Well not brand new, but at least it is now functional.
The previous owner was kind enough to leave us with a fireplace full of ash to clean up, so we figured that he used it pretty regularly. To be on the safe side, however, we called a local fireplace company to come clean and inspect our fireplace.
We were told that under no circumstances we should use the fireplace for wood or gas fires. There were several areas within the flume that had missing mortar, which required the chimney to be tuck pointed or lined. We had a chimney liner at our first house installed, so we figured it would not be a big deal. We were not prepared for the quote that we received, which was two times what it had cost to install the liner in our first house.
Mid-way through this winter, I finally got tired of not having a functional fireplace and decided to do something about it. At first we thought about installing a gas burning insert, but that required that our gas line be moved and an electrical outlet be installed at the back of the firebox.
After finding out how much moving the gas line was going to cost, we decided to nix that option.
So we finally decided to get the fireplace lined, install a burner , and purchase some fireglass. After much research, we decided that an H-shaped burner from Exotic Flames best met our needs.
We purchased fireglass from a vendor on Ebay, and lava rock from a local fireplace store.
We had to wait a while before we received our burner because they were backlogged. But the wait was worth it!
Things are finally warming up outside and inside!