Electric Fireplace vs. Gas Fireplace

A fireplace can be a great addition to just about any home. People love the way a fireplace looks when it is burning on a cold winter day, and the added warmth can help to make for a more comfortable home. While there is something to be said for the traditional wood-burning fireplace, most homeowners do not want to deal with the extra cost and maintenance.

For people that want a fireplace without all of the added cost and maintenance, gas and electric units can offer the perfect fit. You still get the benefits of having a fireplace, but the gas and electric models are easier to care for and they tend to cost less to operate.

If you are trying to choose between a gas fireplace and an electric fireplace, there are a few points to consider. In this guide, we are going to cover some of the points that can help you to decide which type of fireplace is right for your home.

Cost

The cost is a bit of a push between these two different types of fireplace. With both gas and electric, you have models that come in at different prices. If you are looking for the cheapest fireplace out there, electric does have a slight advantage because there are some very inexpensive electric fireplaces, but they tend not to be that good. The cheaper models have fewer features, the look of the flame is less realistic and who knows how long it will last. Regardless of whether you choose gas or electric, it pays to invest a little more up front to get a quality fireplace.

Installation

Electric does have an advantage over a gas fireplace when it comes to installation. All you need is access to electricity, whereas with a gas fireplace, you need electricity for the ignition, gas to fuel the fire and with most units, you are also going to need to vent the fireplace. This makes electric fireplaces less costly to install, and it also means that you will have more installation options.

Look

With both gas and electric, you have a lot of options for the design and the look of the fireplace. That said, gas does have a slight edge if you are talking about the look of the flame. While there are electric fireplaces that can produce a realistic looking flame, you still can’t beat the fact that a gas fireplace has a real flame.

Heat

This is one category where the advantage depends on your preference. Both electric and gas fireplaces can produce heat, but there are some differences. If you are looking for more heat, then gas is the way to go. A gas fire is going to have a higher heat output than an electric unit. If you want more control over the heat, electric might be the way to go. You can get electric fireplaces that have different heat settings, so you have a little more control. You can even run an electric fireplace with the heat turned off. However, gas fireplaces can work and provide heat even during a power outage. If you want an alternative heat source that can work even in an emergency, gas can help to keep your home warm, even when the power goes out.

Safety

Safety isn’t really much of a problem with either of these two options. Both are much safer than wood fires, and there isn’t really much to worry about. If you have to give an edge to one, it would be electric. A gas fireplace can get incredibly hot, so there is the potential for a person to get burned if they happen to touch the cover when the fire is going.

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