A fireplace is a place or construction designed and made for building fires indoors or outdoors. Most often, people make a fireplace form concrete, brick, or stone. Usually, it has a firebox and a chimney. It is important to know that not all fireplaces are like this, which means the designs are different.

When you build a fireplace, it is important to keep it clean. The maintenance is a must so that the performance of the fireplace is optimal, especially if you have built an outdoor fireplace. For instance, you can use a fireplace for heating, aesthetic reasons, and cooking. Likewise, keep in mind that people don’t use an indoor fireplace for cooking.

The difference between fireplace and Pit

You can make a fire pit from stone, metal, brick, etc. Simply put, it is a dug in the ground and you can run the pit by gas, electricity, or wood. An outdoor fire pit, for example, can be used for cooking or heating. You can build an indoor fire pit for aesthetic purposes.

On the other hand, a fireplace is a perfect thing that allows three or more people to enjoy the heat in cold winters. It provides a comfortable feeling than the fire pit, which gives you more of a social feeling. A pit is likewise lower to the ground whereas a fireplace is a bit higher than the ground.

What do you need to build a fireplace?

Building a fireplace requires you to get some tools and materials. There are various options for materials and depending on them, you choose the right type of supplies and tools.

First, you need to check your city’s or state’s regulations on building fireplaces. You need to check the codes that impact the type of materials and tools you can use for building a fireplace indoors or outdoors.

Also, what type of fuels you can burn in the fireplace is another important factor. After completing your homework, you have a wide range of choices. For example, you can build a fireplace from cinder blocks, stone, concrete, and brick. After choosing the materials, the next step is to find some tools required for manipulating the chosen materials and make your desired design.

Some of the required tools are:

  • Ground Levelers
  • Wood and concrete
  • Fireclay
  • Ceramic flue pipe
  • Ash grate
  • Masonry tools

Building a fireplace – step by step

First and foremost, you need to choose a location in your house where you want to build the fireplace. The next step is to find out what codes and protocols you must follow. After knowing the do’s and don’ts, you can decide why you are building a fireplace. What are the goals of creating a fireplace? You must answer all these questions before starting to build the fireplace.

1. Create a budget

After doing your homework, the first step is to create a budget that will help you figure out the design and the materials required for building the fireplace. If anything that is not within your budget, you can skip it.

2. Make a design

In this step, you need to get the space dimensions and determine the size of the fireplace. For example, you can sketch out the design or shape of the fireplace. Make a list of the fuels that you will require.

Do you want to build a fireplace that will use wood or do you want a feature that will run on gas? This depends on your personal preference. The design elements also focus on colors and materials as well as the chimney cap.

3. Foundation and Frame

This is an important step, which requires you to level the ground. Once done, create a foundation and then pour the concrete for it.

Cut the lumber to size according to the measured dimensions. Then, assemble the lumber with nails. This allows you to create a good frame. Next, you need to pour concrete to the lower portions of the frame.

4. Add cement and mortar  

Use concrete screws to cut and attach cement material to the frame of the fireplace. As per the instruction or the guidelines of the building regulations, you need to mix mortar and then add it to the cement material on the frame. You can do this in four feet sections. Once done, move to the next step.

5. Install outer material

This step requires you to press the brick, stone, or any other material into the mortar. While doing this, you need to hold it in place so that it sticks. After covering the mortar section, repeat the step until the entire outer area is completed. You must not leave any space between the stones or brick.

6. Install chimney cap

The final step requires you to attach the chimney cap. Make sure you wear protective gear such as gloves. Then, anchor the chimney with screws or masonry nails.

Wrapping up!

Constructing an indoor or outdoor fireplace is not easy. It requires some time and effort. However, if you want something cozy, then building a fireplace is a nice idea. Follow the steps given above to save material, money, and time to build a beautiful fireplace.

Can you build your own fireplace?

If you’re not lucky enough to have a fireplace in your house, you can certainly have one installed—but first review the options. In fact, by some estimates, homeowners recoup 130 percent of the amount they invest to build a fireplace, with 78 percent of home buyers rating fireplaces as a desirable amenity.

How much does it cost to build a fireplace?

The average cost to build a fireplace is $2,415 with most homeowners spending $1,050 to $3,780 depending on if it’s gas, wood-burning, or electric. A new fireplace unit costs $1,600 to $2,000 on average, while installation and finishing adds $2,100, or about 25% to 50% of total cost.

How difficult is it to add a fireplace?

Modern fireplaces – both wood-burning and gas-fueled – are much easier to install than building a traditional masonry unit. Fireplace inserts are even easier, because they’re pre-built from the factory and require only an opening to fit in to.

Can you install a fireplace without a chimney?

Yes, it is possible to add a wood burning stove or a fireplace without an existing chimney, but you do need to install a chimney in the process. You can‘t install a completely vent-free wood burning fireplace because the smoke and gases have to have a way to exit.

Does adding a fireplace increase home value?

A homeowner can often recover over 100 percent of the expenses associated with adding a fireplace upon selling their home. According to the National Association of Real Estate Appraisers, adding a fireplace to home can increase the resale value of the home by as much as 6-12 percent.

Is a fireplace worth the money?

Having a fireplace won’t hurt your ability to sell your home. People still like fireplaces, but few want to pay extra for them. If you’re an investor rehabbing a home to flip, it’s not worth the cost to add a fireplace to an existing construction.

Is a fireplace a good investment?

Having a fireplace in your house can increase the resale value of your home. Prospective buyers may want a toasty fireplace as a feature of the home they purchase. Therefore, the buyer may be willing to pay more for a home that already comes with a fireplace so they don’t have to install one later on.

Which is better gas or wood burning fireplace?

In the battle for most efficient fireplace, gas fireplace efficiency is always going to win over wood fireplace efficiency. That’s because gas fireplaces burn more cleanly and produce fewer polluting emissions.

Is it cheaper to run furnace or gas fireplace?

Operating a furnace for one hour at 75,000 -100,000 Btu cost a homeowner $1.12 – $1.49 based on last month’s national average natural gas rate. By comparison, a natural gas fireplace running at 30,000 Btu per hour cost only 45 cents.

Is wood burning fireplace cheaper than gas?

The average cost to install a woodburning fireplace is between $857 and $3,595, according to HomeAdvisor, while the average cost of a gas fireplace is between $2,300 and $10,000.

How many hours can you run a gas fireplace?

To ensure that your fireplace remains safe to use, the longest you should leave a vent-free gas fireplace on is three hours. If your gas fireplace has a vent that leads to the exterior of your home, it can be left on continuously as long as the fireplace’s glass pane remains closed.

Is it safe to sleep with a fire in the fireplace?

Can I go to sleep with a fire in the fireplace? You should never go to sleep while a fire is in the fireplace. It may seem safe—after all, the fire is small and controlled behind a metal grate. Before going to bed, make sure the fire is completely extinguished.

Can you leave a fireplace on overnight?

Never leave your burning fireplace unattended. The smoke from burning wood contains carbon monoxide, so in order to prevent this toxic byproduct from entering your home, it is important to leave the flue open overnight.

Can I leave gas fireplace on all night?

No, you should not leave your gas fireplace on overnight as you risk carbon monoxide poisoning. Although it’s never recommended, if your gas fireplace has been properly maintained and designed to run continuously, it may be safe to leave it on.

How long can you run a vent free gas fireplace?

For one, these ventless fireplaces aren’t meant to be installed in bedrooms or rooms without ample square footage. Guidelines also advise that they shouldn’t be run for too long (typically no more than two hours).

Can you go to bed with embers in the fireplace?

You should not leave embers in the fireplace while you sleep. Close Fireplace Damper When Fire Is Completely Out. If necessary to keep the fire burning well and smoke-free, you may adjust the damper into a semi-open position. Shut the damper when the fire is completely, absolutely out.

Do gas fireplaces really heat a room?

Gas fireplaces are easy to enjoy. Heat the area of the home where you spend the most time (often the great room or basement) with a gas fireplace by turning the thermostat down and the fireplace up. This keeps those rooms warm and comfortable and reduces the amount of money spent heating rooms that aren’t in use.

Can a fireplace heat a whole house?