What Types of Fires Can You Use in a Media Wall?
Are you thinking about creating a media wall in your home? We don’t blame you if you are. Media walls are one of the most popular interior design trends right now. But, if you’re going to include a fireplace in your media wall, it’s important you buy the right type. So, keep reading to find out what types of fires you can use in a media wall.
What is a media wall?
Before we take a look at what types of fires you can use in a media wall, we wanted to quickly provide a definition of what a media wall is.
A media wall is basically a protruding section of your living room wall (rather like a large chimney breast), which contains a flatscreen television, a fireplace and sometimes recessed alcoves for ornaments and/or books.
Media walls became popular from the late-2010s onwards when the rise of flatscreen televisions made it possible to abandon bulky old TV stands and instead affix TVs to walls.
New, inset fireplaces also meant that two of a living room’s most prominent features - the TV and fireplace - could be combined into one stunning, stylish feature.
Guide - If you want to find out more about creating the perfect media wall in your home, read our guide here.
So, with the definition of media walls out of the way, what type of fires/fireplaces can you use in them? Let’s take a look…
Selecting the right fireplace for your media wall
When picking a fireplace for your media wall, there are several different considerations you need to take into account such as the fire’s fuel-type, form factor and overall design. We take a look at each of these considerations in detail below.
What fuel-type fireplace can you use in a media wall?
Because of the way media walls are generally constructed i.e. a stud wall made from a wooden frame covered in plasterboard, not all types of fireplace are suitable.
It is strongly recommended that you only use an electric fireplace in your media wall.
Why you should use electric fireplaces in media walls
You should use electric fireplaces in your media wall because they function differently to other types of fireplaces (e.g. gas, solid fuel).
Electric fires generate heat using a heating component/element. Electric fires will generally contain one of two different types of heater:
- Fan-forced heater.
- Infrared heater.
In a fan forced heater, a blower is used to pull cool air into the fire which is then passed over a heating element. Once the air has passed over the heating element and becomes warm, it is then blown out of the fireplace and into the room.
Infrared heaters use a quartz bulb to generate heat, which is then radiated into the room.
Fan forced heaters are the most common form of electric fireplace and are the ones we’d recommend for your media wall.
Because of the way fan-forced electric fireplaces operate, heat is expelled directly outwards (not upwards) and as such won’t damage a TV if you have one fixed above the fireplace. Electric fireplaces also don’t become hot to the touch (except for the section where the hot air is being expelled) and as such won’t cause any issues when embedded in, or affixed to, a media wall.
Electric fireplaces are also easy to set up. Simply plug it into an electrical socket and it’s ready to go. Contrast this to gas fires which need to be connected to your domestic gas supply by a registered professional and you can see why electric fires are the convenient, safe choice for media walls.
Finally, electric fires offer an entirely new level of design and visual customisation compared to other types of fires, with changeable LEDs, flame projection technology, smouldering smoke effects and much more.
Tip - To ensure your electric fireplace won’t damage the TV above it, ensure that the fire’s heater is front facing.
Hole in the wall vs wall mounted electric fires for media walls
Having established that electric fires are the best type of fireplace for a media wall, you’re faced with another question… Do you want your fireplace to be hole in the wall or wall mounted?
If you’re not sure what the difference is between these two types of electric fireplace, we’ve explained below.
Hole in the wall electric fireplaces for media walls
A hole in the wall fireplace is designed to sit flush with the front of your media wall.
Hole in the wall fireplaces are great for creating a smooth, sleek look to your media wall and are available in a huge variety of different designs. Some hole in the wall fireplaces are available in two and three sided varieties, which makes them perfect for prominent media walls (i.e. media walls which stick out a large way from your main living room wall).
Wall mounted electric fireplaces for media walls
Wall-mounted fireplaces, as the name suggests, sit prominently against the wall rather than within it. They are designed to be affixed to the wall using a bracket (in much the same way you affix a TV to a wall).
Like hole in the wall fireplaces, wall-mounted fireplaces are available in a huge range of different designs.
Because they stick out from the wall, wall-mounted fireplaces will take up more overall space in your living room, so if you’re working with limited floor space for your media wall, you may be better choosing a hole in the wall fireplace.
Selecting the right size fireplace for your media wall
Once you’ve decided between a hole in the wall or wall-mounted fireplace for your media wall, you should assess which size fireplace is best.
As the name suggests, the whole point of a media wall is to facilitate the optimum placement of a large flat-screen TV. So, it’s generally best to select your TV first and then select which fireplace will fit below.
Luckily, fireplace manufacturers are well aware of this trend and are manufacturing media wall fireplaces which are deliberately ‘squat’ i.e. are not very tall, but wide. Many people describe these types of fireplaces as being ‘widescreen’, because of their thin rectangular aspect ratio.
Which is all a round-about way of saying, check the dimensions of both your desired TV and fireplace and ensure they will both fit on your media wall before you buy!
Two and three-sided media wall fireplaces
There’s yet another choice you need to make when selecting a fireplace for your media wall.
If your media wall is going to protrude a reasonable amount from your main living room wall, then you may want to buy a two or three-sided fireplace.
As the picture below demonstrates, three-sided fireplaces create a fantastic visual feature, adding to the overall drama and impact of a media wall.
There are a wide range of two and three sided fireplaces available, many of which can be switched between one, two and three sided options.
It’s also possible to buy two and three sided fireplaces with removable glass, so you can create a traditional open fireplace effect.
The best media wall fireplaces
With all of those considerations in mind, it’s time to look at the best media wall fireplaces currently on the market.
Here at Direct Fireplaces, we stock a wide range of leading brands, so we’ve selected some of the most popular media wall fireplaces from each brand below.
Celsi Electriflame VR Louvre Electric Fire
Let’s start our tour of the UK’s most popular media wall fireplaces, with one of the most unusual-looking models - the Celsi Electriflame VR Louvre.
With an unusual wall-mounted pyramidal design and satin and black glass, the Celsi Electriflame is the perfect fireplace if you want to achieve a modern, yet unusual looking media wall.
What really makes this fireplace stand out though, is its VR technology. Conventional electric fires feature flames on a flat screen at the rear of the appliance, but with Celsi’s E-VR Flame Projection technology, the frame illusion is projected onto the front, centre and rear of the fuel bed, creating a realistic fire effect.
Elgin & Hall Pryzm Arteon 1000 3SL Electric Wall Fire
If you like the idea of creating the sort of one, two or three sided installation that we mentioned earlier, then the Pryzm Arteon 1000 is a great option.
You can install this fireplace anyway you want, with the glass fire box either partially covered, fully covered or fully uncovered. The panoramic design of the Arteon 1000 will add visual impact to your media wall thanks to its 5D flame effect, glowing ember effect and realistic, hand painted log display.
It also features a shimmering fuel bed with multi-LED effects with 13 dimmable colour options.
OER Alpine Floor Standing Electric Fireplace Suite
For those of you who want a wall-mounted fireplace for your media wall, then consider the OER Alpine. Not only is it easy to install, but it’s squat stature means that there is plenty of room above it for a large television or piece of artwork.
Whilst the OER Alpine features a three-sided glass front, this can easily be removed to create a fireplace with a more traditional look. It also features app control, so you can control it from the comfort of your sofa using your smartphone - truly the type of feature you want on your media wall!
Flamerite Glazer 900 3-2-1 Electric Wall Fire
With the ability to be installed as a full hole in the wall fire, the Flamerite Glazer 900 can help you create a sleek, modern media wall. With no protruding elements, the Glazer 900 will resemble a screen, complementing a TV placed above it.
Aside from its streamlined appearance, the Glazer 900 features a realistic cinderwood fuel bed, ‘omniglide’ tilting front glass screen (to enhance the flame picture), dimmable flame effect LEDs and much more. For the more tech-minded amongst you, the Glazer 900 also comes with an easy to use iOS and Android app.
OER Hilton Electric Fireplace Suite
Not every media wall needs to be a futuristic marvel. We know that some people would prefer their media wall to have a more classical feel. And, for those people there’s the OER Hilton Electric Fireplace Suite.
The OER Hilton features a traditional satin white surround, contrasting Astoria grey satin slips and ‘Ash’ tiled hearth.
Despite its vintage design, the OER Hilton packs all of the latest tech you’d expect from a modern fireplace such as remote control, app control, and a removable glass front to create an open fire feel.
It’s worth noting that this fire requires full chimney breast depth, so if you’re only planning a slimline media wall, this particular fireplace may not be suitable.
Celsi Electriflame VR Media 750 Electric Fire Suite
We began this list of our most popular media wall fireplaces with an unusual model, and we’re ending it with one.
The Celsi Electriflame VR Media 75 fireplace is certainly one that catches the eye. This is largely thanks to its built-in twin shelf storage solution which elevates the fire to a prominent level.
Celsi’s VR technology means this fireplace has a flame effect which they claim is almost indistinguishable from the real thing. It also features Celsi’s clever IsoFlame technology, which means that the flame is independent from the heat. In other words, you can have the flames flickering away, but no heat (or vice versa), so you can create the perfect ambience in your home no matter the weather or temperature.
Direct Fireplaces: The home of media wall fireplaces
We hope you’ve enjoyed our guide to the types of fires that you can use in a media wall. As you’ll have read, there is an enormous amount of choice available to you, so that you can create the perfect media wall in your home - whether large or small, or traditional or modern.
However, the media wall fireplaces featured in this article are only a small selection of our enormous range here at Direct Fireplaces…
Shop media wall fireplaces at Direct Fireplaces today
Find more fireplace buying advice and guides on the Direct Fireplaces blog…