If you have been looking for the best fireplace logs then you’ve come to the right place.
Real wood logs look great and produce a beautiful flame with relaxing crackling sounds. But they come with a lot of cleaning work, not to mention the need to vent the fireplace to exhaust harmful gases.
You could upgrade to a gas-burning fireplace, but it’s expensive, and running one costs money.
Faux electric logs have the same pleasant effect as real fire logs but without all the added work involved. They use LED lights to simulate flickering flames, and some even produce a crackling sound.
An electric log set is a great (and cheap) way to jazz up your empty and unused gas or wood fireplace. Instead of spending thousands of dollars on upgrading it to burn gas, get a much cheaper electric log set, and you’ll enjoy the same ambiance.
If you want the complete fireplace effect, look for electric fire logs that have a built-in heater. It’ll feel like you are sitting in front of a real fire.
In this buying guide, we review and compare the best electric fire logs for your fireplace. We also give you some tips on how to choose the best electric log set and what features to look for.
If none of our picks below meets your needs, see our reviews of other top-rated log fireplace inserts.
Note: some links below are Amazon.com affiliate links (learn more)
|Best with crackling sound effect
|20”W x 10”H x 10”D
|Best with heater
|23”W x 13”H x 9”D
|Best with fire grate
|20.5”W x 12”H x 8.7”D
| Dimplex DFI2309
|23”W x 19”H x 10”D
|Best for wide fireplaces
|25”W x 19”H x 13”D
Want the whole fireplace experience, including the crackling of burning logs? Get the Pleasant Hearth electric wood log set.
In addition to realistic flickering flames, the Pleasant Hearth log set also produces crackling sounds.
The Pleasant Hearth electric wood log set is a good choice if you are looking for a cheap way to fill your empty gas or wood-burning fireplace.
It’s ideal if you don’t want the mess of burning wood or if it’s too expensive to fix your gas fireplace.
The Pleasant Hearth log set consists of faux logs designed to resemble real birch logs. A bright bulb produces yellow light that’s reflected by spinning spindles.
It’s brilliant how simple the whole set up is. And yet the flame effect is very realistic, from a distance at least. Up close, you can see it’s not real. But taken in together with the room, it adds the same warm aesthetic as a real fireplace.
The spinning spindle also creates the crackling sound when they hit a plastic plate. If you are keen, you’ll realize it is repetitive, not random, but it still adds a lot to the whole fireplace feel.
By the way, the bulb in the Pleasant Hearth log set is incandescent. Most customers went ahead and replaced it with a red LED bulb to reduce energy use.
The Pleasant Hearth is designed to go into an empty fireplace. For a more realistic look, customers recommend putting it on a grate.
It plugs into a standard outlet.
If you want a fireplace log set that also doubles up as a space heater, the Pleasant Hearth set is not for you. It only produces flame effects without heat.
One common complaint by customers is that the on/off switch is hard to reach once you’ve put the log set in the fireplace.
To make it easier to control it, you can plug the cable into a smart plug. That way, you can turn it on and off with your phone, remote control, or a voice assistant.
The Pleasant Hearth electric log set is great for anyone looking for a cheap and maintenance-free way to upgrade their existing fireplace.
If you’d like fire logs that also provide supplemental heat, we recommend the Comfort Glow electric log set. The built-in 4,600BTU heater quickly warms small and mid-size rooms up to 400 square feet.
The Comfort Glow kit includes faux fire logs as well as a firebox. The firebox makes it seem like the logs are set on a grate, giving them a more authentic look. The firebox also contains the heater.
You can control the heater and log effects separately. You can have both on, or turn off the heater and enjoy only the ambiance of the glowing logs.
The logs look quite realistic, especially when you turn up the dancing flames. Using the included remote control, you can adjust the brightness of the logs and flames depending on the level of room lighting.
The heater is also adjustable. You can select five heating levels using buttons on the firebox or the remote control.
As for installation, the Comfort Glow electric log set is ideal for unused gas or wood-burning fireplaces. It’s perfect if you do not want to burn wood or retrofit your fireplace for gas.
It’s also a great choice for old fireplaces that are no longer safe to use with a real fire.
The Comfort Glow firebox slides into the unused space; then, you can plug it into a standard outlet.
The built-in heater is not very powerful. It works best in small and mid-size rooms up to 400 square feet. If you install the Comfort Glow log set in a large room, you have to sit right in front of the fireplace to enjoy the heating.
The Comfort Glow electric log set is a great choice for anyone looking for an electric log set that provides supplemental heating.
An electric log set with a grate looks more realistic than one without. It makes it look like you have actual wood logs burning in the fireplace.
The Duraflame electric log set uses a black grate, pulsating logs, and embers and dancing flames to create a highly realistic fireplace effect. It also has a built-in heater.
The Duraflame electric log set is one of the most realistic ones you’ll find. The pulsating logs and the grate make it look almost like a real fireplace.
Behind the grate is an LED light that projects realistic flames onto the back of your fireplace. Up close, it’s easy to tell the flames are not real. But from a distance and taken together with the grate and logs, they look almost like a real fire.
To complete the fireplace effect, the Duraflame log set gives off heat. The 1350-watt heater is hidden inside the grate, with a blower distributing the warmth around the room.
Note that the heater is ideal only for small and medium-size rooms up to 400 square feet.
The heater has a thermostat, so you can set a specific temperature using the included remote control or buttons on the firebox.
You can also adjust the brightness of the logs and flames.
Installation is simple and quick. No assembly is required, and you don’t need to get a pro to hardwire the log set. It plugs into a standard power outlet.
The power cord for the Duraflame electric log set is too short. Unless you have an outlet inside the fireplace, you’ll have to use a heavy-gauge extension cord.
Another complaint from customers is the noise produced by the log set. Sometimes rattles or vibrates. Users who checked found that the problem is the mechanism behind the grate that projects flames at the back of the fireplace.
A rotating part causes the rattling, but you can adjust it to eliminate the noise.
The Duraflame electric log set is a great choice for anyone looking for a highly realistic electric log set that comes complete with a fire grate, glowing logs, dancing flames, and a built-in heater.
The Dimplex DFI2309 is the most realistic fireplace log set we found. The texturing on the logs is very realistic, and the way the glowing effect is designed makes it look like a real fireplace.
A built-in heater completes the fireplace effect.
One feature that sells the Dimplex DFI2309 is the background screen. Most electric log sets project flames on the back wall of your fireplace.
In contrast, the Dimplex DFI2309 projects the flame effects onto a black screen, which makes for brighter and more realistic flames.
We also love the detailing on the faux logs. They have grooves and marks you’d expect from real wood logs. And the way the logs glow underneath as if they are smoldering makes them look even more real.
To complete the effect, you can turn on the built-in heater. It is a 1375-watt heater, so it’s only ideal for smaller spaces up to 400 square feet.
In winter, the heater can reduce your gas bill since you don’t need to use your furnace as often.
The Dimplex DFI2309 comes with remote control, but it only has buttons for turning the fireplace on/off and turning the flames on/off.
The heater control button is on the fireplace insert. You can select two heat levels or completely turn off the heat and just enjoy the ambiance of the flames and glowing logs.
It’s nice that the manufacturer provides remote control, but it would be better if it were full-function. If you want to adjust the amount of heat from the heater, you have to stand and walk to the fireplace.
The Dimplex DFI2309 fireplace insert is a great choice for anyone looking for an electric log set with an ambiance just like that of a real fireplace.
If you have a wider than average fireplace, the 25″ Dimplex Revillusion electric fireplace log fills up space nicely.
Putting a too small log set in your fireplace can reduce how realistic it looks. It’ll also look out of place.
If you have a wide fireplace, go with a bigger log set like the 25″ Dimplex Revillusion. The light from the log set fills up the fireplace nicely, giving the glowing logs and flickering flames a more realistic appearance.
The Dimplex Revillusion set includes a plastic grate on which sits the faux logs. Underneath the grate is an ember mat that glows when the fireplace is turned on.
To create the appearance of fire, lights project flames onto a partially frosted acrylic screen behind the grate.
Because the screen is clear, you can still see your fireplace’s masonry. This adds to the realism of the Dimplex Revillusion log set and maintains the warm aesthetic of the fireplace.
The Dimplex Revillusion log set has a built-in heater. The 1500W heater produces more heat (5118 BTUs) than most other electric log sets.
The manufacturer still recommends it for use in small and medium-size rooms of up to 400 square feet, similar to what other manufacturers recommend. However, the Dimplex Revillusion heater will warm the room faster and more efficiently.
Using the full function remote control, you can choose one of two heat levels. You can also turn on the 360° side and backlights, adjust brightness and flickering effect, and change the flame color between yellow and blue.
As with any other electric log set, it’s possible to enjoy the flames without the heat and vice versa. So you can use the Dimplex Revillusion log set all year round, even when you don’t need the heater.
The acrylic back screen is a good idea because it keeps the warm aesthetic of the fireplace masonry. But it has a downside. It reflects some of the ambient light in the room.
If the room is too brightly lit, the log set will not look as authentic.
To reduce the reflection, find out which light is reflecting off the screen and move it. Of course, if the screen reflecting the sun streaming through the windows during the day, there’s nothing much you can do.
Another option is to cover the interior of the fireplace in a dark color like black or grey. The dark surface will reduce the amount of light the panel reflects.
The Dimplex Revillusion 25″ set is a great choice for anyone looking for a realistic electric log set for a wider than average fireplace.
It may seem easy to pick the right electric log set for your fireplace. Just pick the best looking one, right?
But looks are not everything, and online images can mislead you. Here’s what to consider when shopping for an electric log set.
The first step is to decide the kind of design you want. Some log sets consist of just logs – no grate and no ember bed.
A log-only set is great if you are on a budget and already have a grate to put it on (or don’t mind buying a grate separately). Note that this type of electric log set typically doesn’t have a heater.
A log set on a grate is the most common design you’ll find. The grate houses a built-in heater and gives the whole set up a more realistic look.
Some log sets also include an ember bed or mat below the grate with glowing embers. The ember bed makes the fireplace look even more real.
Another aspect of the design to consider is the back panel.
Basic log sets don’t have a back panel. They project flames on the back of your fireplace. The downside of such a design is that the brightness of the flames depends on the interior color of your fireplace. The flames look best if the interior of the fireplace is dark.
Some log sets come with their back panel (usually a black one), onto which they project the flames. These log sets have brighter flames, but on the downside, you won’t enjoy your fireplace’s masonry.
That is unless you get a log set with a clear panel like the Dimplex Revillusion 25″ log set.
Getting an electric log set with realistic flames is not a problem nowadays. Even cheap sets appear very realistic, at least from a distance.
Make sure the logs are realistic as well. Pricier log sets generally have better detailing with fake logs, usually molded from actual wood logs.
Check the design of the glowing effect to make sure it looks real.
If you’d like the full fireplace effect, look for an electric log set with a built-in heater. Usually, the heater is not very powerful.
Most log sets can only warm rooms up to 400 square feet in size.
If you choose a log set with a heater, check whether the heat is adjustable. Some sets have thermostatic control (recommended), while others only have two or three heat settings.
Finally, check if the log set comes with remote control. It doesn’t seem like a big deal, but a remote control makes the log set a lot more convenient to operate.
You can turn the fireplace on/off, adjust the flames and control the heat without getting up from the couch.
No, they don’t. But most fireplace log sets include a built-in heater that gives off heat. The logs themselves are just for aesthetics.
Yes, but only if the fireplace is empty and unused. Electric fire logs are different from gas logs. While gas logs are designed to withstand flames and high temperatures, electric logs cannot be used with a real flame.
Electric log sets with a heater have a typical energy consumption of 1300 to 1500 watts. With the heater turned off, they use very little electricity, especially since most use energy-saving LED lights to create flames and glowing effects.
No, it doesn’t since there’s no fuel being burned, and thus there no emissions. The flames and glowing logs you see are just a trick of the light.