7 Steps to Convert a Wood-Burning Fireplace to Electric…

Learn how to transform your old wood-burning fireplace into a modern electric one for an easy and stylish upgrade. We’ll guide you through the steps, from removing the old components to installing the new electric insert, making your fireplace experience simple and warm.

How to Convert Your Wood Burning Fireplace to Electric in 7 Simple Steps

Say goodbye to the hassle of burning logs and say hello to a cozy electric fireplace with help from the pros!

Understanding the Basics of Fireplace Conversion

Transforming a wood fireplace into an electric one involves replacing wood-burning components with electric inserts or units. This grants you the warmth and charm of a fire without the log-burning nuisance.

Wood fireplaces demand constant maintenance and ventilation concerns. In contrast, electric fireplaces use electricity for heat and lifelike flames via LED technology. They’re user-friendly, require minimal upkeep, and provide precise temperature control. Use our expertise to achieve a seamless transition to a convenient electric fireplace.

Benefits of Converting to an Electric Fireplace

Firebox Installation Measurements
  • Convenience: You can turn your electric fireplace on or off with just a flip of a switch or remote control. Plus, many models come with an automatic shut-off timer feature.
  • Energy Efficiency: Electric fireplaces provide efficient heating options that allow you to warm specific areas without wasting energy.
  • Safety: Unlike traditional wood-burning fires, you don’t risk sparks or embers causing accidental fires. In addition, you don’t have to worry about young kids or pets getting burned by the flames.
  • Design Flexibility: Electric fireplaces come in numerous styles and designs that can complement any home decor. Furthermore, you can choose the proper dimensions to fit your hearth for a seamless look.

By converting your wood fireplace into an electric version, you can enhance both functionality and aesthetics while enjoying all these benefits.


Assessing Your Current Fireplace for Conversion

Before moving forward with the conversion, assess your current fireplace thoroughly. Measure dimensions for a snug fit of the electric insert or leg set. Also, decide if you want to hardwire your new firebox or plug it in to a nearby electrical outlet.

Choosing the Right Electric Fireplace

When picking an electric fireplace, tailor your choice to your specific needs. For example, you can get high-efficiency, quiet infrared heat fireplaces. Alternatively, you may prefer an electric fireplace with wood crackling sounds. Or, (one of my favorites) ultra-realistic flames and glowing logs like the Dimplex Revillusion.

Dimplex Revillusion Electric faux Hearth in Living Room Underneath Flat Screen TV

Consider size, heat output (ie. how large is your space?) and design (modern vs traditional). Select a fireplace that complements your home decor, providing adjustable heat settings for personalized comfort.

Electric fireplace inserts maintain a classic wood fireplace appearance with modern convenience. Opt for energy-efficient models with LED technology and safety features like thermostat control and overheat protection. Take advantage of our expertise to guide you towards the perfect electric fireplace for your home.

The Wood to Electric Conversion Process: What to Expect

Converting your wood hearth to an electric variety is an undertaking that requires careful steps to produce a successful transformation:

  1. Begin by disconnecting and removing any existing gas or burning components from your hearth.
  2. Clear out the firebox and chimney to create a clean and suitable space for the electric fireplace insert.
  3. Precisely measure the dimensions of your fireplace opening for an accurate fit for the electric insert.
  4. Choose an electric fireplace insert that delivers adequate heating for your space and the features you want.
  5. Adhere to the manufacturer’s instructions for your install, so you get a flawless setup.
  6. Install the electric insert into the cleaned-out firebox, positioning it securely for optimal performance.
  7. If needed, enhance the aesthetics by installing a fireplace trim kit to fill any gaps around the sides, providing a polished finish.
Dimplex Revillusion Electric Fireplace Insert - With Flames and Without

Some homeowners may choose to tackle this project themselves. However, we highly recommended to involve professionals for a safe and streamlined conversion.

Cost Implications of Fireplace Conversion

The average cost to convert a wood-burning fireplace to electric using an electric insert ranges from $500 to $3,000. This includes the electric insert unit, which can cost between $200 and $1,500, and installation labor, ranging from $300 to $1,500.

Amantii Fireplace Insert - How to Easily Renovate an Old Fireplace with an Electric Unit

NOTE: Additional costs may include electrical work (approximately $200-$500) and removal of wood-burning components (around $100-$300). The cost may fluctuate depending on factors such as the chosen insert type, labor rates in your area, and any extra electrical work required.

Converting your fireplace to electric entails both immediate and ongoing financial considerations. Breakdown costs encompass the electric unit, installation, electrical work and removal of wood-burning components. 

Despite upfront costs, long-term advantages include energy efficiency, reduced utility bills and no chimney cleaning. Keep in mind that this conversion may enhance your home’s value due to the added heating convenience and functionality.

NOTE: You can opt for a lower-priced electric log set. However, the EPA states that these decorative logs are designed more for ambiance than a significant source of heat.

Maintenance and Safety of Electric Fireplaces

To maintain the safety and performance of your electric fireplace:

  1. Regular Cleaning:
    • Dust the unit and vents regularly to ensure optimal performance.
    • Use a soft cloth or vacuum cleaner with a brush attachment to clean the exterior.
  2. Inspect Wiring:
    • Periodically check the power cord and plug for any damage.
    • If you notice any issues, immediately unplug the fireplace and consult a professional.
  3. Ventilation:
    • Keep the air intake and heater vents clear of objects to prevent overheating.
    • Maintain proper ventilation around the fireplace area.
  4. Avoid Overloading Circuits:
    • Do not overload electrical circuits; experts recommend using a dedicated outlet for the fireplace.
    • If extension cords are necessary, confirm that they are rated for the fireplace’s power.

Making the Decision: Is Fireplace Conversion Right for You?

Converting a wood fireplace to electric offers convenience, energy efficiency and safety benefits. By carefully considering the financial implications, maintenance requirements, and safety measures, you can make an informed decision that suits your needs and budget. Remember to consult professionals for personalized advice and guidance throughout the conversion process.