Why Would a Gas Fireplace Not Work?

close-up of a gas fireplace

How do you know when you need gas fireplace repair?

If you haven’t tested it yet, when the temperatures start to drop you’ll know if you need a gas fireplace repair service. Unfortunately, various things may be wrong with a gas fireplace, which means there are many different reasons you may find yourself reaching out for gas fireplace repair in Charlotte, NC. If you do find yourself in need of this kind of assistance, our professionals can be there to help. Reach out at 336-214-1972 today if you need this kind of service.

What could be wrong with my gas fireplace?

You may be thinking to yourself that you haven’t used it all summer, what could happen to a gas fireplace to keep it from working?  Even if it has sat idle all summer, multiple possible problems could cause you to need a gas fireplace repair service: 


This may be the most common problem with any gas fireplace. Repair technicians will typically find wiring has been damaged causing it to draw too much current and trip the breaker. If your gas fireplace won’t start, check the circuit breaker box and if the breaker is tripped, flip it back. If it rips repeatedly, call a professional gas fireplace repair technician. 


How do you fix a gas fireplace pilot light that won’t stay lit? The pilot light on a gas fireplace will get covered in dirt and dust, even if isn’t being used. This will block the sensor’s beam and keep the pilot light from igniting. You can clean the sensor yourself and then try to light your gas fireplace. Repair service by a professional may be necessary if that doesn’t work. 


If your gas fireplace flame isn’t a steady blue-to-yellow flame, but flickers instead, there are a couple of possible problems. One is the flame is too high, and this can be fixed by lowering the flame. It can also be the thermocouple is failing because of insufficient voltage, or the thermostat may be going out. Before making that call for a professional gas fireplace repair service, try cleaning in and around the fireplace first to remove any buildup from last winter. If that doesn’t help, you’ll need to schedule that appointment.


Foul smells from a gas fireplace are not normal and is often caused by a dirty chimney. Last winter, debris or soot built up in the chimney or flue and when you started the fireplace this year, they got hot and started to smell. Or you may have a small critter in your chimney that didn’t make it back out. In this case, a chimney sweep would be the person to call, but if you smell something electrical burning, or you smell gas even with the fireplace off, you need to turn it off and call a professional gas fireplace repair service for emergency service. 

Other problems you may have with your fireplace would be hearing unusual sounds, which could be the blower motor going out, or soot buildup which would need the attention of a chimney sweep or a professional gas fireplace repair service technician. 

Why is my gas fireplace not starting?

A gas fireplace may not be responding and starting if the gas logs are operated by a remote control. Changing the batteries in the remote will usually fix this problem and you can do this yourself, saving the cost of a gas fireplace repair service. 

How do you reset a gas fireplace?

Believe it or not, replacing the batteries in the remote will reset your gas fireplace. We’re all familiar with remote control batteries dying without any warning. Even if you feel that you just changed them, do it again with fresh new batteries. 

But you don’t stop there!  When it comes to gas fireplaces, you also have to change the batteries in the receiver. The remote operates one side of the controls and the little black box inside the fireplace, the receiver, needs fresh batteries at the same time. The receiver batteries are one of the first things a gas fireplace repair technician will check. 

Are there maintenance contracts for gas fireplaces?

Ask the company you purchase your gas fireplace from about any maintenance contract they offer. You should have a professional inspection that includes cleaning, lubricating if needed, and replacing any worn parts. 

For your part as the owner of a gas fireplace, repairs can be minimized, even avoided by performing these four maintenance tasks yourself: 

  1. Turn the Pilot Light Off: Allow it to cool down before taking the following steps. 
  2. Clean Glass: Refer to the owner’s manual on how to remove the front glass and lay it on a soft surface. With a clean, soft cloth, clean both sides of the glass with a designated fireplace glass cleaner.  
  3. Clean the Airflow and Louvers: With a clean, soft cloth, wipe the louvers down to remove any dirt and dust buildup. If your fireplace unit doesn’t have louvers, clean any air cavities of any excessive dust or obstructions.
  4. Inspect and Wipe Down the Unit: With a clean, damp, soft cloth wipe down the exterior and inspect the paint. If you notice any bubbling or peeling paint, have a professional gas fireplace repair service inspect the unit. This often indicates that the unit may not be functioning properly. 

Keeping Warm: What is the lifespan of a gas fireplace?

A quality gas fireplace that is professionally installed and properly maintained after installation can have a lifespan of up to 15 years with normal use. Keeping this in mind can help you determine when you might find yourself in need of a service such as a gas fireplace replacement rather than a repair. Meanwhile, our team can always be there to help determine what service you need to keep your gas fireplace functioning properly. When you need assistance, reach out to us by calling 336-214-1972.