How To Choose A Tabletop Fireplace

A tabletop fireplace is the ultimate conversation starter, adding a cozy mistique to any room. All it needs is a flat surface, and what was just an ordinary dining or coffee table, now has an ambiance and character all its own. The fire is real, but without the smoke, or the mess. It is the perfect blend of elegance, and swagger, and can come in many styles to match your decor.

Unlike choosing to install a gas fireplace, adding a tabletop fireplace is not a decision that needs a lot of additional worry, because the setup and possible locations are vast, and they burn clean, without need of a chimney, so smoke is not a concern. As a centerpiece, or multiple units spread throughout the home, it is an interesting alternative to electric lighting in the evening hours.

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What does the tabletop fireplace use as a fuel source?

Tabletop fireplaces are versatile because they don't require a direct gas line for combustion. Must like a portable propane torch, they keep their fuel source within. They burn 100% clean-burning bio-ethanol fuel. No smoke, no ash, no soot, so, no mess. Depending on the size of the tabletop fireplace, and the capacity of its fuel reservoir, it can burn for a couple hours before needing to be refueled.

Is the fire in a tabletop fireplace real?

Yes. That said, most models have a protective glass that surrounds the flames, eliminating accidental burns. There are also options that use water vapor and colored lights to simulate real flames.

Can I use my tabletop fireplace outdoors?

Using the small, indoor tabletop fireplace outdoors is not recommended. The alternative is what is known as a fire pit table. A fire pit table is similar to the tabletop fireplace, but bigger. Much bigger. They can be the size of a coffee table, to as big as an outdoor patio table.

What style tabletop fireplace should I buy?

Picking the right design of tabletop fireplace can bring a room together and make all the difference in whether or not your decor flows properly. If you are looking for a "wow" factor, you'll surely find a beautiful product to suit your decor.

A few options in styles are:

  • Geometric shapes with their clean lines, especially when done in neutral colors and combined with metal and glass, pair well with a contemporary decor.
Silver Square Tabletop Fireplace
Geometric Stone Tabletop Fireplace
Rectangle Portable Tabletop Fireplace with Glass
Slim Tabletop Fireplace in Shelf
Square Glass Tabletop Fireplace
White Oval Tabletop Fireplace with Glass
  • Stone and clay jar bases with a pebble media, give off a romantic, peaceful ambiance
  • Brushed copper with an antique sheen coupled with a lattice design work well with a more rustic, bohemian and traditional schemes
Round Stone Tabletop Fireplace
Wave Stone Tabletop Fireplace
Stone Geometric Tabletop Fireplace
Black Copper Portable Tabletop Fireplace
Black Ventless Portable Tabletop Fireplace
Black Elegant Portable Tabletop Fireplace
  • Elaborate, botanical designs with a gold finish lend toward elegance, a lovely addition to a sophisticated traditional space
Silver Botanical Design Tabletop Fireplace
Golden Botanical Design Tabletop Fireplace
Gold Botanical Design Tabletop Fireplace
Silver Ventless Portable Tabletop Fireplace
Black with Stones Tabletop Fireplace
Grey Tabletop Fireplace with Stones and Glass

That said, there are so many different varieties, sizes and shapes of tabletop fireplaces that you never have to settle for a specific unit if you know it will not fit into your aesthetic preference. Boutique shops and home improvement stores sell a wide array tabletop fireplace choice.

There are also a handful of online stores that have pictures and size descriptions for your browsing pleasure. And all of these sell the fuel required to keep your tabletop fireplace burning beautifully for years to come.

Are tabletop fireplaces safe?

The simple answer is that they are extremely safe, with one caveat, they still deal with fire, and therein they must be respected. The tabletop fireplace is a bottom-heavydesign, so they are incredibly stable, and the weight ensures it will stay where you place it until moved intentionally.

The ethanol burns clean, but the glass barrier on most units doesn't get very hot, so accidental contact with curious kids or pets touching the glass won't sustain contact burns. However, if anything they reach in and make contact with the fire, burns will occur.

Teach anyone unfamiliar with tabletop fireplaces how to be safe around them and prevent injuries before they happen.

How do I clean and store my tabletop fireplace?


Because the bio-ethanol fuel burns so clean, there is minimal residue present on the burners or media within the unit. They are much smaller, and require less upkeep, but they still need occasional attention. Using a gas fireplace glass cleaner on the surrounding protective shield works well and using a damp towel to wipe the surface of the unit will get all the usual house dust that may accumulate. Of course,all of this is done while the tabletop fireplace is not in use, the fire not lit.


The most important thing to remember is to dump the fuel, or let it burn off completely. Storing anything with an internal accelerant is dangerous, as gases can build up, only needing a small spark to ignite. Let the fuel within burn or dump it into a safe receptacle, then, if you still have the box it came in, store it in its original container.

If it was purchased without a box, select the right size at a home improvement store or shipping company, and add some bating to the free space within to keep it from shifting while stored. Place in an out-of-the-way space like a closet or an attic.

Should I purchase a tabletop fireplace?

The decision to incorporate a tabletop fireplace into your decorating scheme is very personal. It adds a transcendent quality to a room, but that's only half of it. Just like an incense burner or miniature fountain, it is important to keep an eye on certain aspects of the tabletop fireplace to ensure it is always in working order, for when you want to showcase it.

For instance, if it is ignored for an extended period of time, and the fuel evaporates, the unit will not work, making you feel foolish if your intention is to dazzle guests. Proper upkeep has to be added to your home maintenance routine. Be sure before you buy if you can keep it in clean, working order.

Quick tips

The Tabletop Fireplace creates the cozy ambiance of a real fire, without smoke, soot or ashes! Here's what you should know if you didn't have time to go through the whole guide:

  • Elegant tabletop centerpiece
  • For indoor use only
  • Runs on 100% clean-burning bio-ethanol fuel
  • Distinctive shape
  • Glass screens
  • No smoke, melted wax, soot or ashes to clean up
  • No chimney or vent required
  • Reservoir holds about 2-3 hours' worth of fuel (0.5 liters)
  • While the decorative flame provides some heat, it should not be considered as a main heat source