Best Gas Fireplace Insert (Reviews 2024)

The Best Gas Fireplace Insert For Your Home, Office, Or Retail Space

Table of Contents

This guide includes the Best Gas Fireplace Insert options for 2024, which “type” to consider for your chimney or decor, and the features that make the most sense for your particular gas fireplace installation.

The best way to convert a Wood-burning fireplace to a Gas-burning fireplace is to install a Gas Fireplace Insert or Vent-Free Gas Fireplace Unit. Today, we review the best of both types, help you complete this installation, and enjoy a more energy-efficient fireplace.

This list features the ten best gas fireplace insert logs or full gas fireplace boxes and the pros and cons for each model.

Whether you plan to add a gas fireplace insert log or box insert to an existing chimney, use a “direct-vent” (to the outside), or use a stand-alone “ventless” fireplace, we’ve got you covered.

What is the Best Gas Fireplace Insert To Buy?

Below are the Top-Rated Gas Fireplace Inserts and Gas Fireplace options for converting your Wood Burning Fireplace into a Natural Gas Fireplace.  Here are a few things to remember for this project.

  1. Most Gas Fireplace Log Inserts (the most popular option) are available in 18″ & 24″ Log Sets.  Click any Fireplace “Log Insert” Link below to view optional sizes at Amazon.
  2. Other Types of Gas Fireplace Inserts include a firebox only or a firebox with a gas log insert.  Either of these types is designed to fit into an existing chimney (convert from wood to gas log) or new construction.
  3. Assuming you don’t have Natural Gas plumbed to your existing fireplace yet, we strongly encourage hiring a licensed/reputable plumber to provide the “black pipe” gas line to your fireplace/chimney and install your gas fireplace insert simultaneously.

The (7) Best Gas Fireplace Inserts for 2024

 

Editor’s Choice:  Peterson Real Fyre “Big Stack – 18″ Log Insert Kit

Peterson Real Fyre 18-inch Big-Stack Split Oak Log Set with Vented G4 Burner - Match-Light (Natural Gas)

Why We Like It

Gas log Inserts are typically installed in an existing wood-burning fireplace (converting from wood to gas-burning fire). Whether you’re installing yourself (DIY) or hiring a contractor, you will need all the components (parts) to finish the job.

The Peterson brand is one of our top choices because it’s a reputable product and offers all the gas fireplace components you need in one package.

The Peterson gas fireplace inserts include all the components needed to complete the gas log installation.  The “Big Stack” package from Peterson offers the Real Fyre “Big Stack”  18″ Gas Log Set, “Natural-Vented” Burner, Auto-Safety Gas valve, Flexible Gas line, Gas connection accessories, Silica sand, and Embers.

Note:  Our runner-up selection, also from Peterson manufacturing, includes a similar package, except using their 24″ – “Post-Oak log set for a little less money, featured below.

Peterson is one of our top choices because of its reputable brand, and it offers all the gas fireplace components in one package.

The  24″ gas log insert will easily fit most existing fireplace boxes with a clear “inside 30”. In addition, the “Real Fyre” Gas Insert logs are super realistic, and the package comes as a G-45 vented gas log burner, ready for installation.

As our top choice among “Vented” (Only used in VENTED fireplaces) fireplace inserts, these gas fireplace logs from Peterson offer a dual-flame burner and a superior 90,000 BTU heating capacity.

Specs

  • 90,0000 BTU Heating Capacity
  • Six Hand-Painted 18″ Ceramic Logs (Big Stack Collection)
  • Ceramic Logs include Steel-Rod inserts for strength
  • Natural and Real Bark color tones
  • Ember and Silica Sand kit
  • ANSI Certified G45 – Natural Gas Stainless Steel Burner
  • Pre-assembled Auto-Safety gas control valve
  • Custom Steel Grate

Our Take Away

Peterson again provides a fantastic all-inclusive and “vented” gas fireplace insert.  At Checkout, you can also select an LP gas burner or a Dual LP and Natural Gas Burner.

Peterson “Big Stack” –  18″ Gas Fireplace Insert

Peterson

CLICK HERE FOR PRICE >>>


Runner Up:   Peterson – 24″ “Post Oak” Gas Log Insert

Peterson Real Fyre 24-inch Post Oak Log Set with Vented G45 Dual- Flame Burner w/Auto Safety Pilot Control Valve (Propane Gas)

Why We Like It

Running at a close second is another Peterson “Post Oak Real Fyre” 24″ “Vented” gas/log/fireplace insert, which, like our Editor’s Choice, is an excellent option for anyone converting from wood to a gas fireplace. 

The difference between this gas log set (Post Oak) and the Editor’s choice (Big Stack) is the smaller size and the quantity of the ceramic logs included in this package.  Therefore, the “Post Oak” gas insert package is a more economical choice.

Specs

  • 90,0000 BTU Heating Capacity
  • Six Hand-Painted 24″ Ceramic Logs (Post Oak collection)
  • Ceramic Logs include Steel-Rod inserts for strength
  • Natural and Real Bark color tones
  • Ember and Silica Sand kit
  • ANSI Certified G45 – Dual-flame Gas Stainless Steel Burner
  • Pre-assembled Auto-Safety gas control valve
  • Custom Steel Grate
  • Auto-Safety Gas Valve (Pilot, On/OFF) 

Our Take Away

For all the reasons we favor the Peterson Big Stack 24″ Gas Log Insert, we recommend the Post-Oak log set, which, unless the log sets were side-by-side, will satisfy most buyers equally.

Post-Oak  24″ Gas Log Insert – “Best Value” 

Peterson

CLICK HERE FOR PRICE >>>


Best Value:   Peterson 24″ “Split Oak” Gas Log Insert

Peterson Real Fyre 24-inch Split Oak Log Set with VENTED G4 Burner - Match-Light (NATURAL GAS)

Why We Like It

Running at a close third in our top-rated gas insert review is another option from Peterson’s “Real Fyre” lineup.  Like our Editor’s Choice, the “Split Oak” 24″ “Vented” gas/log/fireplace insert is a great option for anyone converting from wood to a gas fireplace. 

The difference between this gas log set and the Editor’s choice (Big Stack) is the Configuration and Style of the ceramic logs included in this package, which is a beautiful “Split Oak” design.

The split oak design also is a less expensive option to the Editor’s choice Big Stack set: an economical choice, offering yet another Design Choice for users.

Specs

  • 90,0000 BTU Heating Capacity
  • Six Hand-Painted 24″ Ceramic Logs (Split Oak collection)
  • Ceramic Logs include Steel-Rod inserts for strength
  • Natural and Real Bark color tones
  • Ember and Silica Sand kit
  • ANSI Certified G45 – Dual-flame Gas Stainless Steel Burner
  • Pre-assembled Auto-Safety gas control valve
  • Custom Steel Grate
  • Auto-Safety Gas Valve (Pilot, On/OFF) 

Our Take Away

For all the reasons we favor the Peterson Big Stack 24″ Gas Log Insert, we recommend the Split-Oak log set, which will satisfy most buyers equally unless the log sets are side-by-side.

Split Oak  24″ Gas Log Insert – “Best Value” 

Peterson

CLICK HERE FOR PRICE >>>


 

Best “White Birch” – 24″ Natural Gas Log Set 

Peterson Real Fyre 24-inch White Birch Oak Log Set with Vented G45 Dual- Flame Burner w/Auto Safety Pilot Control Valve (Natural Gas)

Why We Like It

The Peterson “White Birch” natural gas fireplace insert creates a more than adequate 90,000 BTUs of heating capacity.  The “Vented” Fireplace Log Insert includes heat-resistant, natural-looking five-piece “Birch” Logs and a G45 Dual-flame burner for Vented installation (chimney).

Specs

  • 90,0000 BTU Heating Capacity
  • Six Hand-Painted 24″ Ceramic Logs (White Birch collection)
  • Ceramic Logs include Steel-Rod inserts for strength
  • Natural and Real Bark color tones
  • Ember and Silica Sand kit
  • ANSI Certified G45 – Dual-flame Gas Stainless Steel Burner
  • Custom Steel Grate
  • Auto-Safety Gas Valve (Pilot, On/OFF

Our Take Away

In our quality, performance, availability, and heat output reviews, no brand met our stringent requirements other than Peterson Manufacturing. Originally, our review included two other manufacturers.

However, those products were either discontinued or showed unfavorable user reviews, so we have decided only to feature Peterson gas log inserts now.

This Birch log set is another version of the same basic 24″ gas log set from Peterson, featuring an attractive Birch Log design.

Best “Birch Gas Log” Set – Peterson 24″ Gas Insert

Peterson

CLICK HERE FOR PRICE >>>


“Best “Vent Free” Burner Log Set  – Peterson Real Fyre

Peterson Real Fyre 24-inch Split Oak Log Set with Vent-Free Natural Gas Ansi Certified G9 Burner - Variable Flame Remote

Why We Like It

Suppose you don’t have an Existing Chimney (Vented) or want to install a gas fireplace on an Interior(Not Exterior)Wall. In that case, this 24″ Vent-Free Gas fireplace insert from Peterson may be the ticket.

Available for either Propane or Natural Gas installations, this attractive Split Oak design gas insert offers 24″ Long realistic “Real Fyre” logs and a handy Remote Control for adjusting the flame or turning the unit On/OFF from across the room.

Providing an admirable heating capacity of 36,000 BTUs, the Peterson gas log insert is perfect for those looking to build their freestanding fireplace surrounded by a mantle and using a metal firebox* 

*This vent-free gas log insert requires the installation of a Metal Firebox from Empire Comfort Systems, as the gas log insert produces real-combustible flames.

**Note:  This product does not include a “Metal FireBox”, or Metal Rack for Ceramic logs, and a flexible gas line is sold separately.

Specs:

  •  36,000 BTU’s
  • Dual Fuel: Liquid Propane Gas or Natural Gas Blue Flame Heater, which Heats up to 1,100 sq. ft. Area.
  • Electronic ignition is included with remote control (Functions: On/off, temperature control). 
  • Barrier Screen
  • Seven hand-painted realistic detailed logs using superior ceramic fiber material look stunning.
  • 99.9% efficient with a Vent-Free gas burner. No outside duct or chimney is needed.
  • No Electricity is needed. Battery Assisted Piezo ignition
  • The built-in pilot oxygen depletion sensor (ODS) immediately shuts down the heater if carbon monoxide or lack of oxygen is detected.
  • **1-Year Limited warranty

Our Take Away

The Peterson Real Fyre isn’t the least expensive approach in Gas Fireplace installations. Still, it does meet the needs of anyone without an existing chimney or looking to place a gas fireplace on an “Interior Wall.”

There are two options for fuel hookups: liquid propane or natural gas.  The Stacked Split Oak Log Set features a 36,000 BTU output and includes a Safe Piezo Battery operated Electronic Ignition with Thermostatic Remote Control, provided for customizable heat settings.   

While this is the most expensive gas log set we reviewed and requires additional purchases (Box, Grate, Gas line), If you’re looking for a Vent-Free gas log insert – this is a great choice from a reputable brand.

Best “Vent-Free” Gas Log Set with Remote – Peterson

Peterson – “Real Fyre”

CLICK HERE FOR PRICE >>>


Best Built-In Fireplace insert:   Duluth Forge – Vent Free – Built-In Mantle Surround

No products found.

Why We Like It

Some Folks are considering the installation of a Gas Fireplace but do not have an existing chimney/mantle/fireplace to place a gas log insert.

For those buyers, The Duluth Forge DFS-300R-4AS gas fireplace offers a stylish, complete Built-In fireplace with zero clearance required (mounts directly against the wall), allowing you to surface mount the unit to the wall. 

Duluth offers dual-fuel technology: it can burn either Natural Gas or Propane fuel, depending on your availability.

This Duluth gas fireplace is a complete package – with a full mantle and surround and is vent-free.  A professional will install gas and electrical lines as with all gas fireplace inserts.

Specs

  • Assembled in The USA (Kentucky) 
  • 26,000 BTU Heating Capacity 
  • Size:  15″Deep x 43.5″Wide x 39.5″High
  • Remote Control 
  • Dual Fuel Technology – Natural Gas or Liquid Propane
  • Heats up to 1,350 sq. ft. Area.
  • Thermostat Control – The control automatically cycles the burner on and off 
  •  Five realistic hand-painted Ceramic Fiber Logs
  • 99.9% efficient
  • Vent-free. No outside duct or chimney is needed 
  • Push-button Piezo ignition with Built-in pilot
  • Oxygen Depletion Sensor (ODS) immediately shuts down the heater if carbon monoxide or lack of oxygen is detected.
  • 1-Year Limited Warranty

Our Take Away

The Duluth Forge fireplace has all the options needed in a vent-free fireplace.  Duluth is also the only unit we reviewed that can be surface mounted (not recessed in the wall) and includes a Mantle and full surround – for a complete stand-alone gas fireplace. 

It is also available in your choice of 9 different wood finishes.

Best “Built-In” Gas Fireplace With Mantle Surround

Duluth Forge

CLICK HERE FOR PRICE >>>


Best 36″ Built-In Gas Fireplace Insert – Duluth Forge “Ventless”

Duluth Forge Dual Fuel Ventless Gas Fireplace Insert, Remote Control, 9 Fire Logs, Use with Natural Gas or Liquid Propane, 32000 BTU, Heats up to 1500 Sq. Ft., Black

Why We Like It

The Duluth Forge  – FDI32R gas fireplace insert checks all the boxes for a complete insert package placed in an existing chimney. It offers straightforward installation, natural gas or propane hookup, and all the conveniences you get with a vent-free gas fireplace.

including a 32″ x 30″ High screened viewing window, , and slate tile interior

In addition, this gas fireplace puts out 32,000 BTUs of heat, which is enough to heat 1,500 Square Feet of space.  The Duluth also includes a remote control for easy operation.

Specs

  • Complete Ventless Gas Insert.
  • The Rough Opening for Wall Installation is 35″ Wide x 19″ Deep x 32.5″ High.
  • There is also a trim kit you can purchase separately.
  • Slate brick panel interior
  • 9 Realistic hand painted Ceramic Logs
  • 32,000 BTU Heat Output
  • Fuel-saving electronic ignition
  • Oxygen Depletion Sensor (ODS) Included
  • 99.9% Energy Efficient
  • Remote Control Included

Our Take Away

The Duluth Forge Gas Insert is our Top Choice for Those wishing to convert their wood-burning fireplace into a Gas Fireplace. The Duluth FDI32R includes everything needed to complete a full transformation from wood to gas, and it can be used with a mantle surround for a more modern finish. 

Best Gas Fireplace Insert – Duluth Forge 

Duluth Forge Gas Fireplace Insert

CLICK HERE FOR PRICE >>>>


Gas Fireplace Insert – Buyers Guide (FAQ)

How are Gas Fireplace Inserts Vented? 

These are Three methods used to Vent a Gas Fireplace Insert:

Method #1 – “Vented by Gravity”

The most affordable and Common Method is to use an existing masonry chimney or B-Vent – to allow gravity to carry exhaust fumes up and out of the house.  Combustible heat is transferred into the room naturally or by a fan/blower (as shown below).

Method #2) – “Direct Vent” Installation

It uses a factory vent mounted directly behind the fireplace insert and through the house wall to deliver heated, combusted air from the fireplace to the interior room. It also delivers combusted exhaust fumes outside.

Direct vent fireplaces do not use room air; they only draw fresh air from the home‘s exterior. This high-efficiency gas fireplace insert provides heated room air to flow back into the home by gravity or a blower.

Direct Vent Gas FIreplace Insert - Best Home Gear

Note:  The “Direct-vent” option above is considered the safest and most energy-efficient gas fireplace insert.

Method #3 – “Ventless” (Vent-Free) Installation

Also called – “Vent-Free,” –   Ventless fireplace inserts are 99% efficient and deliver heated room air back into the living space. Ventless fireplaces also deliver spent combustion fumes with hot air back into the room.

Most vent-free gas fireplace inserts are manufactured with an ODS (Oxygen detection sensor) and power off if the safe oxygen level in the room falls below a certain level.

NOTE: Vent-Free Products are not approved in Canada and some States (16 to date).

How To Tell The Difference Between “Vented and Vent-Free” Gas Fireplace Insert:


 How Big a Fireplace Do I Need?

The illustration below from “This Old House” allows you to determine the size of the fireplace you require (In BTUs). The formula total will determine the approximate BTU (British Thermal Units) Output required to heat a space.

What Type of Gas fireplace Insert should I Buy?

There are three different types of gas fireplace inserts you can Buy:

1)  Typical Gas Fireplace Insert (Box)

Typical Gas Fireplace Inserts are good for converting a seldom-used wood-burning fireplace into a gas-burning fireplace.

Typical Gas fireplace inserts are manufactured as a “box” intended to slide into a masonry chimney or new construction. They are exhausted by using a “B-Vent” used in a framed chimney chase.  They typically contain a gas log set, grate, and burner and sit inside their metal box.

A second metal box then surrounds this firebox. The hot air between the two metal boxes is circulated into the room.

Gas fireplace inserts are used for existing chimneys, remodels, and new construction and are available in vented (chimney), direct vent (outside), or vent-free models.

Gas fireplace inserts are sold as a complete package, with available options including a wall thermostat, blower, glass doors, oxygen sensor, and flame height adjustment, to name a few.

2) “Built-In” Gas Fireplace (Stand-Alone Fireplace)

Built-in gas fireplaces are good for creating a gas fireplace – where there wasn’t one.

Built like a traditional gas fireplace insert, built-ins are typically a “stand-alone” fireplace for use in a space without recessing them into a wall.

Built-ins are also offered as In-Corner or Flat wall designs and either the direct vent or vent-free models.

Built-in gas fireplace inserts require mantel and fireplace surround trim to finish the exposed top and sides of the fireplace insert box.

3) “Gas Log Set” – For Existing Fireplace

Many people looking for the most affordable “gas fireplace insert near me” – are typically searching for a “Gas Log Set.”  Similar to our Editor Pick from Peterson.  The gas log set is the market’s least expensive type of gas fireplace insert.

A gas log set allows you to change your wood-burning fireplace to a gas-burning fireplace. This is done by placing a Gas insert, Grate, and Ceramic logs inside an existing fireplace.

Installation, however, does require the availability of natural gas and electricity (vented), which, if not installed, will require the help of a professional plumber and electrician.

Gas fireplace logs can be purchased as vent-free or vented (chimney). If vented, the chimney flue must remain open during use to expel harmful combusted fumes, contributing to a significant heat loss.

*Note: Each of the three Gas fireplaces insert choices below requires gas line and electrical connections, which a professional should install.

Most newer homes are now being built with an air-tight construction method. This means fewer walls or roof penetrations and, as a result, less heat loss. As a result, very few homes are built today with masonry chimneys due to their cost and inherent heat loss.

Every gas fireplace expels combusted gas fumes.  Direct Vent gas fireplaces require the fireplace insert to be “Vented” to the outside of the home, which is recommended to be done by heating or plumbing professionals.  Heat is direct via a blower or radiant heat – to the inside of the home.

Vent-free or “Ventless” gas fireplace inserts are described as 99% energy efficient and have risen in popularity due to their relatively inexpensive installation costs and wide range of designs. There is no chimney to build, and no direct outdoor venting is required.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Are Ventless Gas Fireplaces Efficient?

A:  Ventless Gas Fireplace Inserts are nearly 100% efficient, engineered to consume nearly all the fuel they use for heat. By contrast, a wood-burning chimney loses up to 85% of its heat output through the chimney.

How Much Does a Gas Fireplace Insert Cost?

A gas fireplace insert will vary based on your selected fireplace insert.  You should budget around $580 for a gas log insert and up to $1,200 for a Complete Fireplace kit with Mantel Surround, like the Duluth Forge Model above.

How Long Can You Run A Ventless Fireplace?

How long can you run a ventless fireplace? According to most experts, it is no longer than 3 hours at a time, and some suggest running it for only up to 2 hours.  Ventless fireplaces produce a small amount of carbon monoxide and oxygen depletion.

Are Ventless Fireplace Inserts Safe?

According to  Homeadvisor.com, there are currently 34 U.S. states that allow for the sale and use of vent-free (ventless) gas fireplace heaters, while 16 prohibit their sale.
 
While the principle of a ventless gas fireplace operates much like that of operating a gas stove, the safety of gas fireplace inserts is still an open debate.
 

Most ventless fireplaces include an ODS or Oxygen Detection Sensor, which automatically shuts off the fireplace when oxygen falls below certain safety levels.

As a ventless fireplace generates combustible heat, it also produces trace amounts of Carbon Dioxide and Carbon Monoxide, just as an open-flame gas stove does.

NOTE: Vent-Free Products are not approved in Canada and some States (16 states).

What is the difference between a “Built-in” gas fireplace and a “Typical” gas fireplace insert?

Built-in gas fireplaces are very similar to typical gas fireplace inserts. … However, the difference is that a built-in gas fireplace doesn’t require an existing fireplace or chimney, which is required with a typical inset.

If you don’t have an existing wood-burning chimney, a Built-in model is a good option to consider when selecting a gas-burning fireplace.

Do Gas Fireplace Inserts Provide Any Heat?

Here’s a great video from “This Old House”  – that explains the various forms of Gas Fireplaces and the Heat they can provide:

Gas Fireplace Inserts are considered a high-efficiency source as a space heater, running between 76-99% efficiency, depending on the type.  Ventless Gas Fireplace Inserts (use recycled room air to heat space) generally have the highest heat efficiency rating.

Gas fireplace fire inserts can produce between 20-40,000 BTUs and quickly heat a medium-sized room on the coldest winter day.

Do gas fireplace inserts require electricity?

Gas fireplace inserts do not require electrical power to operate. However, if you choose to install a gas fireplace with a blower/fan, a wall thermostat, or an electric switch, those options will require an electrical hook-up.

How Do You Measure For Gas Fireplace Insert?

If you are using your existing chimney for a new gas fireplace, insert and measure the following: Chimney Opening – height, width, depth (at the top and bottom), rear width, and depth of the hearth (area in front of the fireplace).

Use these dimensions to order the correct size gas fireplace insert.

Conclusion

These are some essential considerations before buying a Gas Fireplace Insert:

  • Insert type – What three gas fireplace insert types meet your needs?
  • Your Budget (how much should you spend)
  • Safety (vented vs. direct vent vs. vent-free)
  • Options (wall thermostat, blower, doors, design)

We recommend consulting a local contractor and assessing the cost of hiring a professional to assist with natural gas or electrical connections for a new fireplace insert –  and the safety concerns associated with this installation.

Thanks for visiting Besthomegear, and please don’t forget to make a comment or suggestion below. We welcome your feedback!

Additional Reading & References:

Kevin Carroll
Kevin Carrollhttps://www.besthomegear.com
Kevin is the author and editor for Best Home Gear, and uses his 25+ years experience in Commercial and Residential Construction Management to author and publish the work for this website. In addition to publishing Best Home Gear; Kevin enjoys the outdoors in Michigan and Arizona, hiking, cycling, fishing, golf, and completing DIY projects at his Home and Garden.

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As a Professional in Construction, Real Estate and Property Management, Kevin uses that experience to publish Useful Articles, and help homeowners improve (DIY) their own homes, lawns, and outdoor spaces.

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