A natural gas fireplace can add beauty and value to your home. It can also be an additional form of heat for a drafty area. These functionally decorative items can be installed almost anywhere. They are also relatively inexpensive and will change the entire look and feel of whatever room they are in. You can add a gas fireplace to the basement game room to create a warm finished ambiance or to the master bedroom for a little romance.
Step 1 - Decide on Location
Place the fireplace as close to an existing gas line as possible to reduce the amount of pipe laying and drywall cutting involved. Locate the existing gas line inside the wall. Then, measure how far the distance is from the gas fitting on the fireplace to the nearest gas line.
You will need to purchase the pipe and fittings needed to attach your new gas fireplace to the existing pipe. Most hardware stores will cut and thread the pipe for you if you need a custom size.
Step 2 - Turn off the Gas and Vent the Pipe
Cover any furniture in the room as cutting drywall can make a dusty mess.
Be sure that all of the gas is out of the pipe before you start. Natural gas is very highly flammable. You will probably need to cut the main pipe. You may wish to look into an evacuation tool or have the gas company turn it off for you.
Use the smallest cut you can get away with so that you will not have a huge patch job to do later.
Step 3 - Cut the Gas Line
You will need to use the pipe cutter to cut the gas line and install the T-pipe so you can run a pipe to the fireplace. Then, screw all the pieces of pipe together and attach it to the intake on the fireplace. Be sure to use plenty of sealant (joint compound) to avoid any leaks.
Step 4 - Check for Leaks
Next, you will need to attach the pressure gauge to the end of your new pipe and apply pressure. Bring the pressure up to around 15 psi by using a bicycle pump. Use the soapy water in a spray bottle and spray all the places where you attached the pipe together. If you see any bubbles, you know there is a leak and you will need to repair that leak before going any further.
Step 5 - Connect Your Line to the Existing Gas Line
Screw your line into the existing gas line and seal up the hole you made in the drywall. It may actually be easier to patch the drywall before you attach your new pipe however to do that you will need one more small pipe and a female-to-male connector.
Wait about 12 hours for all of the compound to dry thoroughly before turning on the gas.