I noticed that my electric fireplace was shutting off periodically so I did some research into the possible reasons why.
Why does an electric fireplace shut off?
An electric fireplace can automatically shut off when:
The unit has overheated
Airflow into the fireplace is restricted
The temperature setting has been reached
The heater outlet is blocked
The heater element is dirty or dusty
Incorrect bulbs are used
There are a number of reasons why an electric fireplace would shut off, some more common than others. Each model of fireplace is different, and so going through the list of the most common issues why electric fireplaces shut off will help you identify the cause of your fireplace turning off unexpectedly.
Why Does My Electric Fireplace Keep Shutting Off?
Electric fireplaces work just like any other conventional heater, and come with a number of safety features to prevent them from overheating and becoming a potential fire risk.
An electric fireplace will shut off if one of these safety features is triggered. Understanding the different areas of an electric fireplace will help you to identify what’s causing your fireplace to keep shutting off.
An electric fireplace will automatically shut off when it starts to overheat. This is to prevent to the unit from overheating causing damage to the fireplace itself, or becoming a fire hazard for your home.
In some cases the fireplace heater will need to be reset after an overheating issue has occurred, so check your owner’s manual for further instructions.
A restricted airflow is one of the main causes of overheating in an electric fireplace. Electric fireplaces need sufficient airflow to operate, and a blocked or partially blocked inlet to the fireplace will quickly prevent cooling of the heating element, causing it to become too hot to work safely.
Find the inlet to your electric fireplace and check for anything that might be blocking it, whether it’s dust, paper or carpet.
When choosing a location for your electric fireplace, be sure to place it in an area of your room where airflow to the fireplace won’t be restricted. Ensure that the heater inlet is kept away from any walls, furniture or other items in your home such as curtains that may cause it to become blocked accidentally.
Some more modern models of electric fireplace may contain an air filter. Check to see if your fireplace has one, as it may need cleaning or replacing.
An electric fireplace can have a number of temperature settings for the heater, usually consisting of off, low, medium, and high. If the temperature within the room has already reached the correct temperature for that setting then the fireplace may turn itself off.
If your electric fireplace has a thermostat, use a higher heat setting than the temperature of your home to help prevent your electric fireplace from shutting off.
Much like when the airflow is restricted into the fireplace, restricting the outflow of hot air can also cause the fireplace to overheat and shut off.
Check to see if anything is blocking the area where your electric fireplace releases the heat.
Be sure to locate your electric fireplace at least 3 feet away from anything in your home, such as curtains, that could potentially block the heat from escaping the fireplace.
Dusty or Dirty Heater Element
It’s important to periodically carry out inspection of your electric fireplace, and especially the area where the heating element is housed. A buildup of dirt or dust can cause the heating elements to overheat, and in turn cause the fireplace to turn off.
To check if your electric fireplace has excess dust, turn off your fireplace at the wall and unplug it from the socket. Allow the fireplace to cool down before attempting to check for dust or dirt.
While waiting, check your manufacturers guidelines for the recommended procedures on how to clean your electric fireplace.
If the bulbs within your electric fireplace are too high wattage for your particular model, it may be causing your fireplace to shut off.
This is more likely to be the case if you have recently had to change the bulbs yourself. Check the fireplace owner’s manual for the recommended bulbs.
Other Potential Causes Of An Electric Fireplace Shutting Off
Electric fireplace heaters draw high amounts of current and the internal circuit breaker may trip if the unit starts drawing too much current.
Never plug your electric fireplace into an extension lead. Always plug the fireplace directly into a wall socket.
Electric Fireplace Turning Off Checklist
– Keep both the inlet outlet to the fireplace heater clear at all times.
– Clean your electric fireplace periodically, taking care to remove any dust from the inlet and outlet of the heater, and the heating element itself. This can be the most common cause of an electric fireplace shutting off after a few minutes of use.
– Plug your electric fireplace directly into a wall socket and not into an extension lead.
– If you need to change the bulbs in your fireplace, be sure to replace them with the correct wattage bulbs.
Why Does My Electric Fireplace Keep Beeping?
An electric fireplace that keeps beeping could mean that the batteries in your fireplace remote are running low and need changing.
Why Does My Electric Fireplace Turn On By Itself?
Your electric fireplace may have a function that enables it to turn on once the temperature in the room has dropped below a certain point. This would allow the room to be kept at a constant temperature, much like a thermostat would do for a central heating system.
An electric fireplace turning itself on my also be triggered by using other devices in your home that have an infrared sensor, such as a TV remote or a games console controller.
Why Is My Electric Fireplace Blowing Cold Air?
An electric fireplace blowing cold air can be a sign that the heating element is damaged and needs replacing, has burned out or has overheated.
A wire may also be loose or the thermostat on the fireplace may simply just be set to below room temperature. Unplug the fireplace from the wall socket, leave for 30 minutes and try again. If the problem persists then you may need to have your heating element replaced.