The idea of installing a gas log lighter in your wood burning fireplace can be quite daunting for some. Fireplace Doors Online is here to help you take some of the pressure away by showing you some basic plumbing instructions for fireplace gas starter pipe installation.
We've compiled instructions for both a wall mount and a floor mount for your log lighter installation. Whichever installation method you choose for your log lighter is up to your preferences, and perhaps the layout of your fireplace. Some homeowners prefer to do all of the plumbing in the floor.
This is something that a DIY homeowner could do, but we always caution that when working with any gas lines it is always best to consult with a certified gas technician. We get a lot of questions from our valued customers about installing log lighters - from contractors to the regular homeowner, so we made this infographic to help with gas starter pipe installation in a wood burning fireplace.
Some basic safety instructions:
- We recommend a certified gas technician install all gas components.
- Make sure to use a natural gas log lighter if you'll be using natural gas, and propane log lighter if you will be using propane. It is imperative that you DO NOT interchange these two.
- A log lighter should only be used in a wood burning fireplace.
- A log lighter is not meant to be used as a gas burner, running continuously as a fire for your fireplace. It is only to light the logs on fire, then to be turned off.
- Fireplace code states that all shut off valves must be within 6 feet of the opening of the fireplace. The reason for this is if there is a gas issue within the fireplace, you can quickly reach the gas shut off valve.
- Always use a log grate over your log lighter, keeping the logs and main fire off of your gas starter pipe.
- Do not use gas flex line when installing gas lines to your fireplace. Log lighters in fireplaces require hard gas lines.
- Wood stoves and wood inserts (a prefab unit that slides into a pre-existing fireplace) cannot have log lighters installed. Log lighters can only be installed in zero clearance or masonry wood burning fireplaces.
- Universal Log Lighter - Has a hole on the end and on the side, so if your gas line comes up from the bottom or from the side of the fireplace, this log lighter will be able to attach to it easily.
- 1/2" Straight Gas Ball Valve (Angled Valve Could Work Too)
- Escutcheon (Flange) & Key
- 2 1/2" Male Threaded Gas Nipples
- 2 1/2" Male Threaded Gas Pipes
- 2 1/2" Female Threaded Gas Elbows
- Pipe Tape
You'll also need some basic home diy tools like a drill, pencil, notepad, and measuring tape. The lengths of pipe and nipples needed will need to be determined by you or your contractor. This all depends on how far from the wall your fireplace sits, how far from the fireplace your valve will be, etc. You will need a long pipe going from the valve to your main gas line in the house.
You'll need to map out where you will be putting your gas lines. You'll need to drill a hole big enough to fit a 1/2" pipe through the interior side of your fireplace.
From this point, we will assume you know the basics of running line through the floor or wall and won't go through a step by step of how to get to these areas and how to drill holes through studs, etc, to hold your pipe. As we said, this is a basic instruction.
- Start by turning off the gas to your home.
- Connect the log lighter starter pipe to the 1/2" male nipple and slide the nipple from the inside of the fireplace through the hole you drilled. (All other work will be done outside the fireplace).
- Connect the male nipple to the female elbow. (For the floor mount, here is where you will turn the elbow to face downward. For the wall mount, turn the elbow facing toward the wall).
- Connect the female elbow to the male threaded gas pipe. (This pipe should be long enough to take you down through the floor or all the way into the wall, depending on application).
- Connect the male threaded pipe to the female elbow. (This will now turn your gas pipe so it is headed in the direction of your main line).
- Connect the female elbow to the male nipple.
- Connect the male nipple to the straight ball valve.
- Connect the other side of the straight ball valve to the gas pipe going to your main line.
- Add your valve flange to your straight ball valve.
Now have a certified gas technician look it over! Once you have the okay, turn on the gas and enjoy your new gas starter for your wood burning fireplace!