How Do Electric Fireplaces Work? A Complete Guide
Electric fireplaces are an incredibly popular heating method renowned for their effectiveness, style and convenience. There are a variety of styles and designs to choose from. Whether you want a traditional wood fireplace look or a more modern style, there’s an electric fireplace that will work for you.
This guide answers the most frequently asked questions about electric fireplaces and gives you extra insight into how they work and what makes them such a great choice for your home.
How Do Electric Fireplaces Work?
The electric fireplace generates heat by using electricity. There are three components that an electric fireplace can use to distribute the heat it produces. A fireplace will use one of these three components:
- Heating coil: The heat or heating coil warms up the air in and around your unit and spreads it throughout the room with a fan. The heating element warms the air, and the fan regulates the airflow, which heats the room evenly.
- Ceramic plate: A ceramic plate is a radiant form of conducting heat. It transfers the heat the unit produces to objects in the surrounding space.
- Infrared technology: Certain types of electric fireplaces utilize infrared technology to heat objects in a room directly. Supplementary heating is produced for the targeted area without the mess, fumes or emissions of a wood or gas fireplace.
Electric fireplaces have no live flame. They create a flame effect, a very realistic reproduction of a flame. This is typically recreated through the use of mirrors and LED lights. The LEDs emit a soft, flickering light that mimics a flame. The mirrors then reflect the light to create a sense of depth and movement. Some models use a water vapor system to create a realistic smoke effect.
No wood or gas is needed to start the fire, and there’s no need for ventilation. Electric fireplaces can provide heat for areas up to 1,000 square feet, though this might vary depending on your model. The flame effects are adjustable, and you can run your fireplace without heat if you just want to use it for the ambiance.
It’s easy to customize and operate your electric fireplace. You have full control over the heat output, flame intensity, colors and other settings. Certain models also have features that allow you to control them via your smart device.
Where Can You Put an Electric Fireplace?
Finding where to put an electric fireplace depends on the style you get, your home’s layout and the space’s decor. However, there are some tips we can give you to help you find the best placement for your needs:
- Where can you install your electric fireplace? While certain models may have different requirements and restrictions, your electric fireplace can be installed almost anywhere in your home. You need to make sure there’s enough room between the heating elements and any combustible materials and flammable objects.
- Can you place a TV above your electric fireplace? Exposure to an excessive amount of heat can damage electronics. Heat rises, so putting any electronics above your electric fireplace could be a risk. However, this depends on which model fireplace you choose. Be sure to check the user manual of your electric fireplace to be certain before installing anything above it.
What Are the Benefits of Electric Fireplaces?
There are many reasons to own an electric fireplace. The biggest advantages of electric fireplaces include:
- Beautiful visual appeal: Electric fireplaces come in a wide variety of styles to suit any interior space. They take up less space than wood and gas fireplaces and are available in various colors, sizes and shapes.
- Minimal maintenance requirements: Electric fireplaces have a longer life span than other types of fireplaces. Because the flames are fake, there are no risks of corrosion and degradation. They’re also easy to install and operate. Most units are controlled with a remote or simple control panel. Additionally, they require little to no maintenance outside of changing a lightbulb every two or three years.
- Extra heating capability: You have more control over the heat output of an electric fireplace. You can turn the heat up or down with your controller and set it to a more comfortable level. Alongside your home’s central heating system, an electric fireplace can keep your house warm throughout the cooler months.
- Affordable price: This is the most affordable fireplace variant you can own in terms of installation and running costs.
- High levels of safety: Electric fireplaces don’t emit fumes, smoke or gases, which makes them safer for families and leaves a smaller carbon footprint.
Electric Fireplaces FAQs
Here are some answers to the most common questions people have about electric fireplaces:
- Are electric fireplaces energy efficient? The short answer is yes. All of the electricity transferred to an electric fireplace is used to create heat, so no electricity is lost. As a result, electric fireplaces are 100% energy efficient, like forms of electric resistance heating.
- Are electric fireplaces safe? Electric fireplaces are safer than gas and wood fireplaces because the flames are fake. However, exposed hot surfaces may cause burns when touched. Other than the heat discharge vent, the materials of an electric fireplace are usually cool and safe to touch.
- Can you leave an electric fireplace on overnight? In general, the answer is no. An adult should always be attending to the fireplace when it’s on to minimize hazards, and that can’t happen overnight. Therefore, you should always turn your electric fireplace off at night to ensure your safety. Check the manual for the model you have or are interested in purchasing for a more specific answer for your situation.
- Does an electric fireplace need to be vented? Because they produce fake flames, you don’t need to vent your electric fireplace. This is part of what makes electric fireplaces so popular and easy to install.
Browse Quality Electric Fireplaces From Chimney.com
Chimney.com has over 30 years of experience supplying homeowners like you with a range of fireplaces from quality brands. Our skilled team can help you get the perfect electric fireplace for your home and your needs. From answering your questions to installation, repair and maintainence, Chimney.com has everything covered.
To learn more and get a free quote, contact us online or call us at (301)-989-3300 today.
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