Your WE LOVE FIRE expert gets this question quite often. Here are the top ten reasons an electric fireplace (or two or three) is going to add value, atmosphere, and a touch of class to your home.
NUMBER 10: REALISM
The evolution of electric fireplaces has been very interesting. Electric fireplaces of the past were not impressive. In fact, almost embarrassing to have in your home. The “flames” and glow looked totally unrealistic. Some had red ribbons blown by a fan to simulate dancing flames! The “ember glow” were incandescent lights bulbs housed in a piece of red plastic. Today’s electrics are in an entirely different class. Most use a technology that includes LED lights reflecting off rotating metal strips for incredible and colorful 3D effects.
NUMBER 9: HEATING
An electric fireplace can heat most rooms up to 400 square feet (ca. 37 square meters). If you have an area that could use a little supplemental heat, an electric fireplace would be a great option. Just keep in mind there are lots of variables affecting the amount of heat needed to stay comfortable. The age of the house, type of construction, the condition and size of windows and doors, insulation levels, orientation to the south, prevailing winter wind direction and geographic location are all important. The heating element in most electric fireplaces is up to 1800 watts or 5000 BTU of heat, enough for a small or moderate size area.
NUMBER 8: COST TO OPERATE
The operating cost of an electric fireplace is reasonable. With the heat turned off, an electric will operate for just pennies a day. More, of course, if the heating element is turned on. The cost depends on how many hours you operate your fireplace and what you’re paying for electricity. A dime a day, without the heating element on, is fairly common. With the heat turned on, expect somewhere between $1.00 — $2.50/day.
NUMBER 7: NO PIPES, NO MAINTENANCE, NO SAFETY CONCERNS
No venting is necessary with an electric fireplace. Gas fireplaces need a vent pipe. Wood fireplaces and stoves need a chimney. Electrics do not require either! No vent or chimney pipe means lower up-front equipment costs and increased installation options. No maintenance is required, other than occasionally cleaning the glass with a standard glass cleaner. And speaking of the glass, it will not get exceptionally hot. The glass on wood and gas equipment get dangerously hot. Not so with an electric fireplace.
NUMBER 6: MEDIA OPTIONS
Media options are those materials that enhance the flames and lighting effects of the fireplace. It used to be that logs were the only choice to spiff up the appearance of a fireplace. But today, you have lots of options! Glimmering fire glass in a dozen different colors will turn the fireplace into a contemporary work of art! Cut glass will sparkle like diamonds! Birch, oak, driftwood, or charred logs portray a more traditional look. Or mix different colors and logs together for a unique one-of-a-kind appearance. Sorry, the dancing red ribbons are no longer offered!
NUMBER 5: SIZES
There are dozens of sizes and shapes of electric fireplaces. Sizes that can be used for inserting into an open burning wood fireplace. Traditional sizes and styles are perfect for a living room. Linear models, 12” high and up to six feet long for a contemporary feel. Corner, see-through, and free-standing stove models are all available for those special projects too.
NUMBER 4: REMOTE CONTROL
Operating an electric fireplace is done with an easy-to-use remote control. If you can change channels, mute and adjust the volume on your TV, you’ll need about a half minute to learn the remote control. The remote will turn on and off the heat, increase or decrease the brightness of the lighting effects, increase or decrease the liveliness of the flame pattern and adjust the spectrum of color.
NUMBER 3: SPECIAL EFFECTS
. . . . . And, if a contemporary look is what you’re after, the special effects of today’s electric fireplaces are truly outstanding. Several colors of glistening fire glass have a spell binding impression. Remember, you can simply turn off the heat with a click of the remote and enjoy your “moving wall art” year-round!
NUMBER 2: YEAR-ROUND USE
One cool advantage that many people like, is the fact that you can enjoy the fireplace in warmer weather, too! Just turn on the fireplace but leave the heating element, off. You’ll be enjoying your fireplace year-round. Try doing that with a wood, gas or pellet model! If you want the ambience and effects without any heat, a click of the remote will turn the heat off. This will allow you to enjoy that special feeling and atmosphere created by your electric fireplace year-round, not just during the heating season. In warm weather, dial in some of the blues and purples with the remote. The fireplace will then provide a subliminal cooling effect! Enjoy your beautiful fireplace in July with your central air conditioning running!
NUMBER 1: VERSATILITY
The ease and versatility of installation is a great reason to buy an electric fireplace. Since no fuel is being burned, there’s no chimney of vent pipe required. An electric fireplace can literally be installed anywhere in your home. Electric fireplaces can be mounted or hung from a wall or recessed into a wall. How about one in the bathroom or bedroom? Maybe a dining room or a large wall on an open stairway? Of course, there’s always the family room or den. All that’s necessary is an electric supply line. Clearances to any combustibles are not an issue with an electric fireplace.
Your WE LOVE FIRE expert has an electric model that will enhance any project you’re planning. We look forward to discussing your plans with you.