If you’re weighing up your home heating options and you’ve decided to install a gas fire, there are some things you need to know before you proceed with your installation. We’ll cover the basics of what you need to know before you install your gas fire unit to cover all your bases.
1. Size matters
The size of your unit matters, bigger units produce more heat. If the unit is too big for the room, the gas fire will produce too much heat. If the unit you’re installing is too small for the room you’re trying to heat, the gas fire will not produce enough heat. This means the room will not be heated and it will cost you more money to run the gas fire.
The geographical location of your house within New Zealand will impact the size of the gas fire required to heat your room. New Zealand is divided into three zones: warm, mild and cool. In the warm zone, gas fires have a heating area of 77 to 130 square metres. In the mild zone, gas fires have a heating area of 68 to 114 square metres. In the cool zone, gas fires have a heating area of 50 to 84 square metres. The cooler the incoming air in colder regions, the harder the gas fire needs to work to heat up a room. You need to consult with individual manufacturers to ensure your selected unit can meet your heating requirements in the geographical location.
3. Heat loss
Heat loss is inevitable, but there are some factors that impact heat loss the most. The main heat loss factors include:
- no or minimal ceiling/wall insulation
- no carpets on the floor
- no curtains
- window area >15 square metres
- ceiling height higher than 2.4 metres
- building on poles or piles
These factors affect the heat loss to varying degrees, no or minimal ceiling insulation and a lack of curtains are the two biggest contributors to heat loss.
4. Functionality vs. aesthetics
You’ll need to consider if you’d like to prioritise one over the other. Are you going for a certain gas fireplace look? Where is it likely to be installed? There are a variety of aesthetic options available on the market that look great and make an excellent addition to every room. You need to balance that with your functionality requirements. What size is the room you are trying to heat? Are there any heat loss factors that need to be considered?
The installation of a gas fireplace is complex and may require the input of several trades to ensure the finish is up to industry standard. You will need someone to build the surround, install the gas fireplace, a licenced gasfitter to ensure the fittings are connected correctly and an electrician to run the electrical wires to the fireplace and a TV if located above your fireplace. Finding a company that can do all of the above will save you time and money when it comes to installing the appliance. It also prevents any hidden costs from cropping up during the build/project. You need to make sure all the tradespeople are licenced, this means the gas fireplace will remain under the manufacturer’s warranty. Regency Plumbing is a licenced gasfitter in Auckland
6. Running costs
Upfront installation costs and the ongoing running costs need to be considered side-by-side. While the upfront costs may be a little higher, depending on your chosen model, running costs can be kept low by choosing an energy-efficient model. The efficiency of gas fireplace varies greatly between manufacturers and models. Not all fireplaces are designed equally, so make sure the model you’ve selected is the most efficient unit suited to your needs.
7. Flue types
There are three main types of flues. The type of flue will have an impact on where you can install the gas fireplace.
– The natural draft flue draws air from the room and expels the exhaust gases through the vertical flue to the outside. Adequate ventilation is key.
– The power flue has a sealed combustion chamber with a fan that draws air for combustion from the outside and expels combusted gases to the outside. This means they maintain air quality and can be installed in any room.
– The direct vent flue uses a natural draft to draw air from outside and expel the combustion gases to the outside. This maintains the air quality of the room.
8. Gas fireplace type
There are three main types of gas fireplaces you can choose from.
– Freestanding fires work well if you have limited space and are easy to install. The flue is exposed and is installed through the roof
– Insert fires are fitted inside an existing fireplace and the flue system is added. You can keep costs down by keeping the existing surround
– Inbuilt gas fires are the more ambitious type, you build the surround around the fire, creating an enclosure for the wall fireplace and the flue.
9. Heat output
Heat output of your gas fireplace is extremely important, this has a direct impact on your units efficiency and running costs. As a rough guide, you’ll need 1kW of heat per 10 square metres. Some units are more efficient than others due to the flue type and geographical location. Ultimately this is a balancing act of deciding what is most important to you when it comes to your heating requirements.
There are a range of gas fire manufacturers in New Zealand, however, it is important to note that not all gas fires are designed and manufactured equally. It’s important to do your homework when it comes to efficiency, heat output, warranty, servicing and aesthetics vs functionality. Some of the major manufacturers we work with to install in your home is Rinnai, Real fires, Regency and Heat N GLO.
If you’d like a consultation on your options for a gas fireplace, get in touch with us today. We can discuss your requirements and put together a plan for your installation. We can take care of the project from start to finish.
Gas Fire Installation by Regency Plumbing
At Regency Plumbing we have years of experience in installing gas fire all over Auckland. We can provide you with a gas fire which is designed for your home, for a competitive price. We can get a new Rinnai Evolve 952 gas fire installed in your home at a good price which will – include the gas fire, fascia, direct flue kit, as well as the gas-fitting work and the electrician. Contact us now to install a new gas fire for your home.