A natural log fire is an appealing image. Unfortunately the reality doesn’t always match the dream. Those with a real open fire will tell you that anything lighter than dark blue curtains is a real no-no, and white fabric is out! The problem is the soot created by such fires. For others, a real fire is an impossibility anyway. If you are currently on the look out for a new fire to keep you warm and cosy during the frosty months and live in an apartment, a home without a chimney, or you are on a tight budget, why not consider an electric fireplace.
Admittedly, the image most people have of an electrical fire is a tacky imitation of a log fire, but things really have moved on since the 1980s. Electric fireplaces are now available in many hugely attractive and varied designs and provide a beautiful ambient glow. No fibreglass is in sight, replacing it are much more demure materials like real wood, stone, marble, slate and brick.
One of the key reasons to install an electric fireplace into the home is that it is highly versatile. Even if you have a non-working chimney, you can still use an electric insert since these devices do not require any ventilation. Wood burning fires, require a working chimney to properly vent the device and the upkeep can be really messy. Since the heat produced by and electrical fire is exactly that, it is not necessary to have anything more than an electrical outlet for the device to plug into, as you would any other appliance. They also create no soot and therefore require very little upkeep.
For those who do not want to ruin the look of their chimney breast, a great option is a fireplace insert. A fireplace insert is a firebox that is designed to fit inside the existing masonry fireplace. They are made of steel, with an interior firebox. When positioned inside a fireplace, the air within the room enters the shell of the insert then the firebox. It is heated there through an electric device. In other forms of inserts, other fuels are used such as wood, pellets or natural gas. The heated air then comes out of the firebox back into the room, warming it. So why not just choose a natural fire instead?
Quiet simply, a fireplace is much more efficient and will therefore keep your rooms warmer for less cost. The outer shell surrounding the insert works to keep the air in the firebox flowing into the room, rather than up the chimney of the masonry fireplace. In a traditional fireplace, most of the heat is pushed up into the fireplace and the room only receives 10 to 20 percent of the heat produced by the fire. With inserts, this is no longer the case. The majority of heat flows back into the room, making an insert a must for those looking for options that will enable them to reduce their carbon footprint.