Electric vs Gas Fireplace in a small room

July 18, 2022
Hansen and Sons Staff Member

Are you looking for a new fireplace for a smaller room? Have you ever considered the differences between gas and electric or considered electric at all? Here we will explain the differences between electric and gas fireplaces and why you might want to stick with an electric for your smaller room heating needs. NOTE: In this blog we define a small room as being less than 500 sq ft.

When looking into getting a new fireplace, you should not look for a fireplace to heat your entire home. It is recommended that you go by the sq ft of the room the fireplace will be in. We know the biggest reason for a fireplace purchase is because you are looking for a gathering place for friends and family or for personal viewing enjoyment. In either case if you get a fireplace to heat the sq ft of your home, the room the fireplace is in will be so overwhelmingly hot that you might not want to be anywhere near it or you will only be able to have it on it's lowest setting and not the highest one that gives you the best viewing flames.

A gas fireplace is a solid fuel burning source, much like your furnace and they are meant to heat larger areas. While not recommended for your main heat source, it could temporarily heat a smaller sized home. There are some gas fireplaces that offer heat redirection and heat loss through the flue system but oftentimes homeowners are not interested in those. As the units are more costly and are less efficient with those features. The smallest gas fireplaces have a heating range of up to 1,100 sq ft. Different manufactures will have different turn down ratings, with the most common being a 50% turn down. This means that on the unit's heating area ,on its lowest flame height setting, estimating we are going by the previous 1,100 sq ft, is now reduced to 550 sq ft. If you are in a room that is equal to or less than that number you will have less engaging/active fires. Visually the flames will be tucked down by the burner and likely blocked by at least 75% of the front logs. If you are looking for an engaging or active fire for your fireplace but have limited room size this might not be the best option for you.

An electric fireplace generally uses fan forced heating elements to bring heat into the room. Their heating values are able to be controlled by the degree. The larger electric fireplaces will generally heat up to 1,000 sq ft. The difference here is if you turn down the heat, you will not see any visual change in the flame. You keep that active fire and can enjoy sitting in the same room as the fireplace with no worry about getting heated out of the room. Electric fireplaces have come a long way in terms of how they look and ease of use. Not only that, but these can go anywhere in your home as long as there is room for it. Electric fireplaces do not require any venting as they don't release emissions that a gas fireplace does that have to vent directly outside the home.

Check out just a few of the electric fireplaces that we offer and see the differences!





Modern Flames

NEW THIS YEAR(In our opinion this is the closest to a real fireplace that you can get with electric. This unit has; different surreal flame patterns, sparking and smoke effects and SOUND. Sound is something most electric fireplace lack, not this one!) https://www.modernflames.com/products/modern-electric-fireplace/orion-multi/.