How Can We Help?
Welcome to the Mendota Hearth frequently asked questions page, where you can find answers to common inquiries. For technical questions or questions specific to the operation of your fireplace or insert, please refer to your owner’s manual or the original dealer or installer.
Purchasing a Fireplace
Why is a fireplace such an important purchase consideration?
The purchase of a gas fireplace deserves the same thoughtful consideration as any major appliance or piece of furniture. If you're building or remodeling, you deserve a fireplace that fits your home and your taste, not the low-quality “builder box” fireplaces found in cookie-cutter housing tracts and apartments. Here’s why:
- A fireplace is a once-in-a-lifetime purchase that becomes a permanent part of your home. If you choose the right fireplace, you’ll have a treasured heirloom for generations of memories, not a disposable product meant to be replaced periodically like a new car or television.
- A fireplace is the center of attention in your home’s most important room for relaxation and entertaining. You’ll see it and spend time near it daily. The fireplace helps form the character of your home’s interior.
- You must be able to depend on your fireplace for low-maintenance heat and ambiance on demand. You must be able to expect long-term, reliable performance and uncompromised safety.
What is the difference between a gas fireplace and gas fireplace insert?
A gas insert and gas fireplace accomplish the same goal for your home — the addition of a beautiful, convenient gas-burning fireplace. Each is distinct from a wood-burning fireplace, electric fireplace or gas stove. Whether a gas insert or gas fireplace is best for you depends on the existence of a wood-burning fireplace already in your home. If you have an old wood-burning fireplace opening and chimney, it’s simple to install a gas insert as a retrofit. A gas insert transforms the space already occupied by your wood-burning fireplace into a gas fireplace insert. If you are considering a more extensive remodel or renovation for a home without a wood-burning fireplace or are building a new home, you’ll install a gas fireplace. While gas inserts are limited in size options because they must fit an existing firebox, gas fireplaces offer significantly more size and shape possibilities. Mendota Hearth offers both top-quality gas inserts and gas fireplaces with our signature combination of ease of use, durability and aesthetics.
Why should I consider a Mendota gas fireplace?
Just like other major appliances, gas fireplaces vary widely in terms of quality, performance and craftsmanship across competing brands, yet each brand promises appealing aesthetics, convenience, clean burning and efficient heating — so who will deliver on that promise?
Mendota Hearth luxury fireplaces are custom built in limited quantities that allow us to take the time to deliver an ultra-high-quality unit with the features discerning buyers demand. Mendota uses only the finest materials, including 18 gauge aluminized steel for the outer casing, NeoCeram® glass and stainless steel burner systems. Our fireboxes are continuously seam welded and hand-assembled in the USA. A Mendota Hearth product surpasses the generic, disposable “builder box” fireplaces installed in cookie-cutter housing tracts and apartments in every respect.
What’s more, Mendota fireplaces are certified ANSI/AGA safety tested, high-efficiency wall furnaces. Our fireplaces have won “Best of Show” honors at the National Hearth Products Association Expo and have been listed as a “Best Buy” value for gas fireplaces by Consumer’s Digest.
I live in a warm climate and I don’t want heat. What are my options?
Mendota Hearth gas fireplaces and inserts feature temperature control to give you comfort and ambiance in any settings. Mendota fireplaces have an extremely wide temperature “turn down” range of more than 80 percent, so you can enjoy the authentic look and feel of a wood-burning fire with the control you get only with gas. Turn on your fireplace and set the right temperature for the climate or season. At the turn of a dial, your Mendota can provide anything from a roaring fire to help warm the entire house with lots of forced air on cold winter nights to the more subtle, atmospheric glowing logs of a late-night campfire with negligible heat on milder days.
Mendota's Heat Management options also allow you to redirect the heat from your fireplace to make your home more comfortable and energy efficient.
Can Mendota fireplaces use liquid propane (LP) gas?
All Mendota gas fireplace and insert models can be converted to burn liquid propane (LP) gas. Discuss this option with your Authorized Mendota Dealer if your home requires LP gas appliances.
Is “Direct Vent” the same thing as “Ventless,” “Vent-Free” or “Unvented?” Does Mendota Hearth offer “ventless” or “free-standing” gas fireplaces or gas inserts?
No. Direct vent fireplaces use a sealed glass front to completely isolate combustion gasses and moisture from your home. This is especially important in new construction homes that are built very tightly to comply with today’s energy codes. Ventless, vent-free or unvented fireplaces are designed to expel combustion gasses and moisture directly back into the room. Ventless, vent-free or unvented fireplaces and stoves are illegal in many states and municipalities.
How do I light or turn on my gas fireplace or gas insert?
When properly installed and seasonally maintained, it’s remarkably easy to start your gas fireplace or insert. Depending on your model, you’ll either turn it on with a remote control, push-button or wall switch similar to a light switch.
Does a gas fireplace need a chimney? How do Mendota gas fireplaces vent?
Mendota Hearth gas fireplaces and gas inserts encompass a sealed system that pulls outside air in and exhausts it back out of your house. Mendota fireplaces do not need a chimney per se, but they do require venting and exhaust to access outside air.
Will my Mendota gas fireplace or gas insert operate during an electrical outage?
Yes. The burners will remain operational, but accessories like blowers and lights will not. This makes your gas fireplace or insert a great “just-in-case” heating option for homeowners concerned about power outages resulting from winter storms.
Can I rearrange the logs in my Mendota gas fireplace?
No. Factory-specified log placement is critical to the proper operation and performance of your Mendota gas fireplace or insert. Misarranged logs can result in serious operational problems. If you notice the logs have shifted during cleaning or maintenance, contact your Authorized Mendota Dealer’s service department and check your installation and operating instructions for proper placement.
Can you burn wood or other materials inside a Mendota gas fireplace?
No. No other materials may be burned inside a Mendota gas fireplace or insert. Mendota Hearth fireplace products are designed and certified by UL specifically to burn only LP or natural gas. Burning wood has a much higher peak temperature that can not only permanently impair the fireplace itself, but also creates significant fire danger to your home and occupants. Even something as simple as burning paper can harm the fireplace’s internal controls and possibly overheat the unit. Do not attempt to place additional media in the fireplace.
How often do I need to clean my Mendota gas fireplace and vent?
While the frequency of your fireplace servicing and maintenance will depend on your frequency of use and the type of installation, you should have a qualified Mendota service technician perform an appliance check-up at the beginning of each heating season.