Electric flame effect heaters review and compare

Enjoy the romantic look of a traditional wood or coal-burning fire without the mess.
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Electric flame effect heater

Test results for seven flame effect electric heaters, priced from $250 to $400

Flame effect electric heaters perform as a normal convection heater, with the added old-world charm of a roaring fire, but without the smoke.

All the models CHOICE tested use a fan — with three heat settings of off, half and full — to distribute hot air through an outlet at the base of the heater.

The look is so integral to their overall purpose you can even put the flame effect on without generating any heat. Imagine the homey feel of a log fire in the lounge room in the middle of summer!

We tested seven flame effect electric heaters for heating performance, ease of use and safety.

CHOICE tests are different. We buy the products we test — no freebies from manufacturers. Companies can't buy ads on our site and our work is funded by people like you.

Visit our unflued gas heaters article for alternate heating solutions. 

Please note: this information was current as of May 2008 but is still a useful guide to today's market. 

In brief

  • All these models will heat a medium-sized room (depending on insulation and the climate where you live) and look good doing it.
  • Safety features you would expect to see on an electric convection heater are missing on many of these models.

Brands tested

  • DeLonghi Garda (A)
  • Dimplex Allegri ALG20 (A)
  • Dimplex Brayford BFD20 (A)
  • Dimplex Lee20
  • FlameGlow FG250 (A)
  • FlameGlow FG350 (A)
  • FlameGlow FG450 (A)
(A) Discontinued.

We encountered problems with one of the models (FlameGlow FG450) during the test. We're checking this out further and will report on their performance soon.



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