Vented vs Vent Free Gas Logs: Which Do You Need?

If you’re in the market for a new gas fireplace, you’ve probably noticed that there are two types of gas logs from which to choose: Vented and vent free. While they may look alike on the surface, there’s actually a big difference between vented and vent-free gas logs. Knowing in advance whether you need vented vs vent free gas logs for your fireplace will save you plenty of time in the long run.

Vented or ventless gas logs: which do you need for your home?

Let’s take a look at the perks that come with owning a gas fireplace, the types of gas logs available, and explore their unique benefits and differences.

What is a Gas Fireplace?

A gas fireplace makes a great alternative to a traditional wood-burning fireplace. While wood-burning fireplaces are valued for their cozy allure and nostalgic fragrance, they’re not the most efficient of heat sources.

For those who want the look and feel of a real fire, a gas fireplace may be your best bet. These days, there are plenty of gas log sets that look strikingly similar to real wood, with beautiful flames that dance and provide excellent heat, just like a real fire.

The main appeal of a gas fireplace, of course, is it’s hassle free! No ashes to clean up, no wood to chop and no chimney to sweep — with minimal maintenance, you can enjoy your fire without worry. All you need is a gas line and you can have a fire at the flick of a switch.

Another appeal of a gas fireplace is safety. Because there’s no open flame, there’s less of a risk of your fireplace igniting your belongings and causing a house fire.

Vented vs Ventless Gas Logs

Gas fireplaces come in two configurations: vented and ventless. Each type of fireplace requires its own type of gas logs to function.

Vented gas logs

If you adore the look and feel of a real, wood-burning fire, you’ll love vented gas logs. These log sets can be installed in an existing fireplace, making them perfect for homeowners who are looking for something more efficient than a wood-burning fireplace.

White Mountain Hearth 30" Whiskey River Vented Log Set

The 30″ Whiskey River Vented Log Set from White Mountain Hearth

Just like a traditional wood-burning fire, vented gas logs produce carbon monoxide emissions. For this reason, they require a chimney or flue to operate. If you don’t have an existing flue or chimney, vent-free gas logs may be the better option for you.

Because they require a chimney or flue to operate, some of the generated heat will inevitably escape from your home. This, along with their high fuel consumption, makes vented gas logs less efficient than their vent-free counterparts, but more efficient than traditional wood-burning fireplaces.

A huge appeal of vented gas logs is their appearance. Vented gas logs offer more of a realistic looking flame than vent-free gas logs, making them all the more attractive for those who may be reluctant to part with their wood-burning fireplace. You can purchase vented gas logs in practically any wooden finish to complement your home’s unique style. From traditional oak to stylish birch, the possibilities are virtually endless.

To keep your family and your home safe — and to make sure your gas logs properly do their job — it’s wise to have a professional technician service your vented gas fireplace once a year.

The bottom line: Vented gas logs are ideal if you value ambience over efficiency, or if you have an existing wood-burning fireplace that you want to convert to gas.

Vent-free gas logs

If you’re looking to add a supplemental, efficient heat source to your home, you may want to go with a vent-free gas log set. Unlike vented gas logs, these gas logs do not require a chimney or flue to operate, allowing more heat to stay in your home. For this reason, vent-free gas logs are much more efficient than vented gas logs.

White Mountain Hearth 24" Super Sassafras Vent-Free Gas Log Set

The 24″ Super Sassafras Vent-Free Gas Log Set from White Mountain Hearth

What you gain in efficiency, you sacrifice in appearance. Most vent-free gas logs don’t look as realistic or aesthetically pleasing as vented gas logs. However, the vent-free gas logs we offer at Total Home Supply look just as beautiful as their vented counterparts. We have vent-free gas logs available in finishes such as Whiskey River and Sassafras to make your home all the more cozy this winter.

On top of being more efficient, vent-free gas logs are also less expensive than vented gas logs. All you need is a gas line and you’ll be well on your way to a warmer and cozier home. Just like vented gas logs, it’s wise to have your vent-free gas fireplace serviced on an annual basis

The bottom line: Ventless gas logs are ideal for homeowners who value efficiency over ambience. They’re also great for those who are looking for a secondary vs a primary source of heat.


A gas fireplace makes a great alternative for homeowners looking for something more efficient than a wood-burning fireplace without losing any of the beautiful ambience. If you’re considering adding a gas log set to your home, learn more about the efficiency and safety of vented and vent free gas logs.


Mickey Luongo

Mickey is the resident heating and air conditioning expert.


Dedicated server

about 3 years ago

Fully Vented gas logs must be burned in a fireplace that is capable of burning real wood and must be burned with the damper open. The real beauty of vented gas logs is that they produce substantially more yellow flame than ventless logs which makes them look far more realistic.



about 2 years ago

Our ventfree fireplace logs give off an odor that smells like melted crayons, which bothers me . The fireplace has a clean out in the basement leading us to believe that at one point it was a wood burning fireplace and was converted to ventfree. Previous owners had the chimney blocked. Is there a difference in vented and ventfree systems? Could the wrong one have been installed?



about 2 years ago

Can I use vent free logs in a vented fireplace


Mickey Luongo

about 2 years ago

Yes, you can use vent free logs in a vented fireplace.



about 1 year ago

Can I use vented logs in a vent free fireplace? I have vented now, but I'm considering a switch to vent free because I want the fireplace to produce more heat. What would I have to do to make that conversion? Thanks


Mickey Luongo

about 1 year ago

You cannot under any circumstances use vented logs in a vent free firebox. This is a massive fire hazard.


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