Are you looking to add a beautiful fire feature to your home but do not want to spend a large amount of money to install a gas or masonry fireplace? I have a solution for you… Ethanol Fireplaces. There are many different models to choose from and they come in an array of sizes.
Ethanol fireplaces put a modern spin on the fireplace concept with designs that offer sophisticated “green” technology. Ethanol fuel is produced by the fermentation of sugars originating from plant forestry products. Ethanol fuel is a clean, renewable fuel source which emits a non-polluting, smokeless, odorless, safe fire that can be enjoyed in both indoor and outdoor settings.
An ethanol fireplace will produce thinner flames that are more dispersed and lively. You should let the fuel warm up for just a few minutes for the flame to be at its best. Once it has warmed it will provide you with a beautiful orange and yellow flame, full of motion.
So now that I have gave you a brief run down on what ethanol fireplaces are about let’s take a look at the most frequently asked questions that consumers have.
FAQs about Ethanol Fireplaces
Q: Are ethanol fireplaces safe to use indoors?
A: Yes, as long as manufacturer recommendations are followed these fireplaces are safe for indoor use. Make sure to follow all of the clearance allowances when choosing the placement of the ethanol fireplace.
Q: What type of fuel should be used?
A: Liquid Bio-Ethanol Fuel that is specifically made for use with fireplaces should be the only type of fuel used. Other types of fuel can let off harmful toxins.
Q: How is fuel added to an ethanol fireplace?
A: Carefully pour the liquid fuel into the fuel tray using a funnel to prevent splashing or spillages. Make sure the funnel you use is going to be strictly for filling the fireplace; you don’t want to use one that will be later used with consumable items. Fill the fuel tray to about ¾ of its capacity, DO NOT Overfill it. Also NEVER add fuel to an already lit fireplace, extinguish the flame completely and let it cool a bit before adding more fuel.
Q: Is the ethanol safe to burn when pets or children are present?
A: Yes, bio-ethanol fuel is safe for use with children or pets present. It burns clean without letting off harmful toxins into the air. The only byproduct produced from bio-ethanol fuel is water vapor, which is harmless. Remember: ONLY use liquid bio-ethanol fuel that is specially made for fireplaces!
Q: How much heat will an ethanol fireplace give off?
A: Ethanol fireplaces are vent-less so there is no heat lost up a flue, which increases to amount of heat that remains in the room. The amount of heat given off does depend on the size on the fireplace unit and the opening of the tray but larger units could produce upwards of 13,000 BTUs. Most ethanol fireplaces will list the BTU rating, so make sure to check for it when you find one you like.
Q: How do I light this type of fireplace?
A: Only light an ethanol fireplace with a long stick match or wand lighter. The fuels fumes are what will ignite and it could cause a “POOF” of flame when it first lights. You want to make sure that you are not close and risk getting burned.
Q: What is the white cotton-like material in the fuel compartment? Should I remove it?
A: The white cotton-like material is a non-flammable fiber to help create a better flame presentation. It is not required but it is recommended to leave it in there just make sure that the material does not block of any of the small vent holes. The fireplace will still work properly without it.
Q: Where is the best location to install a wall mount model? Can it be recessed?
A: For wall mount models only! Choose a flat sturdy wall. It can be constructed of brick, drywall, stone, tile, or even a wallpapered wall but do not install it on a wall that has a fabric covering or curtains hanging close. You still need to comply with all clearance recommendations. When installing it you should use spaces between the fireplace and the wall so it is not directly touching the wall. Also an ethanol fireplace should not be recessed into a wall as it needs adequate airflow on all sides not to mention that is gives off heat so it is just not a good idea!
Q: Will the high temperatures of the flame cause discoloration to the fireplace?
A: There can be some discoloration to the fuel tray and lid from the heat that is produced. With extended or constant use there can be slight tarnishing and discoloration to the fireplace itself but it can be easily wiped away.
Q: How should a stainless steel fireplace get cleaned?
A: A stainless steel fireplace can easily be cleaned by using a cleaner that is specified for use on stainless steel. This type of cleaner can be found at a local supermarket or hardware store. Be sure to use a soft cloth to wipe the fireplace down. If discoloration is present it is recommended to use a paste like stainless steel cleaner but still be sure to use a soft cloth to rub and buff the metal.