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During the winter months, there’s nothing quite like the warmth and ambiance of a cozy fireplace to capture the spirit of the holiday season. However, a fireplace isn’t truly complete without a hearth. Hearths not only prevent the dispersion of messy ash onto the floor but also serve as a protective barrier, ensuring nearby rugs and flooring remain safe from stray sparks that may escape the fireplace. Moreover, a stone hearth adds a touch of rustic charm to any home.
If you’re contemplating adding a fireplace to your home, you’ll undoubtedly need to construct a hearth. Stone is a suitable material for hearths because it’s non-flammable. Even so, it’s crucial to verify that the stone hearth has not been treated with any combustible materials.
Installing a stone hearth can be a challenging task if not executed correctly, making it imperative to understand the proper methods for its installation. The following article from us offers comprehensive guidelines for a straightforward installation of a stone hearth, including a stone surround.
How to Install a Stone Hearth
Installing a stone hearth involves breaking it down into sections due to its weight and then assembling these sections together. While modifications may be necessary to suit your specific design, this do-it-yourself project can typically be completed in an afternoon. Basic carpentry skills are required for the installation. Prior to replacing an existing surround for a working fireplace, ensure that the new fire surround is designed for decorative use and possesses fire-resistant properties.
- Begin by placing the hearth on the floor next to the fireplace and marking out its position using a pencil. Once marked, remove the stone hearth.
- Lay a ¾-inch bed of slab mortar following the manufacturer’s instructions. Roughen the mortar’s surface with a trowel.
- Position the stone slabs that make up the hearth onto the mortar, ensuring they are precisely level. Verify the levelness using a carpenter’s level. Proceed to grout the stone slabs with mortar as per the manufacturer’s directions.
- Attach the legs in their designated positions according to the manufacturer’s guidelines. Mark the layout on the wall’s corner braces, and use a pencil to indicate the placement of fasteners. Remove the legs and drill pilot holes using a 1-inch drill bit and a drill.
- Spread a thin layer of mortar beneath where the legs will be placed. Position the legs and attach them using the braces, fasteners, screws, and a drill.
- Apply a thin layer of mortar to the tops of the stone hearth legs.
- With the assistance of a helper, position the mantel in place and ensure it is level using a carpenter’s level. Attach the corner braces to the wall using screws and a drill.
- Place the mantel shelf in position with a helper, mark the bolt positions with a pencil, and drill pilot holes on the marked spots. Fill the holes with mortar, reposition the shelf, and secure it by installing the bolts using a ratchet wrench.
- Clean all joints in the stone hearth and surround with a pointing trowel. Use the trowel to gently remove residue from the joints and surrounding areas. Wipe away any excess mortar from the stone surfaces with a damp rag.
Remember that if you plan to install your stone hearth on carpet, it’s essential to remove the carpet from the designated area to ensure the stone lays flat and adheres securely to the hard floor beneath.
For additional guidance on building a stone hearth or to acquire the necessary materials for your stone hearth installation, please don’t hesitate to reach out to Camosse Masonry Supply. We’re here to provide expert advice and offer the tools and materials required for a successful hearth installation project.