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The Pros and Cons of Buying a Second-hand Gas Fireplace



In a world of ever increasing costs people are looking at every possible way to save a penny or two when it comes to a home make-over or building new. One area where real money can be saved is by using auction websites, where second-hand, damaged or repaired stock products are sold. But when it comes to gas fireplaces, are you really getting a bargain? Or are you creating a bigger headache for yourself than you first expected? The team at Living Flame are here to help.

Here are a few facts that may help you out…

  • In our experience a fireplace advertised as “around 10 years old” is never 10 years old! Often fireplaces are advertised as around that age, but Living Flame have been making fireplaces since 1982 and much of the stock we see advertised is from the late 80s through to the mid 90s, making them more than 20 years old. Within the fireplace is a Data Plate with a serial number, if you can provide that serial number to us, we can tell you the complete history of the fireplace. Our records are quite thorough and go back to day one. The problem with buying a fireplace of that age is the components; like a car, seals, gaskets and other small components fail with age and need replacing. These can end up being costly and negate some of the savings made by buying second hand to begin with. If you can’t find the Data Plate, a photo, or an address will help us track it down.
  • “The fireplace probably has a remote because there are cables coming out of the back of the box…” is not entirely correct. All Living Flame fires from the early 90s onwards were fitted with cables so the fireplace could be upgraded in the future without much difficulty. We can still convert them to today’s technology now, but it does not mean that a remote is included. Again, in this situation, give us a call or send us a link to the auction and we can give you advice on whether it will suit your needs
  • “The fireplace is LPG and I need Natural Gas- that’s an easy change right?” Not always… From the Late 90s Living Flame burners have been universal, but prior to that we had a specific Natural Gas burner which can’t be converted to LPG. Purchasing this type of burner can end up costing thousands to replace. You would end up with a much better burner, newer technology, and still be saving some money, but possibly not as much as you were hoping for
  • The fireplace may need a new endorsement. In 2013 the gas regulations changed and gas appliances came under more strict regulations. For any new installation of an appliance, the gasfitter “should” require a new endorsement for that specific product at the new address (this also applies to new products brought in from overseas). An independent inspector needs to view and test the product, then provide a report and approval. Some products may not meet today’s standards, so ask us and we should be able to tell you or put you in touch with an Endorsing Practitioner who can check it over and provide a report

What we are trying to say is… we are here to help. At Living Flame we understand that building is an expensive, stressful time and we don’t want to stop you building the place of your dreams by the best means possible. So, please ask us the questions, show us the photos and explain what you’d like to achieve. We’ll try to help you where we can with honest advice and pricing on what you may need to do to bring it up to standard. There’s still a good chance you may get the fireplace you want at a much cheaper price than a brand new one. For us that’s a still a win – our products are designed to last and we hate to see them thrown away. Remember, advice is free.