Bio Fire Step-By-Step

If you found yourself on this page, chances are that you are working on a project which specifies a bio-ethanol or gel fireplace. But you are not quite sure how to start or where to go for more information. Below you will find some key questions to ask yourself or other people involved in the project before moving forward. You’ll be able to narrow down your options and create a plan of action for your perfect fireplace.

1. Is it gel or is it bio?

You may have heard about gel fireplaces before or you may even have “GEL FIRE” written in the project documentation. How does this fit into the whole picture? Gel is an old-fashioned type of alcohol-based fuel, which used to be popular about 15 years ago. We strongly recommend that you remove the concept of gel fireplace from your mind and your documents, simply because nobody uses gel fuel anymore in new projects and this might confuse your clients as to what type of fuel they actually require. What you need is BIO ETHANOL FUEL. This is a clear liquid fuel which derives from food waste, usually containing 96% of ethanol and denatured so it is unsuitable for consumption. Bioethanol for fireplaces is an eco-friendly product and the production cycle looks like this:

2. Bio ethanol fireplace in my documents

Now that we have established that you are dealing with a bio fireplace, you need to find out whether the fireplace in the project is a ready fireplace (for example, is this a particular model the architect/client had in mind, or are they just talking about the concept?) or it needs to be BESPOKE to suit the project. If there is no information and the plans simply say “gel fire” or “bio ethanol fire” and include a drawing of a long line of fire, most likely they have only taken into account the look of the fireplace so far. Bear in mind that this look might change if the available space is not suitable to house the fireplace that they originally designed.

3. What information do I need to start selecting/specifying/ordering the bio fireplace?

You need to find out several things first:

  • How big is the room featuring the fire (long fires require large rooms)?
  • What is the natural ventilation (windows, doors, possibility of draughts)? You should not place a fireplace in draughty areas like halls.
  • Are there air conditioning units near the fire? This could be a serious obstacle.
  • Is it for commercial or residential use? This aspect will generate further questions, follow the link to read more.
  • What is the budget for the fire? This might be the key question, as bio fireplaces can cost anything between £200 and £15 000, depending on the style, functionality, and technical complexity of the unit.
  • What is the intended use? Is it mostly for occasional use or is it an important feature that will be in frequent operation? This is a key question when working out the economy of use. For very occasional use, you may want to consider an option which is a bit more fiddly and basic but does the job, like our Bio Container. For somewhat more demanding projects of more frequent use you will definitely want to go for a fully functional solution, possibly even with a remote control – like PLANIKA’s fires.

4. I know what I want, what to do now?

Now you need to find out who will be building the housing for the fire and how they will do it. Depending on the design it may be a steel or stone-lined firebox to house a long line of fire or a surround with an opening to fit a traditional fireplace. In any of these cases, you need to know what materials they may use and what extra work they need to carry out in order for them to build the fireplace structure fully.

5. I have my work arranged / planned, where and when do I order my fire?

If you know that you want a ready fireplace which does not need to be made bespoke for you, it’s always best to order long in advance. You can place your order directly on our website. If you are not comfortable shopping online, give us a call and we’ll help you out. We are happy to keep your fireplace for several months in our warehouse until you are ready for delivery. Note that some models do sell out unexpectedly, so securing your fireplace in advance of the building work is a very good idea.

If you require a bespoke model, we will need more information before we can give you a quote. You are likely to need a good 10-12 weeks from the initial quote enquiry to the delivery of your fireplace unit. Please note that any Black Label (Luxury Line) or bespoke products require full payment before the order is processed and that there may be up to 10 weeks lead time after the payment is cleared. This is worth taking into account when budgeting for larger projects.

6. Is there anything else?

Once you have specified your fire, arranged your building work and ordered the actual fireplace, you only need to monitor the work. You will need to keep an eye on any possible changes to the design of the room. In case of any changes, you must consult with us as some of them may be crucial for the fireplace.

7. Once the project is finished

You are always welcome to send us pictures of your final work. We feature and promote pictures of rooms demonstrating our fireplaces and we usually offer some free fuel in return for the picture. This may be a nice touch at the end of your consultation, especially when our clients are happy with the final results.

We are also happy to cooperate with architects and designers on a professional level. Please email or call us to discuss.

Good luck!