How to Build an Outdoor Gas Log Fireplace
An outdoor gas log fireplace can be a wonderful addition to any garden because it can make your garden more useful throughout the year. The gas fireplace will provide warmth whatever the time of year you are sitting out in the garden.
Building a gas log fireplace is actually much easier than you might imagine, and with the right tools it's actually a very easy project. It's possible to fit these fireplaces whether you already have gas in your property or not. There really shouldn't be any reasons not to fit your own outdoor gas log fireplace.
Step 1 - Choosing the Fireplace
First you need to choose your fireplace. There are quite a few different types of gas fireplace which are suitable for use outside. Gas outdoor units are very easy to install if you already have gas coming into your property. You will just need a professional to actually connect the appliance to the gas main. If you don't have gas on your property, you might prefer using a propane burner. These are also ideal if you don't want to dig up your garden to route gas lines.
Step 2 - Installing Concrete Bases
A concrete base should be installed. Dig a hole for the base, then line the sides with wood, extending to the desired height of the hearth. Fill the hole and form with concrete, properly reinforced with rebar. Level off the top to create an even base for the fireplace and a fireproof separation between your garden and the fire.
Step 3 - Designing the Fireplace
Next you should give some thought to the frame and chimney. You need to design a frame which will enclose the fireplace and offer some protection. Work out the size required to cover your fireplace. Make sure that there is enough space between the fireplace and the wooden frame to fit in some insulation
It's important that the frame surrounds the fireplace but gives it enough space to breathe otherwise it will go out. Also consider the height of the chimney. The chimney needs to be high enough so that you don't get exposed to the smoke. Ideally the chimney needs to be a minimum of 8 feet high, check that this is possible in the area you are considering building in.
Step 4 - Making the Frame
The frame should be made out of lumber using 4x4 lumber to create the vertical supports. The frame can then be covered completely in marine grade plywood which will last outdoors pretty well.
Step 5 - Connecting the Gas Fireplace
The gas fireplace then needs to be connected to the gas lines, it's best to have a professional to do this for you.
Step 6 - Roofing
Cover the plywood with roofing felt, nail and glue this down to ensure that the whole thing is weatherproof.
Step 7 - Cladding
Then it's possible to build around the frame with stone which will give it a much more natural look in your garden. Give some thought to how you will fit the stones together, but make sure that the whole frame is covered and that none of the felt is visible.
If you're having a hard time fitting everything together then you can break the stones into smaller pieces.
Step 8 - Coating the Stones
The stones should then be secured with mortar to make the whole structure strong and watertight.