Do ethanol fireplaces smell?
A concern that is shared by many customers relates to the, “what happens when i get it home”-related issues. As a natural question, people ask me: Does ethanol fireplaces create a smell?.
My answer is usually the same, not really. I wouldn’t be able to sell any fireplaces if they all smelled very bad. It would give the products a very bad reputation. My experience that the smell usually depends on the nose that sniffs, some will say it stinks (on an exhibit – 1 in a 1000) and the rest wont.
Find the right fuel
That being said, I cannot conclude that no bioethanol fireplace in the world wont smell – there is much more than the fireplace itself that influence the smell. Using the wrong or a cheap fuel can in some instances give a smell as it doesnt provide a clean flame. So my clear advice: make sure that you purchase bioethanol intended for ethanol fireplaces. Also, don’t loose faith just because one brand isnt good – there is many different bioethanol products available.
The Fuel Can’t Smell Much
When bioethanol is consumed by flames, the output it some heat, a very little amount of Carbon Dioxide, and a very small amount of water (don’t worry, you wont have any problems with this). None of the output components smell given that the fumes are consumed by flames.
Low quality fireplaces can smell
One thing is the fuel, another thing is the fireplace. An ethanol fireplace works quite simple: you pour bioethanol into a burner (container), ignite it with a lighter, and the fumes will be consumed by flames. However, some burners are constructed in a way that means that not all fumes will be burned off.
Usually this is the result of compromising on price – getting a completely sealed burner just cost a little extra to do in production. When the fumes are not all consumed by flames, a little smell of bioethanol can slowly spread. The smell will rarely be anything you notice as it slowly emerges while you are in the room, and it is still a limited amount of fumes that escape the flames.
Shut it off before it shuts down
Another aspect I experience with relation to smell is when the fireplace runs out of fuel. The flames disappear, but a very little amount of fuel is still left, which can spread a smell of bioethanol that lasts for a minute or two. Usually the flames decrease in size and turn blue once it is about to shut down, at this point I shut off the fire to avoid any smell (but really – its rarely the case that the fireplace consumes all the fuel, 4-5 hours is more than enough).
The conclusion, so do they smell?
Yes it does: Using the wrong fuel or fireplace and maybe having a very sharp nose can mean that you are able to smell the fireplace. I dont think you will hate the smell (just like people dont hate the smell of a nice fireplace).
No it doesnt: In most cases you wont notice anything. You just need to purchase the right fuel and ensure that the fireplace you are about to purchase has a sturdy and sealed burner. This ensures that all the fumes are burned off, leaving you with no smell.
Remember: While the fireplaces almost never smell, there will be consumed some oxygen in the room. That means that the climate in the room will change as a result, just like it would with some candle light.