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The fireplace is the focal point of any room in the house that it adorns and so your choice of the fire needs to be both aesthetically correct, and at the same time compatible with your situation. This will achieve added value to your property as well as giving you pleasure (and heat if required) for many years in the future. All fires types have differing requirements to complete a successful installation, and we hope that the following information assists you in choosing the correct fire for your home.

In this section:

Find an installer in your area

for Gas fires


For Electric Fires ...


for Solid Fuel fires


for Chimney Sweeps


(By clicking on the above links you will be redirected to an external website)

Gas Safe Register

The Gas Safe Register replaced CORGI on 1st April 2009.

Gas Safe Register will offer the public an improved service making it easier to find and check an engineer. To find a Gas Safe registered business and to check each individual engineer to see what work they are qualified to do visit www.gassaferegister.co.uk or call the dedicated helpline on 0800 408 5500.

Every Gas Safe registered engineer has a photo ID card with a unique licence number, and details of the work they are qualified to do. To check this information simply enter the engineer’s licence number on the website or call the helpline.

Understanding your chimney

The flue is the route that the gas fumes take from the fire to the open atmosphere. Below you will see some pictures of what you should expect to see at roof level – this may help in identifying your flue and therefore helping you to make the correct choice of fire for your application.

Class I

class 1 This type of flue is easily recognised by a brick built chimney maybe at the ridge of the roof or part way down, often terminating in a clay chimney pot. Looking inside the flue you will see approx 7” minimum diameter whether of brick or clay liner construction, and having a minimum of 3m overall height. In order to restrict the ingress of rain and prevent birds from entering your flue, you may wish to have a chimney cowl fitted – please see our accessories page to purchase this product.

Class II

class 2 Usually constructed of interlocking metal pipe and found in newer homes, the roof level will show a metal termination with ‘louvre’ style slots and an internal diameter of 5” minimum – older systems may be 4” diameter but this is now obsolete and no longer compatible with any gas fires. Inside the lounge opening you may see a metal box lining the chamber – this will dictate the depth of fire that you can chose.

Pre-cast flue

pre-cast Pre-cast flues are constructed of concrete blocks that bridge between the inner and outer walls of the property, and terminate with a raised ridge tile at the roof level. There are two main flue sizes - those found in houses built prior to 1986 are generally 210mm x 65mm, and after this flue sizes increased to a cross sectional area of 16,500mm2 with no dimension less than 90mm.

Gas fires

Gas fires can either be installed into your existing fire surround, or alternatively to achieve a more modern look you may select a ‘hole in the wall’ type fire. These fires in most applications will require a ‘flue’ and so we have shown below some pictures of different flue types with their descriptions to help you make the right choice.

It is a legal requirement that all gas fires are installed by a Gas Safe Registered Engineer with the relevant qualification to install ‘space heaters’ – this can be checked by looking at the reverse of the engineers ID card when they are at your premises. If you need assistance in locating a qualified Gas Safe installer in your area, please click on the above link or visit the Gas Safe Register website at http://www.gassaferegister.co.uk/default.aspx. Whilst providing this information, One Stop Fires Ltd accept no liability for the quality or any aspect of the engineer which you may use.

With any of the above gas fire options, you will need to have your chimney swept and tested prior to installation to ensure safe exhausting of the products of gas combustion. Please visit http://chimneyworks.co.uk/nacs_sweep_search.html for a registered chimney sweep in your area. After your gas fire has been installed, your engineer will register your information direct with Gas Safe Register who will then forward a certificate.

Electric fires

The key advantage of electric fire installations is that they do not require a working flue to expel exhaust gases, simply a 3 pin socket or switched fused spur on normal ring main. If an electric ‘suite’ or ‘hang on the wall’ electric fire is selected, they will simply go against a flat wall and be secured by means of a bracket (you will need to use the correct fixings for your wall type). An ‘inset’ or ‘hole in the wall’ type electric fire will normally require a recess to house the engine of the fire – this may be either a conventional chimney breast or alternatively a purpose built false chimney breast (the ‘inset depth’ dimensions can be located on the product information pages). Some inset fires can be installed by ‘bridging the cavity’ of a brick / block wall, however you should not use this method on a timber framed property as you may pierce the vapour membrane and allow moisture to penetrate the rear of the fire. If creating an opening in a wall to house the electric fire, always be sure to install the correct width of lintel to support the opening.

Electric Stoves

Electric stoves are freestanding and do not require specialist installation. Most electric fires have an overheat thermostat which will turn off the fire in the event of it overheating. It is therefore advisable to block off any chimney or cavity to prevent draughts from allowing the fire to remain turned on in this situation. These instructions are only a guideline and you should always refer to the manufacturers own installation instructions.

Solid fuel fires

All solid fuel fires must only be installed into Class I flues (brick or clay liners) or metal flues which are suitable to withstand the heat from a solid fuel fire. In most situations, it is a legal requirement to install a permanently open vent to outside, within the room into which the solid fuel fire is to be fitted – the only exception to this is if you are having a stove installed which has a maximum heat output of 5kw, then no vent is required. With all solid fuel installations, you must either have the installation inspected by building control after completion, alternatively a HETAS registered engineer can legally fit and certificate the installation. These are not DIY products and can have dire consequences if incorrectly installed. Please visit http://www.hetas.co.uk to locate a qualified HETAS engineer in your area.

Heat Options Explained

Radiant Heat

All fires give off radiant heat. Radiant heat is like being warmed by the sun. The heat moves (radiates) outward from the fire into the room, the closer you get to the fire the warmer you will feel.

Convected Heat

Convected heat occurs when a fire actively draws in cold are from the room, passes it through a heat exchanger to warm it up and directs it back out into the room as warm air. This feature gives a more rapid and even heat distribution throughout your room and these products are known as convectors.

Fuel Bed Options


Pebble Bed

A pebble bed can be found on the majority of modern fires. Pebble beds are available on both full depth and slimline gas fires and come in various shades of white / grey that will suit a number of interior decors


Coal Bed

Coal beds are often used on more traditional fires. This type of fuel bed has been designed to imitate a real coal burning fire.


Log or Driftwood Bed

As an alternative to pebble or coal, the larger log effect or thin pieces of driftwood give an authentic look as the flames rise between the ceramic pieces.


Deep Fuel Beds (Class 1)

These are full depth fuel beds found on fires for homes with brick built chimneys or prefabricated flues.


Slimline Fuel Beds (Class 2)

These are shallow fuel beds that are found on slimline fires. They are usually at least 10cm / 4” smaller than the deep fuel beds. This type of fuel bed is suitable for homes with any chimney/flue type.

no chimney optionsNo Chimney Options.

Some properties do not have a flue. However you may still be able to have a gas or electric fire.

  • Balanced flue gas fires are ‘room sealed’ appliances and have a glass screen covering the fuel area. This means that the air inlet to the fire and the exhaust outlet are vented via the same pipe through an outside wall.
  • Fanned flue or power flue gas fires are open fronted and draw their air supply from the room in which the fire is fitted – the exhaust gases are drawn from the fire via a pipe to an electrically operated fan which is fitted onto the outside wall. This type of fire will require an electric supply in addition to the gas supply. With increasing technology the fans are now a lot quieter than they have ever been.

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