Yet another question in my long running series of new house questions. I closed recently on a newly constructed house and in my final walk through with the project manager he demonstrated how the gas fireplace works. When he turned it on a god awful smell started permeating the room, the stench of smoke. The room got a bit cloudy and the smoke alarms in the house went off within minutes.
He said this was perfectly normal and that we just have to run it a little bit every day for a few days and this will go away. I have never had a gas fireplace before so I assumed this break in period was normal.
Fast forward a week later of running it two or three times a day every day and while it has gotten a lot better, it still smells and STILL sets the smoke alarm off. I keep trying to call him to ask him to take a look at it and he is not answering his calls. I have two exotic birds and they are very sensitive to fumes and chemicals, so I am too worried to ever burn my fireplace after I move them into their new home.
Is this normal and is there anything I can do to help break this gas fireplace in a little faster? I have never experienced this in my friends homes that have gas fireplaces.
Fast forward almost a year later... the smell did eventually go away but it took a very long time and constant use. The maintenance checkup from the home builder looked at the fireplace and found that the fireplace was NOT properly sealed by the general contractor! This also explains why when I wasn't using the fireplace that I could feel a bitter cold breeze blowing into my house from the fireplace. The project manager all the while told me this was normal but it was the maintenance sub contractor that told me it was installed incorrectly and he did fix it for me. I haven't had problems since.