Monday, August 12, 2013
This is my fireplace or more precisely, what remains of the fireplace after it was butchered. It had a nice arched front to it and no doubt burnt wood in a nice fashion. However, the previous owners told me they had a phobia about burning wood and had an electric insert put in. They didn't mention that they butchered the metal lining of the brickwork hid behind the trim but even if they had, I don't think it would have prevented me from buying this house. However, I do love to burn some wood at a recreational level during winters and I have lots of wood to burn with five more large hardwood trees still on the stump, I would like to get this fireplace working before winter.
I'm torn as to what to do right now. Because the metal lining of the firebox was butchered to run the electrical outlet for the electric insert and the bricks have been hacked, I don't think I will be able to have an open fireplace short of completely demo-ing what is there and starting over. I'm not terribly fond of the bricks used but the practical side of me says they aren't terrible either. So I exploring the possibility of putting in a wood burning insert into the cavity if a properly sized one can be found. After lots of searching, I finally found a local place that was willing to come out next week to look at the situation and give me advice and a quote on what should be done with the fireplace.
If it isn't easy or priced right to salvage what is there, I may end up just tearing out all the brick myself and starting over from scratch. Then I can do things properly and the way I want them done but the drawback is that it will require a lot of time which I would really like to spend on other projects I have in mind before the year is out. So for now I am doing what I have done best on this project, procrastinating. Perhaps once the fireplace rep comes out next week, a plan of action will begin to firm up in my mind and I can start this project simultaneously with the other six I am currently working on.
On a more positive note, I drug the electric insert outside to take a few photos to try and sell it on the web and discovered a false grill on the front that popped open and revealed the controls. Up until now, I hadn't found a way to turn it on and assumed it must have been by a remote control taken by the previous owners. So I drug it back to the fireplace, plugged it in and saw that it does work but looks cheesy as can be. I get the same affect of looking at it as I would seeing a video of a fire on my cellphone. In other words, nothing at all.