Gas fireplaces are setup to burn gas as the source of fuel and as a result have a number of components inside needed to supply the gas, and to start and control each gas fire.
From the outside a gas fireplace is of commonly designed to look like another type of fireplace, such as wood burning, but behind the covers you’ll find a range of gas-related components.
Typically found inside a gas fireplace includes the media such as logs, a burner tray, control unit and an ignition system made up of individual components such as a thermocouple. Depending on the model of gas fireplace, the media may be sat on a combustion matrix.
We’ve discussed exactly what’s inside our gas fireplaces in more detail below.
This article follows on from our article on what a gas fireplace looks like from the outside.
What’s Inside A Gas Fireplace?
For this article we’re going to explain what’s inside our gas fireplace inserts; one of which is operating and we use every winter and one of which we’ve recently removed to convert the masonry fireplace it was installed within back to wood burning.
Other types of gas fireplace are available other than our natural vent gas fireplaces including direct vent and ventless, but all of these typically share the same fundamental components and the internal layouts of these components may differ slightly between types, brands and models of gas fireplace.
Our gas fireplace uses coals as the media (firewood logs are also common).
These coals are loose and are organised on top of the combustion matrix in a specific arrangement to promote efficient burning of the gas. Removing these coals shows the combustion matrix below.
This ceramic combustion matrix is a single component and can also be removed to get to the burner tray below.
These burner trays often come part of an overall burner tray assembly that needs to be fitted into the overall body of the fireplace when the gas insert is installed.
The image below shows the burner assembly on its own that came as part of the gas fireplace insert we recently removed from our kitchen open fireplace.
A burner assembly would typically need to be unscrewed in order to be removed (when the gas supply is also isolated), as so we can’t see anymore more inside as gas fireplace below the burner tray unless the assembly is removed.
However, gas fireplace inserts typically have a firefront located at the bottom front of the unit that’s loose and can be removed to access the control unit behind.
The firefront in our particular model of gas fireplace insert comes in two parts.
The area below the burner tray within the burner assembly can be seen and accessed once the firefront is completely removed.
The main components found inside the burner assembly of a gas fireplace insert include:
- The control unit, such as a dial or set of dials.
- The ignition system, made up of a number of smaller components.
The firefront on our gas fireplace needs to be removed in order to access the controls where we can start the fireplace and change the heat output.
This particular control panel is a singular dial used to start the pilot light and increase or decrease the flame size.
The controls for a gas fireplace can differ between makes and models but is often found as a dial or set of dials like the one we have.
To the left of the control unit inside our gas fireplace is the ignition system.
This ignition is made up of three smaller components used to start the pilot light that in turn is used to light the main flames, including the:
- Spark ignitor
- Pilot light
The images below show what’s inside the remaining area of the burner assembly of our gas fireplace insert.
The picture below shows the back of our gas fireplace insert, highlighting the fixer cables that help to keep the insert tied to the back of the firebox of the masonry fireplace.