Gas fire place functions, but wall switch does nothing?


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Old 12-18-13, 09:47 AM
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Gas fire place functions, but wall switch does nothing?

i've been in my house for about a month now. finally got the gas fireplace fired up. not sure how old this insert is, the previous homeowner told me that the wall switch was used to kill the fire to the main parts of the fireplace and would leave only the pilot on. well, it doesnt seem the wall switch has any effect on what the fire does. everything works, i just have to control it by the manual knob which is right next to the fire. it gets hot quickly. 've been using welding gloves to turn off the fire place. if the switch has no affect on the fire, is it a faulty wall switch or is something faulty with the fireplace insert? here is a picture of my fire place. the wall switch is on the left, the manual knob is tucked back on the lower right behind the metal log support. i have no idea the make/model etc...

 
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Old 12-18-13, 10:33 AM
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First, I would not operate the fireplace with stockings hanging over it.

You did not provide much information about your gas logs so it's difficult to say much other than have a professional come in and inspect them to make sure they are operating properly. They can also instruct you how to properly operate the logs. That said there should be a way to turn off the logs that does not require welding gloves. Have you looked over the gas logs carefully for another switch or can the knob be rotated to a different position?
 
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Old 12-19-13, 12:30 AM
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I would take the switch out to see if it's wired.
 
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Old 12-21-13, 02:37 PM
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i should take out that switch to see if it is wired. i removed the logs today to see if i could noticeably see anything that looked like it should be connected. here is what i'm working with.









tried to get a good picture of everything in there
 
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Old 12-21-13, 05:00 PM
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The pictures are good.

When you want the logs on.... you have to turn the temperature knob to a certain point, hold it in and push the red spark button and the pilot lights. You hold the knob in for 30 seconds, release it and turn it to your flame level and it lights. To turn it off... you turn the flame knob to off. That would mean that there is no standing pilot light. Am I correct on the operation ?

Unfortunately.... if I'm correct... that switch won't connect to your exisiting fireplace.
 
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Old 12-21-13, 05:04 PM
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Correct, thats exactly how i worked it.
 
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Old 12-23-13, 09:33 AM
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i pulled the cover from that light swtich, i'm confused as to what the switch does now. there are indeed wires going to it. Its odd that the original homeowner told me that is how the fireplace worked, and the wall switch killed everything but the pilot light.

just out of curiosity, how did you determine that the switch did not go to the fire place?
 
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Old 12-23-13, 09:44 AM
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I don't see an electrically controllable gas valve.
I don't see any electrical wires in the fireplace unless they're hiding under the "embers"

Describe what wires you see in the switch box. Try to approx. gauge of wire and colors.

Just confirming..... when you turn the flame control to off the pilot goes out ?
 
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Old 12-23-13, 09:50 AM
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Correct, the pilot goes out when i switch the flame control to off. it just seems odd the guy would tell me thats how it works and it doesnt, then again maybe this guy forgot how it works? he said it has been some years since he operated the fireplace. i'll pull the cover off of the wall switch again when i get home tonight. Thanks for your help!
 
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Old 12-23-13, 10:03 AM
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My original thought was that they changed the gas valve system to a non remote type.

I'll watch for your update tonight.
 
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Old 12-23-13, 06:53 PM
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I'll have to update after the holiday. I had a disaster when i got off work, a drain pipe broke in my wall between my second floor and basement. Ugh.
 
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Old 12-23-13, 06:58 PM
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Sorry to hear that. We'll be here when you return. Good luck.
 
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Old 01-06-14, 09:44 AM
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Well, finally back. I snapped some pics of the switch next to the fire place.






I'm not real sure how to go about tracing this to determine if it does go to the fireplace. if it doesnt, then this would be the second wall switch in the house that has wires connected to it but does not do anything. Nothing that i can see anyways.
 
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Old 01-06-14, 10:01 AM
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Is there a chance that this switch controls a wall outlet or something within the room like that? I mean, it could be anything.

If this fireplace is on the first floor, do you have access to the basement below or attic above, assuming that's where the distribution box is, might see the wires coming through to trace them somewhere. Might be a good clue.
 
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Old 01-06-14, 10:03 AM
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i think i have access below, i've seen the gas service line to it. i'll dig around and see if there are any wires going along with it.
 
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Old 01-06-14, 10:51 PM
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You may find the wire below the fireplace.

As I previously mentioned, the gas log system may have been changed from the original system.
 
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Old 01-08-14, 07:12 PM
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yupp, you were right. look what i found stuffed up on the foundation block...

 
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Old 01-14-14, 07:58 AM
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Glad you resolved it! Nothing more frustrating than one of those switches in the house. I have one and have yet to find where it goes...
 
 

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