Top 8 Best Realistic Electric Fireplace Insert Reviews in 2020

Let’s face it. Warming up your interiors can be expensive. First, you have to install a chimney. It means getting professional help. Then, there are tons of other complexities that come with lighting fires in the house. But thanks to technological advancements, there are less costly ways to keep your spaces warm. You can go electric and skip all the installations and complications of the unsightly traditional firebox. The best realistic electric fireplace will eliminate the inconveniences regular repairs and maintenance.

Like all modern items, convenience is vital. And it’s what you’ll get with a portable house warmer. Apart from getting rid of ashes in your rooms, the product will embellish its surroundings. An electric fireplace stove is especially ideal for its straightforward installation and operations. Technology improvements in the stove and fireplace industry are transforming the electric fireplace. These new appliances deliver a unique and exciting fire experience.

Nevertheless, realistic electric fireplace units come in various autonomous models and designs. Regardless of your decor or budget requirements, there is a modern fireplace stove to meet your needs. It’s important to note that electric fireplaces are not for everyone. If you’re looking for a genuine, natural sound and appearance of a flame, these products are not for you. But this is the right post for those who need the closest possible experience to replace their traditional fireplace. In this article, we’ll explore the ins and outs of electric fireplaces, including a buying guide and safety tips.

The Best Realistic Electric Fireplace: Everything You Need To Know

Realistic electric fireplace units are a popular and safe choice for warming homes. Their design makes them appear like fake logs, which you can plug into standard power outlets. Most gadgets can radiate heat on a radius of between 200 and 1000 square feet depending on the model.

  • An electric firebox packs numerous benefits like;
  • Ease of operation
  • High-efficiency
  • Easy maintenance with no cleanup
  • Safer use compared to traditional fireplaces

Prices differ from one product to the next, with multiple styles. You can pick from retro options to classic fireplaces that fit into TV consoles. Therefore, if you’re looking to replace the unattractive, old-fashioned furnace, you’ll find everything you should know. We’ll show you how to harness the latest technology to warm up your spaces without messy ashes.

How Do Realistic Electric Fireplaces Work?

Electric home heaters use metal coils to produce heat. The coils become hot by converting electricity to heat. Fireplaces integrate fans in their design to distribute warmth from the heating elements into your spaces. Electric heaters are safe to use in the house, even with kids and pets. It’s because coils don’t transfer heat to the unit’s casing.

Infrared electric fireplaces are different from other heaters. They function similarly to the sun. While you cannot see the sun’s infrared rays, skin and other bodies like clothes absorb the heat. So, this absorption results in the heating effect when objects that light strikes warm up. An infrared electric heater is the most effective option for keeping the house warm. Its functions are unique to the standard fan-driven heaters. Without the fan, a regular electric fireplace might take longer to heat your room.

Along with heat production, electric fireplaces often come with a flame that looks almost real. While some gadgets use regular light bulbs, the best products have LED for creating this flame. Light refraction bouncing around the embers help to give the impression of live fire.

Fireplaces are available in different designs. You can pick between a fireplace insert and complete freestanding one. For the former, you’ll need to place it in an existing firebox. Doing this provides a safer alternative to burning wood in the house. Besides, you can install it without changing anything in your fireplace. It’s a cost-effective method if you want to repurpose the chimney area.

What’s The Cost Of Running A Realistic Electric Fireplace?

If you’ve been hesitating to install a realistic electric fireplace, this section will be useful. The devices ensure efficient energy use. Heating elements tap all the electrical power and change it into heat energy. The process only wastes about one percent of energy.

For effective energy use, electric fireplaces don’t need venting or flue. The design makes sure that no heat escapes. It means that the stove outputs all its heat to the room. Moreover, it’s the reason why the gadgets heat up fast and cool down quickly once you turn them off.

There are two ways to use a realistic electric fireplace. First, you can have it as a scenic feature in your spaces. It would mean only using the flame function devoid of heat. Alternatively, turning on the heat will make it a house heater. Even so, using both features, concurrently still won’t break your budget. The amount you can expect to pay for running the device will depend on local electricity tariffs.

Can You Leave The Electric Fireplace Running Overnight?

The design of electric fireplaces makes them safe. Therefore, you should not worry about leaving it on through the night. Even though it’s safe to have your fire running overnight, keep in mind that it’s still prone to issues that affect electrical appliances. If you want to leave the unattended equipment overnight, ensure to comply with the safety regulations. Some of the safety protocols to follow include;

  • Using the temperature control feature or thermostat to select a reasonable temperature.
  • Ensure temperature levels are comfortable but not too much
  • The thermostat will prevent excessive heating up by turning the fireplace off when it becomes too warm and switching it back on when the temperature goes down
  • Confirm that no inflammable is close to the fire and leave adequate clearance around the equipment

While a fireplace isn’t expensive to run, using one still costs money. It will still increase your energy bills even when running on the lowest power settings. You should turn it off to avoid nasty surprises on energy bills.

Six Benefits Of A Realistic Electric Fireplace

You have plenty of good reasons to get a realistic electric fireplace for your house, including:

  1. The products are available in myriad styles for easy matching to your home decor
  2. The gadgets are non-toxic because they do not burn fuel to produce poisonous gasses
  3. Fireplaces are safe to be around because they’re often not hot to the touch. Also, they don’t emit embers that could pose risks.
  4. Owning the device reduces regular cleaning chores to only dusting around it
  5. Most electric appliances are easy to install without professional help
  6. You can use the appliance visual appeal while keeping the heat off

Buying Guide: 9 Tips To Pick The Best Realistic Electric Fireplace

With countless options for a realistic electric fireplace, choosing the right one can be challenging. That’s why we have put up this buying guide to give you tips on purchasing the best product for your needs. The following are vital factors you should consider while shopping for the appliance:

  1. Add-ons: State of the art house warmers include a remote control for convenient operations.
  2. Energy Efficiency: The best heaters come at a cost. And while they may seem costly to purchase up front, you will eventually save cash on running costs by using less power. Check for products with the Energy Star seal. It indicates models that are eco-friendly and efficient.
  3. Heat Settings: Consider an electric heater with two or three heat settings. It will allow you to regulate the temperatures accordingly.
  4. Heating Mode: Realistic electric fireplace gadgets use different technologies to heat your spaces. Regular models use fans to distribute heat from the coils to the room. Heat delivery vents can be at the top or bottom of the equipment.
  5. Infrared Heating: Some devices use infrared technology to deliver heat to specific targets. It is the best option if you’re looking for a gadget with the least maintenance and high energy efficiency.
  6. Power Capacity: Different electric fireplace models come with varying power capacities. Your room size should decide the power capacity of an ideal heater. Ideally, you need ten watts power for each square foot. You can measure your space to calculate the correct wattage for effective heating.
  7. Size: It’s essential to consider the room size where you are going to use the equipment. Doing this will help you match the electric fireplace’s heating capacity to your space.
  8. Style: Fireplaces come as fixed or freestanding. Your personal needs and home settings should decide the type of heater you’ll choose. A freestanding heater will save you the expenses of installing a fireplace. On the other hand, a fixed electric fireplace is ideal for those with limited space.
  9. Thermostat: Modern electric fireplaces come with thermostat technology for automatic temperature regulation. The feature is vital, particularly when you want to leave the fireplace running through the night unattended.

You will notice that our eight best realistic electric fireplace units come with some of these features.

Top 8 Best Realistic Electric Fireplace Reviews

Realistic Electric Fireplace
1

Lifesmart Large Room Infrared Quartz Fireplace

The Lifesmart electric stove lets you heat only the spaces you need to keep warm in your house.

Lifesmart Large Room Infrared Quartz Fireplace

Features

  • Infrared heating
  • Heat circulation scroll fan
  • Adjustable flame effect
  • Up to 1000 square feet heating area
  • Three-mode heat settings
  • On and off twelve-hour timer
  • Remote control
  • Up to 1500 watts electricity usage


PROS:

  • Efficient energy use through portable infrared heating
  • Eco-friendly design
  • Safe infrared heat that maintains air moisture
  • Realistic dancing flames
  • Oak mantle design to match your décor
  • One year manufacturer’s warranty


CONS:

  • The real product is smaller than the advert
  • Can’t use it as the primary heat source



2

Duraflame 3D Infrared Electric Fireplace Stove

Get this Duraflame Infrared Quartz Fireplace to enhance the appearance of any room. It’s particularly ideal for adding warmth in small living spaces.

Duraflame 3D Infrared Electric Fireplace Stove

Features

  • Infrared heating
  • Comes with side viewing windows
  • Heat circulation scroll fan
  • Adjustable 3D flame effect
  • Thermostat with different heat settings
  • Up to 1000 square feet heating area
  • Remote control
  • Up to 1500 watts electricity usage


PROS:

  • Portable and convenient to use
  • Maintains room humidity
  • Safe for kids and pets
  • Adjustable brightness and flame to match home décor
  • Green zone-heating
  • Minimizes static electricity


CONS:

  • The remote does not decrease or increase the temperature
  • Insufficient heat temperatures
  • Produces loud noise



3

Ameriwood Home Chicago Electric Fireplace

The Ameriwood Home Chicago Electric Fireplace is a great deal for those who need a complete match for their living room.

Ameriwood Home Chicago Electric Fireplace

Features

  • Comes with up to 50-inch TV stand
  • TV console with added storage compartments
  • AltraFlame technology for realistic effects
  • Up to fifty hours of LED lighting
  • Compatible with standard electricity outlets
  • One year manufacturer’s warranty


PROS:

  • Great match for your home decor
  • Durable LED lights
  • Can hold TV sets weighing a maximum of 70 pounds
  • Durable, sturdy design
  • Excellent for small rooms
  • Multi-functional TV console


CONS:

  • Challenging to assemble without help
  • Only works in small spaces
  • It doesn’t come with a remote



4

PuraFlame 33 Inches Western Electric Fireplace

Avoid the ashes and give your home a classic realistic appearance with this PuraFlame electric fireplace.

PuraFlame 33 Inches Western Electric Fireplace

Features

  • Remote control
  • Fire crackling soundtrack
  • Three different flame settings
  • Adjustable thermostat
  • Up to 400 square feet heating area
  • Up to 1500 watts electricity usage


PROS:

  • Realistic fire sounds
  • Accurate electronic temperature regulation
  • Easy to install and operate
  • Traditional log fire semblance


CONS:

  • Only suitable for small rooms



5

e-Flame USA Hamilton Free Standing Electric Fireplace

You’ll get this fireplace insert if you need lavish replacement to the outdated log burner in your home.

e-Flame USA Hamilton Free Standing Electric Fireplace

Features

  • Heat circulation fan
  • Auto shut-off safety technology
  • No-heat option flame effect
  • Two adjustable heat settings
  • Six feet long power cord
  • Up to 400 square feet heating area
  • Up to 1500 watts electricity usage


PROS:

  • Lightweight design for portability
  • Realistic burning flames effects
  • Cool to the touch allowing instant moving
  • Compatible with all rooms
  • Freestanding design consumes little space
  • Prevents overheating
  • Safe for kids, pets, and the elderly


CONS:

  • The legs are plastic
  • Can present problems with screws
  • Suitable for spaces that already have fireplace holes in the wall



6

20-Inch Pleasant Hearth 20″ Electric Fireplace Log

The 20 inch Pleasant Heart fireplace insert is an excellent purchase for those who want to add a realistic effect of natural wood log in their living space.

Pleasant Hearth 20" Electric Fireplace

Features

  • Up to 1350 watts electricity use
  • Compatible with a standard 120-volt outlet
  • Realistic fire crackling sound
  • Fits into any fireplace
  • Produces a real, random glowing ember


PROS:

  • Compact make for small spaces
  • Easy integration with your fireplaces
  • Simple operations
  • Available in a realistic wood-style design


CONS:

  • Takes long to heat to desired temperatures



7

Touchstone Sideline Electric Fireplace

The Touchstone Sideline fireplace insert comes in a sleek and modern design to add a touch of class to your interiors.

Touchstone Sideline Electric Fireplace

Features

  • Up to 400 square feet of heating capacity
  • Uses a maximum of 1500 watts electric power
  • Built-in timer
  • Five-mode realistic color flame
  • Two heat settings
  • Suitable for in-wall installation
  • Compatible with a standard 120-volt outlet
  • Comes with crystals and faux logs


PROS:

  • Multi-adjustable flame
  • Fast room heating
  • Recessed design conserves space
  • Easy to install and use


CONS:

  • Limited functionality to wall mounting



8

Walker Edison W58FP18ES Fireplace TV Stand

The W58FP18ES electric fireplace by Walker Edison doubles as a convenient media center in your house.

Walker Edison W58FP18ES Fireplace TV Stand

Features

  • Up to 400 square feet of heating capacity
  • Compatible with a 58-inch TV set
  • Uses a maximum of 1500 watts electric power
  • Made with high-grade MDF
  • Overheat automatic shut-off technology
  • Provides additional storage shelves
  • Cool-to-the touch design


PROS:

  • Hidden power cord offers a neat appearance
  • Strong and durable
  • Two-color finishing to match different home decor
  • Easy to install and use


CONS:

  • No remote control



Realistic Electric Fireplace User Guide

While some realistic electric fireplace models include a remote, others do not. So, we’ll show you to turn on the device without using a remote control. Even so, the add-on will not function without plugging in the fireplace. Besides, its batteries can run out, or it may malfunction. That’s why we recommend that you learn how to switch on your equipment without relying on the remote.

Step By Step Guide For Turning On The Electric Fireplace

1. Plug in your electric fireplace into the nearby wall socket. It’s always smart to plug it straight into a wall socket and avoid using surge protectors or extension cables.

2. After plugging in, locate the controls on your heater to switch it on. The controls will be placed differently depending on the device you’re using. Regardless, most units have their dials on the sides or front. Depending on your specific model, the controls might include:

  • A for Thermostat Dial
  • B for Main On and Off Switch Used On The Realistic Flames
  • C for On and Off Switch On Low Power Mode
  • D for On and Off Switch On High Power Mode
  • E for Flame Effect Multiple Settings

3. Most units have two or more heat settings. Use the right dial to switch on the gadget to the appropriate temperatures. For many models, you must first turn on the lower heat output for the higher settings to work.

4. Use the main switch B to turn on the flames.

Step By Step Guide On Using A Realistic Electric Fireplace

1. Before using the realistic electric fireplace, make sure to;

  • Plug in the device at the wall and switch on the socket
  • Turn on the electric fireplace power switch
  • Turn on the heat switch on the device
  • Set the thermostat dial above to your room temperature

2. Keep in mind that your heater won’t turn on if the thermostat temperature settings are below that of the room.

3. You can use the thermostatic function by;

  • Turning the dial clockwise to raise temperature settings
  • Turning the dial anti-clockwise to reduce temperature settings

4. The thermostat will make a click sound when it reaches the set temperature. You can switch on the heater and keep turning the thermostat dial clockwise until you hear the click noise. At that point, your device will begin to heat your room.

Step By Step Guide For Regulating Flames On A Realistic Electric Fireplace

All realistic electric fireplace units have the flame function. To use the feature, you need to;

  • Plug in the equipment at the wall and turn on the wall socket
  • Switch on the power button on your device
  • Turn on the flame effect switch
  • Use the flame dial to regulate flame brightness

Some electric fireplace models allow the controls to operate the flames even without turning on the heating equipment.

Step By Step Guide For Turning Off An Electric Fireplace

You can reverse the procedures for turning on a realistic electric fireplace to turn it off. In this case, you should;

  • First Switch off the high power or heat button
  • Switch off the low power or heat button, which will turn off the heat
  • Switch off your gadget’s main power dial, which will in turn off the flames
  • Turn off the wall socket switch
  • Unplug the power cord from the wall socket

The instructions above should apply with most appliances. However, remember to check the user manual that came with your realistic electric fireplace for the right procedure.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What is the most realistic electric fireplace?

The most realistic electric fireplace model will depend on personal preferences. However, we recommend the 20-inch Pleasant Heart fireplace that includes a realistic fire crackling sound and flame.

Where to buy realistic electric fireplace logs?

You can buy realistic electric fireplace logs from online stores such as Amazon and e-Bay or retail stores like Walmart.

Do electric fireplaces look realistic?

Yes. Electric fireplaces with a realistic flame resemble the real traditional firebox. But they do not have an independent heat source.

What’s the cost of installing an electric fireplace?

The cost of installing an electric fireplace will depend on the equipment you’ll purchase. Some realistic electric fireplace models don’t need professional installation services. But the price can add up based on the size and complexity of your device.

The Bottom Line

Getting a new realistic electric fireplace can be costly. But the modern look and warm feel it adds to your home are worth the expenditure. When shopping for one, be sure to follow our checklist to ensure that the device heats your room effectively. You’ll want to calculate your room size to determine the correct wattage level in the equipment you are buying. Besides, you’ll have to decide if you’re purchasing a fan-based or infrared electric fireplace. It’s advisable to invest in the latter for effective room heating while conserving energy.  Whatever you end up picking, our list of the best electric fireplace reviews will assist you in making the right choice.

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