Thursday, January 29, 2015

Fireplace Demolition Begins

As the blog title states, the demolition of the old fireplace began simply with Kevin breaking out the cement around the firebox and then the cement "brick" facing on the interior of the box.  Once out the damage to the firebox itself became clearer.

This is a repeat picture from the last post of the damaged cement "brick" inside old firebox

Once Kevin removed this you can see the scorching that had taken place on the box itself

Pieces of the cement "brick" back

Patrick came over to help with the next phase of brick removal and how much would need to go to get the box itself out.  Kevin used his hammer drill to chisel out the mortar to remove the brick facing.  Patrick made sure as they went along that Kevin didn't overdo and re-injure his shoulder and undo the progress he's made.  As the first sections of brick came out it became clear the entire front would have to come off in order to get this old firebox out.

Kevin taking out the first bricks surrounding the old firebox

Once out they were trying to see if there was a way to remove the firebox at this point or if all the brick needed to come out

It ALL needed to come out.  Patrick was making sure that as Kevin jack hammered the stone shelves as well as brick sections didn't come crashing down on him.

Making progress, and a mess!!

Once the brick was all off and we cleared the mess off the drop cloth we put in front of the fireplace, the guys were faced with how to get the old box undone from the chimney in order to get it out. Not an easy task and it required sections of the chimney pipes to be cut off in order to lift the pipe up enough to actually remove the box.

Kevin was looking at the old paperwork on this fireplace to determine how and where the chimney pipe was attached to the base firebox. In the end they had to take the Sawzall to the pipe and remove a section to be able to detach the box.

After A LOT of effort - success!!! The old box came out.

Once this was done we were able to get a better look at the chimney pipe itself and see the separation on the interior pipe that had allowed smoke into the outer air pipe and channeled it back into the house.  We kept saying as we saw the damage it was amazing the previous owners hadn't burned the place down and we were thankful we trusted our instincts to not light a fire in this fireplace ourselves!!

This is the section that had separated on the interior pipe

So after a long, messy day the old firebox was set outside to be taken to the scrap metal yard, and measurements were done so we could begin our search for a replacement.

Old firebox ready for scrap

Our antique ash box shows how much of a layer of dust was over everything in the house.  I had my work cut out cleaning all this off and airing out the house.

To be continued....

Stay tuned and I'll post our progress in my next few blog posts.

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