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The Wonders of the Electric Fireplace

Aug 17, 2007
Fireplaces have been objects of both functionality and beauty. Fireplaces provide heat and ambience to a certain place in the house. The evolution of the fireplace has taken great leaps in the recent years as we have seen the ascendancy of the electric fireplace.

During the old days, people only had the option of having a wood-fired fireplace. As time went by, gas-powered fireplaces gained popularity as they were relatively cheaper to maintain. But due to technology and the need for fireplaces which can be installed quickly and can be maintained easily, the electric fireplace was born. Electric fireplace simulate the flames of traditional fireplaces. Literally, nothing is being burnt and the illusion of burning is achieved through the use of audio and visual effects. Electric fireplaces can be installed quickly where there is access to electricity.

Listed below are some of the advantages and disadvantages of electric fireplaces that should be considered by those people who would want to avail of these modern-day fireplaces.

- Easy to install

The electric fireplace is very easy to install as compared to the traditional fireplaces. There are models today that can be installed in less than an hour. Electric fireplaces don't really need additional space because many of them are mounted against walls. Some of them can be installed in places where previous fireplaces are located.

Electric fireplace kits come with easy-to-understand and easy-to-follow installation kits. Installing electric fireplace also require the basic tools such as screwdrivers, glass cleaners and the like.

-Environment-friendly

As compared with the traditional wood and gas- fired fireplaces, the electric fireplaces are relatively more environment-friendly. They don't emit any fumes and additional carbon dioxide into the air because they utilize electricity. Electric fireplace are not carbon neutral though, because the electricity that is utilized by these fireplaces comes from the grid which also emits greenhouse gases. However, this fact is arguably more environment-friendly than burning wood directly in fireplaces.

-Convenience

Don't you hate the fact that you would need to put out the fire in the fireplace when you're already sleeping? This inconvenience is solved by the electric fireplaces since they usually come with remote controls. There are also models which have a built-in temperature reader. They automatically turn off when the desired temperature is reached. Some electric fireplace models today have air filtration systems and fans which distributes the heat evenly throughout the room. One can also isolate the aesthetic value of the electric fireplace from its heating function. During summer (when fireplaces are not really used), electric fireplace owners can turn off the heating function of the fireplace and turn the fake flames on to be able to give the room a good glow and ambience.

-Versatility and style

Electric fireplaces can be very versatile indeed. Aside from the fact that one can turn the "fire" without having to worry about the heat, the fake fire can also be modified according to the taste of the homeowner. Modern designs allow owners to change the speed and color of the "fire" of electric fireplaces. This is important for people who would like to incorporate the look of the fireplace and the "fire" into the whole look of the room.

Let us look at some of the disadvantages that come with electric fireplaces.

-It's just a space heater

Let us admit it, electric fireplaces are really high-end space heaters. If one is not too keen about the aesthetic value of having a fireplace, he can settle with space heaters which are definitely less pricey than electric fireplaces.

- The illusion is not good enough

Some people are not satisfied with the way the "fire" of the electric fireplaces looks. However, due to the rapidly-evolving technologies that are incorporated with newer models, the illusion of burning has been improved drastically. But then again, no one can ever argue that the illusion is better than the real thing.

These are just some of the different features and downsides of electric fireplaces. These models can really be useful for people who would like to have the comfort and the beauty of having a fireplace but are not really into the installation and maintenance of a traditional fireplace. Again, it is really a matter of personal choice, of wants and needs. It's just good that the option is available.
About the Author
Lee Dobbins writes for http://fireplaces.home-webzone.com where you can find more about how you can enhance your home with a fireplace .
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