Setting up your living space with a media wall electric fire is an adventure, promising style, warmth, and modern elegance. However, the massive range of options available can be dizzying. If you’re considering building a media wall, your fire is one of the first choices.
This guide aims to provide you with everything you need to make the best purchase decision.
What is a media wall?
The media wall is a combination of modern design and technological innovation. But what truly sets it apart in the world of home interiors?
At its core, a media wall with a fireplace serves a dual purpose. It’s not just a fireplace. Instead, it’s a centrepiece of the living room, providing warmth and entertainment. Let’s break it down:
The entertainment wall
The term “media wall” refers to a dedicated wall where your entertainment devices are placed. This typically includes a TV and sound system but may incorporate game consoles and other devices you use regularly.
The media wall is the modern response to the entertainment centres of the past. It offers a streamlined, organised look, making all your devices easy to access while keeping the aesthetics clean and clutter-free.
The electric fire
Now, this is where the magic happens. The electric fire brings the traditional aura of a fireplace into the 21st century. Most media wall fireplaces run on electricity. With the flick of a switch, it can conjure realistic-looking flames and embers, all without any actual fire involved.
But its versatility is the real beauty of an electric media wall fire. You can adjust the intensity of the flame effect and even change their colour in some models. It offers all the charm of a traditional fireplace without any drawbacks.
Why consider an electric media wall fire?
Why do many modern homes have a media wall with a fireplace? Is it a good fit for your space? Here are some of the perks that make media wall fireplaces so popular:
1) Modern look with a classic feel
Media walls with an electric fire give you the best of both worlds. They’ve got a futuristic look but, on the other hand, also give you the comforting feel of an old-school fireplace. It’s like having a cosy cabin feel in a sleek city flat.
2) Entertainment plus warmth
Imagine watching your favourite Netflix show with the warm glow of a fire beneath the screen. With this setup, you don’t have to pick between binge-watching and staying comfortable and warm. Instead, you get both!
3) Simple to operate
While wood burning and gas fires have their place, some of us prefer simplicity. And if messing with logs or figuring out gas lines isn’t for you, a media wall electric fire is a straightforward choice. You only need to push a button or flip a switch to turn your fire on. Plus, some models come with remotes or smart connectivity, making controlling it from your sofa even easier.
Despite all their dazzling flame effects, media wall electric fires are planet-friendly. Most use energy-saving LED lights for the flame effect and have a smaller heat output, so you’re not racking up a huge energy bill each time you turn it on. What’s more, with ‘flame effect only’ settings, you never need to turn on the heat unnecessarily to get the cosy glow of a fire.
Want a fire that changes colours? Or one with a specific wood finish for the faux logs? There’s a wide variety on offer, allowing you to quickly find the perfect match for your home’s vibe.
Choosing your style: Inset vs wall-hung media wall fires
When it comes to electric media wall fires, you’ll come across two primary styles: inset and wall-mounted. Each has its own set of advantages and a distinct visual appeal.
Inset media wall fires
Inset (also known as built-in or hole-in-the-wall) fires, like the Vision Futura 1500 or the Evonic Halo 1500 XT, are designed to be recessed or set into the wall. They offer a flush finish, integrating seamlessly with the surrounding wall for a sleek appearance.
- Streamlined design: Setting into the wall means no protruding parts, creating a smooth, unified look.
- Space-saving: By being recessed into the wall, they take up no additional room space, making them ideal for smaller rooms or areas where space is at a premium.
- Efficient heat distribution: Being inset often means the heat is directed forwards into the room, providing sufficient warmth.
- Installation: Inset media wall fires may require more intensive installation. You must either hollow out part of the wall or build a stud wall to accommodate the fire.
One-, two-, or three-sided installation
One of the most captivating features of media wall electric fires is their ability to offer various visual experiences based on the number of visible sides. This versatility improves not only the fire’s aesthetic appeal but also its placement and interaction with the room.
One-sided fire installation
As the name suggests, a one-sided installation showcases the flame effect from one side – typically the front. The benefits of this setup include:
- Traditional appeal: It mirrors the classic fireplace design, offering a familiar and conventional look.
- Placement flexibility: One-sided installation is suitable for almost any wall, making it ideal for rooms with limited options.
- Easy integration: It meshes seamlessly with standard room designs.
Two-sided fire installation
A two-sided fire or a corner installation displays flames from the front and one adjacent side. The advantages of this installation type include:
- Better visibility: By offering two transparent sides, the fire’s visibility is enhanced. Because of this, it becomes a more prominent feature in the room, engaging viewers from different angles.
- Corner utilisation: These are tailor-made for corners, an often-underutilised space. As a result, they are turned into the room’s focal point.
- Wider warmth dispersion: With two sides radiating heat, the warmth is spread more broadly across the room.
Three-sided fire installation
These installations showcase flames from the front and both adjacent sides, offering a panoramic view. The advantages are as follows:
- 360-degree engagement: With flames dancing on three sides, viewers get an almost surround-view, which can be pretty mesmerising.
- Statement piece: Given their huge visual appeal, three-sided fires are often the room’s centrepiece, drawing eyes and sparking conversations.
- Maximised warmth: With three sides radiating heat, these installations ensure a more uniform warmth distribution, making for an even cosier ambience.
Wall-hung media wall fires
- Easier installation: If you want to DIY your media wall, wall-hung fires are generally more straightforward. They often require just a wall bracket and some basic mounting.
- Flexibility: You can easily adjust the height or location of a wall-hung fire, giving you more flexibility in room design.
- Visible depth: The slight protrusion from the wall can add an exciting depth element to the room’s design, making the fire a distinct feature.
- Space: While they don’t take up any floor space, wall-hung fires stick out slightly from the wall, which can be a factor in tight spaces.
- Heatflow: Some wall-hung designs might disperse heat in a more upward direction due to their positioning.
What size media wall electric fire do you need?
Selecting the right size for your media wall fire is about more than just making sure it fits. It’s about creating a harmonious balance in your room where everything feels right.
Here’s how to determine the size you need and why it’s so important:
Getting the proportions right
Imagine a massive wall with a tiny fireplace. It feels a bit off, right? The same goes for a small wall overwhelmed with a giant electric fire. Balance is vital when getting the right size fire for your media wall.
Your fire should feel like it belongs there, neither dominating nor disappearing. A good rule of thumb is that the fireplace should cover around one-third of the wall’s width. Always trust your eye and aesthetic judgement, too. Making sure it looks exactly as you want will always be more important. After all, it’s your media wall!
Why the fire comes first
It might be tempting to design a beautiful media wall and then hunt for a fireplace to fit into it. However, this approach often limits your choice of electric fire. The reason for this? Electric fires for media walls come in specific sizes and shapes. It’s much easier to find the fire you love first and then design your media wall to accommodate it. Doing this ensures:
- Functionality: You won’t have to compromise on features or heat output due to size constraints.
- Aesthetic appeal: The media wall will be tailor-made for the fire, ensuring a sleek, integrated appearance.
- Flexibility in design: Picking the fire first means you’ll get a broader range of design options for your media wall.
Measuring for a media wall fire: Step by step
1. Determine the installation type
Before you start, decide if you’re going for an inset or wall-hung installation. This decision will influence your measurements, as inset fires may require a cavity or recess in the wall. On the other hand, wall-hung models need adequate wall space.
2. Measure the width
Firstly, use a measuring tape to find the width of the space where you plan to install the fire. Always measure twice to ensure accuracy.
3. Measure the height
Depending on your chosen design and the model’s specifications, height can be as crucial as width.
4. Check for depth
If you opt for an inset fire, measuring the depth of the cavity or recess where the fire will be placed is essential. Make sure that there’s enough space to accommodate the fire without protrusion.
5. Account for clearance
Remember to account for any required clearances around the fire. Some models require a specific amount of space around them for safe operation.
6. Consider the surrounding features
While measuring, also note the locations of power sockets, cable management systems, and other features that might influence the position of the fire. If you integrate your electric fire with a media setup, account for the sizes of the TV, speakers, or other devices.
7. Mock-up for perspective
Once you’ve taken all necessary measurements, consider using masking tape to outline the size of the electric fire on your wall. This mock-up will visually represent how it’ll fit into your space and help you decide on the perfect size.
8. Keep your measurements handy
Finally, now that you’ve measured the space up, it’s time to shop for your electric fire. Record your measurements and compare them to product specifications to find the ideal fire.
Find out more: Step by Step Guide to Building a Media Wall With a Fireplace
How much heat should my media wall electric fire give out?
Media wall electric fires are primarily an aesthetic addition to your home. But that doesn’t mean you can’t use them for their traditional purpose – providing heat.
Typical media wall fire heat output
Most media wall electric fires produce a heat output of around 1-2kW. In simpler terms, they are ideal for taking the edge off a chilly room rather than acting as the primary heat source. For this reason, you can think of them as a complement to your central heating system, providing an extra layer of cosiness.
The warmth from these fires is often soft and gentle, enough to make a room feel more inviting. If you are snuggled up on the sofa next to the fire, you’ll definitely appreciate the radiant heat. But remember, electric media wall fires are not designed to heat up large, open spaces effectively.
Benefits of low heat output
While a 1-2kW heat output might seem minimal, it does come with its advantages:
- Economic operation: A low heat output means less electricity used. As a result, this means cost savings in the long run.
- Ambient warmth: Perfect for setting the mood without making the room uncomfortably hot.
- Supplementary heating: A great addition to rooms that need a touch more warmth, like a bedroom or home office.
Learn more: Which Electric Fireplace Gives the Most Heat?
Understanding media wall fire flame effects
One of the standout features of modern media wall electric fires is their ability to emulate the hypnotic dance of real flames, creating a mesmerising focal point in any room. But these aren’t just any flames; they are customisable visual treats that allow you to set the mood exactly as you desire.
Traditional flame effect
These effects are designed to mimic the look of wood-burning fires. They offer the familiar orange and yellow hues, creating a warm and cosy ambience.
- Classic look: It recreates the allure of traditional fires, evoking nostalgic feelings.
- Warm ambience: The yellowish glow provides a comforting light ideal for relaxation.
Contemporary flame effects
Modern electric fires push boundaries with various flame colours or even multicoloured patterns. These are fantastic if you want a touch of modernity or a conversation-starting feature in your home.
- Mood setting: Different colours can set various moods. For instance, blue might be calming, while a dynamic multicoloured pattern can be great for an energising party mood.
- Personalisation: You can choose a flame effect that matches your mood or your room’s décor.
Adjustable flame intensity
Many media wall fires allow you to adjust the brightness of the flames. You control whether you want a soft, subtle glow or a vibrant, roaring flame.
- Adaptable ambience: You can tweak the flame to suit different occasions, from a quiet evening reading session to a lively party night.
- Energy efficiency: Dimming the flame effect can save on power consumption.
3D and LED flame technologies
Some models use advanced 3D technology or LED lights to create flames that look real and give the illusion of depth, enhancing the overall experience.
- Realistic experience: The depth and movement created by these technologies can make electric flames almost indistinguishable from the real thing.
- Longevity and safety: LED lights are known for their durability and low heat output, making them long-lasting and safe.
Find out more: The Best & Most Realistic Flame Effect Electric Fires
Media wall fire remote and smart control
In the modern age of convenience, how we interact with appliances has seen significant advancements. Media wall electric fires are no exception. With the integration of remote and smart controls, managing your electric fire has become a seamless, user-friendly experience.
Media wall electric fires like the Elgin & Hall Pryzm Arteon 1250 3SL come equipped with remote control, making it easy to adjust settings from anywhere in the room.
- Ease of use: With remote control, there’s no need to approach the fire to tweak settings. You can do it all from the comfort of your seat.
- Functionality: Modern remote controls allow you to control some models’ flame intensity, heat settings, and even flame colours.
- Safety: A remote provides quick access without getting up if you suddenly feel it’s too warm in the room or need to turn off the fire for any other safety reason.
In the connected home era, media wall electric fires like the Evonic e1500 are jumping on the smart home bandwagon by offering integration with various home automation systems.
- Voice commands: Integrated with platforms like Amazon’s Alexa or Google Assistant, some electric fires allow you to use voice commands. Imagine saying, ‘Turn on the fireplace’, and watching it come to life!
- App control: With smart integration, you can use a smartphone or tablet app to control your fire. This adds a layer of convenience, especially if you’re in a different room or not at home.
- Scheduling: Do you want the fire to turn on just before you get home or turn off at bedtime? Smart controls often offer scheduling options, ensuring your home is cosy when you want it to be and conserving energy when you don’t.
Integrated thermostats and sensors
Some advanced media wall electric fires come with integrated thermostats or sensors that can be managed through remote or smart controls.
- Maintain the desired temperature: Set a desired room temperature, and the fire will adjust its heat output to maintain it.
- Energy efficiency: With sensors detecting room temperature, the fire can automatically reduce its output when the room reaches a certain warmth, leading to energy savings.
Key features to look out for in a media wall electric fire
Beyond their primary function of supplementing warmth and ambience, some features elevate your medial wall electric fire experience. Some key features you may want to consider when making your choice include:
Adjustable heat settings
This feature allows you to customise the heat output according to your preference and the room’s requirements.
- Why it matters: It ensures energy efficiency and helps maintain a comfortable room temperature.
This safety feature turns off the fireplace if it gets too hot, protecting the appliance and your home.
- Why it matters: It ensures safe operation and your peace of mind.
Flame effect customisation
Some fires offer the flexibility to change flame colours or patterns, enhancing the visual experience.
- Why it matters: It personalises the ambience and easily matches the flames to your mood or event.
Set the fireplace to turn off after a specific period, providing convenience and energy savings.
- Why it matters: Useful for bedtime or when leaving the house, ensuring the fire isn’t left on unintentionally.
This feature allows users to pre-set desired temperatures for specific times throughout the day or week. Instead of manually adjusting the temperature every time, you can program the fire to warm your living space just how and when you like it.
- Why it matters: By only heating your room to the desired temperature at predetermined times, you save on energy.
Open window detection
Ever left a window ajar and forgot to turn the heating down? This feature detects sudden drops in room temperature, indicative of an open window or external door. Then, it either reduces or turns off the heat output.
- Why it matters: With open window detection, your electric fire self-regulates, ensuring no energy is wasted from the open window or door.
With this feature, the fireplace requires minimal or no spacing between the firebox and combustible materials, like wood or drywall.
- Why it matters: It provides more installation flexibility and ensures safe operation.
Find your perfect media wall electric fire at Direct Fireplaces
Ready to get started with your media wall build? Find the perfect fire for your setup here.
What’s more, with free delivery to the UK mainland, no-hassle 14-day returns, and a range of finance options, getting a media wall fire has never been easier. Plus, we can arrange media wall fire installation through our partners, Direct Heating Services.
Need more information before buying?
You might like:
- The Most Important Features to Look for in a Media Wall Fire
- Why Media Walls are Becoming a Must-Have Feature in Modern Homes
- Mounting Your TV Above Your Fireplace: Best Practices and Tips
- How Much Does it Cost to Build a Media Wall with a Fireplace?
- Step-by-Step Guide to Building a Media Wall With a Fireplace
- What Types of Fires Can You Use in a Media Wall?
- How to Create the Perfect Media Wall With a Fireplace
- How Do You Install a Wall-Mounted Electric Fire?
- Your Complete Guide to Evonic Fires: FAQs Answered
- Can You Put a Fireplace on a Corner? A Complete Guide to Corner Fireplaces
- Can You Control Your Fireplace Using a Smartphone?
Need more advice? Our friendly team is always happy to answer your questions. Contact us on 0161 376 4181 or email [email protected]. Or you can visit us at our showrooms in Cheadle, Stockport, and Bromsgrove.