Electric fireplaces are rising in popularity thanks to their wide range of benefits including how easily they can be implemented into your house or apartment without the need for an existing fireplace or a chimney.
If electric fireplaces don’t require an existing chimney or fireplace then does an electric fireplace have a flame, and is the flame actually real?
Most electric fireplaces have a flame, but it isn’t real. The appearance of the flame can be created by a display, or by a light source within the fireplace from which light is refracted in a pattern to create the illusion of a flickering flame.
Electric fireplaces have come along way in recent years and many of the more modern electric fireplaces offer very life-like flames, so how do electric fireplaces make their flame look so realistic, and what are the benefits of having a flame that isn’t real?
Does an Electric Fireplace Have a Flame?
The majority of electric fireplaces on the market today have a screen that resembles a real fireplace, with surrounding effects such as logs, pebbles or coal.
Once the fireplace is plugged into your electrical socket, the flames can be turned on to resemble the flickering flames of a real fire.
The flames aren’t real, but can instead be created by a light bulb, usually an LED, located within the fireplace. The light is randomly refracted three-dimensionally through a rotisserie to give you the most realistic experience of a flickering flame possible.
Other models of electric fireplace have a built-in display that showcases the flames rather than a light.
The heat from an electric fireplace isn’t provided by a light bulb or a display, but is instead generated by a heating element located in a separate part of the fireplace unit.
The size and brightness of the flames can usually be changed on an electric fireplace, and some models even come with a remote control to enable you to change the settings from the comfort of your seat.
Many electric fireplaces now allow you to choose whether to have only the heater or the flames operating at any one time, meaning that the fire can be enjoyed in the summer without having to endure a hotter room.
How an Electric Fireplace Flame Works
Here’s a video showing how a rotisserie-style refractor electric fireplace works:
The video shows how light is refracted onto a screen from multiple pieces of angled mirror located on the rotisserie.
As the rotisserie spins, the light from the bulb located at the base of the electric fireplace is reflected onto a screen located at the back of the fireplace.
The rotisserie spins at the right speed to provide the most realistic experience for a flickering flame.
The video also highlights the different brightness settings available. By changing the brightness of the bulb, the brightness of the flames and the fake logs can be altered to suit your preference.
Benefits of Having a Flame That Isn’t Real
– Can be turned on or off in an instant
– No time required setting up the fire
– Nothing left over to clean up
– Can be used in the summer without warming up the room
– Child and pet-friendly
– Size and effect of the flames can be changed
– No smoke produced
– No harmful gases or fumes released
– No requirement for a chimney or venting
– No need to have your chimney cleaned
– The fire doesn’t have to be regularly looked after
– Different brightness settings
– Flame can be controlled by a remote (in some models)
– The flames aren’t hot to the touch
– Minimal maintenance time and costs
– No need for smoke or carbon monoxide detectors
Do Electric fireplaces also make a crackling sound?
Some models of electric fireplace provide the sound of a crackling fire along with the flames to further improve the realism.
For electric fireplaces with a light bulb, as the light refractor in the fireplace spins to produce the flickering flames, a device creates the crackling noise. For electric fireplaces with a display, the crackling sounds will be played through in-built speakers.
Electric Fireplaces Have a Flame!
Yes, the majority of electrical fireplaces for sale on the market today have a flame for you to enjoy, albeit one that isn’t real!
Although the fires aren’t real, many electric fireplaces produce very realistic flames that have a whole range of added benefits over a real flame.
You can read more about the pros and cons of an electric fireplace, including the pros and cons of other types of fireplaces for comparison.