Why do some gas logs Whistle?
We have had quite a few visitors ask us why their gas logs make an annoying whistling sound or hissing noise when they turn them on. In most cases, these are people who have purchased their gas logs from a home center or hardware store. However, I have found that some of them actually purchased their gas logs from us, but did not use the connector tube that was supplied with their burner system when they installed their logs. So, here's the answer:
A loud noise or whistling sound produced by a gas log is generally the result of having installed the gas log with a corrugated flexible gas connector tube (see fig. A). It is a scientific fact that when air (or gas) is blown through a corrugated tube, it whistles in varying tones depending on the volume of air flowing through it. You may recall an old toy from the 1970's called the Whirly Tube, which was a piece of corrugated plastic tubing about 3 feet long that worked on this same principal and would whistle when you swung it around in the air. Gas logs that are sold with a flexible corrugated connector tube are lower quality brands that are generally sold at home centers and department stores. Most of the Peterson Gas Logs you see on our website will come with a bendable aluminum tube that is totally smooth inside and out (see fig. B). Some models do in fact have a special corrugated connector that is "Smooth" on the inside so it will not whistle.
A poorly or cheaply made gas log burner system can also be the cause of an annoying whisling or hissing sound. This is a common complaint that we hear about from discount brands of gas logs sold by mass merchants and hardware stores. I will also note that a pilot flame that is adjusted too high can also make an audible hissing sound that can be annoying, but this is less likely to be described as a whistle, and it is usually easily recognized as coming from the pilot.
Here is a video from YouTube that explains how the Whirly Tube works and even mentions how corrugated tubes should not be used for gas fireplaces:
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