Electric energy

Electric fireplaces What are they and how do they work?

Electric fireplaces What are they and how do they work?

Today, heating technology has evolved, also to meet the aesthetic demands of an increasingly demanding public that has developed a more intimate relationship with its spaces than in the past.

Electric fireplaces are increasingly being used, which with their high calorific value and the total absence of odors, harmful substances and greenhouse gases, are increasingly appreciated by those who want to furnish with traditional taste and enjoy a pleasant warmth.

What is an electric fireplace?

An electric fireplace is an element of home decoration that also serves as a support heating.

From an aesthetic point of view it looks like a conventional fireplace. Inside you can see fake wood or charcoal logs accompanied by a lighting system that simulates embers and a real flame in motion.

What are electric fireplaces like?

Unlike the bulky traditional wood-burning fireplaces and oil stoves, which require a large space for the combustion chamber, the installation of the extractor hood and other accessories, the electric fireplace takes up minimal space.

Basically, it is the advanced version of an electric stove, with which it shares the principle of operation, even if some optimizations have been made to make energy management more efficient.

Structure and finishes

Its structure is practically that of a simple stainless steel frame, with finishes reminiscent of a painting, or of a traditional fireplace for some models, which contain high-power electric heating elements inside.

Electric fireplaces are usually accompanied by a forced ventilation system to allow heat to circulate and make the environment pleasant.

Realistic flame effect

The vast majority of models of electric fireplaces are equipped with a realistic flame simulator, which makes it visually identical to a traditional one, with the option of being able to activate the resistances and the fire effect, to adapt its use to the context.

In this way you can have the flame effect without the drawbacks of smoke, ashes and always have the wood at hand, with all the related dirt. Thanks to this technology, practically all models of electric fireplaces are 100% portable, so they can be moved wherever you prefer.

Where are these types of chimneys installed?

The electric fireplace is usually manufactured with a very limited thickness, and there are many models of built-in electric fireplace or that are designed to be installed in the wall. These inset electric fireplaces are powered by sturdy electrical cables, usually quite short, for safety reasons and which are usually concealed in the back.

Other models, however, are intended to be inserted in special furniture and are equipped with safety systems against overheating and fires, or to be installed in existing chimneys.

What is the consumption of an electric fireplace?

The consumption of an electric fireplace depends on whether the heating mode is activated or not. The electrical part of decoration, that is, the simulation of flames in which only led light is used, the consumption is about 15 watts of power.

In the heating function, the consumption can be between 1000 and 2000 W, which is approximately the same consumption as an electric radiator.

Operation of the electric fireplace

The electric fireplace works exactly like a normal stove. Inside, protected by safety grilles, there are some electric heating elements (normally 2000 watts), which can be activated to increase the power as needed. By circulating an electric current through the resistance, the electrons collide with the atoms of the resistance and generate heat through the Joule effect.

Unlike stoves, these resistors are usually not very visible to make room for the chimney effect. Actually, this is the main reason for choosing this technology over the others.

From the point of view of thermal power, electric stoves and fireplaces are substantially identical, while aesthetically the difference is obvious. This is because having a heat source with a flickering flame, even simulated, is very nice.

The heat transfer to the electric fireplace is carried out through a very quiet forced ventilation system, which can optionally be used to increase the circulation of hot air.

The most advanced models of electric fireplaces (in English electric fireplace) are equipped with programs that can be managed independently and therefore can be very hot with little simulated flame, etc ...

Remote control

Some models of electric fireplaces available on the market are sold with a remote control to activate or deactivate the lighting, the heating system, etc.

They can also carry a touch screen to manage their operation.

What is a gas fireplace?

Gas fireplaces are another alternative to wood burning fireplaces. Like electric fireplaces, they avoid the management and storage of firewood and do not generate waste.

The fuel used in gas fireplaces is butane, natural gas or propane.

The main advantage of gas fireplaces compared to electric ones is that gas is considerably cheaper than electricity. The main drawback is that you have to prepare the gas supply and that they generate greenhouse gases.

The design of gas fireplaces are also made with the appearance of traditional charcoal or wood or charcoal fireplaces with a realistic flame. Some of them allow ceramic logs to be added to give a more realistic look.

Publication Date: October 22, 2021
Last Revision: September 22, 2021