Ethanol Fireplaces Pro’s and Con’s
To some extent sales people will always push the pro’s of an ethanol fireplace in order to sell you one. Today I’ll talk a little about what a lot of ethanol fireplace retailers might consider stupid – the pro’s and con’s. I believe that it’s natural to seek out the negative aspects about an ethanol fireplace before making the final decision to buy one – and that’s what you’ll be able to after reading this article. My hope is to give you an idea of what to expect, and what not to expect from an ethanol fireplaces.
For starters, let’s have a look at the con’s of an ethanol fireplace
The Con’s of an Ethanol Fireplace
What’s important for you is difficult to know, as you all are different, therefore ill take some of the most known con’s of investing in an ethanol fireplace
It’s just not a source of primary heat
What does that mean? Well, while a fireplace do give out heat, it’s not sufficient enough to heat up your house like a traditional stove. Therefore one con is the low amount of heat it generates, which is about 2-3,5 kW (the equivalent of a radiator).
Not all fireplaces are safe
While a lot of the fireplaces i sell cost from $2.000 and up, you can easily be lured in to buying a cheap model of say $300 or even $100. While the salesperson might tell you the product is fine, I’ve experienced otherwise. Having sold ethanol fireplaces since 2008 I’ve seen quite some stuff, and let me just ask you this: which product is safer, the one that cost $100 or $2.000?.. You’re absolutely right, its the last one!. Usually what happens is this; in order to cut cost the manufacturer has to outsource production to China. Here the manufacturer need to cut cost as well in order to sell such a cheap fireplace, and what happens? He might compromise on quality with material and finish. I’ve seen weldings that couldn’t hold the heat, and who’s problem is it? The customers. While the reseller has some responsibility, you get all the hassle.
One quick advice here is: avoid cheap fireplaces, ask if the product is tested and certified, and what ever you do, avoid a burner system that is built on cups. What can happen is quite unfortunate, if you spill ethanol liquid, and it is heated up underneath the cup, at some point the cup will be pushed out and the liquid will ignite. Of course this cannot happen with a traditional burner system – compare the two burners below, the cup is just not as safe as the burner on the right side.
They consume oxygen
Surprised? I guess not, just like a traditional fireplace, candle light or whatever flame might be burning – it consumes air. Without it, it cannot burn – so what this means for you is simple: make sure to get some fresh air into the room every once a while. If you can’t get fresh air into the room directly, it’s probably not wise to use the ethanol fireplace in more than an hour or so.
It’s still a fireplace
So treat it like it is one. I see many clients who a very careless around our products, and that’s a shame because it compromise their safety. You should never pour ethanol on it while it’s burning or even when the burner is hot. Being careless is when accidents happen, treat the fireplace with respect.
The Pro’s of an Ethanol Fireplace
Well well well, I’m glad you made it all the way down here, because now I’m going to share all the good things about ethanol fires. If you’re not considering the ethanol fireplace a primary source of heating, and you’re willing to invest in a safe product I’ll let you in on some of the truly great benefits of an ethanol fireplace.
No chimney, lot’s of freedom
An ethanol fireplace is actually a quite simple construction, and because of the fuel (denatured ethanol) – there is no need for a chimney or massive installation. Since it doesn’t need a chimney, it’s a mobile fireplace – that is, the floor models of course. Having a mobile fireplace is great in many ways: if you move you can take it with you, if you change the decor you can move the fireplace, you can take it out on the patio – and many more.
No dangerous fumes
Unlike burning wood, the ethanol fireplace doesn’t emit any dangerous fumes when burning. That’s actually the reason it doesn’t need a chimney – the fuel is so clean that the final product of the flame is a very small amount of water and carbon dioxide (and don’t be afraid, you won’t get wet walls or suffocate, see the Con about oxygen for more info).
From ashes to… Nothing!
Having such a clean flame also gives other benefits. Of course you don’t get any ashes as the remaining liquid vaporize, but another thing is soot. You won’t get any soot on your walls or ceilings. The only places we ever se soot is where the flame touch, and even then it’s a very very little amount (did i emphasize the little part enough? – it’s basically nothing!).
Easy to use
While the traditional stove is requiring you to chop wood, drag it inside and struggle with ignition – the use of the fireplace is just much simpler. You simply take an ethanol bottle, pour the ethanol into the burner and ignite it with a long lighter. The flames will come in a matter of minutes, and sometimes even seconds. That means you’re able to turn it on just before greeting guests or surprising the loved ones.
Consider the Facts and Decide Yourself
My hope is that you’ll take this information and consider what your need is. I would never sell you an ethanol fireplace if it were with the intent of using it as primary heating. If you on the other hand wanted to avoid wasting time and money or a chimney, I would stress the flexibility and ease of use. You are always welcome to contact me with any questions or concerns you might have!.