How to Build a Marble Fireplace

marble fireplace

Adding a marble fireplace to your home can enhance the ambiance and décor and increase the value. A properly designed and installed fireplace will add function to your room and class to your lifestyle. Here are some instructions to follow when putting together your marble fireplace.

Step 1 - Identify Your Needs

Are you looking for simply an aesthetic architectural accent? Do you want something strictly functional–or both? Decorative fireplaces usually do not require a flue and chimney; functional fireplaces do, however.

Step 2 - Know Your Chimney

Several types of chimneys hook up to a fireplace:

Class One Flue

These are characterized by either a stone or brick chimney that is seven inches or more across. This chimney will work with all heat sources.

Class Two Flue

Found in homes built after 1960, these have a slightly smaller liner made from steel in place of the traditional brick chimney. Although it works well with electric fires, gas, and LPG, it does not work well for wood burning.

Pre-Cast Flue

This style is found in most new homes identified as a tiny, rectangular box located on the rooftop. Like Class 2 flues, it also does not work with wood fires.

Step 3 - Choose

Without a chimney, you are limited to an electric fireplace or one with its own power flue or a balanced flue system. Choose which fireplace you'll need to fit your chimney.

Step 4 - Balance

Make sure when locating the fireplace, you size it in accordance with the room shape and size. Don't plan on installing a very large fireplace in a small room, so it becomes a dominant and overwhelming feature. Make sure to keep an adequate amount of wall space available after installation to help balance the room.

Step 5 - Create a Budget

Shop around for the best deals you can find on marble blocks for building your fireplace. Keep in mind that imported Italian marble will be expensive, but the beauty it possesses is well worth the investment.

Step 6 - Assess Your Skills and Tools

If attempting this project yourself, make sure your masonry skills match the task at hand or get a professional to handle the job. You will also need first-rate tools to complete the job successfully. Consider renting tools and other construction aids like scaffolding to ensure a safe working environment. Assemble the necessary tools and supplies to build your fireplace.

Make sure you obtain the correct mortar epoxy to ensure proper bonding. If the need for cutting marble arises, specifically when using tiles, make sure you use a cutting saw with appropriate blades used for the task at hand. Keep in mind while cutting marble, a cooling liquid, usually water, is needed to keep the blade from running hot.