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Air Tight Fireplace Doors?

If you are looking for fireplace doors that are more energy efficient, our Tight Fitting Door option is a great choice. With narrow frames around each panel of glass that overlap closely, they provide a more air-tight seal than doors with gaps between the glass. These are not gasketed doors and they are not 100% air-tight, but they do exceed most green energy standards and block nearly all the air from coming in or out of your fireplace. The beauty of this design is that it can be made in virtually any size with less obstruction to the view of the fire than doors with gaskets.

Statement from Design Specialties: Since gasketed doors are no longer required due to recent changes to the ICC code, we have dropped our gasket option and replaced it with a more attractive airflow reduction method, our new tight fitting door option. By adding vertical stiles between the glass panels, we are able to reduce airflow by an additional 35% when the fireplace is not in use.

Shown Above: Legend Bifold Fireplace Door with Tight Fitting Door option from Design Specialties.

HERS Compliant Fireplace Doors

Years ago, Air-tight fireplace doors were required on masonry fireplaces in order to meet Home Energy Rating System (HERS) for Green Homes. These doors required frames around the glass with gaskets. Doors like these could only be made with 2 doors where one frame overlapped the other with a gasket. This type of door was not practical for larger fireplaces that need more than 2 glass panels. So we never supplied gasketed doors. The HERS no longer requires air-tight fireplace doors. Instead, it just requires doors that cover the entire opening of the firebox.

Here are excerpts from the 2019 Building Energy Efficiency Standards that apply to fireplace doors in green homes. The pertinent seceion is: 150.0(e):


(e)Installation of Fireplaces, Decorative Gas Appliances and Gas Logs. If a masonry or factory-built fireplace is installed, it shall comply with Section 110.5*, Section 4.503 of Part 11**, and shall have the following:

1. Closable metal or glass doors covering the entire opening of the firebox; and

2. A combustion air intake to draw air from the outside of the building, which is at least 6 square inches in area and is equipped with a readily accessible, operable, and tight-fitting damper or combustion-air control device; and

EXCEPTION to Section 150.0(e)1B: An outside combustion-air intake is not required if the fireplace will be installed over concrete slab flooring and the fireplace will not be located on an exterior wall.

3. A flue damper with a readily accessible control.

EXCEPTION to Section 150.0(e)1C: When a gas log, log lighter, or decorative gas appliance is installed in a fireplace, the flue damper shall be blocked open if required by the CMC or the manufacturer's installation instructions.


*Section 110.5 states that gas logs cannot have a standing pilot, which would indicate that only electronic ignition or match-light systems are acceptable.

**Section 4.503 of Part 11: This refers to CALGreen Standards, which states that any new gas fireplaces must be direct vent.

Mesh & Insulation Options

The Mesh options are behind the glass so you can burn the fire with the doors open and still have spark protection. Great for real wood or gas logs since most gas long manufacturers insist that you have a screen in front of the logs when they are burning. Mesh panel doors are the most popular and are best for when there are toddlers present because they will not open backwards whereas the mesh screens are easily pushed in. Insulation goes between the back of the frame and the fireplace facing, providing a better seal.

Black Mesh Curtains - These slide back and forth on a rod behind the glass
Gate Mesh Doors - These are separate doors behind the glass that have a flat wire mesh and a black frame.
Insulation: Provides a better seal between the fireplace face and the door frame.

This page was created as part of our Free Fireplace Door Design service. Anyone who has a fireplace and is considering glass doors can take advantage of this program. All you have to do is email us some pictures of your fireplace and we will create digital mock-ups showing you how various fireplace doors will look on your fireplace. This is hands down the best way to shop for fireplace doors. Click Here to Begin Your Own Project!