Electric Fireplace Tips & Tricks
Generally, an electric fireplace is safe and easy to maintain compared to a traditional hearth. The flickering flames look realistic, and since they are just complex light displays, there are no coals or charred wood to clean up. Electric fireboxes also radiate and spread heat around the living room, but there is no need to install bulky fences to keep kids and pets away from the heat source.
However, it’s recommended that homeowners make an effort and do some routine maintenance. Space heaters with realistic-looking flames are not sold at five dollars a pop, so it’s really better if you can prolong their usability to get the most out of your money. This short article features beginner-level maintenance hacks so you can keep your freestanding electric fireplace in top condition for a long time.
How to change a lightbulb
The flickering flames that you see on the firebox are just an elaborate illusion that is created using several lightbulbs. The firebox insert housing the LEDs is one of the main areas that you should focus on. Thankfully, maintaining this area will not require you to vanquish soot, grime, and chunks of burnt wood. All you need to do is a little bit of dusting and replacing the bulbs every few years or so.
When replacing the lightbulb, make sure that the unit is unplugged first. If it was used recently, you need to wait for at least 20 minutes before removing the bulb. The firebox insert is usually found at the back of the unit. Read the user manual to determine how you can open the insert.
When replacing the LEDs, make sure that you do not directly touch them with your bare hands. That’s because your fingers are covered with natural oils that can weaken the bulb’s glass surface and make its light dimmer.
Keeping the exterior surface pristine
Usually, the exterior of a space heater is made from wood that is coated with a special finish. Unlike the firebox, the mantel, cabinet, and other wooden areas do not have any electrical components.
In order to maintain its good condition, you need to clean its surface regularly using a damp cloth and soap. As much as possible, do not use any abrasive chemicals because they are highly flammable. This should be done at least once a week.
How to clean the fan
The fan is also an important part of your electrical heating unit, so make sure that you clean it as well. Modern fireplaces have fans that are already pre-lubricated so you only need to do minimal maintenance every once in a while.
In order to determine if your fan needs some cleaning, observe how its blades rotate. If you notice that the blades are spinning slowly and its surface is covered with dust and lint, you better get your cleaning tools pronto.
To remove the dust from the fan, you need a vacuum with a wand nozzle and a brush.
First, you need to detach the grille and brush its surface to remove dust and other tiny particles. If you were not able to completely clean its surface, don’t worry because you can still use the vacuum.
To make it easier for you, make sure that you clean the fan regularly. This will prevent the tiny particles from accumulating in the deeper areas of the fan.
Note that this should be done once a week.
Make sure that you have a fire extinguisher handy
Electric hearths are carefully made so that they will not suddenly burst into flames while they are plugged in. But for safety measures, make sure that you still have a fire extinguisher nearby.
Keep in mind that not all fire extinguishers are built equally, and each can be used for a specific purpose. Ideally, you should buy a Class C extinguisher because it is ideal for electrical equipment. Its class is clearly indicated on the canister.
Place the fire extinguishers close to the hearth. If the red canister feels out of place in your living room, you can place it on a wall-mounted storage. There are actually a lot of stylish boxes that are suited for fire extinguishers.
Planning to turn on the electric insert all night?
If you are planning to leave the fireplace on all night, make sure that it is only set at a moderate temperature (around 65 degrees) to ensure that you can stay warm without damaging the unit. A lot of modern fireplaces have a timer control so it can automatically shut down after a few hours.
As with a traditional fireplace, make sure that flammable materials are far away from the hearth as possible. Liquids should also be removed from the premises.
Keep in mind that keeping the electric inserts running all night daily can cost a lot. If you can fend off the cold with several layers of blankets, then you should probably go for that option.