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  1. #1

    OT: Ventless fireplaces...

    Have two in my house. They're amazing...can heat the entire house with them. Been in our house for 10 years.

    Someone please explain to me how we're not dead from CO poisoning. How do they work...the whole ventless thing?


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  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by LittleBigDog View Post
    Have two in my house. They're amazing...can heat the entire house with them. Been in our house for 10 years.

    Someone please explain to me how we're not dead from CO poisoning. How do they work...the whole ventless thing?
    Are they nat gas/propane?


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  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by LittleBigDog View Post
    Have two in my house. They're amazing...can heat the entire house with them. Been in our house for 10 years.

    Someone please explain to me how we're not dead from CO poisoning. How do they work...the whole ventless thing?
    Regardless of whether they are vented or ventless use a CO monitor(s) and install them according to the instructions in the package.


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  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by LittleBigDog View Post
    Someone please explain to me how we're not dead from CO poisoning.
    This could be heaven... or hell


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  5. #5
    If they are run for extended periods of time the dangerous gases will build up.

    If you have ever been in a home, especially older folks that burn them a lot, you will get sleepy faster, that means they are used too much.

    Luckily in the south we rarely ever run them for days straight without cutting them down or off. Also, when doors are opened you get an exchange of air.


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  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by LittleBigDog View Post
    Have two in my house. They're amazing...can heat the entire house with them. Been in our house for 10 years.

    Someone please explain to me how we're not dead from CO poisoning. How do they work...the whole ventless thing?
    The ventless ones I have seen are basically decorative and don't put out enough BTUs to heat your house. And to the extent you get your seal tight enough and house heavily insulated enough to allow them to heat it, you would be creating problems with air quality. So to answer your question, I don't know. Are you sure they are actually ventless and not just chimneyless?


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  7. #7

    Natural gas

    Quote Originally Posted by Russ Wheeler View Post
    Are they nat gas/propane?
    nm


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  8. #8

    Definitely ventless

    nm


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  9. #9
    If CO2 poisoning was as bad as they say a lot of us wouldn't be here today because our ancestors would have been wiped out by the "old style" unvented and very inefficient gas space heaters used in the mid 1900's. **
    Last edited by thatsbaseball; 12-01-2020 at 01:21 PM.


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  10. #10
    I think you mean the vented ones are more decorative.


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  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by thatsbaseball View Post
    If CO2 poisoning was as bad as they say a lot of us wouldn't be here today because our ancestors would have been wiped out by the "old style" unvented gas space heaters used in the mid 1900's. **
    My great grandfather had an old ceramic unvented gas space heater. He would sit next to that thing smoking unfiltered lucky strikes. He made it to 103 before dying of "old age".

    Maybe he was in a C02 coma those last 10-15 years and we just didn't notice**

    My mom made go to his last birthday party every year for a decade.

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  12. #12
    Considering they insulated their houses with old newspaper, if they were lucky, probably not comparable. There was constant air exchange.


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  13. #13
    Thereís codes in place for size of room, etc. Iím a plumber of 13 years and I donít install them because of the obvious consequences of a mistake in installing them. However, if the code is followed, they are safe. Thereís also electronics equipped in them to turn them off automatically if o2 levels change.


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  14. #14

    i was going to post the same pic

    Quote Originally Posted by WrapItDog View Post
    My great grandfather had an old ceramic unvented gas space heater. He would sit next to that thing smoking unfiltered lucky strikes. He made it to 103 before dying of "old age".

    Maybe he was in a C02 coma those last 10-15 years and we just didn't notice**

    My mom made go to his last birthday party every year for a decade.

    Name:  c3bbc9c7eb5cd3f0bfef8b743f7f3a57.jpg
Views: 719
Size:  14.6 KB
    my family lived around these my whole life - if you house is so tight to not allow sufficient air exchange then heating is the least of your worries


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  15. #15
    I have been in a few homes with ventless fireplaces and immediately noticed that extra moisture. Lots of water vapor produced burning NG and it's as bad for your home is excess CO would be for your body. I'm assuming it's an older home 15+ years or more. This is good in that the home is probably leaky and let's you get some air exchange. Newer homes are much tighter and many locations require ACH50 of 3 or less now. (Air changes per hour at 50 pascals) many older homes double or triple that.

    The homes I have been in with ventless fireplaces remind me of the feel of my Grandmother's house that was heated with those wall mounted propane heaters. It was in the 90's when we gutted that house and found huge mold growths in the areas around the two heaters. I was a teenager at the time, but mold always meant water leaking in from the outside to my dad and uncles.

    Now 25 years later and having gone through lots of building science education, I know that most mold is caused by interior moisture that can't get out. Those propane heaters came out of her house because of central heat and air, but I guarantee you that it added years to her life. She's currently 89 and still mean as a hornet.

    Ventless fireplaces would be especially bad in the south. Southern homes are typically built to keep high humidity out since it's hot and humid outside and dryer inside most of the time. In colder climates, it's the opposite with cold winters and gas furnaces. Adding high levels of humidity into a home built in the south seems like a good way to grow a lot of mold.

    For my take I would look to find another way to heat the house. Whether you have a gas or all electric hvac system, the monthly energy expense pails in comparison to the costs of mold remediation not to mention the potential health hazard of mold and CO.
    Last edited by JoeLee'sSocks; 12-01-2020 at 01:49 PM.


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  16. #16
    BiscuitEater's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by johnson86-1 View Post
    The ventless ones I have seen are basically decorative and don't put out enough BTUs to heat your house.
    Totally, disagree. Cut up a ventless one and it will run you out seeking a cooler place.

    From the makers ...

    Vented and Ventless Gas Logs are a little different. Vented gas logs burn like a real wood fire with a yellow flame that produces smoke. They must be burned in a wood burning fireplace with the damper open, so smoke goes up the flue along with most of the heat. Ventless (vent-free) gas logs burn cleanly with a lower flame that does not smoke. You can burn them with the damper closed to heat your room.


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  17. #17
    I bought my first set of gas logs last year. I bought an expensive set of vented logs and would hate to know I had to depend on them for heat. They look great though.


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  18. #18
    Sitting next to one of those right now. Moved into grandpa's long vacant old farmhouse this year. Being a 120-year old rather cheaply made wood house, it's not very tight.


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  19. #19

    Been using one for many years,

    Saved my bacon a time or two, when the power took a vacation. (in dead of Winter).

    Cleaned and cranked them up Yesterday.

    Nat Gas.

    I do have a CO detector in place, but not before about two years ago.
    Last edited by karlchilders; 12-01-2020 at 06:53 PM.
    Jack may be gone, but he is "EVER PRESENT"


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  20. #20
    No one answered the OPís question.
    Ventless gas log burners have a regulator and oxygen intake port as well as a Venturi to produce a yellow flame that burns almost all the natural gas. They are tested vigorously by UL. Unlike a vented gas logs that produce blue flame and give off soot


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  21. #21
    Sorry but you got it backwards about the types of flames bro.


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  22. #22
    Quote Originally Posted by thatsbaseball View Post
    I think you mean the vented ones are more decorative.
    Well, that's true too I guess. I think your options are slightly lower BTUs with the heat (and byproducts) going into the room versus slightly higher BTUs with the heat (and byproducts) going outside, although I think if you do the direct vent with the fan you can get a little more heat, or at least taking into account the fact that you aren't limited in how long you run it.


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  23. #23

    Good info! That's what I was wondering. Thank you

    Quote Originally Posted by Allday View Post
    No one answered the OPís question.
    Ventless gas log burners have a regulator and oxygen intake port as well as a Venturi to produce a yellow flame that burns almost all the natural gas. They are tested vigorously by UL. Unlike a vented gas logs that produce blue flame and give off soot
    nm


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  24. #24

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    Quote Originally Posted by johnson86-1 View Post
    The ventless ones I have seen are basically decorative and don't put out enough BTUs to heat your house. And to the extent you get your seal tight enough and house heavily insulated enough to allow them to heat it, you would be creating problems with air quality. So to answer your question, I don't know. Are you sure they are actually ventless and not just chimneyless?
    I've got a ventless propane log set in my fireplace, and you're right - it provides very little heat. It's mostly for atmosphere, and most of the heat goes up the chimney (it's a real woodburning fireplace, and the damper is closed but still the heat goes straight up).

    For air quality, it's possible to bring in outside air using a air-to-air heat exchanger in a well insulated and airtight house.


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  25. #25

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    The house I grew up in, in middle Mississippi, used space heaters - free standing propane burning heaters with ceramic elements. We never thought about CO2 issues because we never knew about it at the time. But the house wasn't tight enough for it to matter I suppose. Either that, or CO2 wasn't an issue with that type heating.


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  26. #26
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    I have been heating my home with a natural gas ventless fireplace for years. It has an automatic blower and will run you out if you leave it running even in temps like today.

    This house is not sealed very well and the air does get changed out more than a lot of newer homes. There is a central unit but we rarely turn it on.. if ever. I will be getting a CO2 monitor soon. I have never noticed the moisture issue in this home but:

    I have a 2nd place on a lake that uses propane and wall heater for heat. I had to put in a dehumidifier to keep the moisture out. When we bought the place it was full of mold. I don't live there so the heat is not on most of the time. I run the dehumidifier year round to keep the moisture content even in that house.


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  27. #27
    Man that ceramic heater takes me back. The house I grew up in was built in the early 1900ís. We had those things in every room. We used to dry off in front of them when we got out of the bath. When I was about 7 or 8 I bent over to dry my legs and put griddle marks across my ass. Took a trip to the ER on that one!!!


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  28. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by WrapItDog View Post
    My great grandfather had an old ceramic unvented gas space heater. He would sit next to that thing smoking unfiltered lucky strikes. He made it to 103 before dying of "old age".

    Maybe he was in a C02 coma those last 10-15 years and we just didn't notice**

    My mom made go to his last birthday party every year for a decade.

    Name:  c3bbc9c7eb5cd3f0bfef8b743f7f3a57.jpg
Views: 719
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    Take that thing to antiques road show! It might be worth something.

    My grandpa used a similar heater and smoked Marlboroís for his entire life. Only made it to 75.


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  29. #29

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    Agreed! I did some research on these when the house we just bought had a ventless log system. They have a CO sensor that will automatically shut off if it's not getting enough oxygen (from inside the room). And they WILL run you out of the room. They put out MUCH more heat than a vented system. They just don't look as pretty (flame wise). If you want dancing flames, but less heat, get a vented system if you have a chimney. A lot of new houses don't have a chimney and have ventless systems installed. I only have the heat turned on for when we go to bed at night.

    Also, I have a CO2 detector near mine. Some literature I've read suggests opening a window or door nearby if you can to help with oxygen flow. But if it's really cold, kinda defeats the purpose.


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  30. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by RocketDawg View Post
    I've got a ventless propane log set in my fireplace, and you're right - it provides very little heat. It's mostly for atmosphere, and most of the heat goes up the chimney (it's a real woodburning fireplace, and the damper is closed but still the heat goes straight up).

    For air quality, it's possible to bring in outside air using a air-to-air heat exchanger in a well insulated and airtight house.
    put a blower on it... it will heat plenty then.


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  31. #31
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    There's a natural gas ventless set in the "mother in laws quarters" in my house with a real chimney. Even though they are ventless, there's definitely an odor when they burn. We seldom if ever use them, only with power outages in the winter and I crack open the flue still because I don't trust them. They heat that one large area pretty damn good and would come in handy during power outages in ice/snow that we seldom have in Starkvegas.

    My mom also has a ventless set in her house and they have an odor too that I can't get past.
    The poster formerly known as: dawgebag


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