Ideas to consider when refacing a fireplace
A fireplace is a primary focal point in any room, but yours may be screaming for a face-lift. You have a variety
of choices when it comes to fireplace refacing, from natural stone to stone veneer, wood or glass tiles. You can even repaint
your existing brick for an inexpensive solution to a much-needed upgrade.
1. Fireplace refacing with glass
tiles is a labor-intensive and expensive project, but the results are well worth the trouble and the expense. A glass-tile
fireplace shimmers with translucent color and is a striking focal point in your room. You can apply the tile directly over
the brick or over drywall, but you shouldn't apply glass over a combination surface. Masonry and drywall retain heat differently.
The glass could crack if one section heats up faster than another.
2. A slate-tile
fireplace is a beautiful choice for fireplace refacing. The rustic, uneven charm of the slate creates a distinctive pattern
on the surface of your fireplace. You can add the slate tile directly over the brick, or you can cover the brick with plywood
before adding the tiles for a more even substrate. Apply your slate tiles with thinset mortar. Depending on your design choices,
you can elect to have a grout line between each tile or you can lay the slate with no grout for a smoother surface.
3. You can find stone veneers made from a variety of real stones for your fireplace refacing project. These products
are lightweight and easy to install for a custom finish that appears to be a fireplace made completely from solid rock. The
veneers are thin and can be applied directly over concrete, brick or any structurally sound surface.
4. Fireplace refacing with a wood surround will dramatically change your room's appearance. You can create a design
with wood strips that run horizontally or vertically to the ceiling, or you can design geometric shapes like square blocks,
triangles or rectangles to add interest to your fireplace. If your original surround is brick, you'll want to cover it with
a plywood backboard before you install the wood facing. Paint or stain your wood before you attach it to the plywood for easier
5. The least expensive way to reface your brick fireplace
is to paint it to coordinate with your room's décor. Some paint suppliers recommend preparing the masonry surface with
conditioner prior to painting, and then following with latex primer and paint. The most important aspect of painting brick
is preparation; thoroughly remove any debris with a wire brush and a vacuum before cleaning it with soap and water. The brick
should be completely dry before you apply the primer.