I bought a foreclosure and we are trying to figure out if we have a log burning fireplace or not.

On the right hand side of the fireplace we a turn valve with the key. If you turn key, you get gas out of the pipe as pictured. There's no pilot light or ignition switch, so you just light by hand.

In the fireplace, there is a pull lever which you can use to open the damper.

Does anyone have any ideas if this is a wood burning fireplace with a gas starter or is this a gas fireplace and/or with gas logs?

My plumber (who is not an expert on fireplace hardware, but who I trust), thinks it's a gas starter and the fireplace can burn logs.

My couple of neighbors all have gas insert fireplaces with glass fronts, but this is the "big" builder model in the subdivision so I'm wondering if we got the deluxe fireplace option that can burn real logs.

enter image description here

1 Answer 1


That is a wood burning fireplace with a gas starter. The intent is to use the gas starter to get your log fire burning. You can then shut down the gas starter jet.

Since it's a foreclosure the flue may not have been maintained properly. It would be a good idea to have a professional come in to inspect the chimney liner to ensure it is in good condition and doesn't have soot buildup.

Wood burning fireplaces require chimney cleaning every year or two, depending on use, to prevent flue fires.

  • Are you saying that on the basis of the shape of the burner? (I'm not familiar with the hardware!). Definently agree on the chimmney cleaner.
    – Leroy105
    Oct 27, 2020 at 17:17
  • 1
    Yes. Based on the burner in the picture and the entire setup. Gas log fireplaces have safety features, such as a pilot with a thermopile and thermocouple to shutoff gas flow in the event the flame is extinguished. Other differences as well in terms of the flame array - it's typically spread out and released through a metal plate that support the gas logs and artificial embers that glow for effect.
    – HoneyDo
    Oct 27, 2020 at 19:37

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.