You should never add any fragrance oils to your bioethanol fuel, as this can create unpleasant fumes that could affect your health.
However, our range of lightly perfumed bioethanol fuels smell delightful without becoming overpowering.
So, what does a bio ethanol fireplace smell like when it burns?
Some biofuels give off a more pungent smell than others, so please check you are using a high-quality brand of biofuel from a recognised, trusted source.
However, you may notice a mild chemical smell when your fuel box burns to empty. Most of our customers consider the burnout aroma well within acceptable levels, but you could simply open a window briefly to let the smell escape if you’re not keen.
You should always ensure the bioethanol fire and surrounding area are free of any spillages and the area is completely dry. Ensure that you only pour biofuel into the correct parrt of the steel fuel box. Take care also not to spill biofuel down any side gaps of the fuel box . If this happens, then this fuel may also light and flames could come from the side gaps of the fuel box. Just use some kitchen towel or similar to clear away any spillages.
It depends on the size of your bioethanol fireplace, but our fireplaces provide a capacity of 1 litre of bioethanol fuel. This usually lasts for around 3-4 hours on full flame.
Can I overfill my bioethanol fuel box to burn for longer?
Never overfill your bioethanol fuel box. This can cause leakage across the top of the fuel box, which could present a fire risk.
Always ensure that the fuel box has cooled down before you add more bioethanol. Never add more fuel when the fuel box is actively burning or still warm — the fuel could ignite as you pour, which could be extremely dangerous.
How long does a litre of bioethanol fuel last?
Generally speaking, 1 litre of bioethanol fuel will burn for around 3-4 hours — but it depends on the quality of the fuel. ImagiFuel is our own-brand bioethanol, offering a superior burn costing around £3.75 per litre if you buy in bulk.
If you half-close the fuel box slider, the flames will be smaller, and the fuel will last longer.
Of course, you can get cheaper fuel for your bioethanol fireplace, but you get what you pay for — you may get shorter burn times and an unpleasant odour from cheaper fuel, making it a false economy to buy cheaper.
Our bioethanol burns cleanly with an extremely low odour. We also sell scented biofuel with delightful vanilla, forest, or Christmas fragrances.
Both ethanol and bioethanol are alcohol — basically the same thing. However, bioethanol intended for fuel has an added denaturant that prevents human consumption.
Bioethanol is made by fermenting the by-products of sugar and starch-bearing plants, such as cereals, sugar beet, maize, soybeans, wheatstraw, and corn, and has been used as a fuel for vehicles and heating systems since 1978. Considered a renewable source, burning bioethanol produces none of the toxic gasses associated with traditional fossil fuels.
Bioethanol burns cleanly without producing smoke, soot, or ash. In its liquid form, it leaves no residue, so there’s no cleaning up with a bioethanol fireplace.
Is it safe to burn bioethanol inside?
The bioethanol supplied for bioethanol fireplaces, such as our own-brand ImagiFuel, is entirely safe for indoor fireplaces, which need neither a chimney nor a flue.
For this reason, bioethanol is the perfect choice for people who want a real fire but can’t install a chimney — excellent for use in an apartment, flat, or conservatory. You can get the look of a traditional fireplace or a wood-burning stove without all the mess and pollution associated with burning wood or coal. You can even get wall-mounted bioethanol fires that complement modern living spaces perfectly.
Can I use gel bioethanol in my biofire?
There are two types of commercially available bioethanol fuel: gel and liquid. Gel fuels have a thick, waxy consistency and are more often used for outdoor biofires and camping stoves. Gels generally produce smaller flames and don’t burn as powerfully as liquid bioethanol.
Gels leave traces of residue after burning, while liquid bioethanol burns completely cleanly, leaving no residue at all. For this reason, never use bioethanol gel in your ImaginFires bioethanol fireplace — it could be dangerous.
Is the flame from gel bioethanol different from liquid bioethanol?
As well as the difference in texture, liquid-based bioethanol produces a more aesthetically pleasing flame than gel-based fuels. Liquid bioethanol produces the same large orange flames as a traditional fire (once the fuel box has warmed up), while gel-based flames tend to remain blue and almost transparent.
Never use bioethanol gel in your ImaginFires fireplace. Only use liquid bioethanol approved for indoor use. And savour a safe, beautiful flame that transforms your living space with the unique cosiness of an open fire (without the existential guilt!).
Can you use denatured alcohol in an ethanol fireplace?
Yes. Denatured alcohol is essentially alcohol that has been rendered undrinkable to obviously discourage recreational consumption.
It should never be drunk as it is poisonous.
Effectively, the alcohol you drink and the alcohol you burn in a bioethanol fireplace are essentially the same. However, burning-grade bioethanol has an additive (such as methyl alcohol) included at the manufacturing stage that gives an unpleasant taste and/or smell to discourage drinking.
You'll find all ethanol and bioethanol sold for burning in the UK has been denatured which minimises the costs of manufacture because it doesn't need to be refined in the same way as consumption-grade alcohol.
Using denatured alcohol is perfectly acceptable for bioethanol fireplaces and recommended.
Check the purity of your bioethanol fuel for a longer and cleaner burn.
We have tested our bioethanol fireplaces extensively with liquid bioethanol and do not recommend using gels with any of our products. Further, we have not tested our products to any of the British or European Standard requirements using any gel fuels, and thus we do not recommend them.
What's the difference between liquid bioethanol and gel?
Bioethanol liquid and bioethanol gel are essentially the same product, with differences in the fuel's viscosity. Both are made from bioethanol - a clean-burning carbon-neutral power source that effectively warms your home or the outside when burnt.
However, gels have a thickening agent added, which makes bioethanol a convenient no-spill medium for portable fires. Gels are often supplied in resealable and (sometimes) refillable tins — you place the container inside your fireplace or burner to enjoy a beautiful, gentle flame.
On the other hand, bioethanol liquid fuels are supplied in recyclable bottles and poured directly into your bioethanol fuel box. High-quality liquid bioethanol should be around 95% pure ethanol, with a denaturing agent that prevents human consumption.
Does bioethanol gel burn in the same way as liquid?
Gels tend to burn more slowly and less fiercely than liquid bioethanol because the thickening agent slows down the burning process.
Gels are great for outdoor burners, which can add charm and cosiness to your patio or garden, although they are suitable for some indoor bioethanol fireplaces. However, gels tend to produce less heat than liquids.
Can I use gel in an ImaginFires biofire?
ImaginFires bioethanol fireplaces are designed for liquid bioethanol only. We haven't tested gels for safety because our beautiful fireplaces are supplied with our premium-quality no-spill fuel box, allowing you to fill and burn your bioethanol fuel in the home safely.
We do not recommend the use of gels with any of our fireplaces.
Why can't I see any fuel when I pour it into the fuel box?
We're very proud of ImaginFire's fuel box. We believe it's a beautiful piece of engineering, with several internal and external sheaths designed to make using and fueling your bioethanol fireplace as simple and safe as possible.
Our "No Spill" fuel box conforms to European standards: BS EN 16647:2015, ensuring maximum safety and high manufacturing values.
So, when you fill your fuel box with bioethanol fuel, it's quickly absorbed into the inner lining of the steel box, helping prevent spillage if the fireplace is accidentally knocked or moved.
How much fuel can I pour into the fuel box?
The fuel box is a sealed unit, so when you pour your bioethanol fuel into the burning aperture, it appears to disappear into the void.
You should never see a fuel layer exceeding the MAX level indicator at the bottom of the burning aperture.
Our fuel boxes are designed to contain up to 1 litre of fuel. Don't be tempted to add more! One litre of ImaginFires bioethanol should burn in your beautiful bioethanol fireplace for around 3.5 hours with the slider open fully, and up to 5 hours if the slider is partially closed.
Bioethanol fuel is widely available online and in some DIY stores, varying in price. Generally, we recommend buying your bioethanol in bulk - purchasing single-litre bottles is the most expensive way to stock up.
Our volatile energy market hasn’t impacted the price of bioethanol. So, buying in bulk gets you the best price for your heating and could save you money compared to gas or electricity.
Of course, the quality of bioethanol varies significantly, and poor-quality fuel offers shorter burn times and can give off an unpleasant odour.
Our own-brand bioethanol fuel is called ImagiFuel, and we consider it the best you can get (at a very competitive price). You will receive 10% off the cost of any fuel and accessories when you purchase a fireplace at the same time via our website.
Does bioethanol fuel smell?
ImagiFuel bioethanol fuel burns cleanly, with a very low odour while burning. Sometimes, you'll notice a slight chemical smell when the flame goes out — this is typical of all bioethanol fuels.
Good quality bioethanol gives off a minimal odour that most people don't notice after using their fireplace a couple of times. However, cheap fuels can produce some unpleasant smells.
We also offer a range of scented fuels, with Vanilla, Forest, and Christmas fragrances — offering a delightful, cosy ambience while you heat your room.
Can I burn anything other than bioethanol in a bioethanol fireplace?
Never use any other fuel types, such as wood, paper, or coal in your bioethanol fireplace. These emit smoke, soot, and ash, which require a flue or chimney.
Bioethanol fireplaces don’t need an external flue or chimney. It’s entirely safe to burn ethanol indoors (as long as you ensure you stick to safety guidelines). However, you will need some ventilation to prevent stuffiness and let oxygen into the room while burning.
Bioethanol fuel has a fairly neutral smell when lit — some people claim that there’s no smell at all, but you will notice a mild, but not unpleasant, odour when you first light your bioethanol fireplace. Some people describe the smell as mildly “coconutty”, while others compare the scent to a burning candle.
Either way, you get used to the mild odour very quickly — literally going “nose-blind” to it after a short period. You don’t get any of the charred wood smell of an open fire — the odour is much less noticeable than a real fire.
High-quality bioethanol for low odour
Of course, it depends on the quality of the fuel you choose to burn — if you buy cheap bioethanol, there may be a more noticeable smell. We recommend reading the reviews before purchasing any bioethanol fuel.
Our own-brand range, ImagiFuel, has a particularly low odour. We even sell scented biofuel with Vanilla, Forest, or Christmas aromas that pleasantly boost the cosiness of your room while you heat it.
What’s that smell when I light my biofire?
The first time you light your brand new biofire, you may notice a mild chemical like scent — don’t panic, this is normal as your fuel box “beds in”.
This smell is harmless and will disappear after you’ve lit your fire a couple of times.
What’s that smell when my biofire goes out?
High-quality bioethanol fuel emits very little-to-no odour while it’s burning, but you may notice a slight chemical tang to the air when the flames go out. This is normal and nothing to worry about. You may detect the same smell when you close the fuel box slider to snuff out the flame.
This smell will be noticeable when you first start using your bioethanol fireplace, but you get used to it after a couple of burns. You’ll hardly notice it after a while. If anything, it leaves a clean smell in the air, similar to when you have a new sofa delivered.
Bioethanol fuel uses oxygen in the air to combust and emits a small amount of water vapour and a little carbon dioxide (about the same amount as burning two candles). There’s none of the charred, burning smell of open fires or wood burners.
Bioethanol (also simply known as ethanol) is a renewable energy source with a string of green credentials, including using 100% plant raw materials. Ethanol is an alcohol produced by fermenting the sugars in various crops such as corn, wheat straw, potatoes, soybean, or sugarcane — often used to power cars and industrial engines.
But, of course, bioethanol is also the perfect fuel for your fire — the guilt-free way of heating your home.
The main difference between motor-grade ethanol that you may be more familiar with, and what we call bioethanol for your biofire is that bioethanol is made from the by-products of those crops — the waste parts of the plant typically thrown away.
Does bioethanol create smoke?
In short — no. Bioethanol burns cleanly, mainly producing a trace amount of water vapour and carbon dioxide. This is why it’s safe to burn bioethanol in the home without a flue, extractor fan, or chimney.
Bioethanol uses oxygen in the air to burn (like conventional fires), so we recommend keeping the room ventilated to ensure airflow. And while burning bioethanol fuel produces a little carbon dioxide, it’s only the same amount as burning some regular candles.
Is bioethanol explosive or drinkable?
We were surprised to be asked this so often! Bioethanol is a Class-1B liquid (for flammability) and Class-3 PGII (for transportation) and is “denatured” to prevent human consumption. Most bioethanol sold in the UK is at least 94% ethanol, with a denaturing agent which adds toxicity to stop people from drinking it! So
Bioethanol isn’t explosive, but it is of course extremely flammable — it wouldn’t be much use if it weren’t, after all. We recommend storing your bioethanol fuel as far away from your biofire and other sources of ignition as possible.
Is cheap bioethanol worth it?
Like all consumer products, you should buy the highest-quality bioethanol fuel that you can, which will help ensure it burns cleanly and also offers a decent number of hours burning time.
You will get at least 3.5 hours of heating from 1 litre of our biofuels. We have not tested lower quality bioethanol with our biofires, simply because we do not believe they are safe to use, nor can their quality be relied on.
Accept nothing less than 94% pure bioethanol with no unnecessary chemicals added.
Transform Your Home with the Hottest Decor & Fireplace Trends - Subscribe Now!
Get exclusive news, ideas, and tips delivered straight to your inbox by subscribing to our newsletter today!
We only sell Bioethanol Fireplaces! We are trusted by many of the UK's biggest high street names to supply biofires to their customers too. Biofires use an environmentally friendly bioethanol fuel which will give you a real flame and real heat! There's no chimney required, no flue to install, no cables to connect and no mains power needed.