I WANT TO LAY BRICK FOR A WOOD STOVE HEARTH. THE FLOOR SPACE IS ABOUT 5'X 5' I'VE NEVER DONE THIS WORK BEFORE. I CATCH ON QUICKLY.
Never having laid brick before is not really a big problem when laying hearth brick. It may take longer but you should be able to do the job. The first thing you have to determine is if the floor in the area is stable and strong enough to hold the brick. Normal brick with the holes weigh an average of 3# apiece paver brick 4# the 5 x 5 area will take 175 laid normally (about 525#) with pavers 112.5 (about 450#) these numbers do not include mortar or the weight of your stove so add for them when decideing if you are in the load range of the floor. When you start to lay the brick I would build a frame 5'x5'and 2 5/8" high for pavers 4" for regular brick mark the sides of the frame every 4" for pavers every 2 5/8"for reg.
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This will keep your brick sq. and you can level your brick by using a 2x4 and mallet or hammer.If you can level them without this a string line is all that is needed.The spacing marks will allow for your joints. I would use type O mortar but you may have trouble finding it. If you want to mix it yourself the mixture is 1 part portland 2 parts hydrated lime 9 parts sand. Type N will work but it is not as elastic as type O and may crack more from the heating and cooling caused by the stove.
Because you have not done this before I suggest you lay the brick in a bed of mortar and don't worry about buttering each brick. Once the brick are in place bag the grout in between the brick and finish the joints with a concave jointer.
I have the ugliest fireplace in the state of Texas! It is made from cheap brick, five feet wide and extends all the way to the ceiling, without a mantle - its just a flat brick wall in the corner of my living room with an ugly 3X3 foot hole for a fire. How can this liability be turned into an asset? Painting is one option but how about some other creative suggestions?
You can look around for a mantle... or you could build one. Often made of wood and sometimes marble or other material.. they surround the opening leading up to a mantle shelf. I have seen them at auctions and at antiques dealers. Or you can look for plans to build one.
We have recently purchased a home that is 11years old. When attempting to use the fireplace I discovered we had a draft coming into the house. We have a stove insert not a fireplace. I have taken the cap off and cleaned the chimney. It was not very dirty. This made no difference. I disconnected the pipe from the top of the stove and checked for draft. Instead of a draft, I have a breeze coming in. This insert was used a lot by the previous owner. I have made sure that there were no appliances running that could cause a negative air pressure. The cap is large and is located on the end of the house about 20-25 feet from the peek. The chimney is sided and rectangular at the top. The top is about 18x30 and only services the fireplace. The cap extends about 8 inches above the flat area at the top the chimney. What should I do or look for to get a draft in my chimney?
Building code requires any chimney to extend above the peak of the highest roof by about 2 feet.... Not just above the roof, it protrudes from.
Any chimney lower than that can be affected by downdraft coming off the higher roof sections. If I am reading you correctly, the solution is to extend your chimney above the highest roof peak of your home by 2 feet.
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