Anyone who appreciates the natural beauty of a fireplace should take a look at the newest idea in fireplace designs: fire and ice fireplaces. Also known as a fire on ice fireplace, they are absolutely gorgeous to look at. Aside from their obvious and almost ethereal beauty, they have many great qualities that homeowners who love having a warm fire in cool weather should know about.
What is a Fire and Ice Fireplace?
Fire and ice fireplaces use special tempered glass pieces instead of gas logs in a fireplace. The overall look is very elegant and modern. A fire and ice fireplace can be a traditional in-wall type fireplace, or it can be designed as a stand-alone fire pit or fire table, such as the one pictured below. The glass pieces which ground the dancing flames can be any color, depending on your preference. When the fire is lit on the glass pieces, the overall effect is stunning; it truly looks like fire on ice!
It is important to note that the glass used in a fire and ice fireplace is not just any old glass; you cannot just pick up some glass pebbles meant for arranging flowers, for instance, and put them in your fireplace. The glass used for this type of fireplace is specially created just for using in a fireplace,and it is tempered glass that can withstand the high temperatures it will be subjected to. The glass pieces should be lead-free, also. I mention that because there are some manufacturers who are making fire and ice glass that is not lead-free. Before you buy, make sure you are getting lead-free glass.
A fire and ice fireplace can be placed inside or outside, so there is a lot of flexibility as to where you want to have your fireplace. Some homeowners have opted to have one inside and to have one outside on the patio also, so they can enjoy their outdoor area even when the weather might be too cool otherwise.
You do need to have access to a supply of natural gas in order to have one of these gorgeous fireplaces in your home or on your patio.
Some of the Advantages of a Fire and Ice Fireplace are:
- They are easy to assemble and to install
- They are very clean – no residue or ashes to clean up, and all that is required to keep them clean is an occasional dusting with a feather duster.
- There is no pollution emitted from a fire and ice fireplace
- Affordability – fire and ice fireplaces are very competitively priced in comparison to gas log fireplaces
- Durability – they last forever
- Versatility – the glass colors can be changed with the seasons or your mood
- Heat production – many people report that the heat from a fire and ice fireplace is much greater than that from regular gas log fireplaces. The reason for this is the glass pieces heat up and emit heat while the fire is going.
Where Can You Get a Fire and Ice Fireplace?
A very good company to take a look at is Fire On Ice. Their glass is 100% lead-free, and is manufactured in the USA. You can also find some beautiful DIY fire and ice fireplaces on the internet that can be customized to fit into many different types of spaces, such as existing fireplace boxes inside a home, or into outdoor fire pits. You may want to build a custom fire pit outdoors out of brick, or you can buy freestanding pits to place the gas burner and glass into.
Installing Your Own Fire and Ice Fireplace
This is an easy project for most homeowners, so don’t be intimidated to do this. You should already have a gas supply running to your fireplace, and you should be comfortable with making the gas connection needed. If you have not ever worked with natural gas connections, then it might be a good idea to have your local gas company do this part for you. They will charge you for doing this, but most times you can have it added to your gas bill, and sometimes they will let you pay for the installation over several months time.
Here is what you will need:
- An existing gas connection
- A stiff wire brush, dry cloths, a shop vac, heat resistant paint if you want to paint the inside of the firebox
- A fire and ice fireplace burner kit
- Crushed lava rock, enough to make a 2″ bed for the burner
- Sand, enough to cover burner and lava rock
Here is how to do it:
- You should clean the inside of any existing firebox with the wire brush, vacuum it thoroughly, and wipe the walls to remove dust.
- Connect the burner to the gas line per instructions that come with your burner. Have your local gas company do this step if you are not comfortable with it!
- Center the burner in the firebox.
- Turn the burner on, so you can see if the flames will be centered in the firebox. You don’t want any flames touching the back of the firebox. You will create soot if this happens.
- Place about 2″ of crushed lava rock under and around the burner, but don’t let the rock come any closer than about 4″ from the front of the fireplace.
- Pull the burner up so the gas jets are clear of the rock and light it again, making sure that it is still centered and the flames are not touching the back of the firebox.
- Cover the burner and lava rock with sand, keeping the sand at least 4″ from the front of the firebox. Brush sand from the top of the burner, and light it again to make sure the flames are still in the center.
- From the front to the back, slowly cover the lava rock and sand with glass pieces. Doing this slowly and carefully will ensure that you don’t mix the glass into the sand and lava rock.
- Periodically light the burner to see the effect of your work, and how the flames play off of the glass. You may need to let the glass cool and do some re-arranging to get it looking just right. Obviously, never rearrange the glass while the burner is on!
- Sit back and enjoy your beautiful fire and ice creation!
If you are looking for a beautiful new way to use your fireplace, then look no further. Fire and ice fireplaces can be easily installed by homeowners in fireplaces with DIY fireplace mantels and surrounds, and they can also be installed in free-standing fire pits and fire tables. They are also wonderful for use in outdoor fire pits. They look good in any type of décor, so what are you waiting for? Check out a fire and ice fireplace for your home or patio today!