Around 80% of UK homes are currently connected to the UK mains gas supply, meaning they can install and use gas fires. If you’re one of the 20% of homeowners who doesn’t have access to the gas network, you might be wondering if there’s any way you can have a gas fire in your home? Keep reading and the Direct Fireplaces team will provide you with the answer…
Don’t worry, we’re not going to leave you hanging – the short answer is that yes it’s entirely possible to have a gas fire in your home, even if you aren’t connected to the mains gas network.
The key is to ensure you buy the right kind of gas fireplace.
The right kind of gas fireplace for a home without a mains gas connection is an LPG fireplace.
What is an LPG fireplace?
Okay, now you might be wondering what exactly an LPG fireplace is.
Put simply, an LPG fireplace is a fireplace which uses liquefied petroleum gas (hence the LPG). LPG is a low-carbon, colourless, highly-efficient fuel which is available in two main types; propane and butane.
When it comes to LPG fireplaces, propane is the type of LPG that is used. This is why you’ll sometimes see LPG fires referred to as propane fires.
The LPG for LPG fireplaces typically comes in bottled form. The LPG bottle is usually located in an sheltered location outside of your home – but close to where your LPG fire is situated inside.
If you’re going to be installing multiple LPG fires in your home (or using the LPG to supply another appliance such as a cooker), then it can often make more sense to install a larger bulk LPG gas tank (which can be located either above ground or underground) which will provide you with sufficient capacity to fuel multiple appliances at once – rather than having to continually replace gas bottles.
With a dedicated LPG gas tank in place, you’ll also save yourself the job of changing gas bottles. When the gas starts running low, you simply need to call your local LPG supplier and they’ll come round and fill your tank up again for you.
What are the benefits of LPG fireplaces?
Aside from the very obvious benefit that LPG gas fires don’t require a mains gas connection, they also have a number of other really useful benefits too.
These benefits include:
LPG gas is one of the cheaper fuels available and is certainly far cheaper than current electricity prices. So, an LPG gas fire will provide you with a lower cost way of heating your home this winter.
LPG is widely regarded as a green (if not renewable) form of energy. This is because it creates practically zero combustibles (such as soot) when burnt, and also emits very very small amounts of carbon dioxide.
By using an LPG gas fire to heat your home, you’ll be doing your bit to help reduce the UK’s carbon emissions.
Like any type of gas, you should always follow best safety practices with LPG. However, LPG is one of the safest forms of gases as, if leaked, it tends to evaporate very quickly – rather than lingering like natural gas from a mains supply is prone to do.
Nevertheless, it is a flammable, pressurised gas, so it’s vital that you have your LPG fire installed by a Gas Safe registered gas engineer.
Easy to source
LPG gas is remarkably easy to source, with many different LPG suppliers in operation across the UK.
It’s easy to shop around and find the best priced LPG for your home.
This is in contrast with mains gas suppliers – where it can be challenging to switch suppliers in order to get the best rates.
By using an LPG gas fire to heat your home, you’ll be in a better position to manage and stay on top of your fuel costs.
Note – remember that you’ll usually have to pay a delivery and maintenance charge on top of the cost of the LPG itself.
Are LPG fires easy to install?
Yes. LPG fires are as easy to install as regular gas fires. However, like gas fires, LPG gas fires should only be installed by a Gas Safe registered heating engineer.
This is because of the flammable nature of gas (both mains natural gas and LPG).
When it comes to the installation itself, this is straightforward.
As we mentioned above, you’ll need to ensure that the LPG fire is installed against an exterior facing wall of your house.
You will also need an area outside where you can store LPG bottles or a location for a bulk LPG tank. Finally, the installer will need to connect the two, routing pipework from the bottle area/bulk gas tank, through the external wall, to the fire.
Because we can’t emphasise it enough, we’re going to repeat this point – make sure that you use a qualified professional to carry out the installation!
Guide – to find out more about the qualifications that a fireplace installer should have, read our guide here.
Can you use any gas fireplace with LPG?
No. Because natural gas burns in a different way from LPG, you cannot use a regular gas fire with LPG.
LPG fires are fitted with special burners which accommodate the specific requirements of burning LPG.
Many fireplace models are offered with two gas options – regular mains natural gas, or LPG. When you’re shopping for an LPG fire, make sure you select the right option!
Many fireplace retailers (like ourselves here at Direct Fireplaces) will provide a menu or drop down so that you can select the LPG version of your chosen fireplace.
How much do LPG fireplaces cost?
LPG fires may be a somewhat newer technology than traditional gas fires, however they’re just as affordable.
Here at Direct Fireplaces you’ll find LPG gas fires ranging from as little as £470 (July 2022).
How much LPG do LPG fires use?
A key question for many people is the amount of LPG that these types of fires use.
The answer varies depending on the rated heat output of your chosen fire, its efficiency (how much of the gas is turned into usable heat), how cold it is outside, how often you use the fire and more.
As you can see, there are many factors at play – so it’s difficult for us to provide an exact answer.
However, as we’ve written previously, it is possible to make some calculations in order to get a rough idea as to how much LPG your chosen fireplace will use.
Let’s take a look at an actual LPG fire and see how much LPG it would require.
The Flavel Calypso Plus High Efficiency Gas Fire is a simple, elegant LPG fire which will look at home in most UK living rooms.
It requires a heat input of 6.9kW.
So, how much LPG does it need? Let’s do some calculations…
6.9kW is equivalent to 23543.8 BTUs. 1 litre of LPG is equivalent to 23,700 BTUs.
This means the Flavel Calypso fire would burn approximately 1 litre of LPG per hour (bear in mind this is only an approximation! The exact amount of LPG a fire will use will vary based on a huge range of factors).
According to major home LPG supplier Calor, each of their 47kg gas bottles holds around 92 litres of LPG. At the time of writing (July 2022), the cost of a 47kg LPG gas bottle varies from between £80-£110 depending on the brand.
So that’s roughly 92 hours of heating from a single bottle of LPG at a cost of between £80-£110.
What types of LPG gas fires are there?
Don’t think that your choice is limited when it comes to selecting an LPG gas fire for your home.
As you’ll see if you explore the gas fires category of our website, LPG fires are available across a wide range of styles, including:
- Class 1 Full Depth Gas Fires.
- High Efficiency Gas Fires.
- Balanced Flue Gas Fires.
- Flueless Inset Gas Fires.
- Freestanding & Outset Gas Fires.
- Top Control & Side Control Gas Fires.
There really is an LPG gas fire for everyone!
Whether you want a traditional looking freestanding LPG fire, or a sleek, modern high-efficiency LPG fire, you’ll find something for you here at Direct Fireplaces.
Do LPG fires require a chimney or flue?
Yes. Like regular gas fireplaces, LPG fires require a chimney or flue. The exact type of chimney or flue you require will depend on the type of LPG fire you buy.
For example, if you buy a class 1 full depth LPG gas fire, then you’ll need a traditional class 1 chimney. Likewise, if you buy a balanced flue LPG gas fire, then you won’t need a traditional chimney, but you will need to use the fire in combination with a balanced flue.
If you’re unsure what the chimney requirements of a particular LPG fire are, then feel free to contact our expert, friendly team who will be able to provide you with advice. You can reach them on 0161 516 3125 or by email at: [email protected]
Best LPG gas fires UK
So, if your home isn’t connected to the UK mains gas network, and yet you still want a gas fire, then explore the range of LPG gas fires we have available here at Direct Fireplaces.
Below, we’ve detailed some of our more popular LPG gas fires, however you can explore our entire range by going to our various gas fires categories and exploring via the ‘Gas Option’ on the filter on the left hand side of each category page:
Gallery Collection Solaris LPG Gas Fire
A classic, beautifully designed fire, the Gallery Collection Solaris will bring the warmth of LPG into your home without breaking the bank.
Available in three different finishes with two different fuel bed options (coal or pebbles), the Solaris is a highly versatile fire and will suit both traditionally-styled and modern living rooms alike.
With a heat output of 4.0kW and an efficiency rate of 64.8%, the Solaris will keep your home nice and warm on even the coldest of days, whilst keeping your fuel bill as low as possible.
As this is a full-depth gas fire, it’s ideal for use with traditional class 1 brick chimneys.
Gallery Aurora LPG Gas Fire
The Aurora from Gallery is a bold, statement-making fire that’ll create a warm focal point in any living room.
Available in three different finishes – black, chrome or antique brass – and with two different fuel bed options (coal or pebbles), it’s easy to select a fire that’ll perfectly complement your home’s decor.
The Aurora gives out a generous 4kW heat output and with a 64.8% efficiency rating, so will heat your home without emptying your wallet!
Flavel Calibre Balanced Flue LPG Gas Fire
If you don’t have a traditional chimney in your home, but still want a gas fireplace, then the Calibre from Flavel is the ideal choice.
As a balanced flue LPG gas fire, the Calibre simply needs positioning against an exterior facing wall of your house – that’s it! You don’t have to worry about constructing a new chimney.
Aside from being immensely practical, the Calibre is available in two different finishes, including brass and chrome.
Even better, the Flavel Calibre is easily one of the most efficient LPG gas fires on the market, with an outstanding efficiency of 94% and an energy rating of B. Matched with its generous heat output of 3.9kW these things make the Calibre one of the best options for cost-conscious consumers.
Gas fireplaces for homes without a gas connection
We hope you’ve found our guide to buying a gas fire for a home without a mains gas connection helpful.
Here at Direct Fireplaces, not only do we stock a huge range of LPG gas fires, but we also make it super easy to buy your next fireplace online. Not only do we offer FREE mainland UK delivery and 14-day no hassle returns, but we also have a range of finance options available to help you spread the cost of your new LPG gas fire.
Shop LPG gas fires at Direct Fireplaces now
For more fireplace buying guides, advice and information, read the Direct Fireplaces blog…