You have a new home or are looking to remodel your existing home. Of course, you need to consider if you want a fireplace and what type to go with. This is a common theme among many homeowners. Should you get a wood fireplace? Gas? Electric? While an architect or home builder can make suggestions on where your fireplace should go, you will still need to choose the type. Even an interior designer can only make interior design suggestions. The big home decor decisions still come down to you. Within the article below, we are going to explore many different options. We will focus a bit on the benefits of both a ventless gas fireplace and a fireplace that is completely electric. Whether you are trying to find a solution for a freezing Massachusetts winter, or are just warming your home in the mildly cold California winter, we are here to help. Let’s jump in.
Here Is What You Will Learn In The Following Article:
- What Are The Reasons People Should Avoid a Wood-Burning Fireplace? – A traditional fireplace has a long list of issues that come with it. In this first part, we will discuss the problems you will face. Problems include things like air quality due to byproducts, and more.
- Which Fireplaces Are Good Alternatives to Wood Fireplaces? – Considering how many problems wood fireplaces have, it is important that we offer alternatives. Two types of fireplaces will be talked about here.
- Is a Gas Fireplace That Uses Propane Better Than a Natural Gas Fireplace? – No matter if people use a vented gas fireplace or ventless gas fireplace, it is good to know the differences between fuel types. Fuel types will be what is talked about here.
- Do Gas Fireplaces Need Venting Like a Direct Vent System or Are There Vent-Free and Ventless Fireplace Models? – Under this section, we’ll dive into the idea of ventless units when it comes to gas fireplaces.
- Regarding a Vent-Free or Ventless Fireplace That Uses Gas, What are Some Common Features? – Gas Logs and more will be covered in this section. We’ll go over many different styles and features you can expect to see.
- Can You Buy a Generic Ventless Fireplace or Vent Free Gas Fireplace off of Amazon? – While generic fireplaces are always tempting due to the price, this isn’t always a good decision. Duluth Forge gas fireplaces will be talked about, as well as some others.
- For a Vent Free Gas Fireplace, What Are Some Common Downsides? – Downsides of gas fireplaces aren’t as numerous as wood burning fireplaces, but they are still present. Here we will talk about problems that come with gas fireplaces before you buy.
- Are Electric Fireplaces a Better Alternative To Both Wood and Gas Fireplaces? – Unfortunately, some people just don’t understand how great electric fireplaces really are. Electric fireplaces and their benefits will be discussed here.
- How Many Common Types of Electric Fireplaces Are There? – Are you interested in electric fireplaces? If so, we are happy to clue you in on the different types that you can commonly find.
- When It Comes To Realistic Flame Effects, What Brand of Electric Fireplaces Is Best To Go With? – You don’t need to look far if you are looking for the most realistic electric fireplace. The most realistic brand will be talked about here.
Wood fireplaces come in these common varieties:
● Open Hearth – An open hearth fireplace has a normal firebox connected to a flue and chimney for ventilation. This is the most traditional type of wood fireplace.
● Enclosed – The only difference with these is that they are closed off from the room with a glass door. Special vents are used to push heat out into the room. These are slightly safer and can be more efficient.
● Insert – This type of insert is simply to turn an open hearth into an enclosed system.
● Wood Stove – Commonly found in rural log cabins and farmhouses, these tend to look very out of place in modern homes.
● Fire Pit – These are really more of a novelty backyard item. They are rarely used for any serious need for warmth.
Even though wood fireplaces have a certain sense of nostalgia, they still come with some serious drawbacks:
● Fire safety is a concern in the form of exposed flames and flammable soot. As soo builds up inside of the chimney, it adds to a huge risk of a house fire.
● Harmful emissions like smoke and carbon monoxide will fill your home. Fresh air will be hard to come by.
● There is little doubt that wood fireplaces are a hassle to use.
● Heat loss is a problem due to so much heat escaping along with the smoke in the chimney.
● Smells will linger in your home from burning wood. These smells will get into your furniture, curtains, and more.
● Stains will develop on your walls. White walls will yellow over time because of smoke from the fireplace.
● TV damage will occur if you mount your TV above your wood fireplace.
● Wood storage is needed if you don’t want to have to deal with frequent deliveries.
● Expensive and time-consuming are the two ways you can describe the process of building a new wood fireplace.
The two alternatives to wood fireplaces are gas and electric fireplaces. Later in the article, we will talk about both types in depth. We’ll cover benefits and downsides of gas fireplaces, and all you need to know about electric.
Just like a gas stove, natural gas requires a gas line to be ran, however you don’t need to change out tanks. A gas unit with liquid propane has the advantage of being more energy efficient, but you have to change tanks from time to time. One type is not necessarily better than the other. It really comes down to your preferences based on their individual requirements and qualities. Propane gas and natural gas can both decently warm a home.
Ethanol gas is rarely used in a full sized fireplace. Ethanol is more commonly used in small, novelty, coffee table gas fire elements. They need to be changed frequently and don’t really put off much heat.
Some gas fireplaces need ventilation due to the harmful things emitted from the flames. This is the same as wood fireplaces. You need ventilation to keep the air in your home clean enough to be safe. Some gas fireplaces don’t require a benefit. This is due to the burning process not releasing so many harmful properties.
There are many features to be aware of with gas fireplaces beyond just gas type. The material it is made from is something to consider. Stainless steel is common, but you can also get wood mantels like a rich apple spice colored wood for your vent free fireplace. You can even build your own mantel for a fun DIY project.
Gas logs are something else to consider. Gas logs, or a gas log set, are inserted synthetic logs to make it look like a real fire. It is common for a gas log set to be made out of ceramic fiber due to its heat resistant properties. Artificial logs also help break up the flame to make it look more like a wood fireplace.
Safety is an important part of gas fireplaces. You will see many safety features listed depending on the model you purchase. Features can include things like automatic shut off and oxygen detection sensors. An oxygen depletion sensor, or ODS, allows oxygen levels to be monitored. Gas fireplaces also have things like a pilot light, a regulator, and more.
You should avoid generic products for most important household items. This is especially important for fireplaces where both safety and performance really matter. That being said, there are some decent brands out there.
For full sized gas fireplaces, some people like Duluth Forge fireplaces. Duluth Forge makes a wide variety of gas fireplaces. You can get a Duluth Forge ventless style fireplace, a Duluth Forge dual vent fireplace, and more.
If you already have a wood fireplace, you can use a ventless gas fireplace insert from a company like Procom.
Although gas fireplaces are a better choice than a wood fireplace for many reasons, they still have their fair share of problems to deal with. Here is what to expect:
● Flames are still exposed. Regardless of their being a lower chance of fire than with a wood fireplace, the chance is still there. Whenever you have flames that are exposed to a room,
● Carbon monoxide is still a problem with gas fireplaces. It is vital to make sure batteries are changed regularly in your carbon monoxide detectors.
● The color of the flame can be very ugly. With gas fireplaces that have orange or yellow flames, they look dull and not at all like a wood fireplace. Gas fireplaces that have blue flames look absolutely inauthentic. The color can be very jarring to most people, and it often comes off as tacky.
● Weak flames are a common issue with gas fireplaces. You have to remember that the burners in gas fireplaces are basically a series of Bunsen burners. You will see a steady streaming flame with little to no flicker. This also has the downside of looking fake.
● Gas fireplaces can be very costly to install. You need a professional who will install it for you. They will also need to install gas lines and vents in many cases.
Electric fireplaces are easily the best choice of fireplace and here is why:
● Unlike wood and gas fireplaces, there is no additional risk of a house fire.
● There aren’t any harmful emissions you need to worry yourself with.
● They don’t produce smoke that will cause any sort of staining or smells.
● Electric fireplaces are incredibly easy to use.
● Out of all three types of fireplaces, electric fireplaces are the most effortless to install.
● Since no ventilation is required, electric fireplaces can easily be installed in any room of your house.
● Because the blower pushes the warm air to the center of the room, it is completely safe to mount a TV above electric fireplaces.
● The infrared heater inside of most electric fireplaces is very powerful and energy efficient.
● With electric fireplaces, you can set up supplemental zone heating strategies to save money heating large homes.
● You can use a remote control on your fireplace without the need to get up.
● Electric fireplaces with high quality flame effects do a great job capturing the ambiance of traditional wood fireplaces.
Electric fireplaces come in quite a few different varieties and types. While some times are useful in some specific situations, some are only useful in a single situation. Some aren’t very useful at all and should be completely avoided. Here are those different types:
● Flat Wall Mantel Package – A mantel package is one of the electric fireplaces that looks the most traditional. After you install these on the floor up against a wall, it looks similar to an open hearth style fireplace. The fireplace of these units and the mantel it comes with is usually two separate pieces. This is so that multiple mantel styles are available for fireplaces from a company. These units are always a solid choice for most homes.
● Corner Fireplace – Let’s say you have a home layout where a focus on the corner is more appropriate. That’s where these corner fireplace units come into play. On top of allowing a wonderful asymmetrical room layout, they also help save a little space as well. Their footprint usually doesn’t take up as much space as a flat wall unit. Of course, they still function just the same.
● TV Stand Fireplace – When you are severely limited in space, you might look for options that combine pieces of furniture. That’s what these units do. It is a TV stand and a fireplace in one. The downside of these is that the fireplace can sometimes be lacking due to the limited size within the stand. Also, you will of course have much less space for things like electronic devices or a media collection.
● Corner TV Stand Fireplace – There is little difference between these and a normal TV stand fireplace. The main difference is these are built for a corner. Unfortunately, these types of fireplaces will also have the same fireplace size issues. If you really want one of these, just get a standard corner fireplace instead. Those types of electric fireplaces tend to work better and they are still strong enough to support a small TV in the corner.
● Wall Mount Electric Fireplace – For some people, they may want to mount a fireplace on the wall. That’s where this unit excels. It is made to be secured to the studs within the wall with special mounting brackets. Optionally, you can install these into a recessed wall. Installing them into a recessed wall means you can have the fireplace flush against the wall, saving more space. A fireplace like this isn’t as traditional, but has a fun, modern look.
● Electric Insert – If you already have an existing fireplace that is wood, these inserts is how you make the switch to electric. You simply install one of these units into the opening of your wood fireplace. Just make sure you get the proper size to fit the opening so it looks seamless. By using one of these inserts, you can switch to electric without wasting your current chimney and mantel.
● Freestanding Fireplace Heater – Portable space heaters already have trouble properly warming an entire home. Unfortunately, it is even harder most of the time with these fireplace versions. Because you are combining fire effects into these already small devices, there are sacrifices made to both the heating ability and visual effects. It tends to do both badly. On top of this, they often look quite cheap and tacky. If you want a reliable fireplace that looks great, you are better off steering clear of these units for the most part.
● Electric Stove Fireplace – Although wood stoves aren’t really that common these days, if you wanted an electric version, they are available. Just like a wood stove, these tend to look very strange in modern homes unless you have a very rural aesthetic style. Keep in mind, while you can cook on a wood stove, many of these electric stove fireplaces aren’t built for that. They are only made for heating.
Although some brands attempt to show realistic 3D flames with gimmicks involving LED lights and water vapor, it really doesn’t look very realistic. Luckily, MagikFlame electric fireplaces use Holoflame holographic technology to display the most realistic flame effects. That isn’t all they have to offer. Here is everything you can expect:
● Ultra Realistic Flame Effects – 3D flames can be seen dancing and flickering as they are projected onto a beautiful physical log set. There are 30 different flame styles available with each fireplace. You can switch between flame styles with ease to set the mood to your preferences.
● Crackling Log Sounds – With the sounds of crackling logs, the fire effects are elevated even further. The sound of crackling logs is soothing and adds atmosphere. Additionally, MagikFlame fireplaces include optional nature sounds as well.
● 5,200 BTU Heater – The 5,200 BTU heater can warm an area of 1,000 square feet without issues. This is enough for most homes. For very large homes, you can get an extra MagikFlame with a 5,200 BTU heater and set up your house for zone heating.
● Smartphone App – Instead of a remote control, you can use an amazing smartphone app with MagikFlame fireplaces. Control the thermostat, fire effects, audio, and more.
For more information, you can read:
● MagikFlame Story – An intriguing origin of this wonderful fireplace.
● MagikFlame Reviews – Some helpful reviews by existing customers.
● Best Electric Fireplace Guide – A ton of useful information about electric fireplaces in general.
● How MagikFlame Is Made – Breaking down how MagikFlame fireplaces are put together.
● Payment Plan and Financing – Financial options so you can get your MagikFlame as soon as possible.
● MagikFlame Warranty – This full warranty will make sure you can purchase with confidence.