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Buying an Electric Fire? Here's What You Need to Know

Electric fires are the hot new commodity in the modern household (yes, we are aware of the pun). But all joking aside, they are a brilliant way to keep our home warm, look great, and save money on gas bills. Perhaps you have seen or heard about these must-have gadgets from a friend or online, and perhaps you wish to buy one. If you are considering taking the next step and purchasing an electric fire for your home, this is the article you need to read. We will keep it short and sweet, going over how an electric fire works, and some of the most frequently asked questions about electric fires that we think will help to make your choice to buy that bit easier.

How does an Electric Fire Work?

This is the million-dollar question, isn’t it? Before you buy anything, it is important to know exactly how it will work. So here is a quick and easy rundown:

Electric fires work the same way that regular fires do, but they don’t require buying wood or coal, and you don’t need any professional venting work done.

Electric fires draw in cool air, and using a heating coil that can be found on the inside; they release that air back out into the room through a fan. That’s it. That’s how they work.

What are the 4 types of Electric Fireplaces?

There are 4 main types of electric fireplaces. Knowing what they are and understanding their differences will certainly help when it comes to buying one in the future or near future.

Electric Fireplace Mantels

These fire units have a mantle included at the top and can be simply set against a wall and plugged in. They tend to come as either a single unit, or as a part of a two-piece combination, and some will even have a large mantle on top that you can place a television on. Just beware of the levels of heat omission associated with your fire before you place a TV on top. The last thing you want is for your TV to overheat.

Electric Inserts

If you have a fireplace already, but don’t want to use the fire anymore, then an electric insert is the perfect solution. With one of these beauties, you still get an authentic fire/fireplace look, but you won’t need to spend time cleaning out the chimney, the fireplace, or buying coal or wood. It’s a win-win. 

Freestanding Fireplaces

The beauty of the freestanding fireplace is that it can be moved from room to room. They are super convenient and work well as heaters but are the least “authentic” in terms of fireplaces. So if it is an authentic fireplace you need, you may not want to choose something like this.

Wall-Mounted Electric Fireplaces

A wall-mounted fireplace is exactly what it says on the tin, a fireplace that can hang on a wall. Some fireplaces can even be inserted into drywall. When purchasing a wall-mounted version, it will usually include all the necessary equipment to mount it yourself. If you don’t want an extension cord hanging down the wall, you may need to have an electrician install a new outlet or fish the line inside the wall down to an outlet you already have.

Electric Fire FAQs

Here is a selection of the most commonly asked questions concerning electric fires. Some of them you might already know the answer to, but hopefully, each of them will give you some food for thought.

Do electric fires use up a lot of electricity?

While many believe that electric fireplaces are high-energy consumers, this is a myth. Based on average electricity rates, the total cost to operate the flame and heater of a 2kW electric fire constantly for two hours costs little more than €2. Although they will only heat up one room, they are of great value for their level of electricity consumption.

Will an electric fire heat up a room?

They most certainly do. Many electric fires have a range of settings that will heat up a room faster or slower, depending on how cold you are. Of course, the energy used will differ depending on the heat level, but an electric fire will easily keep a room well heated.

Is an electric fire noisy?

This really depends. Electric fires can be noisy, but it tends to depend on the price. Many expensive fires will be quiet, whereas cheaper electric fires will be quite noisy when running. Finding a balance between price and noise control is important.

Is an electric fire expensive to run?

When you compare the running of electric fires to paying for/running gas, the price difference can be crazy. After all, why would you want to pay to keep a room warm that you are not even in? Electric fires are inexpensive to run and will keep your room warm. The perfect combination.