There are three basic types of fireplaces. These are a wood-burning fireplace, gas fireplace, and electric fireplace. Out of these three types, the electric fireplace is the safest for babies. The most dangerous part of any fireplace is the flame. But for an electric fireplace is safe because the flame is not real. And the baby can touch the glass because it is not hot.
The only technical but not dangerous part of an electric fireplace is the area where the warm air comes out. The air is not hot which means it cannot burn the baby. But it is good to maintain some distance (like 2 feet) away from the area. With simple instructions and supervision, a baby can avoid this area.
Safety Tips for an Electric Fireplace
- Do not use extension cords
All electric fireplaces have coils that consume a good amount of electrical power. Hence extension cords are not recommended. Directly plug in a house socket. However, some manufacturers say you can use heavy-duty extension cords. For example, if your electric fireplace is rated 1500W then the minimum size of an extension cord is 14AWG (American Wire Gauge).
- Electric circuit
Nowadays most electric fireplaces do not require a dedicated circuit. But you are advised to plug it into a dedicated circuit. An electric fireplace has a coil that can shut down the circuit breaker if the circuit is overloaded. So to avoid all these inconveniences give your electric fireplace a dedicated circuit.
- Clearance distance
An electric fireplace is the safest fireplace but it produces hot/warm air. The flame and smoke are LED effects, hence they can not cause any harm. Give a clearance distance of about two feet away from the hot air vent. The hot air can cause plastic objects to shrink. It can also cause the leather to harden.
Children, adults, and pets should also avoid this hot air area. The hot air will not burn you but comes out at a high speed making it hard to breathe. Do not place anything heavy on top of your electric fireplace. Because it can break the plastic cover hence exposing the hot coil inside.
- Supervise children and pets
Children (7 years and below) are still learning a lot in this world, while pets do not have logical thinking capacity. This is why you must supervise them every time the electric fireplace is on.
Baby-proof your electric fireplace to avoid accidents when you are not around. You can put doors and locks on the fireplace cabinet. You can also hide the control gadgets like remotes.
- Do not use an electric fireplace outdoors
Most electric fireplaces are designed to be used indoors. They do not have features that can handle the tough outdoor environment. For example, they have simple plastic covers that cannot handle a storm or strong wind and dust.
But you can use an electric fireplace on a covered patio space. If you are using it on the patio, place it in the middle of the patio so that wind and rain from the sides cannot reach it.
- Always inspect the cord and electric outlets
Always inspect the condition of your electric outlet/socket. Sometimes the socket fuse can blow or the plug-in holes get damaged. Immediately change the socket when you notice something is wrong.
Also, inspect the cord and cover up any exposed wires using tape. Replace the cord if it is frayed. Do this electric inspection and your fireplace will last for many years.
- Do not remove the top cover
Yes, an electric fireplace is the safest fireplace but without the top cover, it is the most dangerous. It has a very hot coil and fans that rotate at a very high speed. If anything flammable falls on the hot coil then it is a disaster. The top cover also helps the whole system to work well or else some hot air will be lost on the way.
- Call a professional or consult the manual
For any problem that you do not understand well consult the manual. Trust me all answers are in the manual. Self-modification of the electric fireplace can be very dangerous. Call a professional for any repair.
Do not open up the top cover if you are not an electrician. Sometimes an electric fireplace can store a lot of charges hence it requires someone who knows how to discharge them.
How to Install a Wall-mount Electric Fireplace
- A hammer
- A drill
- Concrete nails/screws (depends on type of wall you have)
- A spanner
Choose the best place to install your wall-mount fireplace. First of all, consider the type of wall-mount fireplace. This means you must look where the hot air comes out from. Is it the sides or from the top or the bottom?
Choose a location that is clear. All objects must be two feet away from the electric fireplace.
You must choose a location near an electric outlet. Avoid using extension cords on electric fireplaces. If it is a must you use an extension cord then choose one with heavy gauge wires. Do not place a wall-mount fireplace with a bottom outlet near the floor.
Now is time to attach the brackets to the wall. Most wall-mount fireplaces come with brackets. If it does not have you can buy them from the nearest hardware store.
If you have a concrete wall then use a hammer and concrete nails. If you have a wooden or dry-wall then use a drill and screws. Make sure you use strong brackets because most wall-mount fireplaces are heavy.
Now the brackets are on the wall then hang the fireplace. Brackets that come with the fireplace are always compatible with the fireplace. So there are some nuts and bolts that securely hold the fireplace in position.
Make sure you read the manual so that you know where these nuts and bolts go. Tighten the nuts and bolts.
Now is time to plug in the cord. Make sure the cord is always at the back of the fireplace. And it should not pass at the hot air area. Once the cord is safely plugged in, switch on the fireplace and enjoy.
Out of the three basic types of fireplaces, electric fireplaces are the safest for babies. This is because they do not have a real flame and no dangerous fumes. A baby can touch the LCD screen but it will not get burnt. The hot air outlet is not a dangerous part, but it should be avoided. The air comes out at a high speed hence making it hard for a baby to breathe.