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Masonry fireplace slight cracks

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  • #739458

    Need some advice. Lost heat for a week and used fireplace to keep warm. We burn every year but it’s been a couple years since we had it cleaned and inspected because our usage was rather low. House built in 1937. Fireplace in middle of living room. I do intend to have it checked after winter but wanted some input on these cracks. I would assume it’s a firebrick firebox with an outer brick layer. It takes ALL day to heat up back wall that goes to basement to point where you can’t touch it. Even a foot above hot spot on back wall is cool to touch. Rest of surrounding walls are cool to touch. Are these cracks normal? What is best course of action? I’m pretty handy so can likely repair myself if needed. Just need to know if it can wait until after winter. So far no issues but I always think better to know then not to know. Thank you all in advance. And if any of you have chevys I’m a tech there so let me know if you need any advice on them. See pics below.

    #739471
    ChadM
    Moderator
    East Palestine, Ohio

    I am not a masonry nor a chimney expert but those cracks do not look that bad to me…I would definitely fix them but I would not think that crack would be the cause of a wall heating up to the point that you cannot touch it….

    The hot spot would concern me – I would think that if that much heat was escaping into the wall it could cause a fire.

    Chad

    A Working Pro since 1993

    Member since 12/07/2013

    #739481
    RonW
    Moderator
    Holladay, Tn

    It takes ALL day to heat up back wall that goes to basement to point where you can’t touch it

    Like ChadM I’m no chimney expert. But this would concern me. I don’t believe any part of the wall behind a fireplace should get hot enough that you cant touch it.
    I would call someone to check the condition of the fireplace.

    Ron

    A Working Pro since 1994!

    Member since March 26, 2014.

    #739547
    theamcguy
    Pro
    Fayetteville, NC

    The hot spot would concern me – I would think that if that much heat was escaping into the wall it could cause a fire.

    I agree, I would call in an expert now.

    Automotive Pro
    Fayetteville, NC
    (and also the World's Fastest Poster)

    #739558

    I may have forgot to mention. I’ll load a picture. In the picture you’ll clearly see brick, then a 2×12 beam(which stays cool), and above that is where it gets hot. I think it’s brick with some kind of stone type wall, something similar to plaster and lathe. The max temp its reached is about 175 degrees. I would think even hot water pipes passing through wooden floors are hotter no? In the picture I marked where it gets hot which is directly behind the fireplace.

    #739560

    This link shows the anatomy of my fireplace. At first i didn’t think it did because I didn’t think I had an ash dump but it turns out I do.
    https://www.csia.org/fireplace_anatomy.html

    #739603
    RonW
    Moderator
    Holladay, Tn

    Ron

    A Working Pro since 1994!

    Member since March 26, 2014.

    #739615
    hoaks
    Pro

    Hey ya. Kinda hard to tell from the pics. Have you considered a fireback, if the hotspot is opposite the back/bottom of firebox? Also when I bought my 1952 house, 3 years ago they had no cap on the chimney and water completely shot the morter in firebox. I scrapped it all out and replaced with specific fireplace mortar that even comes in a handy caulk like tube. No probs for 3 winters of lots of burning. But as rest say may be good to get checked out.

    #739617
    Sorpa
    Pro
    Pierrefonds, Qc

    I looked inside my chimney and I didn’t see any cracks.
    So, I would fix what you have there.

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