When you own or rent your home, you likely want the best features within your reach to enhance the quality of the setting. When it comes to heating the interior setting, an electric fireplace is a luxurious addition to use to stay warm. There are many ways you can find the best freestanding electric fireplace in the industry for your home.
In this post, you will learn:
- What’s The Best Electric Fireplace For Your Home?
- Where Should I Place My Electric Fireplace?
- How Will an Electric Fireplace Affect the Cost of Heating My Home?
- How Long Do Electric Fireplaces Last?
- Features to Enjoy on Your New Electric Fireplace
- Why Electric Fireplaces are Increasing in Popularity
- Smaller Types of Electric Fireplaces Available
- Adding a Surround and Mantel to Your New Fireplace
What’s The Best Electric Fireplace For Your Home?
Finding the best freestanding electric fireplace for your interior setting can feel like a daunting task. There are many factors to consider which influences how often you use the product. It’s important to begin by thinking about the design type. The design of your electric fireplace will influence the style of the room. You don’t want to own a fireplace that clashes with your furniture items or interior design theme. If you choose a freestanding fireplace, the style of the crown molding should complement the crown molding in your home. Freestanding fireplaces are great options if you have a classic or contemporary home. The added elegance of the surround will create an attractive look and will contribute to its drama.
If you’re installing an electric fireplace in your home office or a professional setting, choose an electric fireplace insert. Recessed fireplace inserts with stainless steel materials look sleek and modern, especially in offices or waiting rooms. They can create an upscale look on a recessed wall and look more expensive than real fireplaces.
Black fireplaces are also a popular choice that adds a cozy touch to the living space. They can stand out on white walls and will add a rich design. The black details will add a masculine touch and can pair well with raw woods and brass decor items. Those who want something regal and upscale can select a quartz fireplace. Quartz fireplaces are a trendy option due to their gorgeous surrounds. You can even pair a light wood fireplace mantel with the product to enhance its style.
If you’re working with an architect or interior designer to build a new home, then the fireplace you choose will set the design style. You may choose to invest in an infrared electric fireplace stove or a freestanding fireplace. Each option will become the main focal point in the room and can influence the style of your other furnishings. The size of the feature can also dictate the layout of the space.
The cost is another factor many people fail to consider as they shop around for a new fireplace. The cost can vary, depending on the model, features, and quality of the materials. Research the payment plans and financing available through each brand to find the best option for your needs. It’s important to avoid bargain hunting with this type of purchase while shopping on sites like Amazon. Buying a poor-quality fireplace can lead to issues down the road. It can also cause the flames to look fake and have a lack of realistic details in the fireplace. Don’t allow the cost to be the main factor that determines if you select a quality product. Investing more in a reliable fireplace can allow it to last longer and offer more reliability when it’s in use.
You can also look into any warranty or guarantee that is available when selecting your new fireplace. When you’re investing potentially thousands of dollars in the product, you’ll want it to be protected. Most electric fireplaces come with a one-year warranty. This allows the product to be repaired or replaced by the manufacturer if any issues occur. You can also choose to buy an extended warranty if you want even more coverage on the item.
There are many differences in technology to take into account when shopping around for your new fireplace. Not all electric fireplaces are designed the same with how they operate. Because they don’t use gas or real wood as a fuel source, they rely on a specific type of technology to create faux.
Some brands like Dimplex and AFireWater use water vapor and steam to make it look like they have real flames. Unfortunately, the flame effects don’t look realistic or natural as other options in the industry. The water is tinted orange, and the flames shut off when the water runs out each time. This means that you have to continue to refill the water reservoir just to keep the flames going. Although you can control the flame size and intensity, the flames still don’t look like there’s actual fire present.
Mechanical mirrors are another type of technology used by brands like Touchstone and Ameriwood to reflect different lights. The use of the lights creates the illusion that a real flame is present. Unfortunately, this type of technology lacks details that contribute to the realistic look of flames. There aren’t any burning embers or smoke effects.
The most advanced type of technology in the electric fireplace industry is holographic technology. It was invented by Howard Birnbaum because of his experience working with special effects on blockbuster films. He could not find a realistic electric fireplace to install in his home, which led him to create his own electric fireplace. This is an important part of the MagikFlame story and how the company was founded. He used his expertise and skills to create a screen that sits behind the wood logs.
The screen displays real footage of a fire burning, which features realistic details. He went on to patent the technology and start his own fireplace company, MagikFlame.
Today, MagikFlame continues to be the only brand that offers this advanced technology. Most people assume that there’s a real wood-burning fireplace in the home because of how real the flames appear, even when you’re only standing a few feet away.
The brand is another factor to consider when you’re looking for the best electric fireplace for your home. Like all types of products, the brand will determine the quality of the fireplace. There are various top brands in the industry, including DuraFlame, MagikFlame, and Touchstone. Each brand has a different manufacturing process. Research where they construct their surrounds and mantels to ensure you can obtain an American-made fireplace. Brands like MagikFlame take pride in constructing our 28” Inserts in Nashville, Tennessee. We have an experienced and skilled team that assembles each product to make it higher quality or long-lasting. Many types of fireplace companies source everything from overseas, which affects the reliability of each fireplace. It can also make it more challenging if repairs are needed because the parts are hard to find in the U.S. if the product came from China or Vietnam.
When you’re searching for the best freestanding electric fireplace, you also need to consider how much it delivers. Each brand is different in how much heat is generated. The Magikflame electric fireplace definitive guide features many models ideal for large rooms. The products come with a 5,200 BTU heater for more heat than you’ll get with a gas fireplace. The Duraflame 3d infrared electric fireplace also delivers the same amount of heat for consistent warmth. If you want to determine how many BTU you’ll need, multiply by the square feet in the room by 20.
Reading online reviews is another way to determine the best freestanding electric fireplace. You can find Puraflame and MagikFlame reviews on sites like Amazon, or even on each manufacturer’s website. The website is also a great place to learn how MagikFlame is built when you want a solid freestanding fireplace with quality materials.
Where Should I Place My Electric Fireplace?
Where you install your electric fireplace in your home or office determines how much you’ll use it. Think about where you spend the most time or which room in the home gest the coldest. If your family tends to spend a lot of time in the living room, this may be the best spot for it. If you work long hours in your office, you can feel more at home with an electric fireplace installed.
You may also want to purchase it for its style and design. Maybe you want something that is the main focal point in the room. You may have a bare wall that is boring and bland, which is easy to dress up with a fireplace.
You’ll also need to consider how much space is available. There are many sizes of electric fireplace models, whether you live in a condo or a six-bedroom home. Think about the height of your ceilings, the wall space, and the floor space. The smaller size of electric fireplaces means you can place them almost anywhere in the building. Traditional masonry fireplaces can only be installed in larger settings because of their commanding size. They rarely fit in entryways or even bathrooms. Electric fireplaces have a slimmer profile and can be moved to a dining room that you want to dress up or a guest bedroom. The options are endless to ensure you have the freedom and flexibility to place it in a spot that is most beneficial and accommodating. The MagikFlame Churchill corner unit takes up less space than most models. It also serves as a great place to hang Christmas stockings or garland when you want to decorate the room. This is an ideal model to invest in when you live in a small condo or apartment. The beautiful and sleek mantel and surround still allow it to look like a traditional fireplace.
How Will an Electric Fireplace Affect the Cost of Heating My Home?
Not only should you consider the cost of the wall-mounted electric fireplace you want to purchase, but research the cost to operate it. Fortunately, a freestanding electric fireplace or electric fireplace stove can be cheaper than a gas or wood fireplace. With a wood fireplace, you have to invest in buying wood or even using your own trees on your property to chop down. You also have to buy a fireplace screen, and budget for chimney sweeps each year. Fireplace tools also need to be acquired to ensure you can clean out the firebox after each use. Because this type of fireplace requires ventilation, you may have to keep a window cracked. This can prevent the room from feeling warm and can require still relying on your HVAC system to maintain a warm setting.
Electric fireplaces deliver supplemental heat, whether you select a western electric fireplace insert or a freestanding electric fireplace. They deliver enough heat to increase the temperature in the room in minutes. This can allow you to adjust your home’s thermostat and use your HVAC less. Over time, you may notice your energy bill drops. The cost of operating an electric fireplace is also cheaper than other options in the industry. The low amount of electricity they use will only cost you one to eight cents per hour. This depends on if you have the infrared heater turned on as the flame effects are on display. Even on the max heat setting, a freestanding fireplace can only cost eight cents an hour. You won’t notice a spike in your energy bill or have to increase your budget for your energy usage.
Try our MagikFlame utility bill cost calculator tool to assist with cost estimates.
You can even use the built-in adjustable thermostat to determine how much heat you want to release into the room. You can turn the temperature up or down with remote control for added convenience. Whether you’re using the electric fireplace on a windy day or when it’s snowing outside, you can control the heat. This allows you to feel more accommodated and have more control over the internal climate. Gas fireplaces and wood-burning fireplaces only have one level of heat they deliver, which can cause the room to get too warm.
Similar to a space heater, electric fireplaces only heat the room they’re installed in instead of the entire house. This means other residents won’t get too warm as the product operates. The infrared quartz heater built into the product heats items in its pathway and doesn’t dry out the air.
If you have a real fireplace, it can cause the home to get too warm and uncomfortable. It can also cause other floors to become hot as the heat rises. An electric fireplace heater is more advanced because of the heat settings you can adjust at any time. You can even install multiple electric fireplaces in different rooms for increased comfort. Your family members can decide how much they want to heat their room, depending on their preferences.
How Long Do Electric Fireplaces Last?
The lifespan of electric fireplaces is an average of 15 to 20 years. It depends on the type of model you purchase, as well as the brand. The level of care and attention you give the product is another factor that affects its operation. Like other types of products you own, even the best electric fireplace heaters require maintenance and attention. They are relatively low maintenance compared to gas and wood fireplaces. They can save you a significant amount of time and energy when using them but still require maintenance from time to time. Regular maintenance and care will reduce the risk of repairs that are needed in the coming years.
Although you don’t have to clean the firebox or remove any ashes, proper cleanings are still necessary. These can be performed every few months, depending on how dusty the product becomes each season. The frequency with how often you use it also determines when it needs to be wiped down.
You can begin the cleaning process by shutting off the unit. Unplug it from the wall or turn off the circuit breaker to avoid putting your safety at risk. Allow all the parts to cool down for up to 15 minutes. You can now take the access panel off the front or back of the fireplace. You can remove any dust that is present by using a damp, clean rag. Gently wipe the wood logs down and walls of the inside of the fireplace without applying too much pressure. Never use harsh cleaning products, or this can take off the finish inside the fireplace. A vacuum cleaner with an attachment head is also a great device to use to remove dust in hard-to-reach places. This will work well when your hands can’t clean some of the small crevices and compartments present.
You’ll also need to wipe down the glass doors, which can become grimy and develop a few streaks. Use a gentle glass cleaner that improves the transparency of the materials and allows you to enjoy a better view of the flames. The cleaning product should fully dry before you reinstall the access panel on the unit.
You can also browse through the owner’s manual to obtain more guidance on how to properly clean the fireplace. This will allow it to look its best and can also prevent common issues from forming. Every model differs in the level of care and attention it requires each year.
Stock up on a few extra light bulbs you can purchase on Amazon to replace any bulbs that burn out as the fireplace operates. The bulbs can last up to 11 years if you install LED lights. Incandescent bulbs tend to have a lifespan of 2,000 hours or two years. It really depends on how much the flame effects are in use. If you fail to replace the bulbs once they burn out, it can prevent the 3D flame effect from looking realistic and lifelike.
When it’s time to replace a light bulb, unplug the cord from the outlet and turn off the circuit breaker for added safety. Always wear gloves to protect your hands from burns and prevent your oils from transferring to the bulbs. This can affect the brightness of each bulb and can also prevent it from lasting longer.
Start by gently unscrewing the dead bulb in a counter-clockwise direction without putting too much pressure on the parts. Using too much strength can cause it to break. Use an old rag or piece of paper to wrap the bulb to protect it from breaking once you discard it. Gently take the new bulb and screw it in clockwise. Use a screwdriver to secure the access panel back onto the fireplace. Plug the fireplace back in and take a look at the flames to ensure the bulbs are illuminated. If the bulbs are still dim, contact an electrician to perform an inspection and diagnose the problem. The professional will also be qualified to check for any wear or damage that has developed to improve the operation of the unit.
Owning a wall-mounted electric fireplace also means you need to schedule an inspection every 12 months. This will allow you to uncover problems that can become more severe over time if they’re not immediately addressed. Inspections may cost money but can allow you to avoid expensive repairs that are often easy to avoid. It will boost the operation and reliability of the fireplace. It will be less likely to randomly shut off or overheat if the mechanisms and parts are examined.
The inspection also includes having the parts lubricated by the technician. They’ll apply the right product to prevent the components from rubbing together as the fireplace is in use. Proper lubrication prevents premature wear from developing and will prevent the parts from breaking down.
Features to Enjoy on Your New Electric Fireplace
The reason electric fireplaces have a high level of appeal among consumers is because of their versatility. The different features they include allow them to offer more accommodation and comfort. With each year that passes, they become more advanced and innovative. The technology available allows them to be specific to your individual needs and preferences.
Electric fireplaces were first built in 1912 and were commonly found in playhouses in the U.S. for added warmth. In the 1950s, they made a comeback and were sold to the public as homeowners were looking for better ways to stay warm in their homes in the winter season. Again, in the 1980s, electric fireplaces reemerged and featured even more realistic flame effects. This caused more people to consider electric fireplaces instead of spending twice as much on masonry fireplaces. Today, more homeowners are looking for ways to create a green and energy-efficient setting. Electric fireplaces have surged in popularity and continue to become popular. They even appeal to tenants who rent their homes because they are easy to move around and don’t have to be built into the room.
The advanced technology for the realistic flame effect is why they appeal to so many types of people. The realistic ember bed and flickering flames create a beautiful glow in the room for a cozy and inviting ambiance. As smoke billows up from the logs, it’s hard to believe the real fire isn’t in the fireplace. Over time, they continue to look more realistic and elegant. The plug-in design also offers more flexibility with where you can put it on display.
The different color options of the flames also mean you can change up its appearance. Whether your favorite color is blue or pink, you can adjust the flame settings to make it custom. You don’t just have to stick to an orange or blue color shade that comes standard with a wood or gas fireplace. Green, red, blue, purple, and red colors are available to create a more modern look. You can select a specific color based on the season, holiday, or the color scheme of the room.
Many brands like MagikFlame even come with apps that you can download on your phone or tablet. The technology makes it easy to control the fireplace and infrared heater from anywhere in the home, even remotely. You don’t have to have access to the control panel or get up out of your seat to adjust the flame effect or flame colors. You can even look for a model that comes with remote control if you prefer not to download an app that is available. Many models even feature a sleek touch screen that is backlit to ensure you can effortlessly control the adjustable flame and brightness settings.
The adjustable built-in thermostat is another feature that is unique and allows you to heat small or large rooms. Compared to traditional fireplaces, you can customize the heat delivered with a wall mount or freestanding electric fireplace. Burning real wood only allows you to have one temperature that can’t be controlled. With electricity, you can control how much heat the blower produces and have more than two heat settings. Whether you use the minimum or maximum heat setting, it won’t change the flame effect.
Many types of ember beds are available to choose from, depending on the style you’re looking for in the industry. Ember beds often consist of different types of rocks and stones for a regal, luxurious style. You can even select an ember bed of a specific color shade, which will look more upscale than a wood log insert. Sites like Amazon have a variety of fireplaces with different styles of ember beds to ensure you can have more of a selection. Whether you choose a rustic or glam ember bed, it should pair well with the home decor on display.
When you choose to buy an electric fireplace, you also have the option of a hardwire or plug-in design. This depends on the look you want to create and if you rent or own your home. The hardwiring installation process is fairly easy and isn’t a hassle when you hire an electrician. You may even be able to do it yourself by following the right instructions. A plug-in electric fireplace is also ideal if you don’t want to modify the home or make any changes. Either way, you don’t need to apply for permits to install this type of fireplace.
You even have the option of installing an electric fireplace into an existing fireplace in the building. It’s a great option for those who want to update their current fireplace and have a more economical and energy-efficient product. This is an easy home improvement project that doesn’t require hiring anyone to help. Start by cleaning out the fireplace of any ashes that have been left behind. Close the flue or vent since it’s no longer needed. This will prevent any critters, leaves, or rain from entering the building. Use a trim kit to get the perfect fit for your electric fireplace insert when securing it into the fireplace.
Consider where you plan to plug the cord into the wall if you don’t plan to hardwire any of the components or wires. The outlet may be located on the outside of the fireplace on the surround. You can also hire an electrician to install it inside the fireplace to ensure the cord is hidden each time you want to use it. It depends on what option is the most convenient and the look you want to create.
Many safety features come standard in electric fireplaces, although they’re already safe to operate. They aren’t at risk of overheating and come with a timer to allow you to prevent them from operating all night. The automatic shutoff feature offers peace of mind if you happen to fall asleep or forget to unplug it when you leave the room.
Why Electric Fireplaces are Increasing in Popularity
There are many reasons why electric fireplaces continue to increase in popularity. They’re easy to use and don’t require loading wood into the home or trying to start a fire. You don’t have to clean it out frequently just to keep it looking attractive. You can use the included remote control to operate the electric fireplace heater without moving or getting up.
The portability of electric fireplaces is another reason why they appeal to so many people. You can enjoy a fireplace in your rental property without changing the design of the building. You’ll also be able to take the fireplace with you once your lease ends and you relocate to a new home. The portable design gives you the freedom to move it to the dining room after it’s been installed in the living room for several years. You can even place it in a guest room when you upgrade to a newer model but still want to show off its design. The small size can allow one or two people to lift it without using heavy equipment for added convenience.
The versatility of electric fireplaces is an additional benefit of this type of product. There are more ways to use them than real wood or gas fireplaces. They’re available in a variety of styles. You can also select a fireplace TV stand that serves more than one purpose. The furniture item can feature various compartments and shelves for your books, DVDs, and board games. The electric fireplace will sit front and center in the console to ensure it’s eye-catching and easy to see. This will give you a clear view of the beautiful flames every time you want to watch television.
You can also reduce your carbon footprint with an electric fireplace. You don’t have to worry about making an impact on the earth when you want to stay warm. You can save the trees and only use a minimal amount of electricity when you want to sit by the fire. Electric fireplaces don’t release any smoke, which prevents them from contributing to pollution. The lack of emissions means you don’t have to contribute to smog during the colder seasons. Not only are safety features built into all types of electric fireplaces, but they’re safer to operate because of the lack of real fire present. They’re at a much lower risk of causing a fire compared to a wood or gas fireplace. You don’t have to watch for any burning embers that may fly out of the firebox and cause a fire in your living room. There are also no concerns for chimney fires because it never creates soot or creosote.
There’s a high risk of exposing yourself and your loved ones to carbon monoxide and carbon dioxide with wood and gas fireplaces. This can be deadly, especially if you fail to open the flue as you burn a fire. An electric fireplace allows you to safely enjoy a faux fire in the comfort of your home and still enjoy the cozy ambiance it creates. You also don’t have to install any smoke or carbon monoxide detectors throughout the building for added convenience and savings. The ease of installation is another reason to love electric fireplaces. You may be in the process of building a new home or performing a remodel. There’s no need to spend more to hire a contractor or electrician to hardwire the materials. You don’t have to invest in building a chimney or vents where the smoke can release to the outside of the building. You can find the best wall to install without considering possible modifications that need to be made and how it’ll affect the building. You can save more money and even set it up yourself without hiring professional services.
Smaller Types of Electric Fireplaces Available
You may want to own a freestanding or infrared electric fireplace because of its small size. Fortunately, there are many small electric fireplace models to choose from when you don’t have a lot of space. You can place them in a variety of rooms where there’s foot traffic or many different furniture pieces. There are a few top picks of small electric fireplaces to consider when you don’t have space for a traditional wood fireplace.
There are many models that are available as a smaller size to ensure they can be placed in a bedroom or even a bathroom. There are even a few models that can fit in tiny homes for those who don’t want to miss out on the benefits of a fireplace.
Most electric fireplaces are 28 to 36 inches wide with a height of 20 to 24 inches. You can even purchase a trim kit to make it fit into a wall or existing fireplace in the home. There are several models to consider if you’re in the market for a smaller product.
You can benefit from a Duraflame 3D Electric Fireplace Stove because it sits low to the ground. It’s designed to fit in a small corner of the room and measures 24″ W x 23.4″ H x 12.9″. You can even place it in a small closet when it’s not in use or while you’re remodeling a room.
If you want something that doesn’t take up any floor space, consider the MagikFlame Electric Fireplace Insert. This product measures 28″ x 32″ x 12″ and is ideal to use in walkways, entryways, or even a small dining room.
If you already have a fireplace in your home, you can benefit by purchasing the Dimplex 28 Premium Electric Fireplace Log Set. This is convenient to use because you can place the log set right into the existing fireplace. The product is easy to operate and set up in minutes.
If you have a room up to 1,000 square feet that you need to heat, the Jasmine Electric Fireplace Mantel Package is a great model. It delivers a significant amount of warmth and is 27.5″ W x 30.9” H x 11.9” D.
Corner fireplaces are also made to fit in small rooms with around 400 square feet where you’re limited on wall space. They often come with a mantel to ensure you still have a spot for your decor items. They don’t stick out too far and can be placed a few feet away from other types of furnishings.
Adding a Surround and Mantel to Your New Fireplace
When you want to enhance the look of an electric fireplace insert, consider adding a mantel 12 inches above it. This is one of the best ways to draw more attention to the feature and make it stand out. A fireplace mantel is one of the main features that makes fireplaces recognizable and have a more commanding presence in the room. It will also provide you with a place for displaying your family photos or your favorite paintings.
Some people even prefer to add a mantel because they need a place for their television. With heavy-duty studs used to secure the fireplace mantel, it will provide enough strength and support.
Consider the types of materials you want to use for your surround if you plan to build it yourself. Wood materials are classic, traditional, and never go out of style. They also work well for a variety of styles of rooms, whether you have an industrial design or Victorian decor on display.
Stone mantels are attractive and work well in cabins. They have a lot of details and a variety of colors for those who want something unique with added dimension. Some mantels even include tiles, which is a more trendy and modern option. It’s easy to keep clean and reflects the light when the tiles are glazed.
Some people even choose concrete mantels, which are considered to be modern. They have a high level of durability and don’t wear down or become damaged easily. There are different color shades of this type of material, and they look more upscale than they sound.
Adding a surround is also a great option when you want to add more character to the fireplace. This will work well if you’ve decided to make a sleek insert or wall mounted fireplace stand out more. A surround can even feature floorboards that make it look like it has a shiplap on it. Those who want a rustic or farmhouse design in the home can paint the floorboards in white or even a navy color shade to draw more attention to the feature.
When you’re planning to add a fireplace mantel and surround, the different materials used on each feature should complement one another. The wrong color shades used can cause the features to clash and become an eyesore. If you install a concrete surround, pair it with a wood shelf that has plenty of contrast. A concrete surround will also look beautiful and have more of an impact with a concrete mantel to create a cohesive and streamlined look. Stone blocks or bricks on the surround will also look appealing when you pair the materials with a concrete mantel.
If you have a shiplap surround, it’ll pair beautifully with a raw or reclaimed wood mantel that is just as rustic. If you have wood beams on display in the room on the ceiling, they can match a wood mantel that sits above the electric fireplace.
The options are endless when you’re looking for the best freestanding electric fireplace for your interior setting. You can be specific about the features you want and enjoy staying warm at any time of the year.