How to Install a Gas Fireplace

In terms of auxiliary heating, style and atmosphere, and sheer coziness, it’s extremely hard to beat a gas-powered fireplace. However, choosing to install a new fireplace in your home is a considerable investment, and one you most certainly want to get right. Should you install a gas fireplace yourself? At Breakaway, we believe that this is something that should only be performed by a professional. In this blog post, we will discuss how to install a gas fireplace and why you should always turn to the gas fireplace experts, like Breakaway, when searching for a gas fireplace installation on Cape Cod, MA.

Top Considerations When Installing a New Gas Fireplace:

Choosing Among the Different Gas Fireplace Types

Gas fireplaces are broken up into a few categories. When looking at how to install gas fireplace, you will have to choose between one of these popular options:

Vented gas fireplaces

Vented fireplaces typically use existing chimney pipes or vents in your home in order to provide you with a functional, heat producing fireplace. This is the most popular option for homeowners that want additional home heating but would prefer to not have to maintain a stock of wood fuel.

Vent-free gas fireplaces

Because they require no additional venting aside from what the room provides, there’s basically no limit to where these can be placed. Keep in mind, however, that ventless fireplaces are legally capped at 40,000 BTUs at the very top end. Much of the time, ventless fireplaces are chosen less for heating and more for decorative and ambience purposes.

Gas logs

Gas log fireplaces are built to simulate the real deal, adding the look of real wood and flame with none of the hassle.

Gas fireplace inserts

These fireplaces can be installed nearly anywhere depending on your needs. And, they come in a massive range of appearance styles.

Both gas log fireplaces and gas inserts are available in direct vented and vent-free styles!

Related Blog Post: Vent-Free vs. Direct Vent Gas Inserts: Which One Is Right For You?

How Can You Size Your Gas Fireplace?

How to size a fireplace is largely dictated by two factors: How much heat you’re looking to add to your home, and where you want the fireplace installed. If you’re working with a pre-existing fireplace for a wood-to-gas conversion, this is very easy, as simply taking accurate measurements of your fireplace will provide you with the dimensions you need.

For heating, a good—but very general—rule is to aim for 40 to 45 BTU per square foot you are trying to heat. However, when sizing for heating, it’s important to consult with an experienced and qualified HVAC or heating contractor to get an accurate measurement of what your home needs.

Where Should You Install Your Gas Fireplace?

So, where is the best place to install a gas fireplace? One benefit of a gas fireplace is that they may be installed in a wall or a corner inside the home. They don’t have to be installed in a chimney. Or, you could use a bump out or doghouse to not use up floor space.

Gas fireplaces can be traditional and use logs. They can also be contemporary, or linear, with glass media or stones. Traditional gas fireplaces tend to be at floor level, while contemporary gas fireplaces may be at eye level like a picture hanging in a room.

Are There Any Limits For Where You Can Install?

In Massachusetts, there are limits on where you can install vent free gas fireplace devices. These limits include:

  • There must be a primary source of heat already in that room (baseboard or ductwork)
  • Gas fireplaces cannot be installed in a bedroom or bathroom
  • The room size must be large enough for the BTU capacity of the gas fireplace.
  • There are certain clearances to combustibles in the room that must be met.

This is another reason why it’s best not to try to learn how to install a gas fireplace yourself without consulting with a heating professional or HVAC company, like Breakaway. We are aware of all regulations in the state of Massachusetts, and any other regulations in your specific Cape Cod town. We’d be happy to give you a recommendation to start you on your fireplace installation.

How Does the Gas Fireplace Installation Process Work?

Even though the term “insert” might make it seem like a gas fireplace installation is simply plug and play, the process should only be handled by an experienced heating contractor. If you Google “how to install a gas fireplace”, you will find a lot of articles and videos with DIY instructions for installing your own gas fireplace. We highly advise you to not try to install a gas fireplace yourself. This is because installation involves a few processes that require a large amount of precision and knowledge, including:

Running an electrical line

Gas fireplaces utilize electricity for temperature control, ignition, and for any additional features like internal lighting. Proper dedicated circuitry is a must!

Installing gas access lines

Propane gas fireplaces need access to your installed propane tank. This can be a very dangerous job for a layman, so leave it to a pro please.

Correctly mounting the gas fireplace

The actual mounting installation is honestly not all that complicated. However, it does demand precision. At the end of the day we’re talking about a product that produces gas-fueled fire. Mistakes can lead to property damage and injury.

The right venting components

Most gas fireplaces list the approved venting components in its instruction manual. It’s vital that only those components be used, correctly, to ensure safe fireplace operation. In addition to utilizing the correct parts, it’s crucial that they are setup to vent outside your home correctly.

In addition, when installing a gas fireplace, you should have a builder or carpenter frame the unit. They should also help you with any trim work, as your typical HVAC company probably will not perform those duties.

Related Blog Post: Gas Fireplaces vs. Gas Inserts vs. Gas Logs: What’s the Difference?

Breakaway is Cape Cod’s #1 Gas Fireplace Company!

The Breakaway team absolutely understands both the value, and the concerns of installing a gas fireplace in a Cape Cod home. With top-class options from leading brand names, and a dedicated team of fireplace product experts, we are your superior source for gas fireplace installation. Whether it is a gas fireplace, gas insert, or gas log set, we have the right heating product for you.

Have any questions about how to install a gas fireplace in your home? Then, contact our team online to find out more, call (508) 398-3831, or visit us in person at our South Dennis or Mashpee stores to talk more about gas fireplace installation!

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Monday – Saturday: 9:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.
Sunday: Closed.

435 Rt. 134 South Dennis, MA 02660
Next to Mid Cape Home Centers

Phone: (508) 398-3831


Monday – Saturday: 9:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.
Sunday: Closed.

17c Trinity Place Mashpee, MA 02649
Next to Boston Interiors

Phone: (508) 539-1674