Zero Clearance Questions

Fisherman85

New Member
Oct 11, 2018
4
Indiana
New member here. Had a question about installing a zero clearance insert.

I've been thinking of one for awhile. Currently we have a ventless gas log, and I've thought about removing the gas log and installing a zero clearance insert in its place.

The main goal is to reduce heating cost and having a better backup in case of power outage.

So how involved is installing a zero clearance insert (generally speaking)? Is this something someone who is mechanically inclined can do pretty easily, or better left to a professional? Doesn't seem terribly involved to me, but I'm sure there are plenty on here who are more experienced at this.
 

bholler

Chimney sweep
Staff member
Jan 14, 2014
18,613
central pa
New member here. Had a question about installing a zero clearance insert.

I've been thinking of one for awhile. Currently we have a ventless gas log, and I've thought about removing the gas log and installing a zero clearance insert in its place.

The main goal is to reduce heating cost and having a better backup in case of power outage.

So how involved is installing a zero clearance insert (generally speaking)? Is this something someone who is mechanically inclined can do pretty easily, or better left to a professional? Doesn't seem terribly involved to me, but I'm sure there are plenty on here who are more experienced at this.
The first thing we need to know is what model fireplace do you have? Most zero clearance units do not allow inserts to be installed in them
 

Fisherman85

New Member
Oct 11, 2018
4
Indiana
My hope is to remove the whole ventless firebox and whatever else needs to be gone to install the zero clearance. Was thinking of an Osburn Stratford or something similar. Obviously the chimney would run up through the drywall void that's above the current firebox.
 

bholler

Chimney sweep
Staff member
Jan 14, 2014
18,613
central pa
My hope is to remove the whole ventless firebox and whatever else needs to be gone to install the zero clearance. Was thinking of an Osburn Stratford or something similar. Obviously the chimney would run up through the drywall void that's above the current firebox.
Oh ok well that would be fine. When you said insert i thought you were talking about an insert in your current fireplace. But now i understand you are talking about a complete fireplace replacement.
 

Jan Pijpelink

Minister of Fire
Jan 2, 2015
1,604
Lindenwold, South Jersey
At least we are not talking about a "zero tolerance fireplace" like a few hours back. Made me think really hard. Gave up after 10 minutes.
 

bholler

Chimney sweep
Staff member
Jan 14, 2014
18,613
central pa
But to your question no it isnt that complicated as long as you have decent carpentry skills and will take the time to read understand and follow the instructions
 

bholler

Chimney sweep
Staff member
Jan 14, 2014
18,613
central pa
So have any of you installed something similar to this? Is it fairly easy or would it be better to hire a professional?
Yes i have installed quite a few. It depends on your skill set
 

bfast250

Burning Hunk
Dec 6, 2013
111
Missouri
@Fisherman85 - I contemplated this same question/situation. I ended up installing my zero clearance fireplace myself and am very glad I did. Take your time and ask questions if you aren't sure.

I am not in the construction trade. I had never tackled a project this big. Just giving you some context. Good luck!
 

begreen

Mooderator
Staff member
Nov 18, 2005
78,568
South Puget Sound, WA
The key to a successful install will be good planning, reading and following the manual, asking questions when uncertain, getting proper components, measuring well, measure again, take your time with the intent to do it right the first time, ask more questions as it proceeds, don't cut corners, and use quality tools and components.
 
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