Tips for buying an electric fire

Electric fire buying guide

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Choose which type of electric fire you want
There are a variety of different types of electric fires available. Some of the main ones include:

Wall-mounted electric fires: These are fires that are designed to be hung on your wall, like pictures.

Inset electric fires: Also called recessed electric fires, these appliances are designed to fitted within holes in the wall. Depending on the style of fire, this might be a traditional fireplace opening or another recess in the wall.

Electric stoves: These are appliances that borrow the look and style of a traditional wood-burning stove, but are in fact electric fires.

Freestanding electric fires: These are self-contained that are usually designed to create the look of a traditional fireplace but, in reality, simply fit against the wall.

Consider where it will be positioned
Remember, you will need an electricity supply nearby to power your new electric fire, so it is worth taking that into consideration when deciding where to put it. On average, an electric fire comes with a 1.5metre cable.

Choose your heating requirements
How much heat do you need to generate? Some electric fires have a single heat setting, while others have multiple setting. Others still allow you to use the flame effect without producing any heat at all. The most common multiple settings are a 1kW heat output and 2kW heat output setting.

If the appliance is fan-assisted you might find it heats your home more efficiently.

And do you want to control the fire from the comfort of your sofa? Many come with remote controls, so look out for this if it is a feature you want from your appliance.

Choose your flame
Some electric fires now have very realistic flames that are so good that you might struggle to tell the difference from real flames. Others go to the other end of the scale and offer deliberately artificial LED flames in purples, blues and oranges. Deciding what you want from your flames will help to narrow down your options.

Choose your style
There are electric fires to suit all tastes and styles of decor. Some are very traditional, while others are more suited to modern homes. It’s just about finding the right one for your household.

Browse a collection of electric fires to see which style you want.

Dimplex Westcott Multi-Fuel Stove: 5 reasons why it could be the right woodburning stove for you

Dimplex Westcott

1. It comes in a variety of sizes
The Dimplex Westcott is available in 5kW, 8kW and 12kW models, so it doesn’t really matter what size your living room is, you will be able to find the stove that’s right for you. The Westcott’s variety of heat output options make it a very versatile appliance, suitable everywhere from a cosy snug to a generously proportioned room. The aesthetic remains similar, regardless of the heat output, with the exception that the 12kW version comes with double doors.

2. Quality cast iron construction
Dimplex is a well-known and trusted name within the world of heating, which makes this Westcott a safe choice. It’s a solid, well constructed appliance made from high quality cast iron. In this case, the cast iron is put to great use in a traditional yet timeless design, which ensures that the Westcott adapts to various different styles of property and decor.

3. Airwash system
All the Dimplex Westcott stoves include an airwash system. This involves a thin layer of warm air being directed down the inside of the glass when the stove is in use. This effectively creates a film, which prevents soot and dirt from settling. This keeps the glass clean and saves you having to clean it by hand.

4. It’s available as a freestanding or inset stove
Dimplex Westcott
Whether you’ve got an existing fireplace that you want to convert to a stove with minimum fuss, or the space for a freestanding appliance, the Westcott fits the bill. As well as the various freestanding models previously mentioned, the 5kW is also available in an inset version. It is designed to slot into a standard 16inch fireplace opening, so it is suitable for most properties that have previously had an open fire.

5. 80.9% efficiency
That’s what the aforementioned Westcott inset achieves, and the other models are not too far behind. So when you burn fuel on this woodburner, you know that the overwhelming majority of it is being put to great use heating your home rather than being lost up the chimney. That makes the Westcott a very cost effective choice.

See the Dimplex Westcott stoves for yourself.

Recessed, hole in wall and inset electric fires

dimplex-freeport-black-nickel-electric-fire

If you don’t want your fire to take up too much floorspace, one way of ensuring it doesn’t is to choose an inset fire.

Also known as recessed or hole in wall electric fires, these appliances simply slot into your wall – into a pre-existing hole or one made especially for the job – for an efficient use of space and a cosy home.

Recessed electric fires come in all sorts of shapes and sizes, from traditionally-styled appliances that slot into standard fireplace openings, to modern fires designed to be fitted into walls.

Without further ado, let’s look at some of the finest inset electric fires currently available…

Dimplex SP16 Wall Hung Electric Fire
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The SP16 is a stylish, modern electric fire, which can be wall hung or inset.

It has a remote control, two heat settings and a flame effect that can be used independently of the heat. With its depth of just 18.2cm, it is the ideal space-saving contemporary fire. Find out more.

Dimplex Bach Wall Hung Electric Fire
dibach
Another Dimplex fire that can be wall hung or inset, the Bach isn’t quite as panoramic as the SP16. That makes it ideal if you’re looking to devote less wall space to your fire or if, for instance, you want to recess your electric fire into a fairly narrow chimney breast.

It comes with a choice of 1kW or 2kW heat settings, and the flame effect can be used independently. Find out more.

Dimplex Danesbury Black Electric Fire
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The Danesbury is a timeless approach to the fireplace. It is designed to fit into a standard 16inch or 18inch fireplace opening.

The inset depth is just 5.5cm, while all the controls are hidden beneath the canopy to ensure you don’t lose that traditional fireplace aesthetic. Find out more.

Dimplex Exbury Brass Electric fire
exbury
The Exbury is an eye-catching brass fireplace. It comes with a space-saving double whammy; as well as being an inset stove that slots into 16inch or 18inch fireplaces, it also comes without a canopy.

It has a 1.5 kW heat output and comes with a highly accurate electronic thermostatic control. Find out more.

If you like the Exbury, the Dimplex Loxley is also worth consideration.

Dimplex X1 Black Electric Fire
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The X1B is proof that you can add contemporary styling to a traditional fireplace with an electric fire.

With its sleek black finish and minimalist design features, it is the perfect inset electric fire for anyone with modern decor. Find out more.

Dimplex Bizet Wall Hung Electric Fire
Dimplex Bizet Slimline Electric Fire
Another wall hung electric fire, the Bizet can be wall-mounted or recessed to a depth of 13cm.

Its contemporary styling turns your heating requirements into a work of art, with the flames framed on your wall.

Find out more.

Dimplex Aspen Optiflame Electric Fire
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The Aspen is a smart, stainless steel-effect electric fireplace that will slot into 16inch or 18inch openings.

It can be fully inset to a depth of 5.5cm to ensure it saves space and keeps protrusion into your room to an absolute minimum. Find out more.

If you like the Aspen, the Dimplex Adagio is also worth consideration.

Dimplex Horton Brass Inset Optiflame Plus Electric Fire
hortonbrass
The Horton is a standard inset fire with a traditional aesthetic that comes in a brass-effect finish.

It can be fully inset or semi-inset (flat-wall fixed) using a suitable surround. Find out more.

Cheap wood burners: buying a bargain stove

Evergreen Larch

Buying a wood-burning stove doesn’t have to break the bank. In fact, there are plenty of cheap wood burners available that will do a brilliant job of making your home cosy and reducing your heating bills.

Seeing a high-spec stove in a glossy magazine makes a lot of people assume that a woodburner is out of their reach. Nothing could be further than the truth.

With the most expensive stoves you’re usually paying for an unusual or contemporary design.

If you’re looking for something closer to the traditional appearance of a wood-burning stove, you can get some great appliances for less than £300. You can get stoves with modern, cleanburning features and

Here’s a rundown of the cheapest log burners and cheapest multi-fuel stoves currently available.

Mazona Rocky 6 kW Multi-fuel Stove
Mazona Rocky Multi-Fuel Stove
The Mazona Rocky is our bestselling stove nearly every month. The reason? A fairly substantial 6kW heat output coupled with a price tag that is less than £250.

That proves an irresistible combination for many people in the hunt for a cheap wood-burning stove, especially when you consider the cast iron construction and a five-year guarantee. Find out more.

Mazona Signet 4 kW Multi-fuel Stove
Mazona Signet Multi Fuel Stove
The Mazona Signet is a small stove that’s perfect if you’re looking for a bargain wood burner for a snug space, such as a boat, cabin, caravan or small room. It’s also a good option if you’re intending to use the stove to supplement rather than replace your existing heating.

It’s essentially a little sister to the Mazona Rocky and boasts many of the same features, including the cast iron body, five-year warranty, ridding grate and primary and secondary air supplies. Find out more.

Evergreen ST0311-11 Cedar 7 kW Multi-fuel Stove
cedar
The Evergreen Cedar is another very reasonably priced multi-fuel stove with an impressive heat output. In this case, a not inconsiderable 7kW is generated.

The stove is quite traditional but unfussy in its styling – it’s a solid appliance that works with all sorts of different decor. Again, it is made from cast iron. Find out more.

Evergreen ST250SE Ashley 5 kW Wood Burning Stove
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The Evergreen Ashley has an extra aspect of thriftiness: hot plates. Buy this stove and you can use the heat it generates to cook your dinner!

It comes in a distinctive rounded style and generates 5kW of heat output. That styling, coupled with the detailing across the glass, creates a homely and traditional feel to this stove. Find out more.

GBS Mariner 4 kW Multi-fuel Stove
GBS Mariner Multi-fuel stove
If you want to do sleek and modern on a budget, the GBS Mariner might fit the fill. Its minimalist design gives it a lovely, contemporary look.

GBS (Great British Stoves) initially targeted this woodburner at the boat and barge market – hence the marine-related name – but its popularity has grown well beyond that niche. It comes with a three-year warranty, generates 4kW of heat output and is made from top quality steel.

Find out more.

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That’s just a whistle-stop introduction to some of the cheap wood burners available to you.

See a selection of stoves that each cost less than £300