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How Long Can You Leave an Electric Fireplace On?

can a electric fireplace heat a house

It can be exciting to get a new fireplace to enjoy, whether you add the feature to your bedroom or incorporate it into an existing fireplace in your home. The warmth of the built-in heater and the dancing flames in the firebox can offer a cozy experience that allows you to relax and unwind. As you operate the fireplace, it’s important to ask, “How long can you leave an electric fireplace on?” 

In this post, you will learn:

  • How Long Can You Leave an Electric Fireplace On?
  • Are Electric Fireplaces Cost-effective?
  • The Safe Design of Electric Fireplaces
  • Do Electric Fireplaces Get Hot?
  • How to Find the Most Realistic Fireplace
  • Consider the Types of Electric Fireplaces Available

How Long Can You Leave an Electric Fireplace On?

Owning an electric fireplace offers a high level of convenience because you don’t have to stoke the fire to keep it burning. You can turn it on and enjoy using it for several hours at a time without getting up out of your seat. Many people take advantage of the convenience of an electric fireplace and are prone to leaving it on for longer than expected. Some people even leave it on when they sleep at night. It can be easy to assume that since no real fire is used, it’s safe to leave on for longer than normal. You may also enjoy leaving it on because it doesn’t cost much to operate each hour with its energy-efficient design.

If you own an electric fireplace, it’s recommended to shut it off after a period of time as the heater is running to avoid safety issues. Although this type of fireplace offers a high level of safety, it still needs time to take a break to avoid placing too much stress on the parts, which can lead to premature wear.

Most electric fireplaces are built with a fan-forced system with a main heating element and blower. The parts can draw a lot of power and get warm the longer they’re in use. Although the glass doors or panel on the unit may not become hot to the touch, the internal components can increase in temperature. Most manufacturers recommend only leaving the fireplace running if the heating element is turned off. You can still leave the faux flames flickering for as long as you want without worrying about any safety issues.

If the electric fireplace you own has an automatic shutoff, it’s important to use the timer to ensure it powers off the fireplace. If you opt for only using the flames, it’s still important to shut the unit off whenever you leave the room to avoid accidents. Because it’s an electrical feature, you still need to follow a few safety tips.

When your new fireplace arrives, it’s important to read the manufacturer’s guidelines to ensure you provide the necessary care and follow safety guidelines to avoid potential issues with continued use in your home or office.

Are Electric Fireplaces Cost-effective?

One of the main reasons electric fireplaces continue to become more common in different types of homes is because of their minimal energy usage. They’re known to be more energy-efficient than gas fireplaces and can produce just as much heat to ensure you stay warm. On average, you can expect to pay three to eight cents per hour to operate the feature, depending on if you choose to turn on the heater or put it on its maximum setting. During the colder months of the year, you can enjoy leaving it on for several hours at a time without paying more than a dollar each day. You can even adjust the heat with a

On full power, they still only cost less than one dollar to use for several hours each day. You can enjoy plenty of warmth from the unit and adjust the temperature to customize how much heat is present in the room.

Electric fireplaces are more inexpensive to use because they don’t lose any heat as they operate. Traditional wood-burning fireplaces lose approximately 80 percent of their heat through the chimney while burning the wood. Gas fireplaces also lose 20 to 30 percent of their heat, according to volunteerenergy.com. Instead of paying for energy that you don’t use, you can rely on an electric fireplace that uses 100 percent of the energy it consumes without any heat loss.

The feature also heats the interior setting quicker, which means you can get warm quicker and use the heating element for a shorter amount of time.

The Safe Design of Electric Fireplaces

Not only are electric fireplaces cost-effective, but they’re considered to be family-friendly because of their safe design. Without the use of real flames, it means you don’t have to risk contaminating or polluting the indoor air quality in the home. This makes the fireplace ideal for allergy sufferers or those who have respiratory issues. You don’t have to worry about carbon monoxide poisoning if you forget to close the flue or chimney. Electric fireplaces don’t produce any smoke, which means your home is safe from carbon monoxide and combustible materials.

Homeowners can also have peace of mind without the fear of chimney fires. Compared to a fireplace stove or traditional fireplaces, creosote doesn’t release from the unit. You don’t have to schedule chimney sweeps each year because there’s no build-up from creosote every time you use the fireplace.

You can also allow your family members and pets to freely roam the room where the fireplace is installed without worrying about anyone getting burned. The glass doors remain cool to the touch because real flames aren’t used. Furniture items or plants can also be placed in proximity to the screen because there isn’t a risk of items catching on fire because of embers flying around.

There are also many safety features you’ll find in different types of electric fireplaces available for interior use. Setting the built-in timer every time you enjoy having a fire can allow it to shut off automatically.

If you want to be even more responsible with operating the feature, there are some necessary precautions that apply to all types of electric fireplaces. The unit should be unplugged from the electrical outlet when it’s not in use because power still surges through the electrical cord when it’s turned off. Avoid placing the cord under rugs or furniture items, which can become a fire hazard. It should also be hidden behind the fireplace to prevent kids or pets from chewing or playing with it. If the unit is dropped or the cord is damaged in the future, hire a technician to perform the necessary repairs before you turn it back on and attempt to use it.

If some modifications need to be made, like adding new circuits, leave the electrical work to a professional electrician.

If you plan to transport the feature, never lift it by the glass, which can rip off easily due to the weight of the fireplace. Opt for using a dolly car or recruit another person to assist you to avoid dropping it and injuring yourself.

The area where the air intake is present needs to be clear without getting blocked by any objects in the room, which will reduce the risk of a fire. It’s also important to keep flammable liquids, paints, and gas away from the unit.

Do Electric Fireplaces Get Hot?

Some people may be nervous about using an electric fireplace when they have kids and pets in the house, but they’re capable of releasing warm air without the materials becoming too hot. Even with more BTUs, the fireplace insert still stays cool to ensure you can sit close to it without worrying about your safety.

Most types of fireplaces have 4,000 to 5,000 BTU, which delivers enough warmth to supplement your central heating system. The heat it produces in the room can allow you to enjoy zone heating without heating unused rooms in the house for more energy conservation. It will also produce more warmth than a space heater. You can turn the thermostat down in the home as the fireplace is operating. The warm air stays in the room without escaping easily to maintain the temperature better than gas or wood-burning stoves.

The BTUs vary with each model, making it necessary to calculate the square feet in the room by 20 to estimate how much heat is needed to evenly distribute the warm air in the room and prevent cold spots. The amount of insulation in the building also influences if you need fewer or additional BTUs. If you live in an older home, opt for a fireplace that has more BTUs. Newer homes typically have more insulation and can allow you to benefit from an electric fireplace heater that doesn’t generate as much heat.

If you purchase a 120-volt fireplace, you can expect the same amount of heat that you’d get with a hairdryer. If you have more square feet and plan to use the fireplace in a large room, consider a fireplace with 220 volts.

With an electric fireplace, you can have the freedom to adjust the amount of heat to ensure the room reaches the perfect temperature.

electric fireplace

How to Find the Most Realistic Fireplace

When investing in a new fireplace, most consumers want to find the best model available in the industry. With electric fireplaces, the goal is to own a feature that looks like you’re enjoying a wood fire in your living space. Whether you’re remodeling your space or are building a new home, the type of technology used will determine how upscale and high-quality the feature looks.

Begin your search by looking into some of the top fireplace brands that are available, like Dimplex, Duraflame, and MagikFlame. Check out the reviews other Dimplex or MagikFlame customers have posted in the last one to two years to get insight into the quality of the products each company sells.

As one of the newest companies in the industry, MagikFlame has achieved success because of how realistic their fireplaces look because of the advanced technology used. The fireplaces are built with patented holographic technology and feature a screen that is placed behind the faux wood logs. The flames have many details, including burning embers and smoke, to create the illusion of a real fireplace.

Many people find the Magikflame to be unique because it involves an entrepreneur who was looking for an electric fireplace to purchase for his home. Without any success, he decided to create his own electric fireplace and begin selling the models to customers.

Today, the MagikFlame fireplaces are extremely advanced and accommodating with an app that allows you to adjust the settings on your tablet or smartphone device. Each fireplace also has a 5,000 BTU fireplace heater and 30 realistic-looking flames. The log crackling sounds are the ultimate cherry on top when you want the complete experience of enjoying a fire.

You should also consider where each brand manufacturers its fireplaces, which can attest to the overall quality of each product. MagikFlame takes pride in building their fireplaces in Nashville, while other companies source from Canada or even China. Although this may come with a lower price tag at times, it also means the fireplaces can have a shorter lifespan. Performing repairs can also be challenging because parts that come from other countries can be difficult to obtain.

You can also look on Amazon to find some of the most popular fireplaces available. Look at photos that are posted by other customers to get an idea of how realistic the flames look. Check to see if the company has quality customer service and offers a manufacturer’s guarantee with each fireplace they sell. The warranty can protect your investment and shows the company is reputable and stands behind the quality of its products.

Make a list of your needs before you settle on a model that is the most accommodating. You may need something that has a sleek and attractive design, or you may be in search of an item that is compact and fits in small spaces. Understanding what you’re looking for can allow you to narrow down your search results and find the perfect option.

Consider the Types of Electric Fireplaces Available

Not only do you need to ask, “how long can you leave an electric fireplace on?” but you should also consider the type of electric fireplaces that can offer the most benefits to your personal space. There are many fireplaces to choose from, which includes a freestanding fireplace. This type of fireplace looks like it is built into your wall and features a surround and mantle. You can enjoy something that is more noticeable and eye-catching when you want to make a statement to ensure it’s the main focal point in the room. A wall mounted electric fireplace can offer the same effect with its design.

A fireplace insert is another option if you prefer the feature to sit flush with the wall. An insert easily fits within a wall cavity and sits securely with brackets that are used. You can achieve a modern and upscale design by selecting this type of fireplace to own. It’s a great option for those who own their property and can make modifications.

Other types of fireplaces come built into furniture pieces, including TV consoles and dressers. You can own a versatile and functional product for your setting, especially if you don’t want to clutter the space with too much furniture.

Learning about the different options available with electric fireplaces can make it easier to weigh the pros and cons of each option. Consider your setting to get an idea of what option would work the best when you want to create a cozy ambiance in the setting. You don’t have to compromise the look of a wood fireplace and can show off the feature when you invite your friends and family members over.

There are also different types of technology used with each model in the industry. The flame effects may be created with mist or water vapor that has an orange tint. Screens are also used to display a real fire that was recorded to ensure it looks as real as possible. Many fireplaces even take advantage of LED lights for more visual appeal.

How to Install an Electric Fireplace

Before you buy a fireplace that runs off of electricity, it’s important to know how to install it. The installation process is easy compared to wood burning stoves or fireplaces because of the simple plug-in design of this type of fireplace. You won’t need an electrician to help you hook any hardwiring features up. If you want to follow added safety measures, avoid plugging it into a power strip or extension cord to avoid the heat source from overheating or electrical issues from occurring.

Compared to a wood or gas fireplace, you also don’t have to worry about installing gas lines or venting because there isn’t a fuel source with the feature. The lack of smoke negates the need for a chimney, which means you don’t have to obtain permits or hire a contractor to perform work on the house.

You can opt for placing the electric fireplace in an existing structure in your home, which may require an electrician. You can enjoy the energy-efficient design of the product without getting rid of the beautiful masonry or design of your surround and fireplace.

The feature can even be inserted into an existing fireplace with masonry to convert it into a more economical and eco-friendly fireplace. The process is simple when you want to avoid the hassle of tearing out the old fireplace.

It’s important to learn “how long can you leave an electric fireplace on” when you’re the owner of an electric fireplace. Following the right safety tips can offer peace of mind when using the fireplace.

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