If you want to elevate the home decor of your living area, any interior designer will be sure to tell you how great a fireplace is. However, not all types of homes can support a fireplace, and wood fireplaces are banned in many regions of the country. What options does this leave?
For some people, a high-definition video of a crackling fire while playing some relaxing music is enough ambiance. Of course, this is barely scratching the surface of the possibilities. In this article, we are going to show you why that video of a burning fireplace isn’t nearly as good as it can be. We’ll explain the difference between getting an electric fireplace, and which one you should consider if you want a beautiful crackling fireplace for your home. It is easy to be the architect of your own relaxation by choosing the best fireplace option.
What Is a Fireplace Video?
Fireplace videos are essentially just hours of relaxing fireplace footage. This can be on a video streaming service connected to your TV, or sometimes even part of an electric fireplace.
Videos of a crackling fireplace can be full HD, or even ultra HD like 4k UHD. A cozy fireplace 4k display can certainly look great, but what else can it do?
It is common to have the fire burning to be accompanied by crackling fire sounds that add a great ASMR effect. On top of the sounds of the fire itself, it is also common to have other audio along with it. This can be relaxing music, white noise, or even nature sounds. Just like a real-time nature video, the rain sounds, thunder sounds, and howling wind can promote stress relief and deep sleep.
Music is also commonly played in these fireplace videos. It can be a piano music playlist, or even Christmas music for that time of the year. For instance, you can get a streaming video of a Christmas fireplace with birchwood or a Yule log while popular Christmas songs play in the background. However, if you prefer no music, you can always find ones with just the more atmospheric sounds.
Can a Fireplace Video Be As Good as an Authentic Relaxing Fireplace?
While hours of fireplace videos can add a good amount of relaxing atmosphere to a room, they can’t compare with real fireplaces, or for a much better option, electric fireplaces.
Do All Electric Fireplaces Use a Fireplace Video, or Do They Use Different Ways To Simulate Flames?
Only some decorative electric fireplaces use videos of fires. Most don’t. Instead, electric fireplaces use other means to simulate flames. Some use cheap 2D LED flames, some use lights reflecting off water vapor, while others use 3D holographic projection. The 3D holographic projection is the leader when it comes to 3D flames that genuinely look like the real thing.
What Are The Main Advantages of a Proper Electric Fireplace Over Just Using a Video of a Virtual Fireplace on Netflix or YouTube?
There are several different advantages if you want to get an electric fireplace instead of just playing a long or looping video of a fireplace. The most important thing is that electric fireplaces actually produce heat. The infrared heating coils inside of them are great at quickly warming homes with minimal electricity needed. A good electric fireplace can warm a home of up to 1,000 feet without issue. Zone heating can be used for extra-large homes.
Another great advantage is that high-end electric fireplaces have much more realistic fire effects than even a video of a real fireplace. This is because no matter what, that video is still 3D and flat. Quality electric fireplaces that use Holoflame technology create 3D flames that look more realistic than any video of a fireplace.
One advantage that most people don’t think about is that an electric fireplace frees up your TV set. Since most people would be streaming a fireplace on their TV, that can’t be used for other things at the same time. With electric fireplaces, you can enjoy it while still watching the TV without issues.
On top of all of this, electric fireplaces are amazing additions to a room. It gives an excellent focal point. If you get an electric fireplace with a beautiful mantel, it will add so much aesthetic value to the room even when it isn’t being used.
When It Comes To a Fireplace For Your Home, Is a Wood or Gas Fireplace a Good Option?
It’s easy to be swayed by the charm of wood fireplaces. While they come with a lot of nostalgia, they, unfortunately, also come with quite a few problems you need to be aware of. Here are the main types of wood fireplaces:
- Open Hearth – These are easily the fireplaces most people picture. It is an opening against a wall, connected to a chimney for the smoke to escape.
- Enclosed – An enclosed fireplace is simply one that has glass doors on the front. This makes them slightly safer and a little more efficient.
- Enclosed Insert – This type of insert is made to convert one of the open hearth types of wood fireplaces into one that is enclosed.
- Wood Stove – You would usually find these in old cabins or some other rural type of dwellings. Burning wood in them produces heat for the room and the top can also be used for cooking.
- Fire Pit – Generally, these are for outdoor areas like backyards. You’d rarely find something like this inside a home.
Regardless of which type of wood fireplace someone would choose to use in their home, there are plenty of severe disadvantages to be aware of:
- Because of all of the flammable soot that builds up inside of the chimney and the flames that are exposed to your home, there is a much higher chance of a house fire.
- Harmful emissions such as carbon monoxide and smoke are inevitably going to fill your home. Both of these emissions can be deadly in large enough amounts.
- In order for you to use wood fireplaces, have to clean them, maintain them, and keep an eye on the fire. All this hassle makes using wood fireplaces fill like a second job.
- Since fireplaces that burn wood need to let all of that smoke out of the chimney, a lot of the heat goes with it. For these reasons, wood fireplaces are pretty inefficient.
- There is no getting around the fact that your home is going to smell like smoke. All of this smoky smell will get into your furniture, carpet, and curtains. It isn’t fun for you or your guests.
- Stains are also a big deal because of the smoke. With time, smoke in your home begins to turn your white walls yellow, and stain any lighter-colored materials in your home.
- It’s really unfortunate, but you can’t mount a flat-screen TV above the mantel of a wood fireplace. Doing so will cause permanent damage to the TV.
- All of that wood needs somewhere to be stored. You’ll need plenty of storage space just for the wood you will be burning.
- If you don’t already have a wood fireplace in your home, they are incredibly expensive if you want to add one. Not only will it cost a lot, but you might even need to move out of your house until it is finished.
With all of the issues that wood fireplaces have, gas fireplaces might seem like the next best thing, right? While they certainly have a few advantages over wood fireplaces, gas fireplaces come with their own set of problems. Here are the common gas fireplace types:
- Direct Vented – This is the type of gas fireplace that has a lot of harmful emissions, so it requires ventilation. Venting is usually in the form of a pipe, rather than a large chimney.
- Ventless – One of these gas fireplaces produces fewer emissions than the direct vented type, therefore they don’t need ventilation. Don’t be fooled though, some of these still produce some harmful emissions, even if it is a smaller amount.
Regardless of which of these two common gas fireplace types a homeowner was to install, they can expect these issues:
- The flames of gas fireplaces are still exposed to your home. Anytime you have any kind of exposed flames, there is still an added risk of a house fire as a result.
- Carbon monoxide due to the gas not having a complete burn is still a common issue. This carbon monoxide release can prove to be just as dangerous as wood fireplaces.
- The color of the flames for gas fireplaces leaves a lot to be desired. Many gas fireplaces have absolutely ugly bright neon blue flames. Even the ones that try to make their flame color more authentic, the colors are still dull and lifeless.
- It’s important to understand that the blowers on gas fireplaces are basically just a row of Bunsen burners. This means the flames come out in weak streams, with little flicker as you would expect from a proper fireplace.
- Although you don’t need a large chimney, installation is still expensive. A professional will surely be needed to install it, run gas lines, a ventilation pipe, and more.
How Are Electric Fireplaces Better Than Gas and Wood Fireplaces For a New Home or a Home Remodel?
Now that all of the disadvantages and problems with fireplaces that use gas or wood are clear, what about electric fireplaces? Not only do electric fireplaces lack all of these disadvantages, but they also have quite a few unique benefits as well. Here is exactly why so many people seem to be switching to electric fireplaces as an important interior design and heating feature for their homes:
- There is no added fire risk with electric fireplaces. They don’t burn anything or produce flames like wood and gas fireplaces.
- With electric fireplaces, your home isn’t going to be filled with harmful emissions such as smoke or carbon monoxide. The only thing that electric fireplaces put out is warm clean air.
- One of the biggest advantages of a lack of smoke is there isn’t going to be a smell that lingers throughout the home or stains on your walls over time.
- It is incredibly simple to use an electric fireplace. There is no regular maintenance or hassle to worry about. After you have turned it on, just set the temperature that you want your home to be and let it do the rest for you.
- It is very easy to install realistic electric fireplaces yourself. No professional is needed. You just choose the spot that you want and then you plug your fireplace into a standard wall outlet.
- You can very easily put an electric fireplace into any room in the house since there are no ventilation requirements. Feel free to install one in your bedroom, dining room, family room, and more.
- Unlike wood and gas fireplaces, it is completely safe if you feel like mounting your TV up above your electric fireplace. Any hot air that comes out of the fireplace is blown to the center of the room. It doesn’t simply rise straight up.
- Electric fireplaces are much more heat efficient than traditional fireplaces. This is due to their excellent infrared heating coils and the fact that heat won’t escape through a chimney.
- Even if you have a really big home, you can still keep your heating bills low with a supplemental zone heating strategy utilizing more than one electric fireplace.
- With an included remote, electric fireplaces can be controlled without even the need to get up from your seat.
- Electric fireplaces can simulate the realistic ambiance of a real fireplace if you invest in a quality brand that uses Holoflame technology.
Do Electric Fireplaces Come in a Variety of Different Types To Choose From?
There are many different types of electric fireplaces. Quite a few are useful in most homes. Some you should buy with a little bit of caution. Others you are best off if you stay away from them completely. Here are the different types:
- Flat Wall Mantel Package – A great choice if you want a traditional-looking fireplace.
- Corner Fireplace – Great if you want to save a bit more space.
- TV Stand Fireplace – Buy these with caution due to the lower performance of the fireplaces within these TV stands.
- Corner TV Stand Fireplace – Just like the standard TV stand fireplaces, be sure to check how good the fireplace inside of it actually is due to limited space.
- Wall Mount Fireplace – These can be placed on a wall or built into a recessed wall for a more modern look.
- Electric Insert – These inserts allow you to convert an existing fireplace into an electric one.
- Freestanding Fireplace Heater – You should avoid these portable heaters due to their very weak performance and tacky look.
- Electric Stoves – These look like wood stoves, but are electric. They look out of place unless you have a very rural design aesthetic in your home.
Are Generic Amazon Fireplaces Okay To Purchase?
It’s really a good idea to just avoid generic electric fireplaces completely if you want something reliable and looks great. Generic brands vary in quality quite a lot and often look very cheap. Although some of the prices are tempting, you will always be much better if you just properly invest in a great brand, to begin with.
Is There a High-Quality Electric Fireplace Brand With Realistic Fire Effects and Relaxing Fireplace Sounds?
If realism and atmosphere are what you care about the most, MagikFlame is what you should get for your home. MagikFlame fireplaces come with all of these wonderful features:
- Ultra Realistic 3D Fire Effects – Their fireplaces have the most realistic 3D holographic flame projection. MagikFlame fireplaces come with 30 different styles of flames you can choose between. They all move and flicker like a real fireplace.
- Crackling Log Sounds – The sounds of cracking logs help make the 3D flames that much more realistic. On top of the relaxing crackling log sounds, there are sounds of nature that can be played as well.
- 5,200 BTU Heater – You can’t go wrong with the powerful and efficient heater inside of MagikFlame fireplaces. The infrared quartz will warm your home quickly, keep it warm, and will use the smallest amount of electricity possible while doing so.
- Smartphone App – MagikFlame fireplaces come with a simple-to-use smartphone app so that you can happily control your MagikFlame fireplace from anywhere in your home.