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The Best Fireplace Insert

Last updated on February 29, 2024
Best Fireplace Insert

Our Review Process

Don't Waste Your Money is focused on helping you make the best purchasing decision. Our team of experts spends hundreds of hours analyzing, testing, and researching products so you don't have to. Learn more.

Look for the DWYM seal for products that are the best in a category.

Our Picks For The Top Fireplace Inserts

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Product Overview
Key Takeaway
 Best All-Purpose Pick

PuraFlame Crackling Fire Sound Fireplace Insert

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Crackling Fire Sound Fireplace Insert

This insert is not only easy to install, but it also has all the bells and whistles. There's a heater that you can turn off or on as needed, as well as sound effects to simulate the crackle a traditional log fireplace makes. The fireplace uses LED technology to keep energy costs low.

Overall Take

Easy to InstallAll you'll need to put this insert in place is an A/C plug with voltage up to 120, making installation easy.

 Runner Up

R.W.FLAME Recessed Adjustable Flame Fireplace Insert


Recessed Adjustable Flame Fireplace Insert

With the capacity to heat up to 400 square feet, this fireplace features realistic flames and multiple effects that you cycle through with the remote. The heater has two power levels to help you find the warmth level you need. The sleek 3.8-inch design gives it a low profile to make it easily blend in with any wall.

Overall Take

Overheating ProtectionThis fireplace insert includes an auto-heat kill switch that will keep it from overheating.

 Strong Contender

R.W.FLAME Vent-Free Fireplace Insert


Vent-Free Fireplace Insert

Choose from four different sizes to find the fireplace insert that fits your space. The built-in touch screen lets you control the operation either using the remote or on the screen itself. You can also select from five different hues to find the flame color that you prefer.

Overall Take

Warm and CozyThis fireplace insert can be controlled both through the remote control and on the touchscreen itself.

 Also Great

TURBRO CSA Certified Electric Fireplace Insert


CSA Certified Electric Fireplace Insert

This 23-inch insert is the perfect addition to your empty fireplace, with a lemonwood ember bed and built-in thermostat. You'll get three adjustable brightness levels on the flames to help you set the mood you need at a given time. The adjustable thermostat lets you pick the temperature you want.

Overall Take

Fits in Existing UnitsThis fireplace insert includes the logs and base that you simply slide into your existing fireplace.

Buying Guide

Few things can be as comforting on a chilly night as a fireplace. Not only does it provide heat to the surrounding area, but there’s also something cozy about the sights and sounds of a fire burning in your favorite gathering space.

But traditional fireplaces can be messy and complicated. Gas-powered fireplaces have become a nice alternative to their wood-burning counterparts, providing realistic-looking flames with the press of a button on a remote. But the problem with gas fireplaces is they can be expensive, burning fuel with every hour you have them on. Over the course of the winter, you could find your utility bill hiking upward.

That’s where fireplace inserts can help. First, you don’t have to pay a company to come in and install logs in your open fireplace. If you’re replacing existing logs, all you’ll need to do is remove them and slide the insert in. You can even install a fireplace insert in an entertainment center or have shelving built around it. Some people even choose to simply set an insert on the floor and plug it in—a solution that’s great if you’re renting.

Before you buy a fireplace insert, take a close look at the specifications. Make sure it will fit into your existing space and verify whether you can simply plug the insert in or you’ll need to hardwire it to your electrical.

What to Look For

  • Most fireplace inserts should be placed a certain distance below the ceiling. Check these requirements before you buy one.
  • Some heaters include safety features like auto-shutoff. This will keep the insert from overheating.
  • Many homeowners mount a TV above a fireplace. This can damage the TV. Whether it’s an insert, log or gas fireplace, experts advise keeping your fireplace and TV away from each other.
  • Fireplace inserts are typically controlled using a remote. But some also give you the option of controlling it by tapping on the touchscreen itself. This is a great option for when you can’t find the remote or your remote stops working.
  • Many fireplace inserts will give you multiple options for the visuals. This can include the brightness and style of the flame. If you’ll like this kind of variety, check for a fireplace that will provide it.
  • Sound is also important. Some fireplace inserts include sound effects that simulate the crackle of fire against wood. You may even be able to find one that lets you choose from a variety of sounds.
  • Many fireplace inserts have a heat option, and some can warm a space of up to 400 feet. But it’s important to note these aren’t built to be your sole source of heat.

More to Explore

Fireplaces initially served a very important purpose in a home. In fact, in the 1600s in America, some houses had multiple fireplaces that heated the home and helped with baking and cooking. Over the centuries to follow, fireplaces changed in size and style, and they also varied by region of the U.S.

But perhaps the biggest change to fireplaces came with the Industrial Revolution, which saw homes burning coal instead of wood for heat. This changed the shape and material used to build fireplaces since coal needed iron baskets to burn safely. As the country switched to electric and gas heat, fireplaces became more of a supplement to a home, and today they serve more of a decorative function.

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