Harry Potter: "The fireplace has been blocked up. You won't be able to get through there."
Arthur Weasley: "Damn! What on earth did they want to block up the fireplace for?"
Harry Potter: "They've got an electric fire."
Arthur Weasley: "Really? Eclectic, you say? With a plug? Gracious, I must see that."
— Harry explains to Mr Weasley the problem with the Floo connection to the Dursleys'[src]

An electric fire is a Muggle object designed to artificially reproduce the appearance, light, and heat of a real fireplace, without the need for firewood or ventilation. The Dursleys had an electric fire in their home at 4 Privet Drive, and as such had the real fireplace blocked up. This created some difficulty for Arthur Weasley when he had the Dursley's fireplace connected to the Floo Network for an afternoon so that he could pick up Harry Potter and take him to The Burrow for the rest of the summer.


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