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fireplace energy consumption

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This is the first house Ive ever had a gas fireplace in so Im still familiarizing myself with it.  My question is what is more energy efficient; (1)Running the fireplace with gas furnace off, (2) running fireplace with house fan on circulating the air or (3) forget about the fireplace and only use it as back-up heat. 

Forget about it except for emergencies and those times when you just want the "ambience" of a fireplace.
Fireplaces can actually draw an awful lot of heat out of the house, right up the chimney.
Just how much will depend on the design of your particular fireplace.

Try using it when it's a little cooler outside, and monitor the temps in the rooms farthest away. Or you may be able to notice how much your main heat source runs, with and without the fireplace.

I wish we had a two-cents-worth smiley  :)

Thanks hurricane.  My chimney is closed, but I realize heat still escapes.  The fireplace keeps the main part of the house  freakin' HOT, so the furnace never turns on.  The result is the bedrooms at the other end of the house are chilly.  I just went to wally world and purchased 2 indoor/outdoor weather stations so I can monitor the temp swings.   
My main question (and I think you answered it) is does the gas fireplace actually consume more gas in a set period. 
Thanks in advanced.  This is my first trip back to the forums in about 8 years, lots of great info here.  Lots of knowledgeable people

Mr. Bill:
I've seen a gas fireplace that had an air vent in back, to bring in air from outside the house.  It ought to reduce the sucking-in of cold air into other rooms, but I don't have any personal experience to verify that.

I'm guessing you don't want to sledgehammer a hole in the back of your fireplace just to try it. 8)

I can't answer your question.  But I had a gas "wood stove" in my family room.  I found that leaving the pilot light burning all the time drained a 200 lb. propane tank over the course of the year.

Turn off the pilot over the Summer when there's little chance of using the stove.


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