Removing brick hearth...please help

ijensenJanuary 28, 2014

When we first moved in our home we had this brick wall installed to use a wood stove. We later removed the wood stove and installed an unvented propane fireplace/parlor stove. Changed my mind again and installed this Dimplex Electric Fireplace. We would like to reclaim some of the space necessary for the wood stove, but not necessary for this electric fireplace. We have a wood stove in our family room and a propane fireplace in out master suite. I love the wall as it sits at the end of the dining room and don't want to remove it as an accent wall. Any suggestions on how to remove some of the hearth brick without damaging the rest of it. I would like to reconstruct it back with the same design, but just not protruding out in the room so much. I can gain almost 2 additional feet of floor space and need to complete this before the wood flooring is installed.

Thanks for any advise.....I would like to do this myself to save on the cost if possible. My husband and I are pretty advanced DIY'ers.....:)

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ijensen

This might give a better idea of the overall look of the wall in the space.

    Bookmark   January 28, 2014 at 1:12PM
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akamainegrower

You can remove it with hammer and chisel or rented power chisel, but... Is gaining only two feet of floor space worth it? Removal would be a time consuming and extremely messy job. Avoiding damage to the vertical wall will be another challenge. This is a nicely designed, attractive hearth. How it will look truncated is another qustion. What you have adds to the value of your house far more than an additional few feet of floor would.

    Bookmark   January 29, 2014 at 6:43AM
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ijensen

akamainegrower....you hit the nail right on the head....:) This is why I have been struggling so much with the situation. I have worried that reducing the size of the hearth might make the wall look too overbearing - out of proportion. When we removed the wood stove and the big black stove pipe that went up the middle of the design, I loved this even more. I designed it and drew it up right down to the exact amount of bricks needed, then had a local guy brick it up for me. I wanted a slight rise/arch, not a McDonald's type arch and when he first did the small left column, it was just too much. He kept telling me that it would blend together once finished. When he left that day, I just kept looking at it and knew I would look at it the rest of my life....so I removed it. When he came back the following day, he wasn't surprised and admitted that after leaving he told his other workers I would probably do that. Glad I didn't disappoint him...LOL

I know I just need to weigh out the benefit vs the desire to have the additional room....:( I also know that once started...there is no going back. The home was built in 1979 and we removed the wall (engineered metal support beam) between the living room and dining/kitchen room which really opened it up. It allows you to view this accent wall from the living room (now great room) which you couldn't before. We removed a window and door, and installed Marvin French doors that open to a deck which lets a lot of light in. The extra 2 feet I would gain would allow me to center the table with the ceiling light fixture and the French doors. I am perplexed that if I do it and hate/ruin it I will regret it and if I don't do it I will always wonder what it could have been.

I do appreciate your input. It helps to have someone on the outside looking in. I especially appreciate you pointing out the same concerns I have had.

    Bookmark   January 29, 2014 at 11:11AM
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ijensen

OK......I was stubborn and did it and I am really pleased with the outcome. Yes, time consuming to do but worth it!!! I guess it shows if you want it bad enough you can figure a way to do it...LOL Didn't gain as much room as expected once we tried to follow the original design, but I feel it gives more balance to the smaller stove. You would never know it had been redesigned.

This post was edited by ijensen on Wed, Apr 23, 14 at 15:51

    Bookmark   April 23, 2014 at 3:49PM
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akamainegrower

It looks great! You have every reason to be pleased with your design and considerable labor.

It's also very nice to have a follow-up o the original post.

    Bookmark   April 25, 2014 at 5:27AM
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ijensen

Thanks akamainegrower. I do appreciate your time in posting the reply. I am so glad I just dug in and did this. I will post another picture with the stove and decoration once they are back in place...:) I am getting ready to start on the wood flooring which is another project long time waiting.

    Bookmark   May 7, 2014 at 4:19PM
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detroit_burb

it was beautiful to begin with, but now is more proportional. Nice work!!

    Bookmark   May 9, 2014 at 8:35PM
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