Tipex

Uncovered old fireplace, structural question!

8 posts in this topic

As in the title really, in the kids games room I was suspicious there was a fireplace hidden behind the plaster on the chimney breast, it was obvious that behind the wallpaper there was only a piece of board covering the small hole you see in the picture below.

 

Today Mrs T was stripping the wallpaper off and uncovered the bit of board, so I ripped it out, one thing led to another and we now have what you see in the picture, according to the elderly neighbours there was a back boiler fitted many years ago, hence the (very poor) block work.

 

Holding up the breeze blocks there is a metal lintel, but the breeze blocks themselves don't seem to be supporting the course of soldier bricks as the breeze blocks are slightly loose.

 

Anyone got any opinions on whether I can smash out all the breeze blocks and open the hole out to the course of original bricks you can see down either side? and if that course of soldier bricks needs anything to hold it up or if that basically forms the lintel that hold up the chimney breast?

 

The plan would be to open it up and clean the brickwork to make a feature of it, It's not the nicest fireplace in the world granted, but in an otherwise bland room devoid of any features, it might look quite nice, if not it can always just be plastered over again anyway.

 

gallery_20359_21_265268.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It looks like the "soldier bricks" are held up by the fact that they are angled & attached by the tapered mortar.

I am sure there are more knowledgeable people that will follow me, but, I wouldn't have a problem with doing what you suggest if it were in my house.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We had similar - the breeze blocks came out and the house is still standing. We didn't have "soldier" bricks, but a stone lintel...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I did think it might be a stone lintel as that is what is above all the windows and they are an absolute b@stard to drill in to if you want to put a curtain rail up, I was pleasantly surprised to find the soldiers.

 

Anyone got any idea what the best way to clean the bricks up is?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I used a stiff circular wire brush on a drill, then sealed with pva/ water mix

1 person likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Taking out the infill blocks and bricks won't cause any issues.

As for cleaning the bricks, belt sander, wire disc, flapper wheels for a small grinder, or even a wood block and sand paper.

Could you reroute the surface pipe work, which will look shite when the fireplace is cleaned up?

Flapper discs. http://www.screwfix.com/p/bosch-flap-discs-115mm-80-grit/32902

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Re: the pipe work, yes it is going to be re-routed, it looked horrible before we opened up the fireplace let alone after, but it was done when we moved in as a temporary measure (6 years later is still temporary, right?) to get some heat in to a previously unheated part of the house.

They will go through the side of the chimney and then through the back, concrete floor means we don't have many options for hiding pipe work unfortunately.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now