Gas Fireplace Troubleshooting: How To Do It?

gas fireplace troubleshooting

The gas fireplace at your home significantly controls the indoor temperature besides coupling up as a visually appealing centerpiece. However, when it comes to its operational efficiency, you need to look beyond its elegance and style. Deep within, you know that a malfunctioning fireplace can make your life miserable in winter.

Whether you are using natural gas or propane, the system would perform way better than a wood fireplace. Naturally, an increasing number of homeowners are embracing gas fireplaces. They also deliver value for your money since they burn longer.

Well, gas fireplaces come with their unique set of problems due to their unusual construction. At Hurliman Heating, we help our clients address these issues and troubleshoot gas fireplaces.

Gas furnace problems and routine maintenance

While a gas furnace lasts several years, you must ensure routine servicing and cleaning. Like any other appliance, your gas furnace would malfunction if you overlook routine maintenance. From our experience, we can tell you that most HVAC system problems stem from the homeowner's negligence.

Not all the issues with your gas furnace are as deadly as carbon monoxide poisoning. However, they do pose some inconvenience, which ultimately deprives you of the optimal performance of the system. This explains why professional HVAC experts recommend following up on the routine service schedule.

Common problems with gas fireplaces and how you can fix them

Now, we have explained some of the common gas fireplace issues. Working with the experts, you can troubleshoot these problems before they aggravate further.

     1. Unable to turn on your gas fireplace

Typically, you would be using propane or electricity to operate gas fireplaces. As the gas reaches the system’s pilot light, the flame gets lit by an internal electronic ignition system. In case you are unable to turn on your gas fireplace, it points to a possible interruption in the electrical or fuel supply system.

In case you are unable to turn your gas furnace on, here’s what you need to do.

Inspect the pilot light

An extinguished pilot light often turns out to be the culprit when you fail to turn your gas fireplace on. This can happen due to a fuel line interruption, a strong downdraft, or the accumulation of debris and soot. These issues can flame the pilot light out.

Most manufacturers instruct how to light the pilot light. You will find the respective set of instructions in the manual to light it once again.

Inspect the circuit breaker

There’s a fuse in gas fireplaces that controls the electronic ignition system. The circuit breaker may have tripped following a power surge. This can interrupt the functioning of your fireplace. You simply need to flip the circuit breaker to the ‘On’ position to resolve this issue.

Inspect the gas valves

Your fireplace has a gas valve; if this is turned off, there will be no gas supply to the system. So, inspect the gas valve to ensure that it is open. You need to set it in the ‘On’ position.

Inspect the gas line

It’s imperative to check the propane tank valve, as this should be in the open position. The tank should have adequate gas to keep the system burning. In case you have a natural gas line, keep the main shutoff valve in the open position.

Now, if you find the system not delivering gas despite the main gas line being open, contact the local gas supplier. The company should check where the supply got interrupted and restore the same.

     2. The igniter of your gas fireplace isn’t sparking

If you are unable to ignite your fireplace even after the pilot is lit, you might have a defective or dirty igniter. You did away with any debris or dirt lying between the igniter and the thermopile or thermocouple to fix this issue.

     3. Low gas flow

In case the burner is faulty or clogged, you may encounter performance problems in your HVAC system. This can result in a low gas flame, which would prove inadequate to heat your interiors. The functional ability of the burner can also be compromised due to the accumulation of debris, gas residue, or carbon. All these problems can amount to premature failure of your gas fireplace.

In case the problem persists even after you get the burner cleaned, you may have to replace it.

     4. Uncomfortable odor from the gas fireplace

With a gas fireplace, be prepared to experience a slight odor. This might be similar to factory chemicals or the smell of burning paint. This odor might last for some time and then fade away.

However, if the smell is similar to that of a rotten egg, the HVAC system might have a gas leak. Contact the local gas company immediately and evacuate your home.

Also, you might have an uncomfortable odor in your fireplace due to the presence of soot, small animals, and debris. The presence of moisture in the chimney or vent can also emit this type of odor. Sometimes, gas fireplaces pick up common scents in your homes, such as the ones present in household cleaning products, cigarette smoke, and pet dander.

Reach out to Hurliman Heating for a professional gas fireplace cleaning service, and we will take care of your discomfiture.

     5. Unnatural sounds from your fireplace

At times, gas fireplaces might emit strange noises that are loud enough to alarm you. These generally include shrieking or grinding noises. In these situations, we recommend replacing the system’s blower. We also clean the burners and adjust the flame in case you encounter low rumbling sounds from the system.

Endnote

Overlooking the routine maintenance service for your gas fireplace might also lead to problems with the burner. In these situations, you might try and set the thermostat properly. However, if the problem stems from dirty burner jets or pilot light orifices, you would need a professional hand from us. Besides troubleshooting your gas fireplace, we would examine the circuitry to make sure that the system gets adequate voltage. If you encounter any issues with your HVAC systems, reach out to us for affordable support and services.