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Safety first in fireplace conversion

Make sure fireplace is a good match for wood-burning

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Dear Barry: We have a gas log fireplace in our home and would like to have real wood fires. Would it be safe to remove the gas logs and burn real logs instead? --Dave Dear Dave: Before making changes to your fireplace, you should determine the type of fixture that you have, as well as its internal condition. If it was originally built as a wood-burning fireplace and then converted to a gas log setup, it may be possible to return to solid-fuel use. This would depend on the extent of the conversion and the reason the conversion was made. For example, if the firebox or the damper assembly was altered, wood-burning use may no longer be safe. If a metal flue liner was installed, the liner may not be suited for the high temperatures produced by solid-fuel combustion. If the conversion was made because the firebox or the chimney was damaged, a return to wood combustion may not be possible without making costly repairs. It is also possible that the fixture was never intended for ...