Arguably the two most important things you want from a new fire is that it heats your home effectively but that it doesn’t cost you a fortune to do so. That’s why it’s important to pay attention to how efficient a fire is.

When we talk about a fire’s efficiency, what we mean is how much of the heat generated goes into heating the room compared to how much is wasted. The more heat that goes into making a room warmer, the more efficient a fire is.

In this article, we’re going to take a look at which gas fires are the most efficient, so you can choose the style that’s right for you…

Open Front Gas fires

Open front gas fires look fantastic with their traditional open fire period aesthetic. They provide warmth through convected warm air as it’s pulled underneath the fire, heated with a heat exchanger and expelled out of the canopy at the top, as well as radiant heat from the fuel bed.

Efficiency: Up to ~74%

diagram of how high efficiency open front gas fires work

Outset Living Flame Gas Fires

Outset fires are those that sit on the hearth rather than being set into the chimney. The living flame variety of outset gas fires feature a glass front, providing radiant heat, and also draw in cold air to heat and expel via convection. Some styles have glass panels at the side as well as at the front, increasing the radiant heat.

The living flame effect can come with either a coal, pebble or log effect bed, and many come with remote control options, which are ideal for those who struggle to bend down to operate the controls.

Efficiency: Up to ~78%

Diagram of how high efficiency outset gas fires work

Outset Radiant Gas Fires

These are similar to the living flame radiant fires above except they use ceramic plates rather than a coal or pebble bed to heat the room. Like most other gas fires, they also use a heat exchanger at the back of the fire to heat the air via convection.

Some consider them a little old-fashioned but they’re very effective at heating a room, staying warm long after they have been turned off.

Efficiency: Up to ~84%

Diagram of how radiant high efficiency gas fires work

See all of our outset and freestanding gas fires

Glass Fronted High Efficiency Gas Fires

Glass fronted gas fires that are hearth mounted or built into the wall - such as hole in the wall gas fires - are a very efficient way of heating a room. More of the heat is pushed out through the glass panel via radiation, with less being lost up the chimney. Again, there is also convection at work here to make the fires even more efficient.

Efficiency: Up to ~89%

Diagram of how glass fronted high efficiency gas fires work

Balanced Flue High Efficiency Gas Fires

All of the above gas fires are for those who have a chimney in their home. However, not everyone has a chimney, and therefore they might think they can’t have a gas fire - but that’s not true!

A balanced flue gas fire comes with its own flue system that goes out through an external wall, filtering away any harmful gases. They draw in cold air from the room as with most other fires, but they also pull it in from outside, increasing the airflow into the fire. This is heat within the fire and released from the canopy at the top. There is also a fuel bed to provide radiant heat.

Balanced flue gas fires come in a range of styles to suit you, including inset, outset and hole in the wall designs.

Efficiency: Up to ~94%

Diagram of how balanced flue high efficiency gas fires work

Browse our range of balanced flue gas fires

Flueless Gas Fires

For the ultimate in fireplace efficiency, look no further than a flueless gas fire. Again, these are for use without a chimney, but they don’t use any kind of external flue. Instead, they have an in-built catalytic converter, removing harmful emissions.

Another great safety feature of flueless gas fires is that they have a self-monitoring system that measures the quality of the air, switching themselves off if they detect a drop in air quality that could indicate a fault with the catalytic converter.

Flueless gas fires have a lower heat rating than other fires of 2.5kw (other gas fires can go up to 6kw), but as they’re 100% efficient, all of the heat goes into the room.

It’s important to note that flueless fires can’t be used in very small rooms as they must have sufficient air to burn. 30 cubic metres should be adequate for most flueless fires, but please check the model requirements and your room size before buying.

Here at Direct Fireplaces, we have inset flueless gas fires and wall mounted flueless gas fires to choose from.

Efficiency: 100%

Diagram of how high efficiency flueless gas fires work

See our full range of high efficiency gas fires, or contact us if you’d like any more advice.

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