Even if the mantel of a chimney is located outside and does not come in direct contact with the flames, it is subjected to very high temperatures and tends to clog up very quickly. Whether rustic, classic or contemporary, it is important to clean it regularly to maintain its original luster and character. If it is really in bad shape, it is always possible to change it or to renovate it.
Clean the cladding of a chimney
The cladding, also called coat, brings the finishing touch and gives all the character to your fireplace. Since this is the most apparent part, it is important to clean regularly to prevent it from getting too deep.
After each use, dust off with a vacuum cleaner or a broom to remove as much ash and soot residue. If the mantel of the chimney is in brick or stone, scrub with a wire brush and a little water and baking soda. Then sponge with fine pumice powder. Rinse and let dry.
For a mantel made of marbletake a little steel wool and rub with soapy water before rinsing with clean water.
For the skins more modern metal, use linseed oil and turpentine. In case of stubborn stains, scrub with a scrub brush and a few drops of hydrochloric acid in water. To perform the operation, remember to protect your hands, forearms, but also your eyes and face.
By cleaning the trim regularly, your chimney will keep its natural glow longer, but if it is really in a bad state, it will take more radical measures.
Renovate or replace the mantel of a chimney
In case of too much encrusted tasks or if the dressing is broken, a simple cleaning will not be enough. It will then be necessary to think of replace the coat in its entirety or renovate it by carrying out some renovation work. Be aware that some built-in fireplaces have an interchangeable frame. So you can change the dressing at will according to the decoration of the room. In other cases, it is possible to replace the mantle but it is necessary to carry out masonry work much more expensive and more restrictive. If some bricks dislodge, just strengthen the joints with a little mortar and to hide unsightly stains, it is possible to cover the whole with a special high temperature paint.
Whatever method you choose to renovate the mantel of your fireplace, consider applying a coat of colorless wax finish to prevent dirt from settling too deep.