Risk of explosion with certain gas fireplace models: Fire Marshal


Published December 9, 2020 at 3:03 pm


Before you get cosy by your fireplace, you should double-check the model.

Jon Pegg, Ontario’s Fire Marshal, is alerting Ontarians about a safety hazard associated with pilot lights found in certain model gas-fuelled fireplaces.

Accumulation of gas in the fireplace following failed attempts to light the appliance can lead to an explosion which can cause serious injuries.

This warning follows several investigations where the Office of the Fire Marshal and the Technical Standards and Safety Authority (TSSA) identified deficiencies in some models of gas fireplaces.

“As a result of these investigations, we determined that too many Ontarians have been injured while trying to safely light their gas fireplace,” says Pegg.

“These injuries can be prevented. Working with the TSSA, we have identified design deficiencies in some gas fireplaces and consumers should take preventative steps if they have these appliances in their home.”

Risk of an explosion can happen when gas accumulates after homeowners attempt to light the appliance and it does not ignite after several attempts.

This can occur when the pilot light burners become blocked by dust or dirt or the burner ports become blocked by misplaced decorative features.

This can also occur when gas valves stick and if fireplace vents become blocked.

Ontarians should also follow the manufacturer’s instructions for the proper installation, use and maintenance of gas-fueled fireplaces.

Gas fireplaces and all fuel-fired appliances should be inspected and cleaned annually by a certified technician to reduce the likelihood of gas accumulation and explosion.

Certified technicians can be found here.

Fireplace brands and models with these deficiencies can be found in the TSSA Director’s Order and Health Canada product recalls are identified here.

Ontarians who own the impacted appliances should follow the recommendations provided by the TSSA and Health Canada.

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