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How High Should a Mantle Be Above an Electric Fireplace

how odes an electric fireplace work

If you plan to purchase a new fireplace for your home or office, you likely want it to blend in with the setting and look visually appealing. With an electric fireplace, you can add a mantle, which will prove to be functional just as much as it is decorative. You may be wondering, “How high should a mantle be above an electric fireplace?” 

In this post, you will learn:

  • How High Should a Mantle be Above an Electric Fireplace?
  • Benefits of a Fireplace Mantel
  • Finding the Best Electric Fireplace
  • How to Decorate Your Mantle
  • How to Install a Fireplace Insert
  • Why You Should Choose a Fireplace that is Electric

How High Should a Mantle be Above an Electric Fireplace?

Once you invest in an electric fireplace, you may want to make the feature look complete with the use of a mantle. Mantles are a traditional item that makes fireplaces recognizable and can allow them to look built-in and finished.

The mantle can enhance the look of the fireplace while also creating a focal point in your living room or bedroom. If you place the mantle too high, it can look awkward and prevent the shelf from looking like it’s a part of the fireplace. If it’s too low, it can make the room feel cramped. Knowing how high to mount it can allow you to measure it correctly and allow it to become a feature that you enjoy using each day. As a general rule, it’s important to mount the mantle an average of 12 inches over the fireplace opening, which is a general rule from the National Fire Protection Agency (NFPA) to ensure it’s up to code. The mantle can also be 4 1/2 feet above the floor.

It’s also important to consider the height of the ceilings when measuring the mantel height. The height of the mantle may not be the same in a room with vaulted ceilings as a cottage with low ceilings.

When you perform a DIY mantel installation, mount it slightly downward to ensure it has a better viewing angle. It’s also important to consider the layout of the room to ensure you achieve the right height.

The materials you choose for the mantle is another important part of determining where to mount it. Natural stone, concrete, and glass can be installed lower because they’re non-combustibles. Stone can also be too heavy for wood studs, and the drywall may not be strong enough. If you want to paint or stain the mantle, you should only use non-flammable and heat-resistant materials. The scale and proportion of the feature should be considered when mounting the feature. If you have a taller room with 20-foot ceilings to work with, you can consider hanging two different mantles at various heights to ensure it makes a statement and the fireplace doesn’t look too small for the setting. Make the fireplace extend halfway up the wall to ensure it looks proportionate with all the space available.

When you ask, “How high should a mantle be above an electric fireplace?” you also need to consider other elements and features that are present in the building. The height of other furniture in the room should also be considered with the wall mount shelf. The shelf protrudes over the firebox and can cause the room to look cluttered if it’s too close to other features in the home. Consider mounting it a few inches higher if it’s in proximity to a tall cabinet or faux tree in the living space. You can also mount the shelf slightly higher if you have a linear fireplace in the space. A linear fireplace is known to be taller and works well in rooms that have higher ceilings or more square footage.

If you don’t have a measuring tape, you can also consider mounting the shelf at eye level to ensure it is at the ideal height and is cohesive with other items placed on the walls. You can also hang it slightly lower if you have a fireplace that is floor level instead of raised.

Different Styles of Mantels

After you ask, “How high should a mantle be above an electric fireplace?” it’s important to consider the different styles available to ensure it’s an attractive feature. There are a variety of different styles of mantels to consider choosing to ensure it contributes to your home’s interior design and is a reflection of your taste.

A stone mantle is a great option if you want something that looks dramatic and adds an extra dimension to the space. Stone is a popular option because it’s versatile and can complement many styles of fireplaces, whether your setting has a Victorian look or is rustic. Limestone, granite, and sandstone are common options and have a variety of colors and textures. They also look beautiful on large fireplaces when you’re performing a remodel.

Cast stone is another material to consider because it’s solid and durable but is still light enough to easily mount without hiring a contractor. It’s constructed with ground marble, granite silica sand, and cement. The material holds up well over time without fading or showing signs of wear.

If you want something worn and rustic, opt for scouring local flea markets or consignment stores for an old mantle that has character. You can restore the feature or leave it as it is to make it blend in well with your home.

Wood is another option that is a popular material to use on mantles because it’s contemporary and isn’t overly trendy. It works well with a variety of interior decor styles and comes in a variety of finishes to match the furniture or architectural elements in your home. Wood is also easy to customize to make it specific to your vision. You can even paint or stain the feature in the coming years if your style changes. Mantle kits are available at local home improvement stores if you want to make any modifications or changes to the feature. A wood mantel can look like it came with the home and will add a cozy touch that is ideal for homes with contemporary, classic, or farmhouse styles.

Benefits of a Fireplace Mantel

A fireplace mantle is one of the main features of any type of fireplace and can significantly impact the way your fireplace looks. Electric inserts that are built into the wall can blend in too much with the setting without a mantle in place. Some of your guests may not notice the fireplace if it’s not accessorized with an item that draws more attention to it and enhances its design.

The mantle is also useful for breaking up the space between the fireplace and the wall art that is mounted higher up. Some people also choose to install an LCD flat-screen TV over the fireplace. The mantle can prevent the feature from looking like it’s floating on the wall. Hanging the mantle too high can cause the artwork or TV to be too close to the ceiling and will require your guests to tilt their heads up too much.

The feature is also a great item to use for hanging decorative items when you want to enhance the design of your setting. Some people even use it for displaying their most sentimental or prized possessions, which can include an award or even an urn. You can use the shelf for displaying some of your favorite family photos or for placing candles. The mantle also works well for hanging a large mirror or a vase with flowers to complement the design of the fireplace. You can even change up the decor at different types of the year to ensure the items reflect the current season or holiday.

Not only is the display of the firebox a cozy addition, but the mantle will also add a warm touch to your setting when you want your house to feel like a home. There are many styles and designs to select, which can allow you to have the freedom to choose a mantle with decorative elements or a natural finish. You can customize the color to ensure it blends in well with your surroundings.

Homeowners will also be happy to learn the feature can even increase the market value of the house because they often reflect architectures of different times. The interior item is a fixture that offers more visual appeal and doesn’t become outdated in the coming years. They can also protect wall hangings, TVs, and paintings that hang above the fireplace to prevent heat from damaging the items as the fireplace is in use throughout the year.

fireplace mantel

Finding the Best Fireplace

Not only is it important to invest in a quality mantle, but it’s also necessary to find the best fireplace to ensure you can use it long-term. The quality of the fireplace that is electric you buy will determine how easy it is to use and how long it lasts.

If you want to find the best fireplace that is electric, it’s important to start by comparing the different brands that lead in the industry. Some of the top brands include MagikFlame, Duraflame, and Dimplex. Reading reviews that are posted online can allow you to get an idea of how satisfied customers are with each product and if they’ve become loyal customers to a specific brand.

Magikflame reviews are posted on the company’s website, as well as on sites like Amazon. Reading the different reviews can allow you to discover the features that come with each model and how impressed customers are with the technology provided. Reading reviews can allow you to narrow down your top choices to ensure you make an informed decision with the type of product you purchase. The company’s website is also a great place to view the Magikflame electric fireplace buying guide to discover different models that are available to consumers.

Another factor to keep in mind when buying a fireplace is the technology. The type of technology used when you opt for a model determines how realistic the flames look as the product is in use. Although there are many types of fireplaces available in the industry, not all look as advanced as you’d expect.

Some fireplace models use mist that has an orange tint to create the illusion of real flames. Other fireplaces use LED lights to enhance the look of the flames, while others have a screen that is an image of a real fire behind the faux wood logs.

MagikFlame models are considered by many people to be the most advanced in the industry because of the unique technology used. The Magikflame story is unique because it centers around the founder, Howard Birnbaum, who is also the inventor of the product. Birnbaum has a background in f/x special effects in the film industry and used his skills and expertise to create the first fireplace with patented holographic technology. This has created a stunning flame effect with burning embers and smoke with 30 realistic flames.

You can also consider the different types of features that come with various fireplaces available, which can include a remote control, a thermostat, and different colors of flames that you can customize. The MagikFlame fireplaces even come with an app that allows you to control the feature directly from your smartphone. The brand’s products even include crackling log sounds and a 5,200 BTU heater. The flame gallery available with the brand also offers more customization to ensure you can select small or large flames. There are also a variety of color flames to consider, which can match your home’s color scheme or the season.

One of the main reasons most people use a fireplace is to get extra warmth in their home, which makes it necessary to find a fireplace that emits enough heat. Consider the size of your room to ensure you choose the right feature to heat it to ensure there’s an even distribution of warm air without any cold spots present. You can calculate the BTUs you need by multiplying the square foot of your room by 20 BTUs. Too many BTUs can cause you to use more energy than necessary, and a lack of BTUs can cause the feature to work too hard to heat the setting and can compromise your level of comfort.

Looking into the manufacturing process of each brand is also crucial because it’ll reveal the quality of the product you’re considering purchasing. Many people are surprised to learn how Magikflame is built and that 28” inserts are manufactured in Nashville, Tennessee. Not only does this offer more value and reliability of the products, but it also makes it easier to perform repairs in the future because the parts are easier to find rather than if the fireplace was built in another country.

How to Decorate Your Mantle

After you discover the proper height of the mantel shelf, it’s important to decide how you want to decorate it. The mantle can look too bare and plain if you don’t add any decorative features to enhance its design and show it off in your living room. There are many different features that can look attractive and create a contemporary design.

Some items are considered to be staples on the shelf and can continue to look attractive long-term. Opt for items like vases, picture frames, and framed artwork. Each item can reflect your personal style and taste while curating a collection of items that is unique and custom in your home.

The mantle is also a great place to add garland during the winter season, which will create a cozy and inviting look. The height of the mantle will prevent the materials from getting warm as they sit above the fireplace.

You can also browse a photo idea gallery if you want to get more ideas and gain inspiration when decorating the feature.

Keep in mind the weight of the items you plan to place on top of the mantel to prevent it from buckling or falling off the wall. Opt for lighter items that won’t cause the feature to bow over time. It’s also important to limit the number of items placed on the shelf to minimize the weight. If you want to display a heavy mirror or framed work of art, consider adding more support on the bottom of the mantel to increase its strength. Fireplace corbels are a common feature to install that not only contributes to the design of the mantel but also acts as a type of bracket to carry more of the weight of the shelf. Corbels are available in stone, metal, or wood. They’re built into the wall to reduce the pressure on the materials of the mantel.

How to Install a Fireplace Insert

One of the most common home improvement projects to perform in homes is installing an insert for a fireplace to enhance the comfort and warmth of the setting. If you plan to install a mantle, you may also need instructions for installing an insert into the wall. Some people may feel intimidated by the project, but it is easier to perform than installing other types of fireplaces.

Fortunately, fireplaces that are electric don’t require venting or a chimney because they don’t produce any combustible material that needs to be released. Compared to a gas fireplace, they also don’t require a gas line, which means they’re easier and more convenient to install without hiring a professional.

If you rent your home and don’t want the fireplace to be built-in, you can use a freestanding fireplace, which is portable and easy to move to any room of the home. A freestanding fireplace is an excellent option if you don’t want to hassle performing modifications to your interior setting, especially if you plan to move in the near future.

Why You Should Choose a Fireplace that is Electric

Although many people have used a wood burning fireplace in the past, fireplaces that run off of electricity are increasing in popularity because they use less energy and can offer more savings throughout the year. They don’t require purchasing wood every time you want to enjoy a fire or buying fireplace tools to clean ashes out of the firebox.

The fireplaces also don’t contribute to pollution or affect the air quality in the building, making them ideal for allergy sufferers or those with asthma. Fireplaces with electric features are also easy to operate and can turn on or off with a switch of a button.

The technology has become more advanced in recent years, making the feature look like a wood-burning fireplace with stunning visual effects. It also contributes to the ambiance in the room for those who want a cozy and inviting setting.

The zone heating also prevents the entire home from becoming too hot when the fireplace is in use and contains the heat. This allows other residents in the building to remain comfortable, especially those who spend time on the second floor.

Knowing how high a mantle should be above a fireplace can allow you to have confidence with where you mount it to ensure it complements the fireplace. The mantle can enhance the function of the fireplace and add more appeal to the interior of your home with how it’s displayed.                              

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