A gas fire is a handy way to add warmth to your home – with a simple switch on mechanisms for instant heat. They can be installed in an open fireplace, wall-mounted, or freestanding. And come with a choice of balanced flue or flueless for homes without a chimney.
Maintaining your fire properly is vital to ensure it works efficiently and safely. An easy method to do this is to check the flame as this indicates the health of the system. So, what colour flame should a gas fire have? Read on…
Healthy Gas Fire Flame Colours
A gas fire blue flame when the fire is initially turned on is quite normal. If your gas fire is blue with orange tips this is also quite acceptable as it’s often temporary due to dust in air particles, or a possible lack of oxygen. Colours of flames in gas fires may range from a yellow gas flame, through orange to red. These strong gas flame colours will burn consistently – and are the exception to the rule.
A gas fireplace benefits from red flames or yellow flames in order for it to look and feel authentic. And fires are engineered to operate safely with these coloured flames. Breaking the rules of having a blue flame – known for safety – is acceptable as fireplaces are flued to prevent indoor emissions.
If the fireplace is vented then the damper within the fireplace will need to be opened in order for proper ventilation to be achieved.
Furnace Flame Colours Explained in Detail
A blue flame from your gas stove or furnace shows that the gas is experiencing complete combustion. A roaring blue flame with a light blue central triangle is the optimum.
Gases that burn with a blue flame include:
- Natural gas
A natural gas blue flame proves that the burner is providing the right air-fuel mix – with enough oxygen for complete combustion producing water, carbon dioxide, and heat. Blue flames are hotter and more efficient without any wastage.
Incorrect Furnace Flame Colours
If the flame colour from your gas stove or furnace falls into a yellow, orange, or red burner category this points to incomplete combustion of the gas. Long streaks of any colour including green mean your furnace needs cleaning or adjusting by an expert.
A lack of oxygen results in the flame not being as hot – the coolest flame is a yellow or orange colour. You should never try to adjust a furnace flame colour yourself.
Red flames are a danger sign – when your burner is not receiving enough air for complete combustion. The main hazard of this is the increased amount of carbon monoxide produced. This gas is odourless, tasteless, and without any colour. And inhalation can lead to nausea and headaches, blackouts, and can be fatal.
As this is such a serious issue it’s recommended that carbon monoxide detectors are installed to detect any leaks. If the detector goes off then you should turn off the appliance and leave the house. Contact a gas safe engineer to carry out a thorough inspection.
Other Warning Signs
You may also notice that the flames are wavering and that there’s an accumulation of soot around the furnace. Dirty burners can quickly become blocked – also resulting in soot build-up inside the furnace.
Incomplete combustion is a serious safety issue and your furnace burners will need to be inspected and cleaned to ensure safe and proper operation.
Professional furnace maintenance should be carried out at the start of each heating season. And regularly inspecting the furnace flame colour will determine whether your furnace is working efficiently and safely ongoing.
If you have a chimney then proper maintenance is essential to ensure the fireplace is properly oxygenated – and provides ventilation for any harmful gases.
Make sure that your outdoor vents aren’t obstructed by leaves, nests, or other debris that could cause the change in flame colour.
Call in the Specialists
When you need a new gas fire fitted safely and professionally get in touch with local fireplace installation services. You’ll get all the help and advice you need from fitters with years of industry experience.
An initial survey will give you all the information you need. And you’ll be able to choose from a range of traditional and contemporary gas fires designed to suit your every need.