The Cozy Flame's Blog

Keep Your New Year Warm and Toasty

New Year’s Eve may be over, but the new year has just begun! Make sure your family and home are safe and cozy for 2020 by insuring your fireplace and chimney are properly used and properly maintained.

woman in front of fireplace

What are You Burning?

Whether your fireplace burns gas, pellets, or firewood, it should be used properly, according to manufacturer user regulations and instructions. Fire safety rules should be followed by everyone in the home, and basic maintenance completed regularly to keep the system in property working order.

  • Wood – If you have a wood-burning appliance or fireplace, it should be cleaned of soot and creosote regularly to avoid elevated fire risk. In order to prevent excessive creosote buildup, make sure you only burn properly seasoned firewood in your fireplace. Never burn trash, clothing, or any other materials inside your wood-burning system. These materials can burn incompletely, creating more particulate pollution than necessary and some light materials like paper and leaves can rise up the flue while ignited.
  • Pellets – Pellets are a manufactured product that is made of recycled wood products. These pellets must be purchased and used properly according to your model. You should not burn any wood, trash, clothing, or any other items in your pellet appliance. Only use manufactured pellets and do not attempt to make your own.
  • Gas – Your gas fire appliance should be professionally installed and gas connected by your local gas company. It is important to determine whether your gas fireplace is vented or vent-free and that vented gas logs are properly vented. Do not burn anything in your gas fireplace and keep the logs and fire area clean.

Fire Safety Tips for a Safer Winter

A fireplace is a great addition to your home but can turn disastrous at any moment. Most of America’s residential house fires occur in January and almost all of them can be prevented by proper use and maintenance. In order to prevent other fire accidents such as burns and damage, make sure you follow fire safety rules no matter how often you light your fire.

  • Only burn the proper fuel in your fireplace. Burning other items can contribute to flue obstruction and buildup, raise fire risk, and drop efficiency (which drops safety).
  • Use special long-handled fire tools when stirring your logs, shoveling and disposing of ashes, and cleaning up after your fire.
  • Never leave a fire unattended. Many house fires occur while the family is out or asleep. You cannot control a fire left unattended, so make sure it is properly extinguished before leaving or going to bed.
  • Make sure the damper is open when the fireplace is in use and left open until the fire is completely extinguished.
  • Install carbon monoxide detectors and smoke alarms on every level of the home. Check these devices monthly and change the batteries twice per year.
  • Set rules for the fireplace and make sure everyone in the home knows them. Do not allow children to work with the fire.
  • Plan two escape routes from the home and practice them as a family. Use these resources to help children understand the importance of fire safety and how valuable time is during a fire emergency.
  • Maintain the chimney system properly by scheduling routine services with a certified professional.

Chimney Sweeps, Inspections, and Installations in Milford, CT

Whether you’re looking to service your existing fire system or hoping to install a new one altogether, look no further than the professionals at Total Chimney Care. Our sister company services all of our customers with the utmost professionalism, experience, and know-how. Total Chimney Care sweeps are CSIA certified and take our quality products and install them with expertise and beauty so that they are long-lasting and properly functioning.

Are you giving yourself a new fireplace for New Year’s? You can find the best of pellet, gas, and wood fire appliances at The Cozy Flame.

By partnering with the industry’s top manufacturers like Regency, Hargrove, and Thermo-Rite, our customers can choose from a broad range of capacities, full types, and styles. Whether your home décor leans toward simple and contemporary or traditional and rustic—or anywhere in between—we can match you with an appliance exactly.

Don’t hesitate to call the professionals when you’re ready to upgrade your hearth. The Cozy Flame is a comprehensive hearth and patio store located in Milford, Connecticut and is a retail company founded by the expert chimney sweep company, Total Chimney Care. Depend on us for all your total chimney care as well as all your hearth, patio, and grilling supplies. Start now and don’t stop with your winter fireplace. At The Cozy Flame, we’ve spent years warming your world, indoors and out. Talk with one of our experts today to plan your summer fire pit, outdoor kitchen, and more. Ask about patio heating and fire accessories and forward schedule all your inspections and service appointments today.

Call The Cozy Flame at 203-283-4459, stop by, or contact us online.

Go Custom for Christmas

The holiday season is the time for your fireplace to shine, but why not also enjoy an outdoor fire this season. When you have guests and family over for holiday gatherings, your house can feel cramped, too warm, and uncomfortable. By installing a custom gas firepit now, you can transform your outdoor space into a holiday oasis for all of your winter festivities. Whether you have a patio, poolside, or garden, there is a custom gas fire pit that will fit your needs and warm your guests. Enjoy eggnog, coffee, wine, or cider by a beautiful fire surrounded by friends and family this winter.

people around firepit

Turn Your Patio Into a Dream Space

Maybe you have a fire pit already, but it burns wood and you’re tired of storing and handling firewood. Maybe you’re tired of the lighting, feeding, and cleaning up after your wood fire. Maybe your guests are tired of breathing in the smoke of a wood fire. Essentially, the best way to eliminate the mess and smoke of a fire pit is to convert to a gas fire pit. When you choose a gas firepit you will experience real ease, convenience, beauty, and the ambiance you look for in a fire.

  • Gas burns cleanly – No more smoke, no ash, no more firewood to store or cut. Your gas firepit burns the most efficient fuel, burns less of it, and still reaches the desired temperature.
  • Gas is convenient – Your gas fire pit is easy to use. Instead of fumbling with fire-building, kindling, and matches, you can have flames at the touch of a button or flip of a switch. The fire is easy to maintain and you’ll have precise control over flame and temperature as well as a hard stop when you’re ready to put it out. Some firepit models even come with remote control for the most convenience of all.
  • Gas is easy to install – Your gas fire pit is easier to install than a fireplace. They are affordable depending on the style and model and are safer because they are factory-built.
  • Gas is safer – Your gas fire pit is incredibly safe for your family and your guests. There are fewer accidental fires and burns associated with outdoor gas firepits than wood. You can also choose a model that stands higher than most wood firepits in order to decrease the likelihood of falls into the fire.
  • Gas firepits are versatile – You can choose a gas firepit that is none other than a firepit or you can choose one that doubles as a tabletop, giving your guests a place to put their food and drinks. Save space by choosing a gas fire build-in that brings light and life to your patio or garden’s edge. A gas firepit can be installed using materials that accentuate your landscape and your home exterior. You can also find models with ceramic logs, stones, and reflective materials.

Staying Warm In Winter

It may not be common for your family to invite guests outside during winter, but who says we have to waist our outdoor spaces during the colder months? That would mean you can’t enjoy your yard, patio, or garden area for half the year. At The Cozy Flame, we make it our priority to help our customers find comfort indoors and outdoors this year. Give yourself the gift of a cozy space outside this Christmas. Stargaze the winter sky with the kids, pray or meditate near to a warm fire, use the barbecue grill to help prepare Christmas or Hanukah dinners. You can do all these things and more with a little outdoor heat source like a gas firepit. Depending on your region and climate, you may need a more specific model of gas fire unit to heat your space. The Comfort Consultants at The Cozy Flame can help you choose a model that will also be a heat machine. We can use reflective materials in your setup to send heat to your guests, and when all else fails, you can look at other sources of patio heating such as wall heaters.

When it comes to keeping your guests comfortable, the science of the fire is just that—science. When your guests have a fire to stand or sit beside, their brain makes their body feel warmer. Other ways to help your guests and yourself to feel more comfortable enjoying your outdoor space this fall and winter is to:

  • Add cushioned seating and blankets
  • Add a basket of blankets, mittens, and hats
  • Put down comfy rugs whether on tile, concrete, or earth
  • Install radiant heat beneath porch decking and even fire-safe furniture (this is an extreme and sometimes expensive option, but is gaining popularity in some extreme climates)

Whether you’re looking to use your patio through fall only, or all winter long, we can help you stay warm and cozy by installing a custom gas firepit from The Cozy Flame. If you’re looking to improve your experience at home and add value to your property, find out how we can help you today. Chat with a Comfort Consultant on our website, call 203-283-4459, or stop by our retail store today

Operating and Troubleshooting Your Gas Fireplace

Many homeowners are choosing gas fireplaces because of the safety, convenience, and low-cost of using gas. They are efficient, are great for zone heating, and are low-maintenance. However, low maintenance doesn’t mean NO maintenance and many consumers experience problems with their gas fireplaces because routine services are neglected. It may be a minor problem that is causing an issue with your gas fire or it may be a major one. Here are our tips to operate and troubleshoot your gas fireplace properly so that you can rest assured it is safe while in use.

gas flame

The Benefits of Gas Fires

Whether you live in a condo or a 5 bedroom historic colonial, a gas fireplace can add value and style to your home. Many homeowners choose gas as a source of zone heating, to save money on the central heating bill, and to even bypass an old masonry fireplace and chimney. Gas fireplaces may take the form of log sets, inserts, stoves, and factory-made fireplaces. Whether they are a closed unit, vented, or vent-free, they all work the same way. Gas is piped into your home by a local gas company, and this gas fuels the burners that are hidden in your gas logs. The gases produced by your gas fireplace rise up a chimney or move into your home (if your gas fireplace is designed to be vent-free). Gas is the cleanest-burning fuel and offers many benefits besides being great for the environment.

  • Gas is eco-friendly. It produces fewer greenhouse emissions and particulate pollution. This means less harm to the environment.
  • Gas burns cleaner, leaving less soot in the flue than wood fires and producing none of the creosote that organic materials create. This means less maintenance.
  • Gas fits anywhere. You can choose a gas fireplace unit to fit in any space, big or small. The hospitality industry is even moving toward gas for in-room heat and lower utility costs.
  • Gas is convenient with automatic ignition and even remote control in many models. Your fire can be crackling with just the press of a button or turn of a knob. Experience precise temperature control and immediate shut-off as well.
  • Gas is as realistic as ever. Even vent-free units that were once boring blue flames have come to life in recent years with realistic, dancing flames and detailed and moveable ceramic logs.

Drawbacks to Gas

The same things that are often a drawback to gas fires are also the problems that many homeowners experience, not realizing that there may be an easy fix.
Too much moisture in the home
Your wallpaper may be curling, paint buckling, and wood warping. These are all signs of too much moisture in the house. Condensation is a common problem when gas is burned in the hearth because water vapor is a byproduct of a gas fire. The condensation may rise up the chimney, or it may move into the house if you have a vent-free log set.
Quick fix: vent your vent-free fireplace either by a damper or cracking a window. You can also avoid water damage by using a dehumidifier while the fire burns.
Incomplete combustion
Due to the high efficiency of a gas fire, nearly all the heat produced is used for heating the home, leaving very little to rise up the flue, creating a draft. When a draft is not moving through the flue, there is not enough oxygen to sustain the fire, dropping efficiency and creating a carbon monoxide risk.
Quick fix: have the system maintained regularly by a professional for optimum efficiency. Crack a window in another part of the house to allow the fire to draw oxygen from the home and help create a draft.

When to Call a Professional

You cannot always troubleshoot or fix your gas fireplace problems. It is important to contact a fire expert as soon as you notice a problem with your fireplace that isn’t easily resolved. If your carbon monoxide detector is going off despite venting your fire, it’s time to call a professional. You must not risk carbon monoxide exposure. You may not notice symptoms right away, but carbon monoxide poisoning can often be slow or go unnoticed because symptoms are similar to the common cold and seasonal flu.

Your ventilation problem may be due to improper installation. The flue may be the wrong size, the conversion from wood to gas may have been done without a conversion kit and by a professional. There are a million reasons why your gas fire is burning inefficiently or unsafely. Your chimney and fireplace professional knows exactly what to look for and will focus diagnostics on the likely culprit.

Routine Maintenance

It is important to schedule routine services for your gas fireplace even when there is not a problem. Gas services and chimney sweeps and inspections make the safest and most efficient fire systems. These routine services also maintain your manufacturer’s warranty and may be required by your homeowner’s insurance.

Call 203-283-4459 and ask about scheduling a gas service with our sister company Total Chimney Care.

Are you looking to invest in a gas fireplace? We can help. The Cozy Flame carries the best models from the industry’s top brands, including Regency and Hargrove.

Make The Right Choice With Thermo-Rite Doors

Whether you’re looking for a cosmetic makeover or an efficiency-overhaul, we can help with Thermo-Rite Doors.

Quality Products Made in the U.S.A.

Since 1942, Thermo-Rite has stood for elegance, quality, and superior craftsmanship. We trust Thermo-Rite for all of our glass fireplace enclosures because of their history of excellence within the industry for so many years. They are a cut above the rest, and if one of their stock doors will not work, Thermo-Rite will custom-make doors that are always made with the best products and precision manufacturing right here in the United States.

thermo rite logo

Leave it Up to the Professionals

While you may think you want a door and you may feel you need a door, you may not have any idea what kind to get! This is why it’s important to talk with professionals throughout the process when planning changes to your chimney and fireplace system. Only certified professionals know the SCIENCE of chimney science and understand how a certain type of door can work well with your system and how others won’t. Installing the wrong product onto your fireplace opening can even be dangerous. We don’t just trust Thermo-Rite because of their track record with us as a company, but because of the many options, they have for tempered glass doors. They know safety inside and out because they designed and patented the tempered glass fireplace door before anyone else!

At The Cozy Flame, we are qualified to sell and plan for the installation of Thermo-Rite products —and we know them well.

Masonry or Zero-Clearance Doors?

Depending on the type and age of your home and system, you will need either a masonry or zero-clearance door. It would be very uncommon to find two masonry chimneys exactly identical, so custom doors are usually required. Adversely, zero-clearance fireplaces are usually pre-fabricated fireplaces with model numbers that can be accessed. Stock doors may work for your model. Make sure you contact a professional to find out for sure.

Adding Doors for Efficiency and Beauty

Adding doors to your fireplace is not just a convenient option to stave off chimney odors during the offseason. Fireplace doors can help to save and utilize heat for your home instead of losing it to the chimney. Say good-bye to drafts during the winter and conditioned air loss during the summer. Custom glass doors can also help the wood to burn more efficiently, saving on wasted fuel, producing less creosote and soot, and burning hotter. In addition, you can give your old fireplace a facelift by installing a beautiful set of doors today.

Talk with a Comfort Consultant at The Cozy Flame today. Call us at 203-283-4459 or stop by our retail store at 116-Q Research Drive in Milford, Connecticut. At Comfort Consultants our goal is to warm your world, inside and out.

Find out how we can help you today.

We Sell and Install Pellet Stoves

It’s time to think about your winter fireplace. The temperatures have been uncharacteristically high for this time of year, but soon the air conditioning will work less and less, and eventually won’t kick on at all. You’ll wince as you move that thermostat switch from “cool” to “heat”, and we understand! When you’re tired of wasting money on central heating costs and frustrated with your old wood stove or fireplace, you can purchase a pellet stove. At The Cozy Flame, we sell and install pellet stoves that are the best on the market.

pellets on fire

Why Choose Pellets

Pellets offer all the benefits associated with gas units, with all the beauty and intensity of a wood fire. While wood can be a hassle to cut, store, carry, and light, pellets are easy. You purchase them by bag or crate at a local retailer (or even online) and store them in a clean, dry place until it’s time to use them. Pellets are eco-friendly, made of organic materials and recycled wood products. They burn cleanly, producing less soot and creosote, and create less ash. You don’t have to fumble around with lighters, matches, and kindling when you have a pellet stove. They come with an igniter that immediately sets the pellets to a satisfying blaze.

Once the fire is going, you can adjust the hopper to feed the fire continuously, keeping the temperature consistent even when you’re busy, out of the room or house, or asleep. Many homeowners use a pellet stove as a primary heat source for an entire level of the home or the entire home. This is possible when you choose a unit with enough capacity, and that means talking with a professional before you make your purchase.

Trusted Brands at The Cozy Flame


Our Comfort Consultants can match you with a product that enhances the beauty of your home while keeping you warm and comfortable this winter. We trust Regency for all of our pellet stove products. The Regency brand is budget-friendly, efficient, environmentally-friendly, and easy to install, store, and use. Regency products can match any home and personality.

Whether you prefer sleek and contemporary or rustic and traditional, we have a model for you. These units can be freestanding, installed anywhere, or tucked nicely into an existing fireplace. No matter the size of your space, corner, or open area, we can install. Our team of experts uses refractory products to protect your floors and walls from extreme temperatures, making any space the space for your new stove. Regency stoves even have fire-view windows so that you can enjoy the dancing yellow flame as the pellets burn.


Click here to learn about our Regency pellet stoves.
Click here to learn about our Regency pellet inserts that install directly into an existing firebox.

Is your heart set on a new product, but you’re not sure how to install? Don’t worry. We have you covered. Our sister company, Total Chimney Care handles all of our installs and service needs. The team at Total Chimney Care is CSIA certified and trained and experienced in all of our product installations.

If you reside in the Milford, Connecticut area and are ready to get started on your new hearth today, call or stop by The Cozy Flame. Our showroom is located at 116-Q Research Drive in Milford.

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The Cozy Flame | 116 Research Dr. Suite Q, Milford, Connecticut 06460