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Install Tile over a Brick Fireplace

Updated:2013-09-18 16:32:53
If you live in an older home, chances are you have a fireplace that is made out of brick. Some people like that look, but others prefer a more contemporary fireplace. If you thought that you would have to rip the whole thing out and build a new one, think again! You can make your fireplace over by tiling right over top of the brick. Here's how!

Instructions as follows:


Firstly, prepare the surface for tiling by cleaning the soot off the brick first with a scrub brush and white vinegar. Rinse a few times with plain water and let the surface dry for 48 hours before you begin tiling.

Secondly, next mix a batch of the thin set mortar according to the package directions. Use the trowel to apply the mortar to the entire brick surface of the fireplace. Be sure to cover all of the joints so that they are not showing through the mortar. You may need to apply more than one coat if your fireplace is in pretty bad condition. Let the mortar set over night.
Thirdly, mix up a new batch of thin set mortar. Begin placing the tiles on the stone fireplace by firmly pressing them into the mortar. You should start placing the tiles around the fireplace opening first then work your way out to the edges. Place a spacer between each tile to keep them in alignment. Measure and cut tiles to fit around the edges with the tile saw. After all of the tiles have been applied, let them set over night.
Fourthly, remove the tile spacers. Then mix a batch of the tile grout according to the manufacturers directions. If mixed correctly, the grout should resemble thick smooth peanut butter. Apply the grout with the grout float by pressing in at a 90 degree angle into the spaces between the tile. Use a wet sponge to smooth each grout line as you work. Rinse the sponge several times in a bucket of water to keep the sponge clean. Wipe the entire tile surface with a damp rag. The grout should be thoroughly dry within 24 hours.
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