How to Fix a Crack in a Metal Fireplace
A crack in a metal fireplace can be a serious fire hazard. The heat in a metal firebox can penetrate the refractory brick panels and transfer to combustible materials around it, such as wood, paper and clothing. This can cause structural damage and pose a health and safety risk to your family.
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There are many things you can do to fix a crack in your metal fireplace. First, you should clean out the fireplace and get rid of any dirt or debris that may have been collected inside. This will help you see the exact location of the crack and determine how extensive it is.
The next step is to replace the refractory panel with a new one. This is a relatively simple job, and most do-it-yourselfers can handle it easily.
If you’re replacing the panel on the back of your fireplace, you may need to remove the side panels before you begin. This will allow you to properly install the new panel.
In some cases, you may need to caulk the joint between the two panels. This is a little different from caulking a bathtub or wall.
You should first make sure the area is clean, so you won’t have any stray dust that could affect the caulk later on. It’s best to sweep the area with a broom and brush away any ash that has been collected in the cracked areas.
Once you’re ready to work, clean out all the mortar joints between the fire bricks and ensure that they are sound. If the joints aren’t sound, you should have a professional mason or fireplace contractor take a look at it.
It’s also a good idea to vacuum the firebox walls and floor with a shop vacuum to remove any ash or other debris that may be on top of the crack. Once the chimney is free of debris, you can then caulk the joints.
Refractory Caulk is an inexpensive repair option for small cracks and chips in firebrick, as well as re-pointing mortar joints between firebricks. It’s not a good choice for larger cracks, gaps, or holes, though.
Replacing the refractory in a factory-built fireplace is typically a simple job that is completed by unscrewing a bracket, removing the original refractory, and installing a new one.
Alternatively, you can have a professional mason or fireplace contractor inspect your fireplace and provide a quote for repairs. The cost will depend on the severity of the problem.
Replacement of the refractory is recommended for cracks that are 1/16 inch or wider and for if pieces of refractory break off.
If you’re looking for a way to give your living room a unique touch, you can consider adding a metal fireplace to the space. These units can mirror the style of masonry models but are more affordable.
You can also choose from a variety of styles, such as those that have metal walls instead of firebrick or have an exposed metal chimney. However, it’s important to choose a unit that will work well with your home and will suit your lifestyle.