Q: What are the pros and cons of gas versus electric fireplaces?

Filed in Home Experts by on April 26, 2015


Cullen's - Mendota Fireplace 1A: Gas fireplaces offer the advantage of higher BTUs resulting in the generation of more heat for the space. They also offer real flame, which is highly desirable and provides a nice ambiance. Another advantage to gas fireplaces is that most can still be used in the event of a power outage. They also make a great off-peak alternative to electric heat.


The disadvantages of a gas fireplace might be the need to run a gas line to the location that a new unit will be installed. They also require proper venting which can increase installation costs. Gas units also typically require more space within the room than their electric counterparts.


A key advantage when choosing an electric fireplace is that they don’t require venting. They can also typically be run with just flame and no heat if the homeowner is simply looking for ambiance within the space. Electric units take up very little space, making them ideal for installation in smaller spaces.


The biggest disadvantage of an electric unit is that they can’t be used when the power is out. Aesthetically, the flame is nice, but not as realistic as a gas unit and the units do not put out as many BTUs as their gas counterparts, so their heating capabilities are somewhat limited.


– Gary Stone, Cullen’s Home Center


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