How Does an Ethanol Fireplace Work?

When you are looking to purchase a bio ethanol fireplace, you may be checking out how does an ethanol fireplace work. There are some great choices out there today, so your choice needs to be based on your needs and wants. Maybe you already have a fireplace, but you are looking for a lower maintenance fireplace. If you live somewhere you can’t have a traditional fireplace you may be looking for something you can have.

Lets Learn How Does an Ethanol Fireplace Work?

That is where one great fireplace stands out from the rest, which is an ethanol fireplace. You may have heard about them, but maybe that is as far as it went. So you are wondering about how they work before making a final decision. Well we have you covered there, we are going to go over how an ethanol fireplace works.

Why Is Ethanol a Great Choice?

Ethanol is a great alternative to fossil fuels because it is a bio-fuel. It can also be replenished easily since it is made from corn. It burns clean making it safe for people, pets and the environment as well. You don’t have to rely on collecting wood, if you are a green lover you will love the fact you are saving trees. Ethanol also produces a realistic flame without the mess, which is great for those who want low maintenance.

There is no smell emitted while burning either, which is a big bonus for those with breathing ailments. If you enjoy the crackling sound of a great fire. An ethanol fireplace does provide that as well, without the worries of flying sparks or ashes.

Ethanol Fireplace Placement Options

Since ethanol fireplace don’t require gas or electric, there are so many places you can use and place them. There are wall mounted, for when you want to save floor space. There are also table top styles as well that are typically smaller in size, so they can be easily moved. You can also get recessed styles as well if you would like that in the wall look or if you want a way to change over from a traditional fireplace.

Since no venting or chimney is required you can place in virtually any room. So you can put in rooms you would have never been able to put them otherwise. Many on the market are also able to be used both indoors and outdoors.

How Do They Work?

How a bio ethanol fireplace works is quite simple, there is really nothing technical about it. Ethanol fireplaces have a holder that the fuel goes into. The amount each fuel holder can hold can vary on the size of the fireplace. Fuel typically comes in bottles, which is sold in many home improvement or outdoor supply stores.

Once you have the fuel you simply fill up the fuel holding area to the fill line. If you accidentally spill any, clean up any spilled fuel before lighting. Once you are sure you have no spilled fuel, you can light the fireplace. You can light the fireplace by either a long match or a long BBQ lighter.

Some ethanol fireplaces do have flame adjustment and some do not. In most cases though some do come with a snuffer for extinguishing the flames when you are done burning. Burn time can vary on size of flame and how much fuel the burner can hold. Some fireplaces come with more than one burner as well. So you can choose to use one burner or more.

Maintenance of an Ethanol Fireplace

Well as we mentioned before ethanol burns clean, so if you are wondering about maintenance there isn’t much to worry about. There are no motors or moving parts to repair or upkeep. Since it is not gas supplied there are no line connections or ignitors to have to worry about.

All you simply have to do from time is wipe it down with a damp rag. To removed dust or other day to day things such as smudges and etc. Yes, it truly is that easy! If it is wall mounted, it is suggested to check to make sure the mounting is still stable and solid. Since sometimes they can loosen depending on what the fireplace is mounted to as far as wall material.

Safety Things to Remember

There are some things to keep in mind when using an ethanol fireplace. Make sure that you only use the fuel recommended by your fireplaces manufacturer. There are many not so good fuels that can be dangerous if used. Never use any other type of fuel but the ethanol fuel recommended.

Never place anything flammable near the fireplace, to avoid any unwanted fires. Also never leave unattended, especially around children and pets. The fireplaces have real flames and real flames can cause injury.

Only use in areas it is made for, so only use an indoor for indoor and outdoor for outdoor. If you want one that can do both make sure you know it can. Which most boxes will say so or product information. Otherwise ask a salesperson if applicable at time of purchase.

Never add more fuel while still lit, yes this should be common sense. However, some may still think about trying it but don’t it won’t end well. The fuel you are pouring in could ignite, then igniting the bottle that is still in your hand as well.


So we have pretty much covered what you needed to know about an ethanol fireplace. It is a relatively simple fireplace to use and just about anyone can use one. While typically ethanol fireplaces don’t put out a lot of heat, they may be able to take the chill out of air in the surrounding area. Just don’t expect to use it as a sole source of heat.

They are a great option for both residential use as well as commercial. Since they have endless placement options they can be a great asset. Since there is virtually no maintenance, they are also cost effective for the occasional user. Cost can be a little higher for the heavy user, but considering they are clean burning the cost of the fuel can be rectified.

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