Bioethanol vs Gas Fireplaces Comparison

When it comes to staying warm and cozy, you can’t go wrong with a fireplace. But how do you know which kind to get? If you aren’t sure what the difference is between a gas fireplace and a bioethanol fuel fireplace, you’ve come to the right place. This article seeks to differentiate between the two, as well as to offer some pros and cons so that you can make the right fireplace choice for your home.

Heat Production

One of the key differences between a gas fireplace and a fireplace fueled by bioethanol is the amount of heat that can be produced.

If you need your fireplace as a main source of heat, you will want to go with gas. Gas fireplaces are capable of producing a much higher heat level than bioethanol fireplaces. On the other hand, if your fireplace will be used as a supplementary heat source, you can go either route. Both gas and bioethanol fireplaces can produce enough heat for this purpose. Most people who use a fireplace as a secondary heat source only need around 2-3 kilowatts of heat.

Conveniently Built-In

Another great thing about both gas and ethanol fireplaces is that they can be installed as ‘inserts,’ or built into your wall, for a traditional look. Besides aesthetic qualities, this method of installation, sometimes called a hole-in-the-wall fireplace, has all the advantages of a wood-burning stove and pretty much none of the limitations.

Both types of fireplaces come in different styles and designs, and almost any unit can be customized in a variety of ways to your personal specifications. Further, the bioethanol option also includes freestanding heaters, which do not require much assembly or installation.

Installation Differences

Gas fireplaces tend to be more costly, largely due to the installation process.

This type of fireplace requires a flue, or a ventilation system, in the same way, that a wood-burning stove or fireplace requires a chimney.

Installation Requirements:

  • Attachment to base
  • Establishing flue & vent
  • Connecting pipes to the fireplace
  • Inspection for potential leaks
  • Gas pressure testing

Bioethanol fireplaces can be a more cost-effective and convenient solution, as the installation process is easier, and freestanding units are also available. An ethanol fireplace does require attachment to a base, but you won’t have to have a flue and ventilation system installed. Further, there will be no requirement to check for leaks or fuel pressure, since bioethanol fuel works differently.

Functional Differences

In addition to the differences in installation, there are also some notable functional differences between the two types of fireplaces.

  1. Gas fires produce more heat.

    As mentioned earlier, a bioethanol fireplace can provide enough heat to function as a secondary heating source. But if you intend to use your fireplace as the main source of heat in your home, a gas fireplace will be more suitable. However, since most people don’t use a fireplace to heat their entire home, a bioethanol fireplace is an economical option. Able to effectively heat a space of 200 to 400 square feet, the ethanol option can save you a good deal of money.

  2.  Gas fires are not as pretty.

    If you’re hoping for that aesthetically pleasing, roaring fire type look, you’ll want to go for a bioethanol fireplace. Fires fueled by ethanol tend to create more eye-catching, flickering flames, whereas a gas fire will produce a more constant, overall glow-type flame. You may be able to find a gas fireplace that creates a more natural, flickering flame, but you will probably pay a lot more for this type of model.

  3. Gas fires are remotely controlled.

    While a gas fireplace can almost always be lit with a remote, a bioethanol fireplace does not typically have this feature. For a fireplace fueled by ethanol, you will hand fill the fuel receptacle and light the fire using a lighter.


Should You Use Bioethanol?

Based on this overview, you may conclude that a bioethanol fireplace is the best option. In case you still aren’t sure, review the following features of an ethanol fireplace.

  • Customizable options
  • Money-saving installation
  • No flue or ventilation required
  • Small-space heating solution
  • Environmentally friendly
  • Cost-effective (0.6 to 1.3 USD per hour)

Still not sure which fireplace to choose? Contact us today, and we’d be happy to assist you with any questions or concerns you may have.

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