How to clean faux fireplace large stones

by Judithcausey

Any tips on how to clean a wood-burning fireplace's surrounding stones? They represent many cold nites when we and our pets enjoyed the fire. But seeing that REALLY CLEAN fireplace, I wonder if mine could be like that.

Blackened stones
  11 answers
  • Janet Pizaro Janet Pizaro on Jun 09, 2016
    For the stone you can try shaving cream which is just a foamy soap and no chemicals involved. For the grouted area if the shaving cream is not enough dip a toothbrush into white vinegar and gently rub in.
  • William William on Jun 09, 2016
    Wear rubber gloves and eye protection at all times. Mix a solution of TSP in warm water in the bucket according to package directions. The dirtier your fireplace, the stronger you want to make your solution. Add 2-3 ounces of bleach per gallon of solution. Lay plastic over or around the hearth to protect the underlying floor. Seal around the edges with duct tape to prevent leaks. Pile blankets and/or towels around the area to catch runs, drips, and overflow as you scrub. If the fireplace is heavily soiled, wet it down with the solution using a sponge to allow the detergent to begin working before you start to scrub. Next, attack with the scrub brush. Deep, hard scrubbing will be required on porous stone. Eye protection is very important here, as the scrubbing process will send droplets flying! You may want to keep your mouth shut as well. If stains are persistent, make a paste of water and TSP and apply directly to the stone. Scrub liberally. Finish by sponging clean water over the stone, from top to bottom, as a rinse. Once you’re satisfied with the cleanliness of the stone, allow it to air dry before removing the blankets, towels, and plastic.
  • MN Mom MN Mom on Jun 09, 2016
    To add to @Williams post, I would also have your fireplace checked to be sure your chimney and flues are clean and in good shape. If you're getting sooty and smoky residue building up inside your home, it's worth having a professional make certain the draw is all working at its best.
  • Teresa Teresa on Jun 09, 2016
    Please think about what MN Mom said before you start a fire in the stove. But cleaning if you use a brass brush with soap, vinegar, ammonia and water. Yes this is a little strong but it works and with less energy then just soap and water. Hope this helps. Teresa
  • Nan Nan on Jun 10, 2016
    Spray heavily with white vinegar, put a towel at the bottom to collect the drainage and let it set in and dry, brush with a soft brush when dry
    • See 1 previous
    • MN Mom MN Mom on Jun 11, 2016
      Shaving cream sounds like a huge mess to me !
  • Debi S Debi S on Jun 10, 2016
    When I moved in, I had a fireplace that had been neglected. After having chimney checked and cleared, gas lines replaced, new gas insert and doors, it was time to clean the bricks. Yuck! Cleaning came before the replacement of insert. Stones and bricks were black with soot. I tried vinegar and scrubbing. Some removed. I tried bleach. I tried plain soap and water. I tried steam cleaning with metal brush. Little bit of TSP. ALL WORK JUST A LITTLE. I found a post that suggested Scrubbing Bubbles. Amazingly the soot just ran off. Until I used Scrubbing Bubbles, I didn't know that the stones inside were White! Very little scrubbing required. Lots of towels to catch the mess, water and rags after. A little bit of scrubbing on mortar.
    • Marilyn Zaruba Marilyn Zaruba on Jun 12, 2016
      @Debi S Aren't you clever? I need to remember that...Scrubbing bubbles...who woulda thought it?
  • Crystal Meyer Griffith Crystal Meyer Griffith on Jun 10, 2016
    It depends on what the "stones" are made of. If foam/plastic, a good scrubbing with a detergent will do. If they are actually stone or concrete you don't have to worry about them dissolving. The best thing to removed carbon based soot is brand name oven cleaner (not the dollar store stuff). You do need to protect your floors and surrounding areas with lots of old towels/rags. I used a piece of cardboard from a large box to prevent overspray when using in a bathroom. Use a spray bottle of warm water to rinse. You may need to scrub the stones with a brush while cleaner works. Repeat as needed to remove soot. This also works well on tile surrounds. I saved a shower stall full of tile after a tenant started a fire in the bathroom. That tile lasted another 25 yrs!
  • Sue Harviel Sue Harviel on Jun 10, 2016
    I use a mixture of vinegar and baking soda to clean EVERY THING. It's pretty amazing. I actually used this mixture to clean the inside of my fireplace and it came out stunning. Play around with your ratio. I like mine thick so it forms a paste but other folks might like it a bit thinner. I pour a cup of vinegar in an old plastic butter container then start stirring in the baking soda until I have it the right consistency. Careful in this step because it can foam up and overflow like a bad science project. I don't have to soak it or let it sit, I just grab one of those kitchen sponges with the green rough side to it and go to town! After I've finished cleaning, I then take a damp clean cloth and go over everything to make sure I haven't left any grit there. Done! It's not a messy method either.
  • Alva Jean Alva Jean on Jun 11, 2016
    windex and terry towel
  • Linda Linda on Jun 11, 2016
    How about TSP.
  • Judithcausey Judithcausey on Jul 05, 2016
    This one day of scrubbing bubbles & one day of magic eraser (which crumbled into shreds). But if there were a way to keep it going, I think it will work. I intend to keep going & keep trying all suggestions. I'm thinking if I ever get it to my satisfaction, I want to paint the grout a lighter color?