Latest Discussions : HVAC


01:08PM | 11/10/02
Member Since: 11/09/02
9 lifetime posts
The house we bought originally had a wood burning fireplace. Previous owners converted this to a gas fireplace, but took their logs when they moved. We've purchased and installed American Hearth gas logs (they call it an "unvented gas log heater or vented decorative appliance").

The problem is that when we use it, an odor is given off that eventually makes you tired/ill. IT IS NOT PROPANE that we're's more like when you first light a gas stove, but the smell doesn't disipate. We've had the dealer over to check it out. Everything is installed properly, there are no gas leaks, it just has a "burned gas" kind of smell. And it doesn't matter if we use it vented or not vented.

The dealer suggested that a chemical used in the house (recent painting or carpet cleaning) may be causing it...but none of that has happened. He even suggested moving our extra paint cans to the shed out back instead of the garage, but that hasn't helped either.

Has anyone heard of this/had this problem? Any suggestions to remedy the situation? We're even considering converting it back to wood. Any help is much appreciated!


04:22AM | 11/11/02
Member Since: 11/09/02
9 lifetime posts
Carbon Monoxide....those are the words I was looking for all along. We think that's what the problem is. We'll go get a tester today. If that's the problem, the dealer (or manufacturer) should have to repair/replace it, right?


07:38AM | 11/11/02
Member Since: 11/09/02
9 lifetime posts
But these are NEW logs. The previous owner took theirs with them when they sold the house. So if the problem is carbon monoxide from a bad flame, wouldn't that be the gas logs and not the fireplace?


11:12AM | 11/11/02
Member Since: 11/09/02
9 lifetime posts
New Update...we got a different set of logs from our dealer, and we still get the same smell. So it's not the logs. But they're also installed correctly, so it's not the installation. Any tips on where to go from here? Who should we call to help us...the gas company, a contractor, a handyman? I admit, I'm starting to feel lost.

We thought maybe cleaning the chimney because we don't know when it was done last, but that doesn't seem to make sense because we're not actually using it.

We're also thinking about converting it back to wood. Any thoughts on this?


that guy ty

01:14PM | 11/11/02
Member Since: 11/09/02
6 lifetime posts
If they are new logs would the smell be from burning off the "newness" of the ceramic/concrete logs themselves? I am a newbie as well, but that is a thought I have. They also make detectors that detect gas, carbon monoxide and oxygen depletion as well. Good luck, Ty.


06:28AM | 11/14/02
Member Since: 11/13/02
1 lifetime posts
I originally posted this not realizing that your unit is "Unvented". I don't know anything about that however, I'll leave my post anyways, just in case.

Hi, I have the same problem with my fireplace insert. I haven't corrected it yet, however I believe the problem to be that the exhaust pipe diameter up through the chimney is too big for the unit we are using. I also have 2 90 degree elbows in the exhaust to get it to the back of the hearth and up the chimney.
If your exhaust pipe diameter is too big then the gases flowing out will cool too quickly and not escape out but rather down back in to your house. Any type of bend in the pipe will also slow the gases down allowing them to cool down faster and back down.
The fireplace insert I am currently using was moved up from the basement with a 3" exhaust (where it worked fine) to the main floor where there is a 4" exhaust with 2 elbows. My solution, if correct, will be to move the insert back downstairs and purchase a new one with a 4" exhaust for upstairs.
Hope this helps!

[This message has been edited by Curly (edited November 14, 2002).]


11:11PM | 11/14/02
Member Since: 11/14/02
1 lifetime posts

7. Not Recommended
In addition to knowing what to look for in an energy-efficient gas fireplace, it is important to know what is not recommended. In the case of gas logs, ceramic logs with gas burners are placed directly into an existing wood fireplace to give the effect of a burning fire. These gas logs provide no real heat to the house and are essentially a waste of energy and money, as well as a potential source of pollutants, although they can provide an attractive fire.
Gas logs can also cause venting system problems, particularly in colder regions. This is primarily because wood fireplace chimneys are not designed to handle the low-temperature, low-flow, high-moisture flue gases generated by a gas fire. If a wood fireplace chimney is not relined to accommodate these gases, the chances of flue gas condensation and chimney deterioration are high. As well, if the fireplace is on an outside wall, there is a risk that the gas burners will not generate enough heat to create a good draft. Under these conditions, the house can become a better chimney than the chimney itself (see "The house as a chimney"), disrupting the flame and drawing carbon monoxide and other combustion products back into the living area.

8. What to Avoid
A type of gas fireplace to avoid in Canadian housing-the vent-free gas fireplace-is available in the United States. As the name implies, these units do not vent to the outdoors; all the combustion gases (including carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide, nitrogen oxides and large amounts of water vapour) are released directly into the house. These fireplaces can cause serious indoor air quality and moisture problems, particularly in airtight Canadian homes. They are not approved for use in Canada.


12:11AM | 10/27/17
I am unsure when this post was originally posted however I purchased a non-vented gas log for my wood fireplace and it smelled the whole house up and it was so powerful I couldn't take it so I had that taken out and purchase a gas log set vented that set has been great I have not had an issue with it I don't get a lot of heat in the house but I love the fire that I have in the fireplace and no mess maybe this will be helpful I hope


09:40AM | 03/02/19
Member Since: 03/02/19
1 lifetime posts
I purchased ventless log burner with logs 8 years ago. For 6years, it worked beautifully. No odor except for a little of the gas smell, but not bad. Last year, however, it started giving off a chemical smell - not gas or rotten egg smell - but a smell that gave me a terrible headache. I removed the gas logs and burned the unit without them, and it worked fine. I think the logs themselves wear out and begin leaking something that smells awful when heated. I haven't been able to find anything about the ceramic logs being harmful, but I will not use them again.


02:13PM | 11/20/19
Hi to those who are struggling with there Gas Logs smelling- we are a gas installation company and install Gas logs as well. I have found you will have an odor when you 1. initially use your logs for the first time from paint on the logs and any dust on the logs so its recommended to burn for a couple hours with a window open to get all residue off.
2. when starting your logs the first time in the season you will also have to burn off the logs for any dust or hair from animals unless you clean them first or just burn it off and open window.
3. Also you will also get a burned gas smell that will go through the house so i recommend open up door or window nearest to fireplace to let that smell out then should be fine but this will happen everytime you light your logs.
4. if you are on propane and your tank is lower than 15% you will be burning off oderant in the gas and that may stay until you get your tank filled..
5. If you have painted or have used chemicals in your house you will also get an odor until the logs have burned up all of the chemical odor in the house because vent-free logs get there air from the inside of the house. You can open up your damper as well until all odor is burned up or open up a nearby window or door until burned off. I like to keep a window open nearby alittle anyway so just a habit I got into.
I have a gas log set myself so when I turn it on I open door or window


07:22PM | 12/02/19
Thanks for the advice I will open a widow slightly when operating my vented gas fireplace.

Jordan Bronson

03:59AM | 12/05/19
Member Since: 12/04/19
7 lifetime posts
Does it have... Weird Sweet Smell Odor, Rotten Veggie Smell or Garlic or Cabbage Add Sweetness or Sweet Tobacco Smell.... VERY hard to described? Cause Burn Eyes, Nose, Throat or Lung Irritation or Choking Like Coughing. Headaches and Nausea - Nauseating, Pungent, Sickening, Sicken Smelly, Queasy, Respiratory Issues, On and On and On.....

Here is the Link of the YouTube Video:



06:15AM | 09/21/20
We removed the logs and burn for heat. Problem solved

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