If you are no longer using your old fireplace but are still interested to use that space, installing an electric fireplace insert will be a good idea. These are relatively cheaper to operate as compared to gas fireplaces. You will also appreciate the fact that an electric fireplace insert produces no emissions and doesn’t need any venting. Better still, electric fireplace inserts will fit well in place with the old fireplace in a very simple installation process.
We believe that you are here to learn how to install an electric fireplace insert, right? Well, in the installation guide below, we are going to explain the common tasks that are involved as well as the tools needed. Additionally, we point out areas where you might need a professional to do the installation for you if need be. Without any further ado, below is a step-by-step guide on how to install electric fireplace inserts!
Electric Fireplace Insert Installation Ideas
- Select the space
Before you can even make an order for your electric fireplace, make sure to choose the space first. Doing this helps you to make up your mind about the sizing of the insert. In case you have just one possible location where the insert can be installed, choosing the space might not be a problem for you.
- Take proper measurements
In most instances when people have trouble installing their electric fireplaces, the underlying problem is normally wrong measurements. It is therefore very important to check the measurements carefully to guarantee that the insert you order is going to fit in the fireplace. Take the measurements of the height and width using a tape measure and record them on some piece of paper. Your fireplace insert is supposed to snugly fit into place and it shouldn’t leave any gaps.
- Purchase the right insert
Proceed to purchase the electric fireplace insert that has the style and the look that you would want. Do not focus much on the temperature given that an electric fireplace insert cannot be as hot as a real fire. Make to review other things like energy efficiency and safety features among others. These inserts could use so much energy within a very short time. This, therefore, means that cheap inserts could have long-term costs.
- Clean the gas fireplace
In case there is gas in the old fireplace, you must ensure to turn it off completely. You should also remove any installations like fireplace doors, blowers, and grates but leave electrical outlets in place if present. Use a painter’s tarp on the fireplace’s front side to collect any debris that might fly out as you clean the fireplace. Start cleaning your old fireplace by taking away log holders or any other object still trapped in there. Using a big painter’s brush, you will easily sweep all the debris into your dustpan and throw that away. Portable vacuum cleaners can also be used to pick up the extra mess that the brush couldn’t handle.
- Ensure the fireplace has been waterproofed
You all know that electricity and water don’t get along. For this reason, you need to waterproof that area where you will be installing your electric fireplace. Make sure that your chimney has a rain cap to keep rainwater off the fireplace. You need to note that even very little water seepage can be hazardous. To make sure that this never happens, it is good to hire a professional to install a rain cap on the chimney.
- Seal the damper
A damper is meant to seal and also open the fireplace’s opening into your chimney. This is very essential when you are using a gas or wood fireplace. Otherwise, the damper has no use for people using electric fireplace inserts. It would actually waste energy by allowing cold air in and letting the heat escape through the chimney. Other than simply closing the damper, you need to seal it tightly to make sure that no heat escapes via the damper edges.
- Get the fireplace insert ready
Place your electric fireplace insert onto the edge of your gas fireplace and check whether the cord can get to the closest electrical outlet. In case you realize that the cord is very short, you might need to get an extension cord for the insert. If this is not the case and you want your electric fireplace insert permanent, you can call an electrician. He/she will come up with an electrical outlet at the back of the fireplace for the purpose of hiding the cord.
- Clean the glass
You need to clean the glass on the fireplace insert using a glass cleaning solution and a cloth in order to remove any fingerprints and marks.
- Install your fireplace insert
Plug the insert’s cord into the electrical outlet located inside or outside the fireplace. In case your ledge drops off into your fireplace opening, use a piece of wood and place that at the center to make sure that the insert remains level with the edge of your fireplace. Cautiously shimmy and slide your insert into the back to ensure that it flushes with your fireplace’s opening. Turn on the power for the unit and enjoy a beautiful electric fireplace insert.
Check to see that the insert produces flames as advertised. You also need to test the remote control to ascertain that it works. In case you spot any issues, consult the troubleshooting guide on the manual, and if that doesn’t help, call the support team.
- Install the surround
In case you bought it as a standalone unit, the electric fireplace insert will not have any kind of surround. All the same, installing a surround with the electric fireplace insert makes the fireplace look very realistic. This is meant to finish off the new fireplace to catch the eye of your visitors.
- Observe precautionary measures
It has been recommended that users unplug the unit whenever they aren’t using it. Users should also check the condition of their electrical outlets regularly. This helps to prevent sudden malfunctions. Never attempt using electric fireplace inserts in the bathroom as they haven’t been designated to work there. If it will be possible, you should not use an extension cord to avoid overheating the unit.