26th Jan 2023

Millivolt VS IPI Gas Fireplaces

Millivolt and IPI fireplaces are both types of gas fireplaces, but they operate differently. A millivolt fireplace uses a thermocouple to generate electricity that powers the gas valve, allowing the fire to be controlled by a simple on/off switch or a thermostat. An IPI (Intermittent Pilot Ignition) fireplace uses a standing pilot light that is lit by a spark generated by a battery-powered module, and the fire is controlled by a thermostat or remote control. 

Advantages of Millivolt Fireplaces: 

  • Simple operation: A millivolt fireplace can be controlled with a basic on/off switch or thermostat, making it easy to use. 
  • No electricity required: A millivolt fireplace generates its own electricity, so it can function even during a power outage. 
  • Low maintenance: A millivolt fireplace has fewer parts than an IPI fireplace, so it requires less maintenance. 

Disadvantages of Millivolt Fireplaces: 

  • Limited control options: A millivolt fireplace can only be controlled by a switch or thermostat, so you can't adjust the flame height or use a remote control. 
  • Inefficiency: A millivolt fireplace is less energy efficient than an IPI fireplace because it uses a standing pilot light that's always burning. 

Advantages of IPI Fireplaces: 

  • Advanced control options: An IPI fireplace can be controlled by a thermostat or remote control, so you can adjust the flame height and turn the fire on and off from anywhere in the room. 
  • Energy efficiency: An IPI fireplace is more energy efficient than a millivolt fireplace because it only uses a pilot light when the fire is on. 

Disadvantages of IPI Fireplaces: 

  • Complex operation: An IPI fireplace requires a battery-powered module to generate the spark that lights the pilot light, so it's more complicated to operate than a millivolt fireplace. 
  • Maintenance: An IPI fireplace has more parts than a millivolt fireplace, so it requires more maintenance. 

Both Millivolt and IPI fireplaces are great options for gas fireplaces, but they operate differently and have different advantages and disadvantages. Millivolt fireplaces are simple to operate and require less maintenance, but they offer fewer control options and are less energy efficient. IPI fireplaces offer advanced control options and are more energy efficient, but they are more complicated to operate and require more maintenance. Ultimately, the choice between the two will depend on your personal preferences and the specific needs of your home. 

Additionally, it's important to note that both millivolt and IPI fireplaces can come in different styles, including traditional, contemporary and modern designs. This means that you can choose a fireplace that matches the aesthetic of your home, regardless of the type of technology used. 

Another thing to consider when choosing between a millivolt and IPI fireplace is the cost. Millivolt fireplaces tend to be less expensive than IPI fireplaces because they have fewer parts and less complex technology. However, the cost of operating a millivolt fireplace may be higher in the long run because of its inefficiency. On the other hand, an IPI fireplace may have a higher initial cost, but it can save you money on energy bills in the long run. 

Lastly, it's important to consider the safety aspect. Both millivolt and IPI fireplaces are safe to use, but IPI fireplaces are considered to be safer as they are equipped with a safety shut-off feature that turns off the gas if the flame goes out. This is an important feature that can prevent gas leaks and potential fires. 

Overall, both millivolt and IPI fireplaces are great options for gas fireplaces, but the decision between the two should be based on your personal preferences, the specific needs of your home and your budget. It's important to do your research, consider all the factors and consult with a professional before making a final decision.