Each of these accessories will require extra work, set up, and programming, which will in turn make the cost of installation rise.
Tips to know:
- Vent-free fireplaces give off more heat but there is also a higher level of exhaust retained inside the room.
- Gas logs are the cheapest choice but not a lot of heat is generated. This is because its damper is locked open for release of exhaust.
Questions to ask:
- What are your state laws on the types of fireplaces?
- Is there a gas line ready in the home and what is its length?
- What is your priority, heat or aesthetics? If you are actually heating your home with this fireplace, you will want to make different decisions than if you are simply trying to make your house look nicer.
How can I save money?
- Gas inserts may cost 4 or 5 times more than a set of gas logs initially; but, in the long run you can save a lot on gas because of its energy-efficient set up with clean air revolving indoors, and no worries about having the fire burning as long as you want.
- Usually, basic installation costs include a gas line work up to within 10 feet; so, place the fireplace within this distance to save on this cost.