We're happy to help 01909 475330

Do Electric Fires Need A Chimney?

September 11, 2011

Answer: No

At Creative Fireplaces we often get asked if Electric Fireplaces need chimneys. The answer to this question is typically no, but can depend on two factors:

1. Electric Fires & Toxic Fumes

1. Unlike gas fireplaces, electric fires do not emit any toxic vapor and do not need to be vented in any way. This means there is no need to install an electric fire against a chimney as it is suitable to be installed against a flat wall with no recess

2. Electric fires are simply powered by a standard 13 amp socket. These fires are simple plug and play appliances and can be fitted in any room with a socket nearby

3. Electric fires have lower heat output than gas fires (2kw as opposed to 3kw on average) and for that reason do not need to be vented & do not need an air brick in the room in which they are installed 

2. Recess allowance for electric fire


1. Electric fires have a working mechanism that is recessed into a chimney traditionally. A large percentage of electric fires need a 3 inch or 75mm recess to allow for the depth of the back working mechanism of the fire. This section of the fire is usually recessed into a chimney breast and the fire surround is fitted in-front

2. If you do not have sufficient recess depth within a chimney (for example if you are fitting an electric fireplace against a flat wall), then you will need to have sufficient recess depth within the fire surround to accommodate the fire

3. The recess allowance within a fire surround to accommodate a fire is known in the fireplace industry as the “rebate”. The rebate is defined as the distance from the back of the wall to the front of the back panel. The thickness of the back panel is also included in the overall allowance to recess an electric fire as the fire sits in-front of the back panel.

We make it easier:

At Creative Fireplaces, we manufacture all our marble fire surrounds to order in our Nottinghamshire factory and can modify the rebate to suit your individual requirements. This means any electric fire can be fitted against a flat wall if required as we will build enough allowance within the fire surround to allow for the recess depth of your electric fire