Thursday, October 16, 2014

How to Install a Fireplace Mantel

Fireplaces are popular architectural features in many homes. Whether the décor features a classic or a modern design, homeowners can install a fireplace mantel to enhance the elegance of the room. It can also create a focal point within the space. Mantelpieces are available in a variety of woods and finishes. It requires only a few tools to install a mantelpiece. These include a tape measure, a stud finder, a drill and a carpenter’s level. The mantel will be secured in place with liquid nail and screws.

Measure the fireplace to ensure that the mantle will fit around the firebox opening in accordance with local building codes. Use the tape measure to locate the center point of the fireplace and mantle. This will ensure that the mantelpiece is properly centered around the fireplace. Locate and mark the location of the studs on the sides and top of the fireplace.

Spread a drop cloth on the floor in front of the fireplace to protect the mantelpiece and the flooring. Lay the exterior side of the mantle face down on the drop cloth. Apply a bead of liquid nail to the reverse side of the mantelpiece. Turn the mantel upright and set it in place using the center point marks made earlier. Use a drill to pre-drill holes through the mantel and into the studs. Use the level to ensure that the legs are plumb and that the shelf is level before securing the mantelpiece to the studs with screws. Secure the mantelpiece in place with wood screws through the legs of the mantel and the underside of the mantelshelf. If attaching the mantel to a stone fireplace surround, use masonry nails instead of screws. Cover the screw or nail heads with wood putty. Allow the putty to dry before sanding it smooth and painting or staining it to match the mantelpiece’s finish.

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