Electric Fireplaces and Stoves
For tens of thousands of years, the flickering flames and warmth of a fire on the hearth has been an integral part of daily human life. We can all identify with the calm and peaceful feeling of looking into the heart of an open fire. But, the advent of modern heating and cooking appliances has taken the open flame out of most of our homes. Electric stoves and fireplaces are an easy way to introduce the realistic and satisfying effect of burning wood into any room while providing safe, clean and efficient heat.
How They Work:
There are two basic functions to an electric stove or fireplace: the flame effect and the electric heater. Realistic open fire flames are created by the light from small bulbs or LEDs shining onto a random pattern of rotating, polished metal fingers that reflect the light onto a glass screen to create an ever changing three-dimensional flame effect. These “flames” can be so realistic that you hesitate to reach out to the surface, even though it’s cool to the touch. The built in heater works by having electrical current pass through metal coils that heat up. The radiant heat that is produced is moved out of the stove with a built-in, super-quiet fan, creating warm air that circulates through the room.
The Benefits Of Faux Fire:
• All of the units just plug into any electrical outlet.
• All surfaces stay cool and safe, so they can be placed against a wall or cabinet on a wood floor or carpeting.
• Unlike a gas or wood appliances there are no emissions, so no chimney or venting is required.
• They are completely safe around children or pets. (Dogs and cats usually stake out a warm spot right in front of the heater)
• The built in electric heater uses approximately 1500 watts, with a 4-5,000 btu output. Enough to heat around 400 square feet.
• All of the stoves and fireplaces have built in thermostats or variable heat output controls, as well as brightness control for the flames.
• The flame effect and heater can be operated independently, so you can have the flames without the heat being on. Many models also come with a remote control.
• Save energy by zone heating in the room you are using, instead of heating the whole house with a central system.
Form, Function and Fit:
With the knowledge of electric fireplace functionality and benefits under your belt, you can now begin your process of selecting the size and style that’s right for your living quarters—whether it’s a home, apartment, condo or cottage. Electric fireplaces and stoves come in so many shapes and sizes, there’s sure to be a style to suit your space.
Electric Fireplaces—From Mantels To Entertainment Centers:
Electric fireplaces are available in a variety of styles designed to fit into any home décor. You can choose from simple compact designs, traditional fireplace surrounds and mantels, or entertainment centers to hold a wide screen TV.
Surrounds and mantels for the electric fireplaces are all wood construction with real veneers that are fine furniture quality and available in a variety of stained finishes, as well as basic black and stone. The fireplace surrounds are easy to assemble and the electric fireplace units come assembled, ready to plug in. If you’re looking for something that provides more of a traditional fireplace feel or would like to create ambiance in extra rooms, mantels and surrounds offer the perfect solution.
The combination electric fireplace/entertainment center option is great for someone who has limited space and wants more out of their fireplace than just heat and good looks. This choice also makes a nice focal point for a room and has great potential for storage.
Electric Fireplace Inserts:
Fireplace insert units are designed to fit right into any existing fireplace to provide the warmth and ambiance of a real fire without the maintenance and mess. Electric inserts are easily portable and come assembled and ready to plug in. When using an electric fireplace inserts you can keep the damper closed since they produce no smoke or emissions.
Featuring the same realistic flame patterns and efficient electric heater as the fireplaces, electric stoves can go anywhere, living room, basement, garage, kitchen or bedroom. Patterned after classic European cast iron wood burning stove designs, they add a warm, traditional feeling to any room, even before you turn the flames on. Available in compact or full size models, basic black or colors, they are lightweight, durable, and can be easily moved from room to room.
Thinking about an electric fireplace or wood stove to heat your home? Learn more about the economic benefits and ease of use in our Plow & Hearth Living Blog.