Decorations and Fireplace Safety

November 16, 2017 | Fireplaces

The Holidays are here, and no matter what you celebrate – Kwanzaa, Hanukkah, Christmas, or Festivus - it’s for the rest of us. Most of these celebrations include decorations. It’s important to brush up on your fireplace safety knowledge.
  • Don’t hang anything over the opening. Even on a fireplace with a screen, or glass. This includes: stockings, plastic greenery, and signage.
  • Consult your installation manual for clearances. Keep your decorations on, or above the mantel. Not draping over.
  • Your Christmas tree should be at least 3 feet away from your fireplace. Further if you have any rambunctious pets or toddlers that live for knocking things over.
  • Don’t throw anything other than wood in your wood-burning fireplace. Some of us are lucky not to have had accidents doing this in our childhood. But wrapping paper and cardboard boxes should not be burnt. Pieces could fly out and cause damage. Recycle those materials instead.
Our last piece of advice: If you’re looking to get a new fireplace, come by our showroom now. We (unsurprisingly) get very busy this time of the year. For your benefit, we suggest talking to us in-person and viewing our showroom fireplaces to get an early installation date. See our showroom hours. Click here for a quick guide on yearly fireplace maintenance.  

Why Choose a Gas Stove

November 2, 2017 | Fireplaces

Now that we’re getting into the colder months, a gas stove is the perfect choice for homeowners who want to upgrade their heating. Why?
  1. Less heat loss up the chimney. Gas stoves can be more efficient than a direct vent zero clearance fireplace because the body is exposed, rather than hidden in a wall. With a gas stove, any heat radiating from the body will flow into your home.
  2. Less construction. Direct vent fireplaces require an open wall with framing and a rough in inspection, you might not want to do that in the winter months. A gas stove does not require any open walls, only access through the roof, or the side wall, which can be made and patched up same day.
  3. More options for installation. You’re not as limited on where you choose to install a gas stove. Which means you can target high traffic areas of your home.
Free standing stoves provide the most benefits for those who do not currently have an older or non-working gas or wood fireplace. Some things to consider:
  • Space – if you’re worried about space, gas stoves come in different sizes; our smallest unit will heat up to 950 sq.ft.
  • Clearances to combustibles – like any fireplace, you’ll need to be aware of any combustibles near your stove. This includes: furniture, curtains, and carpet – carpeted areas will require a hearthpad.
Contact us for more information about adding a free standing gas fireplace to your home.  

Product Feature: Jotul GF 305

October 18, 2017 | Fireplaces

Jotul (pronounced: yo-tull) has been one of the top sellers of gas and wood stoves world-wide. Their free standing fireplaces are made of durable cast iron, and feature high quality fireplace technology designed to bring you the best in heating. Most of their units feature enamel options; and if they’re gas, interior media options as well. The newest addition to the Jotul line is the GF 305. Featuring a modern design, the 305 is available in white or black, and has a large fire viewing area for a unit of its size. The GF 305 is the first unit to feature the new ceramic Jotul Burner III, completed with a contemporary driftwood media kit. To learn more, visit our product page. Or, see the installation manual.

Product Feature: FireplaceX 42 Apex Wood Fireplace

September 28, 2017 | Fireplaces

FireplaceX has recently introduce the new 42 Apex wood burning fireplace. Armed with advanced technology, the 42 Apex is designed to deliver heat while being one of the highest performing and cleanest burning zero clearance wood fireplaces on the market. A massive 328 sq.in fire viewing area is just the icing on the cake. Some other unique features include:
  • Bypass damper for easy startup fires and smoke-free reloading
  • Easy to use single air control, artfully hidden in the face design
  • Perforated air wash for super clean glass
  • Unibody construction and heavy gauge steel firebox lined with kiln dried firebrick
Because of its flexible installation options, the 42 Apex could be installed within interior walls. It is best suited for new builds and bigger renovations. Contact us today to find out more about the 42 Apex wood fireplace from FireplaceX.

High Efficiency Fireplace Inserts

September 14, 2017 | Fireplaces

Get ready for winter! If this winter is like the last, we’re in for a head spinner. If you’re looking at buying a new fireplace, now is the time to do it. The weather is still warm enough that most people haven’t thought too much about it, but it’s cool enough for you to want to test your new fireplace before we really get into the colder months. We have over 50 fireplaces in our showroom, so if you’ve been mulling over a design style, or brand, come see them in person to help make up your mind. Most units will take 2-4 weeks from the time we order them, to the time we can get an installation date. Our inserts are the more popular units this time of year, we get a lot of home owners needing or desiring to upgrade their existing wood burning fireplaces to gas or replace their old inefficient gas inserts. Some fireplace that fit inside the average wood burning fireplace in the greater Vancouver area are: Valor Legend G3 Available in B Vent, or Direct Vent, the Valor G3 is a powerful heater that has the added bonus of looking great too! Select your desired media, liner, and surround for a complete unit suited perfectly to your style. Technical features include the standard remote control, and one of the largest turn down ratios on the market. Lopi Radiant Plus Medium Love this unit, but it won’t fit your space? The Lopi Radiant Plus is available in 3 sizes to suit your needs. What makes this unit special is the ceramic glass. With no reflections, the ceramic glass makes it look like you can reach in and touch the flames (don’t ever do this!) There are not many options to choose from, the Radiant Plus line features a traditional log media, and few surround options. Enviro E20 Armed with multiple media, liner, and surround options; the Enviro E20 is one of our more affordable fireplace inserts. You might think least expensive = cheap product, but that is absolutely not true. You can expect this unit to heat up to 1,200 sq.ft while maintaining an EnerGuide rating of 61%. All these units are available for viewing in our showroom, stop by and have a look! Click here to view more of our fireplace inserts.

Product Feature: Travis 42 Pro Builder

August 31, 2017 | Fireplaces

  Travis Industries has recently introduced the 42 Pro-Builder fireplace. It was designed with builders in mind. It is a low-cost unit, and doesn’t come with many options or accessories, but it does feature a clean look and linear design that will appeal to many homeowners . What makes this unit stand-out, besides the contemporary look, is that it comes with the great technology and performance we’ve come to expect from Travis Industries. Why bother installing a fireplace your clients aren’t going to be happy with? We often have customers who purchased condos with the “builders special” type fireplaces, their biggest complaints are that it gets too hot, and it looks like something from the 80’s. We believe that a 42 Pro-Builder is a great fireplace to replace the traditional builders fireplace. Notes The 42 Pro Builder is in production, but we do not have too much information to give. BTU’s in NG/LPG are 13,000-25,000/hr, and it can heat up to 1,250 sq.ft. Some optional accessories include: blower kit, basic wall remote, the unit comes with white crushed glass media, but can be substituted with any other colour. We have the installation manual in our showroom, come by and have a look at it to see if the 42 Pro-Builder is right for your project.  

Finishing Your Fireplace

August 10, 2017 | Fireplaces

Your installation manual will tell you what materials you should, and shouldn’t finish your fireplace with. It will tell you clearances for combustibles, including how high your mantle should be above your fireplace. What it won’t tell you, is how the cut of tile can affect your fireplace. Your fireplace will heat the finishing area around it. When choosing materials, such as tile, it’s best to make sure there’s adequate grout area. Or at least, separation between large tiles. If you choose to finish with one slab of marble (or a similar stone) the heat will move the tile slightly. This has resulted in broken tile; and unhappy homeowners. If you cut your tile into pieces (even larger pieces) your fireplace should be fine. In one case, we had installed a linear fireplace, it was finished with a single slab of granite surround by others. The granite cracked in the same spot multiple times. We only realized after the 3rd or 4th piece of granite was replaced that when the floors had been installed, they were on a little bit of a slant. So the granite had been installed with a gap to hide the unevenness of the floor, leaving about ¼ of an inch exposed. The heat got to this area and cracked the granite. The best way of avoiding these problems without sacrificing your wants is to opt for a fireplace with a large opening. The bigger the distance between the fireplace burner and the slab of tile, the better. Units to consider with a large opening are:

Valor H5

Town & Country TC54 FireplaceX 4237
As always, consult your manual, and talk to your sales person about your finishing materials. *The unit in our header is the DaVinci, a power vented fireplace with safe touch glass.

Planning your Outdoor Space for an Electric Fireplace

July 20, 2017 | Fireplaces

Planning your outdoor space can be a combination of fun and freaky. What colour theme should I go with? Why do I keep killing my plants? One thing you can always get right is adding an electric fireplace. Benefits of an Electric Outdoor Fireplace
  1. Provides ambiance Whether you’re planning a romantic night on the patio, or having a themed party, an electric fireplace comes with LED lighting colour options, to help you set the mood.
  2. Easier installation Electric fireplaces don’t need venting, gas line, or non-combustible framing.
What is needed for an Outdoor Electric Fireplace?
  • Power source Your fireplace will need to be located close to a power outlet.
  • Weatherproofing You need to protect your electric fireplace from the elements - especially in rainy Vancouver. A stainless steel cover is available for purchase and is required with the warranty.
Lastly, come to our showroom to see our collection of electric fireplaces, they are available in sizes ranging from 40”W - 88”W, with multiple media options to choose from.

Technical Terms: Pilot Lights

July 6, 2017 | Fireplaces

Most fireplaces will come with two options for your pilot light. We'll tell you the difference and help you choose which is right for you and your fireplace. Standing Pilot: Pilot flame remains in contact with the thermocouple or thermopile to keep it hot. This generates a small electric current, which keeps the main gas valve ready to light with a flip of a switch. Electronic Ignition: Electricity is supplied by a battery or 110V. This enables the pilot light to be lit each time the appliance is used. Is There a Cost Difference? Yes, typically an electronic ignition will be an added feature to a fireplace and cost a little more. But the money saved up by not having gas running all the time will typically recoup itself within 3-4 months.

Fireplace Clearances

June 22, 2017 | Fireplaces

Clearances refer to how far materials have to be from your fireplace. Most zero clearance fireplaces can have combustible materials (e.g. wood framing, drywall) touching the back and sides of the unit without fear of heat damage. Some fireplaces require non-combustible framing and finishing materials for installation (e.g. steel studs, cement board, Skamotec). Furniture, other soft furnishings, and draperies need to be 3 feet away from the front of all heat producing fireplaces. Mantels, and other finishing materials need to be a specific distance from your fireplace. A general rule is the more a mantel projects forward from the wall the higher it will need to be. A popular trend is hanging TV’s or artwork above a fireplace, this used to not be recommended. But there are new ways to make it safe and easy to hang a television above your fireplace. Read an article on Houzz about this design debate. Remember: It is important to consult your installation manual for all requirements. Valor HeatShift The Valor HeatShift System allows you to hang combustibles, such as televisions and art, above your fireplace. The airflow and venting technology transfers the heat above the fireplace. The HeatShift System is available with most Valor indoor zero clearance fireplaces. Up to 60% of the heat will rise up and flow through the HeatShift System and pushed back out into the room. This is done without the use of fans, and without the need for electricity. As the HeatShift dramatically lowers the temperature of the wall you can place your mantel closer to the fireplace. See the HeatShift System brochure. Enviro Heat Distribution Kit Available with their linear direct vent zero clearance fireplaces, the Enviro Heat Distribution Kit also makes it possible to hang a TV above a fireplace. The heat can be shifted above the unit, or to another room. The Enviro heat distribution kit does not change the mantel requirements. And is available with Enviro linear models only. See the Enviro Heat Distribution manual. For more information on clearances and your fireplace, contact us today.

Types of Venting for Wood Stoves

June 8, 2017 | Fireplaces

Wood stoves have always been a popular option for homeowners; for good reasons, too.
    • They have more flexibility in terms of where you install them
    • They can be more efficient than built in wood fireplaces
    • They often feature a design that makes a statement, whether you go for a more traditional look like Jotul, or a contemporary design like Stuv
One of the first questions we get is how wood stoves are vented. There are multiple ways to vent your wood stove, below we have listed our most common methods:
      1. Through an existing chimney
        • you can have your stove inside, or just in front of an existing masonry fireplace and use the chimney to vent
      1. Directly out the exterior wall and up
        • you can choose to leave the venting exposed or enclosed
        • your wood stove must be close to an outside wall to do this
      1. Straight up from the wood stove and out through the roof
        • there are multiple flashings available for all roofing types

Image from ICC-RSF

Wood stoves need to be vented upwards, with termination extending two feet beyond the roof line. Talk to us to see how we can help you add a wood stove to your home. See our list of wood stoves.

Focus Fires

May 25, 2017 | Fireplaces

Focus Fires are a line of wood fireplaces, available as free standing or direct vent, they’re more known for their free standing units. The designer, Dominique Imbert, was a philosophy teacher in the south of France, he gave up his teaching career to follow his true passion and created Focus Fireplaces. Each unit was hand-made by him. And today, his creations are featured all over the world. Vancouver Gas Fireplace is proud to announce that we have become a dealer for these world re-known fireplaces. We can’t wait to get started on our first project; below you’ll find pictures to some of our favourite projects. All pictures are available to view at the Focus Fires website.
Gyrofocus in Norway Norwegian Wild Reindeer Centre Pavilion (Dovrefjell National Park)
Gyrofocus in USA Guggenheim Museum, New York (1998)
Meijifocus in Wales In a dragon's eye that looks out over the sea
Filiofocus in Switzerland view on Leman Lake
Agorafocus 630 in Sweden Dreaming near the Baltic Sea
If you have a big project that could use a Focus fireplace, come see us and we’ll help you complete your dream. Lead time is estimated at 14 weeks. If you’re interested in learning more about Focus Fires, please contact us. Alternatively, we design and manufacture custom gas fireplaces for residential and commercial use. Take a look at some of our projects.

Update on City of Vancouver Gas Restriction

May 11, 2017 | Fireplaces

On May 1st, the restriction on natural gas went into effect. There was widespread confusion on what the ban entails, and as a result, Vancouver Gas Fireplaces had a few installation cancellations from Vancouver homeowners. We’ve learned the facts of the gas restriction, and have collected some resources to explain how it will affect Vancouver residents and businesses.
  • The new policy applies to any property that needs to be re-zoned
    • you can replace your current gas or wood fireplace
    • you can add a gas fireplace to your new build, as long as it wasn’t re-zoned after May 1st, 2017
  • This zoning policy only applies to those living within Vancouver city limits
We have a lot of people asking if this really is a big deal. The answer is yes. If a site is being re-zoned from SFD to commercial, or any variance, the property will no longer be allowed the freedom of choosing between Natural Gas or electric. This will affect:
  • New housing developments
  • Businesses; restaurants in particular
  • You
With less residents and businesses sharing the cost and transport of gas, the prices will go up. The bottom line is: a portion of Vancouver residents and businesses will be forced to pay more for electric appliances, while the remaining will have to pay higher costs to maintain gas lines and access to natural gas. Plus, this will hurt businesses and their employees. Learn what you can do at the Save My Natural Gas campaign website. Links to resources: Statement from FortisBC

Heat your Outdoors Effectively with Bromic.

April 20, 2017 | Fireplaces

Bromic offers a wide range of outdoor heating products. Gas and electric, flush-mount, overhead, and free standing. In fact, Bromic Platinum Electric is the only patio heater certified for flush-mount in the industry. Your outdoor area will get more coverage with less heaters with Bromic, which saves money over time.

Bromic_free-blog Tungsten Portable Heater

Bromic also offers a service that will help you plan how you heat your outdoor space. If you send us your patio design, we can send it in to Bromic and they will complete your layout with an effective heating map, including costs. Contact us for more information about Bromic Patio Heaters.

Bromic_private-blog Cobalt Electric Heater

Planning your Outdoors with VGF

March 30, 2017 | Fireplaces

Summer is almost here? Maybe it doesn’t look like it quite yet, but it’s time to get going on planning your patio or deck. We have a variety of products for both small and large outdoor living spaces. BBQ’s Portable, fueled by coal, and available in 7 sizes; the Big Green Egg is a big hit in our showroom. There are so many cooking accessories and stands to choose from – which is great especially when you’re dealing with limited space. Patio Heaters Whether you’re looking for a free standing, propane fueled heater, or an electric flush-mount, we have you covered. Bromic-blog-spring-2017 Most would think that patio heaters are for large outdoor spaces, but that’s not true. A small heater can be a great addition to an apartment patio, or a garage/workspace. Fireplaces and Fire Pits Outdoor fireplaces are a great feature piece for any outdoor setting; many are ventless, which makes it easier to frame and install. Outdoor fireplaces are available in gas, wood, electric, and ethanol – making the possibilities virtuously endless. We have a section on our website dedicated to fire pits, but we’ve found our more popular items are our custom designs. Come by our showroom and ask us how we can help you prepare your outdoor space!

Why Choose Vancouver Gas Fireplaces? Building Trades Edition

March 16, 2017 | Fireplaces

When you work in the building trades you usually want to have a reliable source for all of your essential needs. Somewhere to get your tiles from. Somewhere to get your doors from. Your floors. Your hardware. And your fireplaces. That’s where we come in. We carry a wide range of products for individual needs – electric, gas, wood, and ethanol. And when you’re helping someone design their dream home, it should include a well-designed fireplace from a trustworthy manufacturer. We only carry products that we believe in, and our sales staff work hard to provide the best solution for every customer. We have fireplaces for all kinds of applications, including B-Vent fireplaces for apartment renovations, ethanol and electric for spaces that don’t, or can’t, have access to a gas line. Whether your design includes traditional or modern design elements, we can find you a gas fireplace that will look great in any setting. If your client is looking for a high-end showcase direct vent fireplace brand like Stuv; or a high-performance, low-cost brand like Enviro. VGF has the unit you’re looking for.

blog-valor-G3-choose-vgf-trades The Valor Legend G3 comes with a variety of designs options to suit your clients style.

We recognize that metro Vancouver has a unique style, so we make sure our products can be versatile and fit in with modern, traditional, and transitional décor.

blog-FPX-430-choose-vgf-trades The FireplaceX 430 with contemporary driftwood log set and traditional brick liner.

Sign up to our newsletter to receive news about products and developments in the fireplace industry.

Product Feature : Stuv 30 Compact

February 16, 2017 | Fireplaces

New to the VGF showroom is the Stuv 30 Compact, a wood burning stove that comes on a swivel base; so you can have the flame views pointed in any direction. We anticipate this to be a popular unit. Why?
  • Clean contemporary look. Most people enjoy the overall ambience of a wood fire - but Metro Vancouver homes tend to be more on the contemporary side, and an old-fashioned wood stove doesn’t fit in with modern décor.
  • Advanced technology for a wood stove. The stove features a combustion air intake from under the unit, which passes through the combustion chamber, and is vented out through the side of the unit. The hot air is circulated through the room by natural convection.
  • Multi functional.stuv-blog-door With the 30 Compacts’ 3 door design, you can choose what function you want from your fire. 1. Leave the door and glass open for a less functional heater, but see and smell the fire. 2. Leave the door open, but glass closed for a more functional heater and see the fire. 3. Or, close the door and the glass for a slow burn, which optimises performance.
View the line of Stuv wood and gas fireplaces we carry at VGF. Come by our showroom to see the Compact 30 wood stove, or the B95C gas fireplace.

February 2, 2017 | Fireplaces

Product Feature: Bell Fires Room Divider We introduced a line of contemporary fireplaces from Bell Fires last year. Since then, we’ve installed these units in our showroom and all over the lower mainland. What makes Bell Fires a popular line is their look and the technology they possess – both make Bell Fires unparalleled in the fireplace industry. The Look The Bell Fires line features a clean contemporary look that can and will match with any style space. The large ceramic glass allows for a full view of the flames and log set, which are amplified with double burner technology. The dual burners will add depth, and make these units seem even bigger than they really are – without sacrificing space in your home. The Pier design makes this fireplace the perfect feature to separate a large space; or, alternatively, bring two spaces together. The Technology Bell Fires feature an array of technological advancements for fireplaces:
  • Unique venting system, their fireplaces aren’t true zero clearance, they require specific clearances. See the manual for details.
  • Double burner technology for added depth – turn one burner off and maintain 85% efficiency.
  • Safety system allows for possible overpressure to be released in a controlled way.
  • The off-centre flue makes it easier to leave the fireplace open – making your room more spacious.
  • Remote control with programming that allows you to ‘stoke’ the flames.
product-feature-room-divider-bell-blog We have the Vertical 3 featured in our showroom – come by and have a look!

January 19, 2017 | Fireplaces

Picking a paint colour for your room can be pretty daunting. Home-owner's tend to want to pick a colour they love, without thinking too much about their furniture or accessories. Here are 3 simple things to remember when selecting a colour palette:
  • If you have a brick or tiled surround, go for a complementary colour, to provide a cool contrast, pick a shade opposite your tile/brick (so if your tiles are dark, pick a light colour and vice versa)
  • Find colours that you have in your room through furniture and accessories
  • Have a great view? Look outdoors for inspiration
In honour of Colour of the Year for 2017, we decided to grab a few photos from our manufacturers and come up with colour palettes. Bear in mind that our colour choices might be limited more to neutral colours because we don’t have a view of the full room. But we hope this provides a glimpse into selecting paint colours.

blog-solara-colour-palettes Unit pictured: Solara II from Marquis

This bedroom has a lot of neutral colours, and a very beautiful, bold painting. The neutral colours might be the best option for doing the full room, but if you're considering a adventurous colour in a bedroom, it's best to paint one wall as a feature wall. The most common wall for this is behind the headboard.

blog-vertical-colour-palettes Unit pictured: Vertical 3 from Bell Fires

This unique fireplace allows for countless design ideas, we decided to highlight the shape with our showroom unit (pictured right) where we painted the wall black, and the ledge salmon - it is quite the colour combination, but we have received nothing but compliments. For best results, we would recommend a neutral colour for the wall, and your bold colour for the inner ledge.

blog-horizon-colour-palettes Unit pictured: Horizon from Valor

Even though this photo shows only a quarter of the room, you can see there are a lot of colours to choose from. A lot of neutral colours. This is probably a more difficult space to choose paint for, there's a lot going on indoors and out, personally, we think a grey/blue would work best.

blog-insert26-colour-palettes Unit pictured: Insert 26 from Amantii

For this large room, we selected a colour palette from the colours already shown, but because everything is so neutral and clean, the colour palette is so much wider than it appears from our small sample – especially if the one wall above the fireplace is painted to create a feature wall. To make selecting a colour even more difficult: the Amantii Insert 26 is an electric fireplace, which means it features LED lighting with multiple colour options; opening up the colour palette even wider! What would we do? Grey. It's modern, clean, and quite frankly we have never seen a grey wall we didn't like. We feature over 10 different paint colours in our showroom, as well as tile and stone options; this helps our customers get ideas on their dream fireplace. We can even offer finishing services! Contact us today about selecting the right fireplace for you and your home!

2016 in Review

January 5, 2017 | Fireplaces

2016 was a busy year! We saw the introduction of Stuv, Bell Fires, and Focus Fireplaces. As well as the Big Green Egg. With all the change-outs we do, our showroom gets a lot of wear and tear; so we painted our showroom and re-finished the floors. On to the Fireplaces! Our electric units got a lot of attention; well-deserved attention. Electric fireplaces aren’t at all what they used to be, they can feature an array of media option, and LED lighting with all kinds of colour options. Most feature a contemporary linear design, but we do have electric inserts, fit to go into an existing wood firebox. amantii-year-end-blog The reason electric units are so popular is because there is so much versatility in where they’re installed – which is great for condo owner’s, and homeowner’s who don’t want to do a complete renovation. Another option for easy installation are EcoSmart ethanol fireplaces, they’re ventless, clean-burning, and can be moved (certain models only, some heavy lifting required) if you want to change your layout. ecosmart-year-end-blog For gas products, our more popular items were inserts. There were a lot of people updating their homes, and they knew that a gas fireplace insert is the best way to do it. A new fireplace can completely change the look of a room, and if you’re not sure what style you want to define your space with, you can never go wrong with a traditional log set and contemporary front. valor-g3-year-end-blog

Holiday Hours

December 19, 2016 | Fireplaces

Our response to the Zero Emissions Building Plan

November 25, 2016 | Fireplaces

As many of you have heard, the City of Vancouver has passed a Zero Emissions Building Plan. Problem: This will increase costs in a city that’s already facing an affordability problem. Vancouver residents will have limited choices on the appliances they use in their homes and businesses. In the future, this could mean:
  • No gas fireplaces
  • No gas ranges
  • No gas barbecues
  • No gas furnaces
The elimination of these appliances will lead to job loss and force businesses (especially small, like ours) to downsize, or move to a less accessible location, or close up all together. Councillor De Genova has issued a Motion on Notice (B.1) that is being voted on November 29th, 2016. The motion moves to include natural gas as an acceptable form of energy in the Green Buildings report. We at Vancouver Gas Fireplaces support Councillor De Genova’s motion, as it allows choices for business and homeowner’s, and will not lead to job losses. Please email mayorandcouncil@vancouver.ca to make your voice heard! The vote takes place on November 29th, 2016.

Product Feature: Opti-Myst from Dimplex

November 24, 2016 | Fireplaces

An interesting addition to the electric fireplace line from Dimplex is the Opti-Myst. Featuring a smoke and mist effect, the Opti-Myst uses electrosonic technology and lights to give an illusion of a flame. Completely safe to touch, the Opti-Myst can be installed anywhere (with access to electric) and doesn’t require venting. Because it doesn’t emit heat, the Opti-Myst is 100% efficient. blog-opti-myst Design options are pretty much endless, multiple units can be combined to create on long, linear fireplace; you can make your Opti-Myst see-thru, single-sided, pier, corner, or whatever type you want. Add any kind of media to complete your Opti-Myst. View the flame from an Opti-Myst on the Woodland Direct youtube channel.

Quick Tips: Real Estate and your Fireplace

November 10, 2016 | Fireplaces

An old or non-working fireplace is a big turn-off for buyers, most will assume that because the fireplace has fallen into disrepair, then the rest of the home must have been neglected as well. Replacing a fireplace before selling doesn’t have to be such a big deal, we can help you pick a fireplace based on recent trends and functionality, and we can also help you spruce up your mantel and finishes – no need to spend too much time looking for a contractor. For Sellers:
  • Replacing a fireplace could net 11% return
  • There are many types and sizes of fireplaces to choose from
  • An updated fireplace will freshen your space up and make it more attractive to buyers
    • you can’t go wrong with a traditional brick liner and log set with a neutral surround
  • Some gas fireplace updates qualify for up to $300 rebate from FortisBC
  • We offer finishing services so you don’t have to spend too much time finding and hiring a contractor
For Buyers: Contact us for more information on how we can help you improve the ambiance of your home!

Product Feature: C44 from Enviro

October 27, 2016 | Fireplaces

Enviro Fireplaces have recently introduced a linear gas fireplace. You can expect the same great performance as with other Enviro products, but with a more contemporary look. There are multiple media and liner options so you can choose which look suits your space best. blog-c44-contemp-trad With 504sq.in of glass area, the C44 provides a full view of the beautiful media and liner (no matter what you choose), as well as the dancing flames, which reach impressive heights. blog-c44-flame The Enviro C44 will heat up to 1,700sq.ft, making this unit fit for quite a large area; an optional heat distribution kit is available, so you can send the heat to the areas of your home with the highest traffic. With an efficiency rating of 64.5%, the C44 is available for the FortisBC rebate. Conditions apply, contact us for more details.

October 13, 2016 | Fireplaces

There are a few fireplace retailers to shop at in Metro Vancouver, here are a few reasons why you should choose Vancouver Gas Fireplaces: About the Team Our sales and administration team act as a cohesive unit from the beginning to end, we’ll help you find the perfect fireplace, schedule a date for installation, and, if needed, provide you with finishing services. Products You won’t find ‘builder’s specials’ on the VGF website, we only carry medium to high-end brands, most will come with multiple design options to best suit your needs. View our list of manufacturers. Our showroom also boasts over 50 products, we have gas, wood, electric, and ethanol fireplaces for you to view, we’re not a one-size-fits-all kind of store. Gas Fitters We have gas fitters on staff and a number of sub contracted gas fitters who work with us on a regular basis. We make sure that they’re organized and, of course, the best at what they do. Extras We also design custom gas fireplaces and fire pits, in fact, we have a whole section on our site dedicated to our custom jobs. We take pride in our work, and offer unparalleled service with every job we do – whether it’s big or small. Contact us today to find out how you can update and revitalize your home with Vancouver Gas Fireplaces.

Fireplace Maintenance Tips

September 29, 2016 | Fireplaces

It’s that time of the year again! Keep your gas fireplace in tip top condition with these easy steps! Take your glass out and give it a cleaning Dust and debris can and will build up over time, to give your glass a good cleaning follow these easy steps:
  • Take the glass out
  • Use the cleaner that was given to you along with your fireplace purchase from us
    • OR, recommended product: Kel Kem
  • Using a soft, warm damp cloth, apply the cleaner to the glass
Never use harsh products like Windex or anything abrasive
  • To dry your glass, use a soft cotton cloth
Clean your log set We recommend using a very soft brush to gently remove the dust off your log set. Do not use a cloth, water, or vacuum cleaner. Check your pilot light If you’re having trouble getting your pilot light lit, consult your owner’s manual for directions. Check your batteries Batteries will be located in two places:
  • The remote
  • The receiver
Weak batteries in either device will make it harder to control your fireplace settings. Better to replace them both early on in the season. Consult your Owner’s Manual for instructions on replacing batteries If you have a gas log set, check the chimney for any obstructions, and make sure the damper is wide open. Otherwise, odours and smoke won’t go up the chimney, they’ll just settle into the room. Do a test run to burn off any excess dust, and to see that everything is running smoothly. And there you go! Your fireplace should be in working order for the upcoming winter season!

Feature Product: Stuv B100H

September 15, 2016 | Fireplaces

When looking at fireplaces, most homeowner’s will consider what media and finishes suit their décor. Are their interiors loaded with traditional, or contemporary fixtures? And how about re-sale; can they sell their home with a fireplace with such a defined appearance? We're focussing on the B100H from Stuv, it is a remarkable unit in both fireplace technology, and overall looks. Does it have style? The Stuv B100H gas fireplace has such a classic look to it, and features clean contemporary lines – Stuv products were designed to look amazing in all styles of homes; whether you enjoy a rustic atmosphere, or a modern interior. blog-stuv-100h What about functionality? Armed with one of the top gas fireplace technologies, the B100H features a wood-burner, which means it has 2 burners, one long in the front, and a short one in the back. This gives the unit a more realistic, campfire look. Too hot? Turn one burner off and maintain 80% efficiency. blog-stuv-100h-technical Come see the Stuv B100H in our showroom!

Bromic Outdoor Patio Heaters

August 17, 2016 | Fireplaces

Bromic heaters feature a sleek, new design – compared to traditional heaters, they have a smooth body and non-intrusive look. blog-bromic-all They will also heat more total area, with less units, saving you money; both in the short and long run.

blog-bromic-comparison photo compares Tungsten Gas 500 (left) with competitor (right)

The above photos are a comparison of Bromic Tungsten Gas 500 with a direct competitor – not only are the Tungsten’s less expensive, but because they have a bigger heating area, less units are required. These heaters aren’t just for commercial setting like restaurants, you can easily install a Bromic heater (most likely electric) on your outdoor patio, deck, or dining area. Great for late night entertaining! The Bromic product line features multiple types and styles of outdoor heaters. You can get a freestanding propane fueled portable heater, or mounted electric heaters – plenty of options to choose from. View the Bromic brochure. Ask us how much you can save with a Bromic product!

Electric Outdoor Fireplaces

August 11, 2016 | Fireplaces

An outdoor fireplace can bring so much to any outdoor space or patio, but sometimes they require more time, money, and effort to install. Amantii Fires have come up with a great solution. Electric Outdoor Fireplaces
blog-electric-aug-2016-BI72 blog-electric-aug-2016-BI50 blog-electric-aug-2016-BI72-room
Amantii has designed the Panorama line, a series that is rated for both indoor and outdoor use. While the outdoor version NEEDS to be purchased with a cover, these units are faster, cheaper, and easier to install. Media options include a variety of gem stones, crushed glass, fire & ice, and a contemporary log set. Ambient canopy lighting is also available in 13 colours, so you can really set the mood! blog-electric-aug-2016-BI40 The flame will operate without the heat, perfect for the hot Vancouver summer nights. But if it gets a bit cool, all Amantii units will heat approximately 400-500sq.ft. The Panorama series is available in deep and slim models, so they can be installed into walls with a lot of space, or walls with little space. Come down to our showroom to see the Amantii Panorama in person! Or contact us with any questions.

Big Green Egg

July 27, 2016 | Fireplaces

Powered by charcoal and air flow technology, the Big Green Egg is a powerful cooking machine! There is a grill, a smoker, and an oven all rolled into one durable, high powered BBQ. Featuring a double-wall and ceramic construction, the Big Green Egg is an efficient cooker that was built to last, and won’t rust like metal grills. The outside surface stays relatively cool to the touch, making it safer around children and pets. Armed with dozens of optional accessories, the Big Green Egg has the tools to cook multiple dishes at the same time. Extended racks means you can triple the capacity easily. See the Catalogue for details.

blog-big-green-egg-recipesClick the images above to see the Big Green Eggs' expansive list of grilling recipes.

Available in 7 sizes, you can be sure to find one that suits your needs. You can cook for hours without adding more charcoal. Unburned charcoal can be saved for the next cookout simply by closing the vents to snuff out the fire, saving you money! Come to our showroom to see the Big Green Egg in person, or email us for more info.

New Developments and Electric Fireplaces

July 14, 2016 | Fireplaces

Metro Vancouver is bustling with new condos, as developments are going up all over Metro Vancouver. But one thing we notice is very few of them have fireplaces. Our suggestion? An electric fireplace. We get it, there’s probably no need for the extra heating a gas unit would provide. But with an electric fireplace, the heat can be turned off, and you could still get the ambiance  - with a contemporary take, of course. Why is an electric fireplace perfect for new condos?
  • No venting required
  • Easiest and cleanest installations
  • You can uninstall and take them with you to your next home
We offer a variety of styles of electric fireplaces, click the manufacturer to see the selection they offer.  
electric-Jul-2016-amantii electric-Jul-2016-dynasty

When to Inquire About a Fireplace

June 30, 2016 | Fireplaces

Part 2: New Builds and Major Renovations Most finishing details can be decided on at a later time in the building process, but people forget that a fireplace is not a finishing detail. Too often we’ve had a client come in, inquiring about a fireplace while they’re already at the framing or drywall stage! Fireplaces require clearances and distance to combustibles, plus venting. The best time to speak to a salesperson is during the planning phase. While installations are never booked that early, this allows us to keep in contact with the contractor to make sure dimensions and timing are good. At any other stage, we could run into hindrances that could be costly. Find your dream fireplace and we will work with your contractor can make sure installation runs smoothly. Ideally the fireplace will be installed once the roof, doors, and windows are in; and when the rough-in is complete of gas and power.

When to Inquire About a Fireplace

June 16, 2016 | Fireplaces

Part 1: Small Renovations You’re not planning on a big renovation, that’s okay! Fireplaces can easily be changed, in fact, there are many reasons to replace a fireplace.
  • Your old one isn’t working like it used to
  • You’re concerned with energy costs
  • Your home was a recent purchase and the fireplace just isn’t your style
When should you talk to a sales person? Even if you don’t have a rough timeline of events, it’s still best to talk to someone right away, especially if you live in a condo. That way, we can help figure out what your needs are and give you an idea on the process. How long will replacing my fireplace take? This is a bit difficult to generalize, but we have a process that we stick to for every installation job.
  1. We make a visit your home to determine how the installation can be done
  2. We give you a quote on your desired fireplace(s)
  3. When you pay a deposit, we can schedule an installation date
  4. After the installation date, we will send an invoice for the balance
We can usually schedule jobs in as little as 1-2 weeks, but we recommend planning at least a month in advance. We also offer full-service, which means we can help you with all your preparations and finishings! Worried about finances? We have partnered with FinanceIt to make it easier for customers to replace their fireplace. Contact us and find out how it works.

New to the Showroom – May 2016

May 19, 2016 | Fireplaces

See what we have new in store! We have added several new indoor and outdoor fire features. To see what we've retired, and to get some great deals on fireplaces, check out our specials page.
Stuv B95C Stuv products feature state-of-the-art burner technology, and unique looking media options. This contemporary style fireplace will blend in easily with a modern surrounding. Stuv_B-fire-95-L-side
Ambiance Intrigue Direct Vent Zero Clearance traditional fireplace, with a massive 910 sq.in of fire viewing area, and remote controlled accent lights. Ambiance_Intrigue
Enviro E20 Direct vent insert with glass bead media, the Enviro E20 was designed for easy installation – this is a great unit to consider if you’re looking to replace a fireplace on a budget. Enviro_E20
Valor Legend G3 738J Consistently the best selling Valor fireplace, the showroom G3 features traditional logs, and a traditional look. Available in either B-vent or Direct Vent inserts, the G3 is a versatile unit that can and will look great in any home. Valor_G3-traditional
Avalon Radiant Plus Small Another small and budget friendly direct vent insert, the Avalon Radiant Plus Small is available in traditional style only. Avalon_Radiant-Plus-Small
Outdoor
American Fyre Contempo Customers coming into our showroom looking for an outdoor fire pit have stressed that they want something they can put their feet up on to. Well here you go! The Contempo provides ample room for your feet. But please remember safety first! AmericanFyre_Contempo-Firetable
Napoleon Galaxy Equipped with LED lights, the Galaxy provides quite the contemporary look. It’s a showroom favourite! Napoleon_GSS48
Outdoor Order Curve 10ft heat radius and a safety tilt switch, the Curve is an easily transportable outdoor patio heater. Fueled by a propane take that sits safely at the base. OutdoorOrder_Curve
HPC TK (Tiki) Torch Liven up your outdoors with a Tiki Torch! The TK Torch will set the tone for your outdoor party area. Remote control, automatic restart if blown out by wind. HPC_TK-Torch

Replacing your Condo Fireplace

May 4, 2016 | Fireplaces

Don't have time read all this? Email us a picture of your current unit to help you get started. Options for replacing fireplaces in condos Vancouver Gas Fireplaces can assist you whether you need to replace an old gas fireplace, or an old wood-burning fireplace, in your condo. When looking to replace your inefficient, or outdated gas fireplace in your condo there are a few things to consider when determining your options. *Please note: To remove and replace a gas fireplace in a condo will most often require that the finishes around the fireplace be removed, replaced and repaired. Vancouver Gas Fireplaces can provide the services required for your complete project; removal, installation of the new fireplace and whatever framing and finishing is required to complete your project. How is your existing fireplace is vented? Direct Vent (balanced flue) Venting is most often through the wall, but can also go through the roof. Direct vent fireplaces always have sealed glass fronts that cannot be opened during operation. B vent (natural venting) Goes up through the roof, and is typically only used for open fireplaces or fireplaces that have doors which can be opened. Why the venting is important
  • Venting is not universal. Not all fireplaces can be adapted to any venting.
  • A new fireplace must almost always be adapted to the venting for the old fireplace. It's usually not possible to replace the existing venting through the building and/or the vent termination on the exterior of the building.
Many low-rise buildings pre 2000 have B venting, which is venting used for open gas fireplaces, up through the roof. Most high rise buildings, and buildings post 2000 use direct venting, through the wall. There is a third venting style which has been used in a few buildings, again, mostly pre 2000, which is power vented. This is a system that uses an inline fan system to push the vent gases out a horizontal termination. There is one unit to replace power vented fireplaces, the Nova from Vanox. If you have existing Direct Venting Venting height is often the most constraining factor in determining which fireplace can be installed in a condo. In most condos it is not possible to replace the exterior vent so the new fireplace must be adapted to the wall vent. It is important to know:
  • The size of the venting. We can usually get the sizing if we get the model number of the fireplace from the rating plate which is normally located near the valve.
  • Height which the vent goes through the wall. As many of the earlier direct vent fireplaces had a low exit point. As hot air rises, venting cannot slope down.
Below are some links to some direct vent fireplaces that can be adapted to existing venting. The Valor Portrait series is particularly usefully because of its size and its low vent exit. In many instances, these are the only options because for the low exterior vent height of many of the older units. [product_category category="condo-blog-replace-direct-vent-valor-portrait" operator="AND" columns="4" orderby="name" order="asc" per_page="60"] Other recommended direct vent fireplaces for retrofitting and adapting to an existing vent termination. This is a partial list. [product_category category="condo-blog-replace-direct-vent" operator="AND" columns="4" orderby="name" order="asc" per_page="60"] If you have existing B venting Because manufacturers have shifted to the new direct vent technology, there are few options available. But trust us, they are great options! Valor Fireplaces has an efficient fireplace insert that can be adapted to B vent. It is available with a rock or log burners and a multiple number of fronts and trims. View the Legend G3. Providing there is reasonable roof access to the existing B venting, Valor also has a B vent adaptor kit that can allow the following models to be used to replace B vented fireplaces. [product_category category="condo-blog-replace-b-vent" operator="AND" columns="4" orderby="name" order="asc" per_page="60"] Another option which has been made to specifically replace B vented fireplaces in condos is the Nova by Vanox, a clean faced contemporary styled unit. Recently introduced, the Lyra 28 from Vanox is also a suitable option to replace some  Montigo units, click on the link to see details. If you do not want to remove your existing B vent fireplace and finishes, the Euro 25 by Archgard is approved to be retrofitted into the following older units:
  • Montigo 28 series,
  • Firehearth Monterey Firesong 220 series,
  • Archgard Marquis T 100 series,
  • Gas Glo GG 28 series,
  • FMI 450 and 850 series
This is done by removing the burner and some of the panels in the old unit and inserting the new bay window style fireplace in the shell of the existing fireplace. Get the model number of the fireplace from the rating plate, which is normally located near the valve. If you have an existing Wood Burning Fireplace Some condos have open wood burning fireplaces that can be converted to gas. The key to doing this is ascertaining the route in which the gas is brought to the fireplace. This is often done on the exterior of building from the gas meter. To install an efficient sealed gas insert, flexible liners has to be installed through the chimney which requires access to the roof. If this is not possible you can install an open gas log set which, while not efficient, will supply some heat and ease of use as compared to wood. There are many available efficient gas inserts with a variety of burner styles and finishes. In addition to the traditional log set, contemporary rock or glass style open burners are available.  

The Modern Fireplace

April 14, 2016 | Fireplaces

In design style, the term modern refers to a 1930’s prohibition era architecture and furniture design. This style has roots in the German Bauhaus School of Design, there are very strict rules and guidelines as to what will qualify as modern; typically the term is characterized by:
  • polished surfaces
  • asymmetry
  • bold geometric shapes
In truth, modern fireplaces aren’t really a thing. Unless you want one custom designed by yours truly. If a customer came into our showroom and asked us to direct them to our modern fireplaces, we’ll show them these: Valor Bolero blog-modern-firelpaces-valor-bolero What makes it modern? The Bolero features a strong, geometric polished surface. The design almost resembles a household appliance from the 1930’s. Valor Classic Arch blog-modern-firelpaces-valor-classic-arch The Classic Arch brings out a prohibition era style with the bold geometric lines. We’re almost getting into the style of chrome highlights with this one, but the simple lines keep this unit modern. We'll also have a little fun and show them these:
blog-modern-firelpaces-bell-fires blog-modern-firelpaces-element-4 blog-modern-firelpaces-stuv

(click images for links to manufacturer pages)

What makes the above direct vent lines modern fireplaces? Their simplicity and undefined style. You could call them contemporary, but they have a bit of a retro look. They look so clean and classic, they can fit in with any style of space. Which makes them perfect for those wanting to incorporate a modern style to their living area, and are having a rough time finding a truly modern gas fireplace.   Contact Vancouver Gas Fireplaces for all your indoor and outdoor heating needs, with over 400 products to choose from, we’ll be sure to help you find the unit to suit your home perfectly.

Outdoor Units in the VGF Showroom

April 7, 2016 | Fireplaces

Thinking of sprucing up your outdoor living space? We can help! VGF carries all kinds of outdoor products; including, but not limited to: fire pits, heaters, fireplaces, torches. We have products that will work in a variety of outdoor settings, don't worry if you think your patio is too small, or you don't have enough room for venting - check out our EcoSmart line if those issues are your main concern. Currently, we have roughly 15 outdoor products for viewing in our showroom. Here's a list of our more notable outdoor items: (click the thumbnails to view the product page) Fireplaces
Napoleon_GSS48THUMB Marquis_AuroraTHUMB EcoSmart_FusionTHUMB
Napoleon Galaxy Marquis Aurora EcoSmart Fusion
Fire Pits
Outdoor_ProvidenceTHUMB Outdoor_NaplesTHUMB Marquis_BolaTHUMB
Outdoor Great Room Providence Outdoor Great Room Naples Marquis Bola
Patio Heaters
Bromic_Platinum-gasTHUMB Bromic_PortableTHUMB Bromic_Tungsten-electricTHUMB
Bromic Gas Bromic Portable Bromic Electric
SunGlo_270SSTHUMB HPC_TK-Torch-THUMB Travis_Tempest-TorchTHUMB
Sunglo A270 HPC TK Torch Travis Tempest Torch
Want to see more? Check out our Outdoor tab to find a product that's right for you.

Why You Should Consider a See-Thru Fireplace

March 17, 2016 | Fireplaces

See-thru fireplaces are a great addition to make to your home. They’re less expensive to install than 2 separate fireplaces because they only need one flue and one set of venting. The more popular installation locations are between dining and living rooms, arguably the most occupied rooms of the home. Other locations include between master bedroom and master bath, kitchen and living room, and between the living room and main entry way. Why should I buy? We already mentioned they’re less expensive than installing two fireplaces, but they’re also going to be less expensive in the long run. With the heating technology of fireplaces these days, you can expect to efficiently heat two rooms with the one fireplace – which will be less money spent on fuel. How should I design? Some homeowners might worry about incorporating a design, maybe they’re wanting a different look for each room. That’s okay! So many fireplaces come with media and liner options that will fit in with any style space – making it easy to transition from a modern chic dining room to a rustic living room.
blog-see-thru-tc36 blog-see-thru-bentley blog-see-thru-l1 blog-see-thru-b100
TC36 See-Thru Bentley See-Thru L1 See-Thru B100
We have two see-thru units available for viewing in our showroom.
blog-see-thru-4415 blog-see-thru-davinci
4415 see-thru DaVinci Island
Contact us for more information!

All About Stuv

March 10, 2016 | Fireplaces

Stuv Fireplaces has been a force in the wood fireplace and stove industry. Recently, they introduced a line of contemporary gas fireplaces, that are fit for a modern lifestyle, with intriguing double burner technology. The technical design of the burners make it possible to turn one burner completely off and still maintain 80% efficiency. Double Burner
Two long burners distributed along the width of the fireplace for a heavy flame presence. Units that feature the double burner are: B95c, B95 3-sided, B100 Burner__Double
Double Burner Wood
The front burner stretched across the length of the fireplace, with a shorter one behind that produces tall flames for a realistic wood fireplace effect. Units that feature the double burner are: B60, B80, B100H Burner_Double_Wood
The simple design of Stuv fireplaces makes it easy to blend with any style space, with no louvres, or surrounds, you can incorporate your personal touch without having to worry about it clashing with your fireplace. Contact us if you have any questions about Stuv, or other fireplace products.

VGF Gives Back

March 3, 2016 | Fireplaces

Vancouver Gas Fireplaces in recognition of the refugee crises is donating $600 USD a month to The Al Salam school in Turkey. The school is located near the Syrian border, and has been set up to school refugee children, both boys and girls, equally. This donation pays directly for one teacher and six children a month. We encourage you to help out. Find out more about the Al Salam school.

New VGF Website

February 25, 2016 | Fireplaces

You may have noticed the new look of the VGF website. With the amount of visitors on mobile and tablet devices, we thought it was about time to launch a mobile friendly site. Because most fireplaces will come with your choice of log sets, rock sets, or glass media, we decided to do away with the traditional and contemporary tabs – making it easier to navigate our products. We have helpful descriptions if you don’t know what type of product you need. And yes, we kept our contact form – it will appear on every product page, and is available in our contact tab. We hope you enjoy navigating through our new site!

Introducing the Valor H6 Direct Vent

February 11, 2016 | Fireplaces

Billed as a large format fireplace, the H6 features tapered sides and a shallow depth for easy installation into a variety of applications. Valor_H6-room The unit was designed for efficient zone heating, which is harder to do with large format fireplaces. Valor combines looks and efficiency absolutely seamlessly in the H6. And the Valor Comfort Control remote is included so you have more control over your heating. The H6 has a 60% larger fire viewing area than H5 and is complimented by the best in fireplace media, and liner options. The Valor H6 is great for renovations, and new builds; it would be best suited for a larger living area.  

How to Measure for an Insert

January 28, 2016 | Fireplaces

Want to get a head start on replacing your old fireplace? You can start by measuring your current fireplace, to give you more of an idea of which inserts you should be looking at. Most fireplaces will curve in the back, which will make G and H a little bit tricky. For the depth at top of the fireplace, all you have to do is measure, in a straight line, from the face to the back. This will tell us how much of a curve there is and how much room we have to work with. For the back height, measure from the bottom, to where the curve starts. Be sure to contact the VGF team if you need any help, or if you want to know your options for a fireplace insert. For a PDF version, click here. How-To-Measure-Inserts

Product Feature: 564 Clean-Face

December 16, 2015 | Fireplaces

While they're well-known for their wide selection of surrounds, trims, and doors; Fireplace Xtrordinair brings us this louvre-less fireplace in the 564 direct vent fireplace. The 564 clean-face will heat up to 950 sq.ft; and combines convective heat, radiant heat and reduced depth dimension. They're ideal for zone heating in bedrooms, dens and intimate spaces. All the same technologies and capacities as its’ sister 564, the only difference is the clean-face is available for those who prefer the look of a clean fireplace. If all that heat is too much, all Fireplace Xtrordinair units are equipped with comfort control, which means you can enjoy the flames, and have the heat turned on to a minimum – perfect for summer nights. Media options are limited to one traditional log set, but liners come in a variety of styles, including: stainless steel, herringbone brick, handmade brick, and others. To learn more about the 564 clean-face direct vent fireplace, view the brochure.

New to our showroom – Dec 2015

December 10, 2015 | Fireplaces

If it feels like we just got a bunch of new units, we did. We introduced 5 new units back in October, and now we have 7 new units to spend the holidays with.  
Paloma The Paloma is a free standing gas unit from Heat-N-Glo. It features a rock media black liner. The viewing area is a massive 34 ½”H x 18 ½”W – impressive measurement for a free standing unit. Free standing, or stove units aren’t exactly known to be contemporary, but Heat-N-Glo strays from the traditional to give us this modern unit that can fit in with most contemporary spaces. HeatNGlo_Paloma
White Jotul 370 We had the Jotul 370 in standard grey, but now we have it in white. Loaded with features like accent lighting, 3 sides of fire viewing, and multiple media options – the Jotul 370 is set to impress. Jotul_GF370-logs
Amantii Fire & Ice Amantii has introduced a line on Fire & Ice units; they are available as built-ins, partial built-in, or wall-mounts – this makes it easier for buyers to get what they want and need. The Fire & Ice series is quite unique to the electric fireplace industry, instead of traditional log media, or crushed glass, the Fire & Ice features large ‘ice bergs’, which makes for quite the interesting sight. We don't have the Panorama series on our website yet, but you can still view the brochure. Amantii_BI-40-Deep
Amantii WM-BI 2428 VLR This small unit packs a big punch, with up to 500sq.ft of heating abilities, the unit will effectively heat a large room or small apartment. Check out the WM-BI brochure.
EFDF Yosemite Resembling a porthole, this Yosemite unit features a faux coal media, with a mirror for a cool never-ending fire. This unit does not produce heat.
4415 See-Thru Already available as a one-sided linear, Fireplace Xtrordinair has introduced the 4415 see-thru. Same great features, but now you can enjoy 2,100sq.ft of heating. View the 4415 see-thru brochure.

Product Feature: Bentley from Marquis by Kingsman

November 26, 2015 | Fireplaces

A versatile zero clearance direct vent gas or propane fireplace Available as a one-sided or see-thru, the Bentley Direct Vent Zero Clearance gas fireplace from Marquis has proven to be a quite popular unit. Marquis_Bentley-Driftwood What makes it so popular? It is truly one of the most diverse units we have available. It features all kinds of media, liner, surround, and door options. If that’s not enough, there are even two types of glass to choose from (ceramic or tempered). The Bentley also comes in two sizes, both with extraordinary viewing areas. View the one-sided brochure, or the see-thru brochure to learn more about the Bentley. Marquis_Bentley-ST-Driftwood Until December 31st, 2015, FortisBC is offering a rebate of up to $300 on any qualifying EnerChoice fireplace. With its’ high efficiency rating, the Bentley (gas version) is included in that offer. All that is required is the unit needs to be purchased (not installed) between now and December 31st. Come visit us in our showroom to see the Bentley ZCV39 with traditional log set in action! Or contact one of our sales reps to get more information on any Marquis by Kingsman product.

Product Feature: Cypress from Avalon

October 21, 2015 | Fireplaces

An efficient, free standing gas stove The Cypress free standing gas fireplace is quite the workhorse; it can heat up to 2,000 sq.ft, and is considered to be a green unit. Complete with Travis Industries ‘GreenSmart’ technology, the Cypress has an efficient turn-down ratio of 70% on natural gas. The unit features a fresh look on the traditional stove, it was designed with sleek lines and a smooth finish to make it easy to fit in with any and all surroundings. There are options when it comes to media, including: driftwood logs, classic logs, and a stone set; all of which will enhance the 749 sq.in of fire viewing area. Avalon_Cypress This unit is available with the FortisBC Rebate program – purchase the unit before December 31st, 2015 and receive up to $300 back! Or contact one of our sales reps to get more information on any Avalon or Travis Industries products.

New to our Showroom – October 2015

October 8, 2015 | Fireplaces

We’re always making changes to our showroom, but sometimes it’s hard to keep up. Here are some of the newest additions that definitely deserve an in-person viewing.
Bell Vertical Without taking up too much space, the Bell Vertical 3 is a great unit for any space. It is a clean, contemporary design that can transition well into any style or surroundings. BellFires_Vertical-3
Enviro Westport Steel We also have the Westport Cast Iron on our website, you can check out the installation manual and brochure. The Westport Steel is an updated, or modern take on the traditional look on the Westport Cast Iron. It features the same heating area (1,700sq.ft) and efficiency rating (71%) but comes with a new, updated look. Enviro_Westport-Steel
Jotul Allagash The Jotul Allagash is a freestanding gas stove that is available as both a b-vent or direct vent, making it a good, versatile option for home heating. The unit comes standard with a realistic, 3-piece ceramic log set; and like all Jotul products, the burner is constructed of a quality cast iron base mated to a heavy-grade stainless-steel porting plate. Making this quite the heavy-duty, efficient unit. Jotul_GF-300-Allagash
Lopi Northfield A little bit on the smaller side, the Northfield is a great unit for heating a large room or medium-sized apartment. The unit doesn’t sacrifice viewing area, with 3 sides of fire viewing area, the unit is sure to dazzle from any position. Not yet on our website (it’s on the new site – we promise) you can take a look at the brochure and installation manual. Lopi_Northfield
Valor H6 The largest in the Horizon series, the Valor H6 provides a massive fire-view that’s fit for a large space, but because of its’ shallow firebox and tapered corners – the Valor H6 will fit snugly in tight spaces and corners. Again, not on our site yet, but we have the brochure and installation manual. Valor_H6-room
L1 long beach media Okay, the Valor L1 isn’t exactly new to the showroom, but we updated the media, and that has to count for something. We’re now featuring long beach media, which is a mix of logs and river rocks. Dare we say that the new look give the L1 a more calm and relaxing feel? We do. Valor_L1-longbeach
Be sure to visit us and find out more about these units! If none of these suit your style, we will gladly help you decide what’s best for your home. Or, check out the units we've recently retired on our Specials Page.

The Lucius 140 Tunnel is the Perfect Choice for a New Build or Renovation.

October 1, 2015 | Fireplaces

In the process of a new build or major renovation? Deciding what kind of fireplace to get and where to put it is quite the tough decision. But there is opportunity present with a major renovation, and that opportunity comes in the form of a see-thru. It’s a perfect way to separate a space, and still be able to enjoy your fire from multiple points in your home. One of our favourites is the Lucius 140 Tunnel, it features clean lines and no clutter. It will easily fit in with any style of space, while deservedly maintaining the fire feature moniker. It is an especially great option for property flippers who might not want to commit to a certain style fireplace when they don’t have a specific buyer in mind.

Why Should I Choose a Gas Log/Stone Set?

September 3, 2015 | Fireplaces

When you have a wood masonry fireplace, making the decision to upgrade is hard, and then there’s the question of HOW you should upgrade. We’re taking a look at when you should choose a burner rather than an insert. Burners come in all forms:
  • Gas log sets
    1. Birch
    2. Oak
    3. Charred Oak
  • Stones and Rocks
    1. Multi Coloured Stones
    2. White Stones
    3. Grey Stones
  • Shapes
    1. Spheres in different sizes
    2. Geometric shapes
Or, you can choose to combine any of the above. Gas burners are not meant for a lot of radiant heat, because they’re installed into pre-existing masonry fireplaces or metal fireboxes, there’s no technology keeping the heat from escaping up the chimney. If you’re not concerned with heating, you love the look of your current fireplace but want to update it, then a burner is probably the right option for you. Check out our Log Sets and Stones and Shapes. If you can’t find what you’re looking for, contact us and we’re sure to find something to suit your needs.

gas-log-set-blog This old wood burning masonry fireplace was converted into a contemporary space by adding a sand pan burner, and some paint.

Enjoying your Fireplace Year-Round!

August 27, 2015 | Fireplaces

Typical imagery for a fireplace will include those romantic winter nights spent curled up in front of the fireplace. But what about romantic summer nights? Valor fireplaces feature the lowest turn-down ratio of all our units. This means you can enjoy the ambiance of the flames without the heat. Of course this doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice on the heat in the winter, Valor units are very efficient heaters; and on average, will supply 950 sq.ft of radiant heat to your home. But it’s nice having the option to enjoy your fireplace year round. Check out our Valor units to see if any of them are right for you.

Introducing Bell Fires

July 30, 2015 | Fireplaces

A line of contemporary, direct vent gas fireplaces

Bell Fires has a unique, modern line of direct vent gas or propane fireplaces. Their units come with black ceramic glass that enhances the flame and log set, adding depth to the shallow units. The units are frameless, and include a full glass view of the flame, log set and double burner, which only adds to the exquisiteness of Bell Fires units. All units have an efficiency of 85% and a depth of no larger than 17 13/32" – making them a great option for anywhere in the home. These units are minimalist, but they include some pretty great added features and technology:
  • Double burner
  • Patented safety system - where possible overpressure discharged in a controlled way.
  • Remote control
  • Black mirrored ceramic glass
Come to our showroom to see the Vertical in action, starting mid-August. BellFires_Vertical-3 Or contact one of our sales reps to get more information on any Bell Fires products.

Bringing the Traditional Campfire to Your Own Backyard!

July 23, 2015 | Fireplaces

Sometimes, getting out of the city is a little unrealistic – and with the fire bans and water restrictions, setting up a campfire is a no-go. Why not have a camping experience you can enjoy at any time in your own backyard? (preferably in the summer months) You can complete it with a traditional style gas fire pit from Kingsman by Marquis. Marquis_Firepit The unit is very customizable, and can be completed with any non-combustible material. It also comes in two shapes: round or rectangular, and, as an added bonus, you can opt for lava rock media, stones, or gas logs. You can choose between natural gas or propane, and can use the same tank for your fire pit as you use for your BBQ. Talk to us today to see how the fire pit from Kingsman fits in with your outdoor needs!

Outdoor Great Room at VGF

July 16, 2015 | Fireplaces

We're happy to introduce a new, extensive outdoor line to our site and showroom The outdoor décor industry in the lower mainland has been experiencing quite the boom in sales. Residents want to make their patios and decks as beautiful as their living and dining rooms. Which is why we’re introducing the Outdoor Great Room to our line of outdoor fire pits and fireplaces. The line features several styles of fire pits and tables with a variety of finishes. Most products are fitted for Propane only, but some can be converted to Natural Gas. We have 3 units available for viewing in our showroom.
Outdoor_Providence-Black

Providence

Outdoor_Key-Largo

Key Largo

Outdoor_Naples

Naples

 

Your Guide to Patio Heating with VGF

June 15, 2015 | Fireplaces

We’ve talked about how many fire pits, fire bowls, and outdoor fireplaces we have; but did you know we also have a wide collection of patio heaters? We carry 12+ patio heaters ranging from gas (natural gas or propane) to electric, and ethanol. Gas or Propane Our more popular patio heater for restaurants and public places is the Bellagio from Napoleon fires. What makes it so popular? It’s fueled by propane, but has an option conversion kit for natural gas. Which means there is a flame. An impressive flame at that! Protecting guests from accidental contact is a SAFEGUARD screen, and a protective tube for the flame to travel up as to got be affected by winds. It is composed of stainless steel, which makes for an attractive, high quality finish. Electric New to our patio heating line is the Bromic Tungsten; an electric, mounted heater that is great for small spaces or spaces you just simply don’t want to dedicate a fire feature to. The Tungsten emits minimal lighting, so you can set the mood yourself. Technical requirements are a 220 V electrical connection. Ethanol Our ethanol fire features consist of the EcoSmart line, which includes a few items that could be considered patio heaters. We think they’re at least worth a look. Contact us about your patio heating needs. We have our more popular items in our Vancouver showroom, including both the Bellagio.

How to Clean Brick

May 8, 2015 | Fireplaces

vgf-tips-trick-clean-brick
There are several methods to cleaning your old brick, because brick can wear down with harsh cleaning, we suggest starting in order and working your way down the list until you’ve achieved your desired look. Up first: dish soap and salt. What you’ll need:
  • Bucket or large bowl
  • Grease cutting dish soap
  • Salt
  • Scrub brush with coarse bristles
  • A few rags
Mix equal parts grease cutting dish soap and salt in warm water until it forms a paste-like consistency. Use one rag to spread the paste on your brick; if your brick area is large – do small sections at a time to avoid cramping. Use the scrub brush to scrub the paste into the brick. Sit back for 10 minutes and have a rest. Fill that bowl or bucket with warm water, grab a clean rag and then rinse the paste off. If that doesn’t turn out as clean as you hoped, move on! But, please be patient and wait about a week between methods. The brick needs to dry and you need to adjust to the change. On to the second attempt. What you’ll need:
  • Boric acid
  • Bucket or bowl
  • Scrub brush with coarse bristles
  • A few rags
  • Rubber gloves
Put your rubber gloves on and mix 1tbs of Boric Acid in with about 4.5 litres of warm water. Dip your scrub brush into the solution and start cleaning the brick. After finished scrubbing, dip a clean rage into warm water and wash the solution off the brick. Still not satisfied? The next step involves ammonia, which is considered to be a dangerous product. Wear rubber gloves, open all windows (you should be doing that anyways) and NEVER mix ammonia with bleach. What you’ll need:
  • Ammonia
  • Rubber gloves
  • Grease cutting dish soap
  • Bucket Pumice
  • Scrub brush with coarse bristles
Mix one part ammonia, one part pumice, and two parts dish soap.  Add hot water until a paste forms. Use the rags to spread the paste on the brick. Wait for 10 minutes. Wet the scrub brush and brush the mix off the brick, then rinse it off with a wet rag. How did that turn out? To avoid having to go through this process again, we recommend dusting regularly and wiping your brick down with a damp cloth at least once or twice in a blue moon. Brick is making a huge comeback, and it pays to keep it well-maintained.

FAQ’s About Fireplace Media

April 2, 2015 | Fireplaces

You may have noticed we have more than the traditional log sets available for a majority of the products on our website. Here are some FAQ’s for those interested in fireplace media. My fireplace has a set of ceramic rocks in it. Can I replace them or move them around?   If the rocks are placed directly on the burner, or in and around the flame, the fireplace has been tested with those particular rocks in those exact positions. Moving them or replacing them with rocks of different shapes and sizes may negatively affect the fireplace's overall performance. However, the rocks around the burner footprint - the ones that fill the space at the base of the fireplace - can be replaced or moved around I have a steel wood stove, brick lined, and doors come off for an open front. It is vented through a chimney. Can I put 18" gas logs in it?   Yes, you can install the log set if you leave the doors off to do this procedure.   Some manufacturers have rock style burners and use specifically colored and sized ceramic rocks in the burners. Can these be changed out for other rocks? In the case of sealed direct vent fireplaces, it is important that the size and placement of the rocks remain approximately the same as recommended by the manufacturer. As long as these criteria are met, the rocks can be replaced with other ceramic rocks of slightly different sizes and colors. With open units, more drastic changes can be made. Can I change the log set in my zero clearance fireplace or insert fireplace?   The logs installed in gas fireplaces cannot be altered. The set-up of the logs is specific to the way the burner has been tested and works. Also, if you alter the logs, the warranty is likely to be voided. Can I do a combination of two types of media?   While we wouldn’t recommend adding media to a unit designed for one type of media, there are units that have options to have combinations. Such as the Bentley from Marquis by Kingsman. If you're inquiring about adding or changing media to an older unit come and talk to us about your options. We sell some kinds of glass and rock media in-store.

FAQ’s About Fans and the Fireplace

February 5, 2015 | Fireplaces

Fans are not as commonly used for gas fireplaces as they once were. Here are a couple of often asked questions regarding fans: Does a fan make the fireplace more efficient? No, a fan does not increase the efficiency of a fireplace. Fans are normally not required but do provide air circulation which can speed up the time to get the room up to your desired temperature. Unless you are planning on using this fireplace in a very large room or as your primary heat source a fan is not a necessity. What else is important to know about fans? The Valor fireplaces we sell at Vancouver Gas Fireplaces are not made with fans. All other inserts that we carry come with fans. To run the fans you need to either run electricity to the existing firebox or have a fan cord that runs across the hearth to the nearest electrical outlet in the home. Some of the inserts that have fans have a battery backup system. These units are designed to operate the fireplace in a power outage. Any fans in fireplaces that operate off your house current will not work in a power outage.

Feng Shui and your Fireplace

November 4, 2014 | Fireplaces

 

For anyone paying attention to the news lately, you might have heard the story of residents in China suing the country because of bad Feng Shui in new builds. So we decided to research Feng Shui and your fireplace. According to experts, electric or gas are best because they don’t have an open chimney for energy to escape. If you already have a wood-burning fireplace, put a glass screen in front of it to prevent energy from escaping. If you’re in the process of renovating or building your home, here are some tips on selecting the right location for your fireplace. Fireplaces are meant to be a point of attraction, and to represent your style. Depending on what you want to bring out in your feng shui. Putting a fireplace in the south wall of your living room will bring good luck. The south energy is fire, and it relates to your future and reputation. To bring out the best, the fireplace needs to be the focal point, with furniture arranged around it. Other areas that are favourable are the earth-energy walls; the NE wall will bring positive education for you and your children. The SW wall will enhance your romantic relationship. Avoid a fireplace on the north wall, as this could lead to failure in your work life. Placing it in the SE will also lead to money issues. Of course, we at VGF take this with a grain of salt. We just found the interest around feng shui, well, interesting. Our recommendations will always revolve around what type of unit you’re looking for and what your main goal for your fireplace is. Feel free to contact our staff at salesvgf@vangasfireplaces.com for any questions you might have about your fireplace.

FAQ’s about Fireplace Efficiencies

July 10, 2014 | Fireplaces

Here are five questions we frequently get asked about gas fireplaces and how to make them more efficient:

Q - Will a fan add efficiency to a gas fireplace?
A fan will modestly increase the efficiency of a fireplace by accelerating the rate at which room air is heated and circulated. In our experience, the more a unit relies on a fan for efficiency, the less effective the unit. Take a look at our high efficiency inserts.
Q - How is a direct vent insert efficient?
A direct vent insert is an efficient gas insert made to go into an open wood-burning masonry or prefabricated fireplace. It is a sealed unit with a glass front. A direct vent insert has two flexible liners, each generally three inches thick, that is installed into the chimney flue, one for exhaust and one for air intake, making it a closed system. This insert primarily provides radiant heat through glass, although convective heat is pulled around the firebox from the room, often passing through some form of heat exchanger and returned to the room.
Q - Can I set my fireplace on a timer?
Most fireplaces can have a wired or remote control unit installed with a timer feature.
Q - Will putting doors on an open fireplace increase its efficiency?
Most gas or wood fireplaces that have been designed to operate "open" will not work properly with the doors closed, and in doing so, you may run the risk of melting the valve. The real benefit of having doors is to keep the warm room air from going up the chimney when the fireplace is off.
Q - I am getting confused between the efficiency of direct vent and sealed B-vent fireplaces. I have been told that the sealed B-vent does not create the draft and waste heat like the standard B-vent gas fireplace and is not noticeably different from the direct vent. Is this true?
All direct vent fireplaces are not efficient, but most are, it depends on whether they have heat exchangers etc. or not. Definitely open B vented units are inefficient and can cause drafts. Some sealed B-vented units are as efficient as the better direct vent units as long as they have been installed properly with fresh air make up. Quiet often in older homes there is adequate fresh air make-up; fresh air kits are usually required for newer, 'tighter' homes.

General Fireplace Questions

August 15, 2011 | Fireplaces

I have a steel wood stove, brick lined, and doors come off for an open front. It is vented through a chimney. Can I put 18" gas logs in it? Yes, you can install the log set if you leave the doors off to do this procedure.   Can a gas fireplace be installed in a room that does not have a fireplace? Yes. Direct vent gas fireplaces and stoves are designed for installation in this manner. Direct vent gas fireplaces are installed and vented without the need of masonry work.   Can we hook up our fireplace to a smart system? If your fireplace has electronic ignition, hooking up to a smart system is a relatively straightforward process; essentially it is just another switch. If your unit has a standing pilot system, you will have to install a relay, which goes from millivolts to twenty-four volts which is the operating level for most smart systems. Town and Country fireplaces actually have an interface part available to work with smart systems.   How close can we install a mantel to a gas fireplace? There are no standard measurements for all gas fireplaces. Every model has been individually tested during the approval process. When designing your finished project. make sure you consult the manufacturer's specifications before proceeding with the work.   How often should I have my fireplace serviced? Most manufacturers recommend servicing your fireplace once a year. However, if you use your fireplace often and as a primary or strong secondary heat source, we would suggest following the manufacturers recommendations. On the other hand, if you do not use your fireplace that often, servicing once every two or three years should suffice. A good tip for maintaining your fireplace is to open up the access to the control area and carefully vacuum and clean it out. These areas can be great dust collectors. If not cleaned out, the dust buildup can eventually affect your fireplace.   Who do I call for servicing? When setting up a service call, make sure that the technician specializes in the servicing of gas fireplaces and is familiar with your model. There are differences between furnaces, hot water heaters and fireplaces.   Should we leave our pilot light on? It is advisable in colder weather to keep the pilot on so that some heat is maintained in the vent system. This facilitates the start-up of your fireplace in colder months. In warmer months, if you are not using the fireplace, you can turn the pilot light off.   Can we change our fireplace from a standing pilot system to electronic ignition? Historically, most gas fireplaces have operated with standing pilots, much like many furnaces and hot water heaters. Retrofitting existing units with electronic ignitions would require replacement of the valve and pilot system. With most fireplaces, this is not possible due to design restrictions.   Some manufacturers have rock style burners and use specifically colored and sized ceramic rocks in the burners. Can these be changed out for other rocks? In the case of sealed direct vent fireplaces, it is important that the size and placement of the rocks remain approximately the same as recommended by the manufacturer. As long as these criteria are met, the rocks can be replaced with other ceramic rocks of slightly different sizes and colors. With open units, more drastic changes can be made.   Can we install drywall to the fireplace? Drywall is considered a combustible. Check the specification of the fireplace you are installing for clearance to combustibles. Note too that drywall finishes will often crack in higher heat situations.   Can we turn down the heat from a fireplace and still have the flames? More gas, more flames, more heat; less gas, less flames, less heat. A few direct vent zero clearance fireplaces have heat dumps, or heat take offs, but other than this you cannot have the flame without some heat. This will vary depending upon the efficiency of the fireplace.   Can you have a gas fireplace that directly vents out a wall without glass? There are no fireplaces that direct vent without glass, as the waste gas would come into the room if not for the sealed glass. On the other hand, direct vent technology allows for the installation of fireplaces in areas where you could not previously put them and at relative inexpensive costs.   Can I put a TV above a fireplace? The short answer is yes, however depending upon the fireplace, care must be taken to provide adequate clearance. Each fireplace has tested clearances to combustibles specs for the area above that should be followed carefully. We would also recommend insulating the framing in the wall above the fireplace to prevent heat going up through the wall, as well as installing some sort of deflection to direct heat away from the face of the TV. Ultimately, you have to decide if you want to watch a TV that is at least half way up the wall.   I recently bought a home where the previous owner converted the wood burning fireplace to gas. At the bottom I found sand and some white cotton like substance that glows when the flame is on. Is this asbestos? Was asbestos ever used in gas fireplaces? It is not asbestos; it is vermiculite and rock wool.   There is a white film on the inside of the glass. How do I get it off and why is it there? The film is generally caused by the mineral residue left over from the burning off of the gas. There are water components in gas which carry minerals. Luckily, there are specific cleaners made for cleaning fireplace glass. Do not use ammonia based products as they might cause damage or etching to the glass. To remove and clean your glass check your owner's manual or call a service technician.   If the power goes out, will my fireplace still work? Most fireplaces installed today have a standing pilot system which generates millivolts of electricity to operate the fireplace, thus no external power is required. At this point, electronic ignitions are seldom installed. Of course if you have a fan, it will not work in a power outage, however the fireplace will.   What are the regulations regarding installing a gas fireplace in a bathroom? If the bathroom has a door, the fireplace must have a direct vent-balanced flue system - no open B vents. The fireplace must operate on a timer or thermostat and must be 18" from the tub or shower. The glass on the fireplace should be ceramic.   What size of gas pipe do I need to use for a particular fireplace? The size of the pipe required for a fireplace will depend upon the amount of BTU's used, and the gas pressure along its route to the fireplace and back to the meter. In most cases, gas fireplaces can be fed by copper pipes from 3/8" to 5/8" or steel pipes up to 3/4".   What does remote ready mean? Does it come with a remote? Remote ready means that you can turn the unit on and off via the remote (wired or wireless). This requires a millivolt valve that creates millionths of volts of electricity to control the valve. Remote ready units do not come with a remote because there are up to 20 different kinds of remotes.   Do we need to have those brass strips like the ones shown in the fireplace brochure? Most fireplace manufacturers, like car manufacturers, like to show as many options for the product as possible, even if many customers just want the basic unit. All the fireplaces shown in the brochure can be obtained in basic black.

Condo Fireplace Change Outs

January 24, 2008 | Fireplaces

As a fireplace specialist for Vancouver’s built-up urban area, one of the most common questions Vancouver Gas Fireplaces (VGF) gets is, "What can I do about the fireplace in my condominium?” followed by one or all of the following statements: "It has ugly cheap brass strips on the top and bottom”, "The flame is no good”, "It does not heat”, and so on. These situations are definitely a result of developers installing the least expensive fireplaces available in the condominium market. In most instances, the clients VGF have encountered with these issues did not realize what their fireplace would be like until they had already moved in and started using it. The irony is that for very little extra cost in relation to the purchase price of downtown condos, higher quality fireplaces could have been used as a selling feature. Once a condo is finished, changing out the fireplace becomes difficult for two main areas of concern: the finishing and the exterior vent termination. In terms of the finishing, it is nearly impossibly to remove a fireplace without affecting the finishes around the fireplace. In some very rare situations, VGF has been able to remove the burner from the fireplace and then cut the fireplace in half, folding it in on itself without affecting the finishes. In most cases, the surround must be removed in order to get the fireplace out, which usually involves replacing the tile and possibly fixing the drywall around the fireplace. For many people, this is an extra expense they are unwilling to undertake unless they are looking to change the complete look of the fireplace; a daunting exercise for a retail customer, unless part of a larger project or handled by a company that will handle both the fireplace and the finishing. As well, the trickier issue for changing out direct-vented fireplaces is the exterior vent termination. Most fireplaces are approved as a complete system with its exterior termination supplied by the same manufacturer as part of the system. No two manufacturers are alike. So you cannot in theory hook up one manufacturer’s fireplace with another's vent termination. The issue is further made difficult by either the accessibility of the exterior terminations in high-rise condos and the fact that many strata councils do not want the exterior of the building touched. If VGF is able to access and change the exterior termination, then there are many choices to choose from for upgrading the fireplace. If the termination cannot be altered, you must change out to the same manufacturer for a worthwhile upgrade, which in most cases is unlikely. Another option which VGF has used on occasion is to get permission from the inspector, using a special equipment permit, to adapt one manufacturer’s fireplace to another's vent termination, which we think is compatible in terms of venting and supply configurations. In some low-rise condos, and in the upper floors of some high-rise units, open B vented fireplaces are installed. These are fireplaces that are vented through the roof. Because the vent system used by these types of fireplaces is universal, once the issue of the finish is dealt with, changing out these fireplaces is much easier, limited only by the size capacity of the venting in place. Important to note is that most often these open B vented installations are done very cheaply, and the result is inefficient units that must be replaced with sealed efficient units. Valor is one manufacturer VGF has found to be very adaptable to these types of situations, as they specialize in high quality efficient units. Another solution for dealing with changing out fireplaces in condos comes in the form of a new product that uses denatured alcohol and has to be refilled. The EcoSmart® system will probably not appeal to everyone because of its sleek modern style and the fact that the burner has to be refilled, however it is certainly an option for dealing with unsightly fireplaces. In the end, the clients would be better served if the designers and developers of condominiums specified and installed high quality good-looking gas fireplaces, of which there are now many on the market. More money is spent on bathroom fixtures in a seldom-used powder room than on the fireplace, often the focal point of a living room. For the sake of an extra one or two thousand dollars per unit (based on units listed in the millions), developers could easily use a quality fire feature as a selling benefit instead of choosing inferior models that only perpetuate irritation and disappointment for retail customers. Vancouver Gas Fireplaces is North America's leading wholesaler and innovator of custom fireplace design and implementation. VGF provides the most comprehensive fireplace website to architects, builders, designers and renovators.

Planning Ahead to Select the Ideal Fireplace

August 28, 2007 | Fireplaces

by Robert Koby.
All too often the fireplace in a new home or renovation is an afterthought, chosen with less consideration than cupboard handles or baseboard moulding. But the center piece of the home's main room should be chosen with at least as much care as the fridge, stove or other major appliances.
Contractors should understand that if they exclude the homeowner from the buying decision, they will continually be dealing with unhappy clients. As a fireplace retailer, I often see disgruntled customers after the building contractor's work is done. The homeowners are unhappy with the appearance of their fireplace, or complain that it pumps out too much heat, or too little heat. Projects are often budgeted at hundreds of thousands of dollars, yet for a few hundred dollars suitable solutions to the customer's complaints could have been found during the initial decision-making stage. The first step in choosing a fireplace is to decide what sort of look you want and how much heat you want the fireplace to generate. Conversely, choices based primarily on cost and size often result in the installation of inexpensive "builder's special" fireplaces. These can be bought for as little as $600 to $800, and tend to be metal boxes with mechanical-looking flames. If your primary consideration is heat, you will want a high-efficiency, closed fireplace. These can use two kinds of vent systems: a direct vent or what is known as a high-efficiency "B" vent. Direct venting is generally around seven inches in diameter, and has two components, an outer air intake pipe that draws air in from outside and an inner exhaust pipe that vents to the outdoors. Direct vents allow for venting outdoors from the rear of some fireplaces, or off the top and out the wall, as well as straight up and through the roof. Prices for direct vent fireplaces range from $600 for very basic builders units to $4,500 for high-quality units with cast iron fronts. View our selection of contemporary fireplace designs to get a better understanding of this range in price. A direct vent gas fireplace is often necessary because of vertical venting restrictions or the desire for efficient heat. A number of direct vent fireplaces can seamlessly fit into your design scheme. Quality direct vents with clean faces and no horizontal louvers result in a minimum of metal showing once the surrounding finishes have been applied. There are also direct vent gas fireplaces available with classic cast iron fronts and porcelain enamel finishes. One popular option is direct vent models that duplicate old-fashioned ceramic coal burners. Some of these are also available with mantel surrounds and tile or cast inserts, which complement the fireplace's finished appearance. Direct vent fireplaces are very efficient and can be integrated into the heating system of a house, especially if zone heating is used. Gas fireplaces can be controlled by thermostats that are either basic or programmable. If the homeowner wants a fireplace that looks like open-masonry, with an open front and a clean face that can be finished right up to the opening, the solution is vertical venting. Open-burning gas fireplaces usually use a standard "B" vent - a conventional flue system venting gases up a chimney just as with a wood burning fireplace. They can also use an "A" vent, which is the kind of manufactured chimney used for wood burning fireplaces. The key to achieving the open-masonry look is to allow enough vent space for a quality fireplace. Too often the vent space, or chase, is restricted in the initial framing to only accept a small "B" vent, which limits builders to using the inexpensive equivalent of a direct vent "builders special". The best look for an open gas fireplace is achieved by installing an open, zero-clearance wood burning fireplace and setting a gas log set into it. Zero-clearance wood burning fireplaces are double metal boxes with a masonry interior and are available in many sizes and with clean faces that can be finished right up to the opening with non-combustible materials. They are less expensive than full brick and masonry fireplaces, and do not require major structural support. Their venting can be easily offset to avoid design problems using an air-cooled "A" type vent. These vents are typically 10.5 to 15.5 inches in diameter and require two inch clearance. The vent sizing has to be taken into account when the initial framing is done. After the zero-clearance wood burning fireplace is installed, you can select an authentic looking gas log set. It's a good idea to include the client in the decision. An additional advantage of a zero-clearance wood burning fireplace is the option of removing the gas log set and burning real logs. If the zero-clearance wood burning fireplace option does not work, consider a "B" vent fireplace. There are several "B" vent fireplaces dedicated to the same features, aesthetics and options as the direct vent.   Vancouver Gas Fireplaces is North America's leading wholesaler and innovator of custom fireplace design and implementation. VGF provides the most comprehensive fireplace website to architects, builders, designers and renovators.