One of the biggest maintenance issues in having a gas fireplace is keeping the glass clean. You may notice a white film that builds up on the inside of the glass from time to time. The best thing you can do is to try to prevent it. You may notice a “fog” or moisture on the glass when you first start your gas fireplace. Try to let your fireplace run for a long enough time so all the moisture has a chance to evaporate. The main reason the glass develops a white powdery film is due to moisture in the gas (both natural gas and propane gas) it burns not being completely dried before turning off your fireplace.
The other cause of dirty glass is`1 black soot. Anytime you have black soot on a gas fireplace glass you have a serious maintenance problem. You need to have a qualified service technician service the fireplace. This is an issue that will cause additional problems and just cleaning the glass will NOT take care of it. The soot will continue to build and can cause a dangerous situation.
If your glass does develop a white film and you would like to clean the glass it can be taken care of in a few simple steps.
First, make sure the fireplace has been turned off and the glass is completely cool. Never handle or put cleaner on a hot glass fireplace door.
Second, remove the glass door, (See your owners manual for instructions for your particular fireplace). This is usually done by releasing four latches, or for older models, removing screws. Be careful not to damage the gasket that seals the door.
Third, place the glass on a protected surface, we usually use a towel or drop cloth to protect the floor and the glass. Use gloves to protect your hands, and apply an approved glass cleaner. We use Stove Bright gas fireplace cleaner which can be purchased from a hearth shop or from a hearth service technician. This cleaner is similar to a car wax in which you apply approximately two tablespoons of the cleaner to the glass, and then with a paper towel smear it around to cover all the surface of the glass. Make sure you get even coverage and you get it into the corners of the glass. Again be careful not to damage the gasket around the door. After allowing it to dry completely buff it off with a soft, clean cloth. You will know it is dry when the compound no longer smears.
With the glass still removed, you now can replace or refresh the burning embers that are included in most fireplace. (see your owners manual for instructions and type of material)
Fourth, replace the glass. Make sure that you put the glass on evenly and all of the gaskets are intact. Secure all of the latches or screws so your fireplace glass door is again air tight.
Fifth, sit back and enjoy the clear view of your fireplace which should be looking as good as new! If you maintain your glass it will last you a long time. Leaving the white film or the black soot on your glass for extended periods of time can permanently damage the glass which is very expensive to replace.
It is an involved process, but it is well worth extending the life and beauty of your fireplace. If you need help with the project, or just don’t feel like doing it yourself, you can call or email L and M Service Specialists, Inc. We will be happy to do your service for you.