Electric fireplaces are a good option for supplemental heating. Compared to traditional wood-burning fireplaces, they emit none of the smoke byproducts that can be harmful to respiratory health, and require much less cleaning. And unlike gas fireplaces, they require no gas lines and eliminate the danger of gas leaks.
An electric fireplace surround gives the unit a traditional classic look, enabling it to blend better into the room. In this article, we discuss electric fireplace surround ideas to give your fireplace a seamless homey look.
What is an Electric Fireplace?
As the name implies, an electric fireplace uses electricity as the sole source of energy to provide heating. This makes them safer by producing none of the smoke byproducts of a wood fireplace. It also makes them more convenient to use, since they do not require extensive cleaning of soot and creosote buildup.
Because an electric fireplace produces no emissions, they also require none of the vents needed by a gas fireplace. And compared to ventless gas fireplace models, they are completely emissions free and legal for use in all jurisdictions.
What is an Electric Fireplace Surround?
An electric fireplace surround is a frame or housing for the electric fireplace. It can consist of wood, MDF or steel, or more exotic materials like stone or marble. There are three advantages for using a surround for the electric fireplace:
- It gives the electric fireplace a traditional hearth look,
- It protects the unit from damaging elements in the home, such as spills, or being bumped by furniture.
- Depending on the material used, a surround can preserve the heat for longer, allowing you to switch off the electric fireplace sooner and save on utility bills and preserve its operational lifespan.
Technically speaking, electric fireplaces don’t generally need a surround, since they don’t generate flames and don’t need to be placed in a hearth. However, a surround makes an electric fireplace much more aesthetically pleasing, provides greater protection, and improves its heating efficiency.
Electric Fireplace Surround vs Mantel: What’s the Difference?
In traditional usage, a fireplace surround is the material between the firebox and the mantel. It can be constructed from heatproof stone, concrete, tile, or brick.
A mantel or mantelpiece, on the other hand, refers to the decorative frame around the fireplace opening. It usually comes with a shelf above the firebox.
Electric Fireplace Surround Ideas
Since electric fireplaces don’t generate flames, there are more design ideas and material choices for their surrounds compared to wood-burning fireplaces.
Steel or metal comes in a variety of finishes to suit different interiors. Whatever the case, it lends a modern industrial aesthetic to the room.
This resilient material provides a contemporary feel while being robust enough for decades of winter use. It retains heat well and comes in a wide range of colors and textures. It is very low maintenance, fireproof, and highly resistant to rot.
Bricks provide a traditional hearth look, and suits both classic and modern interiors. One advantage is the ability to create patterns to make the space more attractive.
Granite is a low maintenance stone material with good heat resistance. It’s also durable against chipping and scratching, making it a good choice for homes with pets or children.
One of the key benefits of using marble is its water-repellent property. Since it doesn’t soak water, it provides increased protection against water damage for your electric fireplace. It’s also highly durable, comes in a wide range of colors, and speaks luxury. Of course, it comes at a steep price, and it requires additional sealing compared to other material choices.
Limestone is highly versatile. It pairs magnificently well with wood furniture and paneling, and it complements a huge array of colors and styles. It’s also less expensive than marble, but has less protection against water damage and comes in a more limited range of colors.
Other material choices
For those with a bigger budget or are handy with DIY, here are some exotic material possibilities for your electric fireplace:
- Aged mahogany
- Cast iron
Recommended Electric Fireplace Surrounds for 2022
Amantii SYM-34-SURR-BRON Bronze Surround For 34″ Symmetry & Symmetry-B Electric Fireplaces
You can add a finished look to your SYMMETRY and SYMMETRY-B 34″ Electric Fireplace. The surround is installed on the wall and offers a beautiful touch to your fireplace. This surround is bronze but it is also available in dark grey (SYM-34-SURR-GREY).
Its dimensions are 16-7/8″h x 34-1/2″w.
You can add a finished look to your SYMMETRY and SYMMETRY-B 34" Electric Fireplace. The surround is installed on the wall and offers a beautiful touch to yo...
You can add a finished look to your SYMMETRY and SYMMETRY-B 34" Electric Fireplace. The surround is installed on the wall and offers a beautiful touch to yo...View Product
Empire EBL74TK Optional Black Wall Surround / Trim Kit for EBL74 Fireplace
Specifically for use with the Empire EBL74 Nexfire Contemporary Linear firebox, the black wall surround allows for seamless surface-mount installation. It will also give your Nexfire firebox a beautiful and contemporary, finished look.
Specifically for use with the Empire EBL74 Nexfire Contemporary Linear firebox, the black wall surround allows for seamless surface-mount installation. It will ...
Specifically for use with the Empire EBL74 Nexfire Contemporary Linear firebox, the black wall surround allows for seamless surface-mount installation. It will ...View Product
Full package with electric fireplace unit
Sierra Flame by Amantii WM-FML Linear Series Wall Mount/Flush Mount Electric Fireplace with Charcoal Steel Surround
This sleek electric fireplace features a heater and fan, and the heat can be operated without flame. Heat is dispersed from surround and circulates throughout the room. It can provide supplemental heat for about 400 – 500 sq. ft. of space on 750 to 1,500 watts. All linear fireboxes in the series measure 19-7/8″ high x 7-1/8″ deep, regardless of width.
The deep charcoal surround is steel, proportioned for each linear fireplace. The surround incorporates the touch pad controls and a mesh venting for emitting the heat without distracting from the overall aesthetics of the fireplace. The touch pad controls offer on/off function, temperature and timer adjustment as well as flame brightness. The touch pad illuminates only when it is in use and automatically fades to off so as not to distract from the beauty of the fireplace.
Additionally, several options of fireglass media is available to add your own custom look to fit your decor and taste. Variations and colors of fire glass available include reflective glass, frosted glass, gems, and small or large beads. Most Amantii fireplaces require only one (1) five (5) pound package of fire glass for proper fire bed coverage.
The package comes with a remote control and 76″ plug. The unit is also hardwire-ready for both electrical installation and thermostat.
WM-FML-26,34, 48, AND 60 ARE ON SALE FOR A LIMITED TIME. WM-FML-72-7823-STL and WM-FML-88-9623-STL are currently on backorder. We have no estimat...
WM-FML-26,34, 48, AND 60 ARE ON SALE FOR A LIMITED TIME. WM-FML-72-7823-STL and WM-FML-88-9623-STL are currently on backorder. We have no estimat...View Product