What Is The Funny Smell Coming From My Electric Fireplace?

In Resource Center

Electric fireplaces are a popular and convenient alternative to traditional wood-burning fireplaces, as they do not require a chimney and can be easily installed in any room. However, some electric fireplace users may notice a strange smell emanating from their fireplace from time to time. This can be alarming and may lead to concern about the safety of the appliance. In this article, we will discuss some of the common causes of electric fireplace smells and what you can do to address them. 

Build Up of Dust And Debris

One of the most common causes of an electric fireplace smell is a buildup of dust and debris in the appliance. Over time, dust and other particles can accumulate on the heating element, fan, and other internal components of the fireplace. When the fireplace is turned on, these particles can be heated and produce a burning smell. To remedy this issue, you should regularly clean and maintain your electric fireplace by dusting the interior and exterior and vacuuming the air intake and exhaust grills. 

Malfunctioning Heat Element

Another cause of electric fireplace smells is a malfunctioning heating element. The heating element is responsible for generating heat and is located in the back of the fireplace. If the element is damaged or not functioning properly, it may produce a burning smell. If you suspect that the heating element is the cause of the smell, you should stop using the fireplace immediately and have it inspected by a professional. 

Electrical issues can also be a cause of electric fireplace smells. If there is a problem with the wiring or circuit board of the fireplace, it may produce a burning smell. Electrical issues can be dangerous and should be addressed by a qualified electrician. 

Burning of Poor Construction Materials

In some cases, the smell may be coming from the materials used to construct the electric fireplace. Many electric fireplaces are made with synthetic materials, such as plastic, which can produce a burning smell when heated. This is usually not a cause for concern and will dissipate after the fireplace has been used for a while. 

Exterior Sources

Finally, it is possible that the smell is not actually coming from the electric fireplace itself, but rather from something nearby. For example, if you have recently painted or used a new cleaning product in the room, the smell may be emanating from those sources. It is always a good idea to rule out other potential sources of the smell before concluding that it is coming from the electric fireplace. 


There are several possible causes of electric fireplace smells, including a buildup of dust and debris, a malfunctioning heating element, electrical issues, and the materials used to construct the fireplace. To address these issues, it is important to regularly clean and maintain your electric fireplace and to have it inspected by a professional if you suspect that there may be a problem. If the smell persists or you have any concerns about the safety of your electric fireplace, you should stop using it immediately and seek the advice of a qualified electrician or appliance repair technician.