Fireplaces are beautiful, traditional and oh so cosy. However, a real fireplace is a massive pain and also involves a lot of maintenance. That is the reason, electric fireplaces have become such a viable option. An best electric fireplace works using metal coils that automatically heat up when the appliance is plugged into an electrical socket. As well as the coils there is also an electric fan inside the fireplace that is sometimes referred to as a blower motor. This is the part of the fireplace that pushes the air in to the room. None of the heat will be wasted because the fan pushes out 100% of the heat that is generated by the coils. However, heat is not the only thing you are going to want from an electric fireplace. You will also want it to give the illusion of real flames. In order to do this a light bulb is used. The light generated from the bulb is then refracted in a 3D random pattern which gives the flames that flickering and realistic look.
What are the Benefits of an Electric Fireplace?
- No Dangerous Fumes: By using an electric fireplace you eliminate the need to use gas or wood to generate a flame. This completely eradicated toxic fumes from the fireplace and also helps keep your carbon footprint down.
- Low Maintenance: Traditional fireplaces need to be cleaned regularly. Really they need to be cleaned after every use in order to function effectively. With an electric fireplace, this is not the case at all. Really all you will need to do is take a duster and some polish to the display every now and again. As well as most electric fireplaces simply plug directly into a household socket, so the problems you experience should be minimised to a blown fuse.
- Reduce Energy Costs: Home heating system massively increase energy costs during winter, and radiators will need some maintenance at the beginning of the cold season after being neglected over the summer months. An electric fire can provide a room with warm lighting and equally dispersed heat in minutes while also keeping energy costs low.
- Many Design Options: Although many people will want an electric fireplace that looks like the real thing, you are definitely not limited to this style. The design options available are literally endless, and you will definitely be able to find something to fit your own personal style and give your room the fashion statement it deserves.
What are the Different Types of Electric Fireplaces?
- Electric Fire Place Mantels: This kind of fireplace will be composed of two main components. The first component is a mantel that houses the firebox. The second component is a vent free firebox which displays the realistic flame effect. In general this type of fireplace is available in a variety of finishes and colours and will plug into any standard 120 volt wall outlet.
- Wall-Mount Electric Fireplaces: The best electric fireplaces that are wall mountable will be available in hanging models that can be directly installed into drywall. Professional installation may be required with this kind of model in order to ensure that the installation meets building code. However, the mounting hardware and installation manual should come with the unit itself.
- Electric Fireplace Inserts:Electric fireplace inserts are made to fit inside a space where a fireplace has previously existed such as a brick hearth. The best electric fireplace inserts will have LED inner glow logs complete with pulsating embers that provide an incredibly realistic frame effect. In same way as an electric fireplace mantel this kind of model can be plugged directly into a standard 120 volt outlet. You should also be able to use this kind of fireplace with or without heat.
What do you need to Consider When Purchasing an Electric Fireplace?
- Heat Capacity: An average size electric fireplace will run at 120 volts, 1500 watts and 12.5 amps. The heating capacity of the fireplace is determined by dividing the number of watts by 10, therefore a 1500 watt fireplace will heat 150 square feet. In order to determine the heating capacity you will need, just conduct the calculation the opposite way. Find the square footage of your room and multiply this by 10. That will make sure that you purchase a fireplace powerful enough to heat the entire room adequately.
- Flame Only Operation: There will probably be many occasions where you would like the relaxed ambience that a flickering flame provides without the heat that traditionally comes with it. By looking for an electric fireplace that comes with a flame only operation you can enjoy a realistic flame all year round without adding heat to your room. You should also be able to control the look of the flame e.g. changing the speed at which they flicker or how bright they appear.
- Adjustable Thermostats: Electric fireplaces are extremely efficient at heating a space, and you will probably find that you can feel the heat in the room just a few minutes after turning it on. If your model does not have an adjustable thermostat then you will find yourself constantly turning the fireplace on and off. With an adjustable thermostat you can make sure that the room is always a comfortable temperature.
- Cool To Touch: If you have children and pets then this a definitely a feature that you need. Many fireplaces come with glass displays and without the appropriate protection the glass will become burning hot when the heat is turned on. If you choose a model that has a cool to touch feature then you can make sure that every member of your family is safe from getting burned.
- Safety Approvals: The best electric fireplaces will have been put through rigorous safety tests and should have passed with flying colours to both national and international standards.
The Top 5 Best Electric Fireplaces Reviews
Touchstone Onyx 50” Electric Wall Mounted Fireplace
The Touchstone Onyx electric fireplace features a 1500 watt heater with two distinct settings. The fireplace also has the ability to heat up to 400 square feet. The product will arrive packaged securely and can be mounted easily in as little as 10 minutes. The heat kicks in quickly and distributes well around the room. If you want the visuals without the heat the flames also work independently. The ambience that the fireplace gives is fantastic. It works really well in large spacious rooms as it gives the illusion of cosiness and helps to eliminate some of the vacant empty feeling that large rooms can sometimes have.
- The fireplace features a programmable timer with an auto shut off setting.
- The unit comes with the exclusive Touchstone mounting bracket for easy and level wall mounting.
- The black frame will be strong design feature in any room, and the realistic flames with provide the illusion of cosiness and warmth.
- The glass front needs to be removed before the unit can be installed.
Electric Fireplace with Mantel and Multicolour Stone Façade
The perfect alternative to a real fireplace. This product provides warmth and ambience without having to deal with lugging logs around and cleaning up messy ashes. The product comes already assembled, all you need to do is plug it in. The weight of the unit is surprisingly light considering how realistic the stone façade is. This model is compact in size but still packs a punch with the temperature. One downside of the product is that it doesn’t come with a remote control. The glass front is a nice feature and makes a change to the mesh fronts that are common with many other electric fireplace models.
- The 3D log flame motion feature makes the product extremely realistic and authentic.
- The heater comes equipped with dual thermostat and a thermal cut off.
- The unit plugs directly into any 120v outlet.
- The heating unit begins to emit a loud grinding noise with frequent use.
- The blower continues to emit hear even when the room has reached the set temperature.
Lifesmart Large Room Infrared Quartz Fireplace in Burnished Oak Finish with Remote
The Lifesmart Infrared Quartz fireplace provides deep warmth to even the largest of room, and comes with a traditional oak stain mantle surround. The cabinet itself has a very nice finish although it is quite small and you may find that you will need to raise it up slightly. The flames are very realistic and the product comes with a remote control so you can change the settings with ease. This product also has a built in thermostat so once the desired temperature is reached the heat will immediately shut off. Although the model is small, the heat distributes well throughout the room and you will likely find that you don’t need to use your central heating even on the coldest of days.
- The real fire display is adjustable and can be used with or without heat
- The unit comes with two distinct heat settings controlled using a digital thermostat and remote control.
- The quiet scroll fan effectively circulates heat with ease.
- This fireplace can literally be installed anywhere because no venting is required.
- The actual colour of the product is deeper than the picture suggests.
- The cord is quite short and the unit cannot be plugged into an extension cord which makes placement difficult.
SEI Cartwright Convertible Electric Fireplace, Espresso
This convertible Electric fireplace is definitely one of the best electric fireplaces out there and is guaranteed to be the focal point of any room, with the rich espresso colour and traditional style. The assembly of this product is really easy and you will only need a screwdriver to complete the job. The individual sections lock together securely and the whole thing can be moved easily. The brightness of the logs can be customised from off to super bright and there are also other flaming effects that can be adjusted. The wood stain and the slate frontage look really terrific and make a great feature of the whole product.
- The product comes with a collapsible extension so the fireplace can also be used as a corner fireplace.
- The stylish finish is accentuated by lovely faux slate tiles arranged in a sunburst pattern.
- There is no wiring required. Simply plug in and go.
- This particular electric fireplace is energy efficient and can heat 1500 cubic meters in as little as 24 minutes.
- The switches and dials are quite hard to reach.
Dimplex DF12310 Electric Fireplace Deluxe 23-Inch Insert, Black
The Dimplex electric fire deluxe works up to a huge 1375 watts and comes equipped with the manufacturers patented flame technology. The flame is large, bright and realistic. It does make a very slight whirring kind of sound when the heat is turned on, however it is very slight and can only really be heard when the room is very quiet. This fireplace will also need to use quite a bit of juice so you should ensure that you have an adequate outlet. Overall, it’s a really great little unit and in a dark room you would never know that it’s not real.
- The product is incredibly easy to install and plugs directly into a standard household outlet.
- The built in fan heater distributes heat evenly throughout the room.
- There are three distinct modes; full heat, half heat and flame only.
- The stylish black finish will add an essence of class to any room.
- The remote control only turns the unit on and off, it doesn’t control the heating elements.
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