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The 7 Best Gas Fireplaces of 2023

Nov 23, 2023

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Turn up ambiance and turn down the thermostat in your living space.

Sure, home decor like a throw blanket or comfortable seating may help cozy up a living room or bedroom. But if you truly want to warm things up—temperature-wise and style-wise—nothing beats a gas fireplace with a mantle.

While they’re certainly a substantial investment, gas fireplaces are an energy-efficient way to heat your home, and can help reduce your electric bill to potentially save you money in the long run. If you couple that with the instant ambiance gas fireplaces bring, it's well worth the price.

Gas fireplaces aren't as common as electric fireplaces, and most of what you'll find is on the traditional side in terms of style. That said, there are a handful of modern options from established companies. We cover it all in our roundup below, so keep scrolling for our best gas fireplace recommendations, along with important points to nail down before shopping.

Looking for more fireplace options for your home? Check out our stories on the best outdoor fireplaces, fireplace TV stands, and fire pit tables.

In many ways, gas fireplaces operate similarly to other indoor gas-powered appliances. Still, there are some differences worth highlighting.

The majority of modern gas fireplaces are ventless and have an electronic ignition, so there's no pilot light to get up and running. They also feature a backup battery so they’ll work during power outages. For models that do require natural or direct venting, the parts needed for installation are typically included with the fireplace.

Gas fireplaces use natural gas or propane, and a good portion of models are dual-fuel. Natural gas fireplaces produce more heat than those that run on propane (a moot point if there's no gas line hookup) and can be more expensive in the longterm, since propane tanks need to be replaced when they're empty.

Heat is measured in BTUs, and the larger the space, the more BTUs your fireplace puts out. Generally speaking, the number of BTUs is relative to the fireplace's size. For example, a 44-inch-wide gas fireplace can give off 30,000 BTUs or more, whereas a 32- or 28-inch gas fireplace may only produce between 15,000 and 20,000 BTUs.

Some gas fireplaces we cover have a built-in pilot oxygen depletion sensor to automatically shut down if carbon monoxide is detected or if there's a lack of oxygen in the room. This is different from automatic shutoff, which switches off power if controls remain untouched for a set length of time.

In addition to auto-shut-off and safety features, there are gas fireplaces with adjustable thermostats and remote controls. Some have the option of wall or corner installation, which is a handy, space-saving solution.

During our research, we considered models from established brands including Duluth Forge, Pleasant Hearth, Monessen Hearth Systems, and ProCom. We looked at each model to compare quality of build, heating power in relation to size, value-added features, and overall aesthetics to make our final selections, with the aim to offer styles with varied features across multiple price points, starting at roughly $550 and topping off around $1,200.

Finding a modern gas fireplace is no easy feat as the vast majority of what's on the market has traditional wooden mantles. But this sleek option fits the bill, with clean lines and a matte black finish that sits flush with the wall. It also comes with a limited lifetime warranty, which beats the competition.

The 32-inch-wide natural gas fireplace generates up to 19,100 BTUs of heat to warm rooms up to 700 square feet. It features six realistic ceramic logs and direct-venting technology that's sealed for efficiency.

The vent also eliminates odor and exhaust, and the stove has a tempered glass front. The hood and vent collars are included, but the remote control and fan are sold separately.

This grand 44-inch-wide gas fireplace features a handsome mantle with detailed woodwork and a walnut finish, along with double fire-screen doors.

The fireplace generates up to 32,000 BTUs for heating spaces up to 1,500 square feet on either natural gas or propane, and there's a built-in pilot oxygen depletion sensor for safety.

Other highlights include ventless design and an adjustable thermostat with a remote control.

If your space lacks a natural gas line and you want to install a fireplace, a propane-fueled model is the answer. This one features a dark cherry finish and a few eye-catching details, with a contemporary design that can work well with a variety of decor.

The 32-inch gas fireplace features a ventless design and an adjustable thermostat, emitting 20,000 BTUs of heat, which is expected for a fireplace of this size. This model also has the option of corner installation, though it lacks a remote control.

With a dark tobacco finish, classical accents in the woodwork, and and stately crown molding, this 42-inch-wide natural gas fireplace can easily become the centerpiece of your living room. It also delivers up to 27,500 BTUs for warming spaces as large as 1,000 square feet.

Top features include an adjustable thermostat and ventless design, along with realistic faux logs and two rows of flames. All of this adds up to excellent value for the price, but there's no remote and it doesn't convert to propane.

This gas fireplace takes cues from old-fashioned wood-burning stoves, with decorative antique-style details on the feet and front panel. It runs on either natural gas or propane and it puts out an impressive amount of heat for its size with 25,000 BTUs, enough to cover rooms up to 1,000 square feet.

Other highlights include the ventless design, a built-in pilot oxygen depletion sensor, and a remote control to adjust the thermostat. Its logs don't look as realistic as other models, though, which may be a drawback for some.

This gas fireplace's mantle is finished in antique white with a slightly distressed finish to add character. The antique bronze front panel is another decorative highlight, with geometric metalwork and a brick-like fire-screen. Five hand-painted ceramic logs in the hearth complete the overall realistic look.

The fireplace is ventless and runs on natural gas or propane, featuring an automatic heat cycle to maintain temperature, a built-in pilot oxygen depletion sensor, and an adjustable thermostat. With an output up to 26,000 BTUs, it's an ideal choice for medium to large rooms up to 1,350 square feet. The lack of a remote control is a downside.

Attention to detail is what makes this gas fireplace a standout. It features a Victorian-inspired mantle with a chocolate-brown finish, a metal arch framing the firebox, and a decorative fire screen. At only 28 inches wide and 15,000 BTUs of heat, it's ideal for a smaller living room or as a charming addition to a bedroom.

The ventless gas fireplace runs on natural gas or propane and includes a built-in pilot oxygen depletion sensor. There's no remote control but you can adjust the thermostat.

Rachel Klein is a Senior Commerce Editor for Popular Mechanics, where she writes about everything from garden hose reels and patio furniture to mesh wifi systems and robot vacuums. She started her career as a daily newspaper reporter and was a travel editor for more than a decade before she started testing and reviewing luggage, noise-cancelling headphones, and other travel-related products. Fast-forward another five years and her area of expertise includes home decor, appliances, tech, and outdoor adventure gear. In her spare time, you'll find her planning her next trip, reading historical fiction, and seeing as much art as she can squeeze into a weekend.

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Looking for more fireplace options for your home? Check out our stories on the best outdoor fireplaces, fireplace TV stands, and fire pit tables. fire pit tables.