Chilliwack Heating 


JC Fireplaces & SpAS 


Useful Fireplace Information: Safety, FAQ, Cleaning & Maintenance

Most people have questions when it comes to the product lines we carry. Listed below are some of the most common categories of questions asked.

Please choose a category below.

Fireplace Safety


Chimney fires do not occur in clean, intact, properly installed chimneys. Sweep clean and inspect your appliance once every year or so. More frequent cleanings may be required, based on the type of wood burned, the type of appliance, and the frequency of use. In general, an older, uncertified woodstove, or any appliance that is used frequently, will require more than one cleaning per year.


The first indication of a chimney fire is usually the noise—a roaring sound that grows louder as the fire’s intensity increases. Clouds of black smoke and sparks will be seen exiting the top of the chimney; in severe fires, flames can extend several feet about the chimney.

  • Wood is the only fuel to use in a wood burning fireplace. Paper should be used only to start a fire, never as fuel. Some woods tend to pop and emit sparks more than others. The risk of fire outside the fireplace is naturally greater when burning high-pop woods. Oak, dogwood, cedar and spruce are high-poppers. Pine, poplar, elm, and cherry are low-pop woods.
  • Never use gasoline, kerosene or any flammable liquid to start a fire. Aside from the danger of possible explosion, these fluids may run out onto the floor and cause a fire to spread uncontrollably. The safest way to start a fire is to use long matches to light newspaper under a small amount of kindling. Use just enough paper and kindling to get the fire started.
  • Never leave an open faced roaring fire unattended. If you are leaving for a long time or going to bed, make certain the fire is out and the screens or doors are shut.
  • Dispose of ashes properly. Ashes may still be hot enough to start a fire days after the flames have died down. Never put ashes in paper or plastic bags or trash cans. Use a metal container with a tightly fitting top.

Gas Fireplace Safety Tips

  • Never move or adjust the logs in a gas fireplace. Doing so will cause an unsightly carbon which can damage the glass and fireplace components. Consult with the manufacturer before replacing any logs or embers in your fireplace.
  • Clean the fireplace glass every 4-6 months. It is normal for a slight film to build up over time.
  • If you do not feel comfortable lighting the pilot light in your fireplace, call a technician. They will be happy to assist you or set up a service call.

Fireplace FAQ

Does a fireplace increase the value of a home?

Fireplaces do add value, although the exact amount depends on the part of the country where you live. The Hearth Product Association conducted a study that shows a fireplace hearth remains the most preferred amenity for a home and in some cases, could produce a 130% return on your investment when you decide to sell.

How much heat do fireplaces really produce?

A gas fireplace will give off more heat than wood burning if you have the right type of glass to absorb and distribute heat after the fire is out. A fire that puts out 21,000 BTU has an efficiency of approximately 70%, which is enough to heat a 1,000 square foot area easily. For wood burning fireplaces, certain woods burn hotter, including fruitwood and oak. Just remember, the harder the wood, the hotter the burn. If you plan to use your fireplace as your primary heat source, you should definitely have a thermostat installed.

What is the cost to heat a gas fireplace?

The answer is dependent on the amount of time you will use your fireplace. An average cost of a thermostat for 100,000 BTUs runs .50. If you calculate that, to operate a 12,500 BTU fireplace for one full hour, you would use approximately .12. When you weigh out the difference between gas and wood burning fireplaces, using natural gas can provide you with as much as a 75% savings.

Fireplace Cleaning & Maintenance

Wood Fireplace Maintenance

For a wood stove or fireplace, it is important that the glass is cleaned on a regular basis otherwise the glass can become dark and etched. We recommend using a fireplace glass cleaner at least once a week during regular burning seasons.

*Note: minimal etching is normal after a long period of time.

Gas Fireplace Maintenance

Gas fireplace maintenance is important to the life and quality of your fireplace. Gas fireplaces with a sealed glass front require cleaning every 6-8 months depending on use. It is normal for a light haze to build up on the inside of the glass over a period of time. This can be easily cleaned using a fireplace glass cleaner.

* Note: Do not use Windex or other household cleaners on a ceramic fireplace glass; they will dry out the glass.

Chimney Maintenance

On average, a metal wood burning chimney will require cleaning every year and a half, depending on how often the fireplace is used. Chimney sweeps are readily available and charge in the neighborhood of $75 per cleaning.

 Contact Us

8915 Young Rd
Chilliwack, BC V2P 4P7


Monday – Saturday: 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM
Sunday: Closed



Fraser Valley (from Langley to Hope)



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