Bioethanol fireplaces are relatively simple forms of fireplaces to use compared to other types of fireplaces, allowing you to quickly start and put out fires with minimal mess created.
A bioethanol fire is also very clean burning and no mess, such as ash, is left behind after fires.
Proper cleaning and care of a bioethanol fireplace is still important as they use a real fire to provide the flames and heat, and bioethanol fuel is highly flammable.
The shutter lid on the fuel box of a bioethanol fireplace should be closed in between fires to help prevent dust building up or other debris falling in. Any bioethanol fuel spilt during refuelling must always be cleaned before lighting.
Our own bioethanol fireplace is the manual insert type that we place and use within our existing open fireplace.
We follow all of the recommendations and guidelines set out by our fireplace manufacturer within the owner’s manual for both cleaning and looking after our fireplace.
We cover all the main cleaning and maintenance considerations for a bioethanol fireplace in more detail below.
How To Clean A Bioethanol Fireplace
Bioethanol fireplaces can consist of two main parts:
- The fuel box
- The main fireplace unit
The main fireplace unit is the body of the bioethanol fireplace. This provides the structure and aesthetics of the fireplace, and in the case of our own bioethanol fireplace is a rectangular shape with low platform.
Our owner’s manual explains that ‘from time to time there may be some temporary discoloration of the paintwork’ and that ‘this is simply harmless residue from the fire’.
We can clean any residue off the body of our fireplace using:
- A non-scratching scourer type sponge
- Washing-up liquid
The fuel box is where the fuel is stored and where the flames are generated in our manual type of bioethanol fireplace.
The fuel box and burner tray can be separate components in an automatic bioethanol fireplace (see our guide to the types of bioethanol fireplace for more information).
Our fuel box sits within our main fireplace body.
Our owner’s manual explains that ‘over time the stainless steel fuel box may start to discolor’.
We can clean our fuel box with an appropriate stainless steel cleaner, with our fireplace manufacturer recommending to ‘rub the cream in the direction of the grain of the steel’.
During manual refuelling of a bioethanol fireplace, bioethanol fuel may be spilt when pouring from the bottle.
This has happened to us a few times where some fuel has spilt onto the fuel box.
In case of spillage, our owner’s manual explains to:
‘Fully remove all spilt fuel with an absorbent cloth and clean area of spillage to prevent ignition outside the burner reservoir.’
Other notable cleaning guidelines for our fireplace fuel box include:
- Ensuring that there’s no fuel with the fuel box before cleaning it thoroughly.
- Not cleaning with water.
- Ensuring that the fireplace is fully dry before lighting.
Our bioethanol fireplace also has safety glass panels on the front and back of the fireplace. These slot into and sit at the front and back of the main fireplace body.
In terms of cleaning, our owner’s manual explains to:
‘Use a glass cleaner to clean the safety glass.’
For general cleaning of our bioethanol fireplace, our owner’s manual explains never to use:
- Steel wood
- Abrasive cleaning products
Using such products could scratch the surface of the fireplace.
How To Look After A Bioethanol Fireplace
To help reduce the cleaning requirements of a bioethanol fireplace to a minimum, there are a few things you can do in between fires:
- Keep the lid closed on the fuel box (burner tray) when the fireplace isn’t in use.
- Taking care not to knock the safety glass when opening or closing the lid, which could lead to chips or scratches.
Keeping the lid closed on a bioethanol fireplace can help keep dirt out of the fuel box between fires.
This can be especially important for open bioethanol fireplaces (like ours).
In terms of looking after our fireplace between fires, our owner’s manual explains:
‘When not in use keep the shutter closed on the fuel box to avoid anything falling into it or dust gathering.’