Yes, they do! But, if you’re hoping that an electric fireplace will heat the majority of your house, you’ll need to adjust your expectations. Think “supplemental heat”, particularly in the area within 10 – 15 feet of the fireplace.
The heating element on many electrics is 1500 watts. This translates to about 5100 BTU’s of heat. For comparison, a gas fireplace might have a burner capable of 20-40,000 BTU’s and wood fireplaces and stoves will range from 15-60,000 BTU’s per hour. A forced air furnace in an 1800-2000 square foot home is probably 80-100,000 BTU’s per hour.
So, yes an electric fireplace, stove or insert will heat, just don’t expect too much from it.