People have been gathering around campfires and places for as long as everyone can remember. Even when we went from a species that roams outdoors to living indoors, this tradition continued. But while the general concept of keeping warm has remained the same, there have been great strides over the years.
One of the most popular has been electric fireplaces. They are a great alternative to traditional wood or gas fireplaces and many people choose to install them in their homes today.
Having been around for over 100 years, they are no longer just a source of heat. In fact, the main reason many people buy them is because of the aesthetic qualities and charm they bring to your home.
What are the benefits of having an electric fireplace instead of a wood or gas fireplace?
First of all, they are totally efficient: no heat escapes from your home and no gases are released. This saves installation and energy costs.
They are also eco-friendly, which is important these days, and a very safe option for people with children and pets. This is because they stay cool even when in use (only the heating vent heats up a bit), making them the safest options on the market.
Finally, compared to traditional fireplaces, they are much less messy: there is no need to chop wood and there is no danger of ashes!
The growing market for electric fireplaces offers consumers a wide variety of options, but it also raises many questions. When buying one, there are several different things to think about. Here, we outline the key questions to ask yourself and the options available to you.
Does your electric fireplace have to emit heat?
A basic question, but the first one on the list. Most electric fireplaces give off heat, and you can adjust the level of this heat. They usually come with remote controls, which is perfect for the summer season, since you can lower the heating according to the temperature around you. Some electric fireplaces even have built-in thermostats which will maintain a group temperature within the room.
However, you may only want the visual look of a fire and no heat. People who live in a very hot climate tend to favor this approach. There are fireplaces that give you this option and, unsurprisingly, they are also cheaper.
What kind of fireplace installation works best for you?
Do you want something easy and portable, or are you trying to find a more permanent solution? Ycreate-inou should also consider the dynamics of your wall.
Built-in electric fireplaces
If you’ve got wide walls with tons of space, then a built-in permanent fireplace unit is that the thanks to go. Consider a rectangular one – you want to focus more on width and less on height. This will look elegant, like a traditional fireplace, especially if you opt for a frameless unit. Try to create a contrast with the wall color as well; for example, a light colored wall would suit a black fireplace unit in your interior. Keep in mind that a built-in fireplace will require a lot more installation work. You will have to build a distinct segment where you insert the fireside unit. Unless you’ve got carpentry and electrician skills available , it is best to rent knowledge for this.
Portable electric fireplaces
If your wall has less space, then you’ll be more happy with a transportable electric fireplace. Wall-mounted ones are especially popular. You can hang them directly on the wall, in the same way that you would a flat screen TV. Mounting brackets come with the fireplace, so if you are constantly on the go, you can take them with you.
Electric fireplace Inserting
Inserts are another good portable option, but as long as your home already features a fireplace opening. This is usually the case with old houses. Oftentimes, you will find that they have masonry chimneys that have not been used for a long time due to all the mess involved.
If your home has an existing opening, inserts are an ideal way to keep things simple. They simply slide through the opening and plug into a standard outlet. There are two types of inserts for electric fireplaces: firebox and electric logs.
Firebox inserts look like a built-in fireplace. Meanwhile, electric log inserts are what you would expect, given their name. They look like a log grill and have built-in lights. These lights create a flaming appearance on the walls of the existing fireplace. The remote control that comes with the registration inserts allows you to control the height of the flame.
How to guarantee the efficiency of the chimney?
The maximum size for any electric fireplace to work efficiently is approximately 1,500 square feet, which is more than enough for most rooms. Take a look at the area where you are installing the fireplace. If you are around 1,000 square feet then you should go for a fireplace with an infrared quartz unit. These deliver infrared heat through invisible rays. The rays heat the objects they touch, rather than the surrounding air. Let’s face it, you want the heat to be transmitted to your sofa, not just the air around it. If you’ve got less space then you ought to choose fireplaces that have fan forced coil heaters. They contain a quiet fan that blows air over the heated coils and the hot air comes out through a vent. This vent can be on the top, bottom, or front of the fireplace.
Another thing to keep in mind when looking at your space is the ceilings. If your room has high ceilings, the fireplace may not be as effective because heat will be retained differently. In fact, for those with larger spaces to cover, consider a newer construction on the market: ceramic heaters. These contain ceramic and aluminum plates. When electricity passes through ceramic, it heats up. Then the aluminum absorbs the heat and a fan blows the hot air into the room. Despite the small size of these, they actually emit a great deal of heat and are considered highly energy efficient.
How are your electrical systems configured?
Most electric fireplaces can be inserted into a standard household outlet. However, you must ensure that this outlet is on a dedicated circuit breaker or fuse. This means that it does not share the circuit with other points of sale.
Plugging an electric fireplace into a shared outlet could overload the circuit and create a real safety hazard. Take a good look at where you plan to install your fireplace and speak to an electrician if necessary. Is there an easily accessible exit? Also don’t think you can use an extension cord, this is a big no-no!
Are electrical fireplaces safe?
From a safety point of view, you will need to ensure that the fireplace is kept free of fabrics that could overheat and ignite. Even though there is no actual fire, which means less of a hazard, you don’t want flammable fabrics to get trapped inside the vents.
To create a really homey feeling, you can get a mantel fireplace. It will allow you to place ornaments and other items near the fireplace, making it a more welcoming feature. This is especially important if the wall around the fireplace is bare, because that can make the fireplace appear small. The same applies if the color is completely plain, although this can be denied if you have things like pictures on the wall. A mantel fireplace is extremely easy to install. You assemble it in a similar way to flat pack furniture and insert the fireplace, which plugs into an electrical outlet.
Can I set up an electric fireplace under the TV?
Your electric fireplace will likely be a central part of the room! Most people have it in the common room or living room and want everyone to gravitate towards it. This means that you will want things close to him.
A good example is your television. Many people like being able to watch TV and keep warm by the fireplace at the same time. Many advertisements have been created of people snuggling by the fireplace while watching a movie together. This is good; In general, all electric fireplaces can be safely installed under televisions. However, the distance between the top of the fireplace and the bottom of the TV should be at least 12 inches. Check that the dimensions of your room allow it.
If you want to be practical, you can get a freestanding fireplace that becomes a multimedia cabinet. These are basically white electric fireplace TV stands and since they must follow the correct standards, there will always be the 12-inch minimum spacing mentioned above. If you have a TV nearby, it is best to select a fireplace with front or bottom heating. This reduces the possibility of heat being directed towards the TV.
What flame effects do electric fireplaces come with?
One of the safety benefits of electric fireplaces is the lack of a real flame. This means there are no harmful emissions and no risk to children or pets. But don’t think this means you can’t have a real flame effect. In many cases, LED lights and mirrors are used to create a realistic flame appearance. Long-lasting LED lights consume little power and do not need to be replaced for up to around 50,000 hours of use.
The choice for you is what kind of visual you want. The classic option is the one that looks like a normal fire. However, there are modern fireplaces that change the color of the flame; you can control this at will. You may want a different color to suit your mood or season. Alternatively, if you have a fireplace and the ornaments on top are constantly changing, you can adjust the color of the flame accordingly.
There are also various effects that you can add. For example, if you want to blink a bit, there are fireplaces that use rotating mirrors for this. Some will provide you with a ribbon flame effectThis is done by using a fan to blow air over a piece of tape to simulate dancing flames, while a light bulb illuminates it from below.
You may prefer an effect that is nothing like fire. Instead, you can use light bulbs under loose pebbles to create a fiery look; This makes it appear that the fire has been burning for a long time. The technology has been developed to a level where it can have virtually any kind of effect. Just keep in mind that the most extravagant options tend to be expensive.
Once you’ve answered the key questions above, you should be in a great place to make your electric fireplace purchase. There is no doubt that it will bring a great atmosphere to your home and it will do so with very little maintenance required on your part.