If it is important to you to have a great fireplace that is the focal point of your living room, it is important to consider what type you are going to get. Electric fireplaces are easily safer and more heat efficient than other alternatives, but even within the electric fireplace industry, there are a ton of different types and styles. Before you start doing a home remodel or working with an architect and home builder on your new home, you need to decide exactly what kind of fireplace you want to put in your home. Do you have a home decor style that would benefit from a stone electric fireplace? Do you want a fireplace that is solid white that lends itself to a more modern interior design aesthetic? Do you want something that is built to sit flush into a recessed wall or do you want a prominent electric fireplace mantel?
In the post that follows, we are going to perfectly explain all of the benefits of electric fireplaces in place of more traditional fireplace alternatives, and we are going to help you choose the fireplace and fireplace aesthetic that is right for you.
Here Is Everything That You Can Expect To Learn In The Following Post:
- Why Is Using a Traditional Wood Fireplace In My Home a Bad Idea? – Because so many people still think using their existing wood fireplace is a good idea, this section will focus on the common types of wood fireplaces and why they are a terrible choice to use in your home over one that is safer, cleaner, and more energy-efficient.
- Aren’t Gas Fireplaces an Acceptable Alternative To Wood Fireplaces? – While it is easy to get caught up with the safety of a cleaner-burning gas fireplace, many people who choose to get one of these quickly realize they have a long list of issues themselves. In this section, we cover common gas fireplace types and the reasons you won’t want to get one over an electric fireplace.
- What Types of Electric Fireplaces Are There and Why Are They Better Than Wood or Gas Fireplaces? – In this section, we talk about all the above electric fireplaces. We list the many types of electric fireplaces there are, which you might want for your home, and which you might want to avoid. We will also talk about all of the specific benefits that electric fireplaces have over wood and gas fireplaces.
- Can You Get a Stone Electric Fireplace and What Are The Options? – If you are reading this article because you are interested in a stone electric fireplace, then this section is for you. Here we talk about the different types of stone fireplaces that you can get for your home.
- Other Than a Stone Electric Fireplace, What Other Materials, Colors, and Style Features Are There? – If you aren’t quite sure exactly what kind of aesthetic style you want with your fireplaces when it comes to materials and colors, this section will break down several more types that you might be interested in.
- Can I Build My Own Stone Fireplace Housing For an Electric Fireplace? – For people that want a real stone fireplace but one that runs on electricity and are having trouble finding one that matches the aesthetics that they prefer, then this section is for you.
- What Are Some Good Electric Fireplace Brands That You Can Commonly Find In Homes? – It’s best to get a proper brand name fireplace rather than a basic one you found on Amazon or at Walmart. However, which one do you get? This section will cover brands like Dimplex, SEI, and more.
- Is There an Electric Fireplace That Has Flame Effects That Are The Most Realistic? – Whether you want a modern white solid wood mantel fireplace or you want to set up a faux stone mantel, you might also be interested in a fireplace with the most realistic flame that you can possibly find. In this section, we will talk all about MagikFlame fireplaces and why they are easily one of the best choices for homeowners.
Why Is Using a Traditional Wood Fireplace In My Home a Bad Idea?
Whether you are thinking about building a new wood fireplace or you are still debating using the existing wood fireplace in your house, you might want to think again. There are several problems that come along with wood fireplaces, from how dangerous they are to how inefficient and a hassle they are. First, here are the common wood fireplaces:
- Open Hearth Wood Fireplace – This is a fireplace that is the first thing that most people think of when they first hear the phrase fireplace. It is an opening connected to a chimney.
- Enclosed Wood Fireplace – This is a unit that is enclosed behind a door rather than completely open and exposed. This protects the room from the exposed flame and helps the fireplace work slightly more efficiently.
- Wood Fireplace Insert – This is an insert that covers an open hearth into an enclosed fireplace.
- Wood Fireplace Stove – Typically found in wood cabins or rural country homes, a wood stove radiates heat when the wood is burned inside of it. You can also do some very basic cooking on top of the stove.
- Wood Fire Pit – A fire pit typically is for the backyard of a home. It is a raised area to burn wood and is usually more of a novelty for backyard parties.
If you were to put a wood fireplace in your home, here are all of the problems you are inviting along with it:
- Fire Safety – Both the exposed flames in an open hearth and the flammable soot that builds up inside of wood fireplaces means that they are extreme hazard when it comes to a house fire disaster.
- Harmful Emissions – No matter how good the chimney is at removing smoke, smoke and carbon monoxide will both still find their way into your home and cause serious health issues that can even be fatal.
- Hassle To Use – You have to clean out the fireplace, split wood, build your fire, stoke the flames, and watch it for safety. You also have to call professionals to clean the chimney several times per year.
- Heat Loss Problem – While the smoke escapes through the open chimney, quite a bit of much-needed heat also escapes. This lack of heat efficiency means you have to burn a lot of wood to keep your home warm.
- Smell – There is no escaping the lingering smoky smell of a wood fireplace. It gets into the furniture, curtains, carpet, clothes, and your hair. This smell will be present long after you get used to it and is extremely noticeable to guests that come over.
- Stains – The smoke will also yellow the walls of your home and soot can even build up on the wall just above the fireplace’s mantel.
- TV Damage – You can’t hang a TV above a wood fireplace. The heat that rises along with smoke particles will destroy the internals of the TV, forcing you to buy a new one.
- Wood Storage – You have to have a good amount of space around your home for wood storage due to all of the wood you will need to keep you warm during the winter.
- Expensive To Build – If you want to build a new wood fireplace, it is incredibly expensive and will take a lot of time and effort.
Aren’t Gas Fireplaces an Acceptable Alternative To Wood Fireplaces?
There is no denying that gas fireplaces are a slightly better solution than a wood fireplace. However, it is important to know that gas fireplaces still have some glaring problems that many customers don’t know about until it is too late. First, here are the common gas fireplace types:
- Direct Vented Gas Fireplace – These are gas fireplaces that need ventilation due to the type of gas that is used inside of it.
- Ventless Gas Fireplace – These are gas fireplaces that don’t need ventilation because it uses a different type of gas inside of it.
Here are the reasons that you should avoid gas fireplaces, regardless of their benefits over wood fireplaces:
- Flame Is Exposed – Although there isn’t a chimney with a ton of soot building up, there is still an exposed flame that prevents a serious house fire risk.
- Carbon Monoxide – Smoke inhalation isn’t a risk like wood fireplaces, both carbon monoxide poisoning due to an incomplete burn of the gas still is.
- Ugly Flame Color – Gas fireplaces are known for having ugly flame colors. Their blue flames look completely artificial, and even their naturally colored flames don’t look quite right.
- Weak Flame – The flames for a gas fireplace are known to be rather weak most of the time. This is due to them basically being a row of Bunsen burners with very few realistic flickering effects.
- Costly Installation – You will have to have a professional install it, run gas lines, and probably install a ventilation pipe as well. This is a large project that will cost a lot of money just to get started.
What Types of Electric Fireplaces Are There and Why Are They Better Than Wood or Gas Fireplaces?
By now, you should understand that wood and gas fireplaces bring many more problems than they do benefits to their home. Where wood and gas fireplaces will fail you, electric fireplaces excel.
Here are the common types of electric fireplaces, which you might prefer, and which you should stay away from:
- Electric Mantle Fireplaces – An electric fireplace mantel is one that looks the most traditional. These are placed on the floor and up against the flat part of a wall to look like a typical open hearth-style fireplace. The mantel is usually disconnected and you connect it during installation. This is so that manufacturers can include several different mantel options easily.
- Electric Corner Fireplace – These are electric fireplaces that are the same as the flat wall models, but they are designed to fit into corners of a room instead. Functionally, these are no different, it is only about shape and location.
- Electric TV Stand Fireplace – This is a fireplace built into an entertainment center or media console. A fireplace TV console can help save space, but you also run the risk of the media fireplace unit inside not being of the highest quality due to more limited space.
- Corner TV Stand Fireplace – These are entertainment center fireplaces built for corners that suffer from the same concerns as the standard media stand fireplaces.
- Electric Wall Mount Fireplace – A wall mount fireplace is just as it sounds. It can be hung on the wall using mounting brackets. A wall-mounted electric fireplace can also be built into a wall recession for a flush profile and more accessibility in front of it. If you are going to build these into a recession, they look great with bookcases built into either side of them.
- Fireplace With Electric– This is a unit that is inserted into a wood fireplace opening, allowing it to become an electric fireplace instead. This can also be used with third-party mantels or for people that want to build their own mantel.
- Freestanding Electric Fireplace – A freestanding fireplace is the typical space heater except it is made to look like a fireplace with some basic fire effects. The combination of the fire effects and heating device in a really small package means that it will suffer at both. Instead of getting one of these, you should get one of the standard electric fireplace types above and get a normal portable space heater when needed for special occasions.
- Stove Fireplace – These are electric fireplaces that are trying to imitate a wood stove commonly found in extremely rural homes.
If you were to get a high-quality electric fireplace like some of the better types listed above, here are all of the wonderful benefits that you can expect to enjoy because of them:
- No Added Fire Risk – You don’t have to worry about an exposed flame or flammable soot build-up with electric fireplaces because no real flames are present whatsoever.
- No Harmful Emissions – There is no smoke and no carbon monoxide to worry about with electric fireplaces, only warm air that comes out of them.
- No Staining or Smells – The absence of smoke means you don’t have to worry about the smoke stains or smoke smells that wood fireplaces are known for.
- Using it is Easy – with electric fireplaces, it is as easy as turning it on and enjoying it. Once the temperature is set, you don’t need to do anything else.
- Easy Installing – Installation is just picking a spot, setting it down, and plugging it into the wall. That is about it in most cases.
- Any Room in Your Home – You can install one in any room, not just the main room of your house.
- TV Safe – It is safe to hang a TV above an electric fireplace.
- Heat Efficiency – No ventilation means no heat loss, which in turn means incredibly efficiency from the infrared coils.
- Supplemental Zone Heating – Electric fireplaces make zone heating simple with multiple fireplaces for extremely large homes.
- Remote Control – Most come with a remote or smartphone app.
- Alexa Voice Control – With the right outlet, you can turn your fireplace on or off with an Alexa system.
- Flame Effect Ambiance – If you invest in a high-end holographic electric fireplace, you can expect flames that look just like the real thing.
Can You Get a Stone Electric Fireplace and What Are The Options?
There are several types of electric fireplaces with a stone aesthetic. You can get ones that are a faux stone electric fireplace, ones that use fieldstone, stacked stone, and more. Some companies like SEI provide electric fireplaces with a stone aesthetic to them. If you want more brand recommendations, check the section on brands near the end of this article.
Other Than a Stone Electric Fireplace, What Other Materials, Colors, and Style Features Are There?
While stone fireplaces can have a great look and add to the ambience of a room, there are plenty of other wonderful choices that tend to be more modern. Fireplaces with mantels made from solid wood will usually last longer than ones with cheaper engineered wood like particleboard. You can get something that is modern and bright like a solid electric white fireplace mantel, or you can get something that is darker with an espresso look. For something in the middle, you can get a fireplace mantel with a whiskey maple coloring.
Other than materials and coloring, there are other features you need to be aware of. The most important of these is probably the flame effects. You want to make sure that you have a fireplace with realistic fire effects rather than ones with poor fire effects. While LED flames might look decent, they tend to look very flat and 2D. Instead, you want to get a fireplace with more realistic flames like something that uses 3D holographic technology like MagikFlame fireplaces. These have 3D holographic flames that are projected onto a real log set in the firebox. Also in the electric firebox is a beautiful glowing ember bed to further add to the realism.
Beyond that, electric fireplaces mostly come down to the mantel preferences you have. You can get something modern and sleek with straight, minimal lines, or something more intricate and ornate with beautiful crown molding.
Can I Build My Own Stone Fireplace Housing For an Electric Fireplace?
Yes, if you want a fireplace mantel or housing that is made out of real stone, and you are an adventurous person that is into DIY home improvement, this is an excellent option. Before beginning, choose a good recessed insert from a trusted company that makes very realistic-looking fire effects. Once you have the sizing dimensions of the fireplace insert, you can begin building your own housing for it out of real stone. Be sure to leave access to a wall outlet for the fireplace to be plugged in, double-check the dimensions are right and make sure the blowers won’t be blocked by your design.
What Are Some Good Electric Fireplace Brands That You Can Commonly Find In Homes?
You should definitely avoid any kind of generic fireplaces. If you want a fireplace that will last you, you need to properly invest in a good brand. Some good brands of electric fireplaces are Dimplex, Touchstone, SEI, Duraflame, Southern Enterprises, Muskoka, and more.
Keep in mind, these different brands tend to specialize in specific types of electric fireplaces and have different aesthetic styles as well as different technologies used inside of them to produce fire effects.
Regardless of what brand you go with, you want to make sure it of course has realistic fire effects, but you also want it to have a high-quality, electric fireplace heater using infrared quartz. An infrared electric fireplace will be much more efficient, saving you a lot of money on your heating bill. You also want to make sure the infrared electric fireplace has some safety features like an automatic shut-off if the blowers are blocked to prevent overheating and damage to the fireplace unit.
Is There an Electric Fireplace That Has Flame Effects That Are The Most Realistic?
MagikFlame electric fireplaces are the fireplaces that most look like the real thing. If you want to get a MagikFlame electric fireplace for your home, here are the features that you can expect to benefit from the most:
- Realistic Holographic 3D Flames – The artificial flames produces by MagikFlame fireplaces look just like the real thing. This is due to the Holoflame technology. Inside the firebox of each MagikFlame fireplace, 3D holographic flames are projected onto the physical logs that are inside of it. There are 30 different flame styles that you can choose from, each will set a different mood that you prefer. The fall has different styles of flickering and has sparks of ember that shoot off from the flames.
- Immersive Crackling Log Sounds – To make the fireplace even more realistic, there are immersive sounds of a crackling log. This allows the flicker flames to not only be a visual treat but to add to the auditory atmosphere as well. On top of the crackling log sounds, you can also choose to play some relaxing sounds of nature.
- Efficient 5,200 BTU Heater – The powerful and efficient infrared heating device that is inside of every MagikFlame fireplace can easily warm an area of 1,000 square feet. 1,000 sq. ft. will usually cover most condos, apartments, and small or even medium-sized homes. If you have a home that is bigger than 1,000 sq. ft., you can get a second MagikFlame and set it up for supplemental heating, allowing you even more savings on your electric bill.
- Easy To Use Smartphone App – Instead of the regular remote you might find with an electric fireplace, MagikFlame fireplaces come with an app that can be installed on a touch screen device like a smartphone or a tablet. With this app, you can turn your fireplace on and offer from anywhere in your home, change the adjustable thermostat, change the fire effects, and much more.
MagikFlame electric fireplaces come in a wide variety of fireplace models with beautiful, solid wood mantels. If you would like a fireplace with a stone surround or you want to build one yourself, you can get a MagikFlame fireplace insert. This will give you all of the benefits of a MagikFlame fireplace and you can use it with a third-party stone mantel or build your own mantel to go around it.
- MagikFlame Story: Through the MagikFlame story, you will begin to see the origins of why their Holoflame technology is so great.
- MagikFlame Reviews: Customer reviews are one of the best ways to see if everything you have heard about a product is true.
- MagikFlame Best Electric Fireplace Buying Guide: The buying guide is perfect if you have more questions about electric fireplaces in general, how they work, and their benefits.
- How MagikFlame Is Made: There is a reason MagikFlame fireplaces are so reliable and you can discover that for yourself here.
- Payment Plan and Financing: Getting a MagikFlame fireplace has never been simpler.
- MagikFlame Full Warranty: These amazing fireplaces are backed by a full warranty.