How do I repair my firebox?


Ideas, opinions and advise from professionals needed... my home has a functioning wood burning stove... it is completely encased in a wood frame covered by tile by the previous owners... the brick surrounding the stove is broken up and jagged and looks terrible.. I want to destroy this horrible tile thing.. and expose the stove and the brick surround it.. my fear is that that broken brick will look TOO rugged to be exposed. My plan is to chip away some of the jagged bricks to make the area as symmetrical as possible and then maybe coat it with something like textured stucco or perhaps apply tile over the brick...Any ideas, tips, hints ANYTHING?? Please note that the stove was inspected when we bought the house and is completely safe and functional. I am simply wanting to repair the surrounding brick strictly on an esthetic level. Here are some photos of the inside..

q calling fireplace masonry pros diy firebox repair

We open these ugly brass doors when we want to use the stove... and it works very well with no issues... except being hideously ugly.

q calling fireplace masonry pros diy firebox repair

This is the top of the firebox..

q calling fireplace masonry pros diy firebox repair

this is the side of the frame with the brick at the base..

q calling fireplace masonry pros diy firebox repair

Help !

  5 answers
  • Kelli L. Milligan Kelli L. Milligan on Jan 28, 2019

    Looks like the busted into the existing fireplace to install the wood stove and did a shotty job covering up their mess. Dont remove much of brick, it's holding up your chimney. The only brick that is not supportive is the brick in front of the chimney box.

    • Jessie Jessie on Jan 28, 2019

      Thank you ! Okay.. I know you cant see it well, but can the brick to the left and right of the stove be chipped away? I don't want to remove it all .. I just want to do enough of it to make it symmetrical.. also can I apply stucco on top of the brick?

  • William William on Jan 28, 2019

    I agree with Kelli. I does look like they opened up a fireplace and put in a wood stove insert. Built a frame with 2X4's, covered with particle board, surfaced with tile? drywall?. Terrible work and....ugly. Yep, you tear out the whole "fireplace" around the stove down to the brick. Yep you can chip away the brick to the left and right. Be careful. You cement, stucco, or anything else.

  • Jessie Jessie on Jan 28, 2019

    Woohoo... this is sounding good to me!!

  • Ellis Ellis on Jan 29, 2019

    This setup looks like a fire waiting to happen. If you look up required clearances between a wood stove and adjacent walls (including plaster or shielded walls) you will see that many wood stoves require 36 to 48 inches between the stove and walls.

    This looks to be a lot less, and the wood is bare. Also, as time goes on, the wood becomes drier and more combustible.

    I would definitely call in a wood stove expert installer and have this installation checked. You could be risking life and home with this situation.

    • See 1 previous
    • Jessie Jessie on Feb 01, 2019


  • Connie Storm Connie Storm on Apr 15, 2020

    Where did you find the french tile. Beautiful.