How Big Should Your Gas Fireplace Be?

Well, folks, here we are again. Summer has come and gone and winter is upon us. It's officially Gas Fireplace Season and you're wondering what type or size of fireplace you should install into your home. We get people coming in all the time looking to buy a gas fireplace and their eyes are immediately drawn to the largest one (naturally). Similar to the saying "my eyes were bigger than my stomach," you're often best suited for a different sized fireplace to what you originally thought.

There are a few points to consider when you're picking a Gas Fireplace or Gas Insert. The main one being the size of the area you want to heat. If you're looking to heat a small room and you put a large unit in, you'll have a sauna even at the lowest setting. Vice versa for a large room: if you put a small unit in a large area, you won't get the full effect of the fireplace.

Valor H6 Large Gas Fireplace | Barbecues Galore

Another thing to consider with gas fireplaces is when they're installed, they're like an iceberg. What we mean by that is you really only see a small portion of the unit. Behind that wall is a large unit that goes 2, 3, even 4 feet back. So, if you've got a 10' x 10' room, you're going to be losing a few feet just to build your new mantle over a large unit.

When picking a fireplace, we can look to use the following baseline when we considering size and square footage.

  • Small Gas Fireplace: less than 500 sq. ft.
  • Medium Gas Fireplace: 500 - 1,000 sq. ft.
  • Large Gas Fireplace: 1,000 - 2,000 sq. ft.
  • Extra-Large Gas Fireplace: 2,000+ sq. ft.

Remember this is just a baseline and this can change depending on things such as: ceiling height, room layout, insulation, electronics, and so on. Heat has to travel, so if it's going up high ceilings or has to go around walls, you're going to need a higher BTU output.

Valor L1 Linear Gas Fireplace With HeatShift Technology | Barbecues Galore

Now you're probably wondering, what constitutes a small fireplace from a large fireplace? The main contributor to that is BTU output. BTUs are the measurement for heating appliances and the definition is: 1 BTU is the energy needed to heat or cool one pound of water 1 degree Fahrenheit at sea level. To simplify, more BTUs = more heat! 

To apply BTUs to the sizes we listed above, we get the following chart:

  • Small Gas Fireplace:  12 000 - 15 000 BTUs
  • Medium Gas Fireplace 15 000 - 25 000 BTUs
  • Large Gas Fireplace: 25 000 - 35 000 BTUs
  • Extra-Large Gas Fireplace 35 000 + BTUs 

If you want to get an idea of a few different fireplace options, we've outlined a few different units below of different sized gas inserts, fireplaces, and linear fireplaces.

Valor G 3.5 Gas Fireplace Insert | Barbecues Galore

Small To Medium Sized Fireplaces

Valor G 3 Gas Insert
Valor G3.5 Gas Insert
Valor L1 Linear Gas Fireplace
Valor H3 Gas Fireplace

Medium To Large Sized Fireplaces

Valor G4 Gas Insert
Valor L2 Linear Gas Fireplace
Valor H4 Gas Fireplace
Valor H5 Gas Fireplace

Valor LX2 3 Sided Gas Linear Fireplace | Barbecues Galore

Large To Extra-Large Fireplaces

Valor H6 Gas Fireplace
Valor L3 Fireplace
Valor LX2 3 Sided Fireplace

The great thing about these fireplaces is you can design them in the comfort of your own home! Check out our Valor Fireplace Design Center to make your dream fireplace right now.

If you're building the fireplace to be a centerpiece in your room and you're looking to pair it with a television or another electronic. You'll want to give the Valor HeatShift System a look. The HeatShift opens up your possibilities for design and sizing to evenly distribute heat throughout the room.

Valor Fireplace Installation With Heatshift System & Venting | Barbecues Galore

As we said, there are plenty of factors that can determine what size of fireplace works best for you. That's why we always recommend stopping by one of our locations to talk to our fireplace experts. They have the knowledge and knowhow to help you find the fireplace that's best suited to you!

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Barbecues Galore has the best selection of barbecues, patio furniture, and outdoor heating supplies. We sell barbecues, accessories, and everything else you need for exceptional grilling and backyard experiences. With locations in Calgary and the GTA, you can visit us in store or shop online. North Calgary Store: (403) 250-1558 | South Calgary Store: (403) 258-4440 | Burlington Store: (905) 639-5952 | Oakville Store: (905) 844-3224 | Etobicoke Store: (416) 546-3266
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