Many prefer gas fireplaces over wood burning ones because they are less of a hassle. You don’t have to buy and store firewood or have to lug the logs in to build a fire. Gas provides all the comfort of a real fire without the effort. However, nationally over 200 children burn themselves on gas fireplaces per year. Many gas fireplaces don’t come with safety screens, and children get too close, burning themselves on the glass of the fireplace. A St. Paul firefighter, Jami Novak, tested the temperature of the tempered glass to see how quickly it would heat up. After 15 minutes, the temperature rose 100 degrees. After 30 minutes, the glass was over 300 degrees. At that temperature, the skin can be burned in seconds.
The easiest solution to this potential burn hazard is a safety screen which you can get locally or online. This will prevent a child or pet from getting close to the fire where they can get burned. Another option which my friend’s family did was build their fireplace at a higher level where a child wouldn’t be able to reach the glass. If you don’t have a fireplace yet but are looking at getting one, be sure you invest in a safety screen or consider an electric fireplace as an alternative. Electric fireplaces use LED lighting to simulate the look of real fire, and the firebox blows out heat to warm the room. Electric fireplaces don’t present the heat danger gas fireplaces do, and because they don’t produce real fire, they also aren’t as much of a fire hazard.
To view various styles of electric fireplaces, click here.