Traditional Gas Fireplace vs Contemporary Electric Fireplace – How Do You Choose?
Which Fireplace is Best for You?
There is almost nothing cozier than snuggling up to a roaring crackling fire on chilly evenings. And while we might have grown up with the traditional wood-burning models of yore, nowadays we have the ability to install an authentic fireplace unit that operates with the push of a button. How convenient is that? Plus, you don’t have to source wood, haul logs inside, or sweep up ash and soot anymore – a bonus in anyone’s book.
So what will it be – Gas Fireplace vs Electric Fireplace?
As you likely already know – there are two primary types of fireplaces to consider: Gas and Electric. Both types have countless styles, benefits and potential land mines. How should you decide? The best way to figure this out is to run through these fireplace options and review some of the main pros and cons of each. Then we’ll take a look at your personal needs one category at a time. You’ll be able to clearly see what type of model – gas or electric, traditional or contemporary – would be best suited to install in your home.
Contemporary Electric Fireplaces – Main Features & Considerations
Though many would not be able to tell a difference at a first glance, there are some essential differences between a modern electric fireplace and a gas fireplace. Whether you choose a traditional or a contemporary electric fireplace model, here are some basics to note:
- Flexible and mobile, only requires an electric outlet
- Easy to install/usually doesn’t require professional assistance
- Super low maintenance and easy to replace parts
- Takes up a minimal amount of room and is ideal for small spaces
- A bit more economical, ranging from $250 – $2,250
A Traditional Gas Fireplace – Main Features & Considerations
A traditional or contemporary gas fireplace might be the perfect direction for your remodel project. Before you dive in, here are some fundamental characteristics of a natural gas fireplace option that will be helpful to know:
- Requires a gas tank, a gas line and professional installation
- Produces more heat and is generally much more energy efficient
- Can still be used during a power outage
- Less costly to heat month-to-month
- Can be a pricier initial investment at $750 – $7,500
Now that we’ve got the particulars down, we’ll dive into your unique needs one at a time. To begin, ponder the room you are looking to fill and the vibe you are trying to create there. Consider the following:
1. The Space You’re Filling
If you need a quick fix or a little flexibility with the placement of your fireplace, electric might be a bit more convenient for you. However, if you’re in the midst of a major remodel and are looking for more of a permanent installation, a traditional gas fireplace might be more appropriate.
2. Your Heating Requirements
If you need to actually heat a large room, a natural gas fireplace is generally more efficient at cranking out measurable warmth. Electric fireplaces are absolutely capable of producing heat, but they are not an effective rival for gas in the long run.
3. Overall Energy Efficiency
Modern electric fireplaces can absolutely produce a fair amount of heat depending on which model you select. These can give you a great heat bump particularly in smaller spaces. However for ultimate efficiency, especially for large spaces, a traditional gas fireplace offers more bang for your buck.
4. The Look of the Flames
While there is no substitute for a wood fire, both gas- and electric-fuelled fireplace installations offer some incredibly inviting faux flames. Odd as it may sound, some people don’t necessarily need their fireplace to provide warmth because they already have central heat, space heaters, or warm external temperatures already. For them, it’s more about the ambience. Therefore, a contemporary electric fireplace might be ideal because they give off less heat.
On the other hand, gas fireplaces offer a more realistic flame according to many users. Gas allows for a more pulsated, multicoloured effect, and many people find that appealing. Be sure to watch both flames live before committing to a model.
5. Your Personal Style
Let’s be clear, a lot of this is going to come down to aesthetics. Take a look at what’s out there, design-wise, and see what strikes your fancy. Go with your gut! Whether you opt for a gas fireplace vs electric fireplace – your home will thank you.
6. Budget & Price Considerations
From the bullet-pointed boilerplate figures above, you might be dissuaded by the upfront cost of the gas options offered here. It’s helpful to look at the overall costs because gas is considered to be cheaper monthly.
Another factor is that you can’t just budget for what the fireplace alone might cost. For example, if you opt for a contemporary gas fireplace layout that is a showpiece in your living room, you could need to add other tiling, wall coverings or flooring. Be realistic as to what it will take to create the ultimate look you want.
7. The Maintenance Schedules of Each
One thing to note – and this will vary from region to region – is that generally a traditional gas fireplace requires the help of a licensed technician who is able to pull a permit for the tank and installation. Also, depending on where you live, you could be subject to regular/annual inspections to remain up-to-date. Factor this into your budget.
Finding Your Perfect Fit
Overall, both gas and electric fireplaces are exciting and worthy choices for your home, and it is a great idea to contemplate an installation for your pad. To determine which style is best for you, it really just boils down to what suits your space and needs the best. Have fun with this decision, and do let us know if we can be of help, in creating the warm space of your dreams!