gas fire place redoing

Discussion in 'Bricks, Masonry and Concrete' started by condoowner, Oct 6, 2012.

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  1. Oct 9, 2012 #21

    condoowner

    condoowner

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    On the last picture you see a drywall section laying against the wall on the right end of the photo.. that chunk goes where you see the pink insulation around the chimney.

    I reinstalled it. All that is left now are small gaps where you see the insulation
    I can post a pic tomorrow.
     
  2. Oct 9, 2012 #22

    nealtw

    nealtw

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    If you have heat in the floor I would think twice about drilling into the concrete, just becuase the last guy got a way with it,.
     
  3. Oct 9, 2012 #23

    CallMeVilla

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    Yes, condo-guy, that "void" is the floor joist space . . . if you had gotten lucky, you might have hit a joist on edge for a solid hold-down. No big. Just glue and screw but do not over-drive.

    You're doing great . . . steady, careful, informed, asking when not sure. EXCELLENT. ;)
     
  4. Oct 9, 2012 #24

    condoowner

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    We dont have heated floors.. i wish but were not that rich !! :D

    Probably is a floor joist. I have taken every precautions to see whst csme out of the hole. Except concrete dust nothing else, no wood chips no steel particles ...

    Anyways the sole plates are installed. I glued them with PL Premium construction glue and tightened the blue screws to a snug but not until i sstrip the concrete...

    I cant move these plates once the glue has dried.. i would need a sledgehammer or a prybar to remove them.

    Time will tell but im comfident there is no damage to the floor...
     
  5. Oct 11, 2012 #25

    condoowner

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    So the steel frame is built! See the pics. Looks nice for my first framing job..

    Then next week will be installing the concrete panels (backer board) and prepare for the stone job.... I am still searching for a style and finishing.. I mean molding around the fireplace opening and the top of the box... At least the box will be built and ready for the cosmetics..

    One question for now: There were 2 triangular steel brackets with teeth that were bolted on the fireplace. I looked in the assembly and instruction manual, no reference to them but they are drawn on every picture. I think they are safety "stoppers" so people installing the fireplace dont stack-up wood or drywall too close to the fireplace top.

    Am I right? I am asking because I had to remove them to install the top frame member. I can rebolt them but not in the same holes. Will there be carbon monoxide coming out of the holes if I leave them open??

    IMG_0690.jpg

    IMG_0692.jpg

    IMG_0693.jpg
     
  6. Oct 11, 2012 #26

    nealtw

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    They were there for those of us that build with wood, so we don't apply wood any closer to the top of the firepbox. I would leave them right where you have them in the photo for the next guy to ask question. You should have finished the drywall where it is missing, it is a code thing as well as a safety thing. Especially important in a multi- family building
     
  7. Oct 11, 2012 #27

    condoowner

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    There is an opening of about the width of the vertical members laying against the wall for them to be screwed to the wall studs, and about 6" wide band not covered at the top. The drywall is exactly like it was built by the contractor in 2005. I can try to insert a drywall piece behind the top horizontal steel member that is against the wall, if its a code issue.

    If not, then what else can I do?
     
  8. Oct 11, 2012 #28

    nealtw

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  9. Oct 11, 2012 #29

    CallMeVilla

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    Nicely done Neal . . . pages 11 and 12 are particularly important. Hitting your LIKE button!
     
  10. Oct 11, 2012 #30

    condoowner

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    Yeah the PDF was interesting. Thanks for the info. I wish my fireplace's manual was that detailled...

    I will install a firewall behind the fireplace so no chances of fire happens. After, all safety first!

    The pages 11 & 12 clearly explains the standoff requirements and the clearances that have to be maintained. Since I am using steel studs and the finished product will be 100% non-combustible, the requirements are less stringent.

    All I need to fix is the back wall and I should be in good shape. What worries me is the other condos... They are all built the same.

    When people renovate these things, do they usually get them inspected by a fire dept or inspector? If so I should make arrangements ASAP..
     
  11. Oct 11, 2012 #31

    CallMeVilla

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    Don't go there . . . do it right and be done with it. Close it up and roast marshmallows. :p
     
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  12. Oct 16, 2012 #32

    notmrjohn

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    Villa really wants to watch TV. Flat screen TVs are incredibly light, wall brackets to hang one inside a cabinet are inexpensive, but get your power and cable in before you get backer board up.

    if you didn't get a permit B4 starting don't get an official inspection. You may find that you should have gotten a permit and now have to pay permit fee plus penalty.

    Your insurance company may provide a general home safety inspection of your property. Call and ask. Possibly rates could go up if they don't like the fire place.
     
    Last edited: Oct 16, 2012
  13. Oct 16, 2012 #33

    nealtw

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    I always wonder about a TV over a fireplace, the heat thing. But everyone is doing it.
    One trick is to use vacuum pipe to run a chace from the back of the mantle to the side of the box. For cables and such.
     
  14. Oct 16, 2012 #34

    CallMeVilla

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    Well, the cool thing is a flat screen over the mantle ... so here is what I did in one house....

    1. Cut into wall and ran power with a properly positioned outlet using closest receptacle for the feed.
    2. Making sure I had at least 6" separation from the AC ROMEX, I ran TWO HDMI cables to the niche where the electronics were to be located. NEVER run comunication cable paralle and in close proximity to AC power ... it can cause picture and sound distortion. If you have to cross the cables, do so on a perpendicular.
    3. Fortunately, the wall studs were well located, so attaching the TV bracket was easy. Absent the proper location, a 2x6 horizontal nailer is the best bet.
    4. As to heat .... The fireplace surround was a zero clearance model so there was no need for an add-on chase. I simply stapled the ROMEX to the studs and used cable staples for the HDMI (they do not crimp).
    5. Fixing and texturing the drywall finished the job.

    Everything turned out excellent! GOOD LUCK :D

    TV.jpg
     
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  15. Dec 4, 2012 #35

    thomask

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    Question are those niches up high for speakers?:cool:

    IS that man made rock?

    Very nice design work there!
     
  16. Oct 8, 2013 #36

    condoowner

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    Reviving this thread after a while on idle! ;)

    I am about to cap the metal stud box I built for the future mantel. Its getting mildly cold here in Montreal in the morning so Ive decided to prep the fireplace for upcoming winter by cleaning it with a Vacuum, etc... I have never used the fireplace since I moved in (almost 2 years ago) but I knew it was working because when I purchased the house, the previous owner had it on. Also, there are signs of usage..

    One day, I started the pilot light around noon, waited for a few minutes to make sure everything was fine and stable, then I left the house. I came back around 4pm. When I entered the house, I was greeted by a mild (not so strong but very noticeable) smell of what appeared to be natural gas. I immediately shut off the pilot and closed the main yellow gas valve. I opened all windows and patio doors to evacuate the smell as soon as possible. The smell seemed to come out of the top louver. I smelled inside the bottom cavity where the "equipment" is located (gas valves, thermocouple, pilot valve, etc) but nothing there. Nothing behind the fireplace, and nothing inside the walls.

    I then called a gas appliance technician and booked a service call. He came a few days later to look at the fireplace but didn't find anything wrong. He brought a natural gas detector with him (sniffer) but the device didn't register anything (literally 0ppm). To him, the smell coming out of the top louver is not natural gas. To me, whats coming out of the louver smells like garlic or maybe like moly grease.. Difficult to explain but it doesn't smell like burning dust or heat at all...

    He did a thorough cleanup and tested everything. He even used a BBQ lighter to find out if there were gas leaks anywhere in the equipment. According to him, its totally safe to do so, since there are no oxygen in the gas line, as well as the gas pressure forces the flame out, so no chance of fire returning to the main or exploding.. I am not convinced... I must say, I was on "alert" ;)

    Anyways, after about half hour looking at the fireplace, he admitted that he couldn't find anything. Other thing he said, there would be no chance of some gas not burning inside the firebox as the pilot flame would burn any residual gas.. The only chance for natural gas to leak and be smelled is from the control equipment and gas pipes at the bottom of the fireplace where there are no flame to burn the gas, but then we would smell it coming from there..

    I noticed that when the fireplace was really running (real flames) the "gas" smell seemed to considerably reduce... Almost to nothing. The tech had some gas vented on purpose to have me confirm it was what I smelled. It was, but much stronger.

    I has a few people coming over and they confirmed they can smell something like natural gas. According to the tech, it is absolutely safe to use the appliance. So I tried to leave the pilot on for a few days, and purchased a good natural gas+CO detector and installed it right on top of the fireplace. It didnt register anything.

    Long story short:

    Gas-like smells coming out of top louver ONLY when on pilot
    Sniffers and detectors not reading anything
    No gas smell when real flames
    No apparent or detectable leaks anywhere
    Abnormal smell confirmed by several people (including neighbors having the exact same appliance confirming my fireplace release a smell that theirs dont)

    What next????? Everything seems to contradict. I must admit, I am clueless... Should I rely on equipment or my (our) nose(s)?
     
    Last edited: Oct 8, 2013
  17. Oct 9, 2013 #37

    nealtw

    nealtw

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    Just a guess but when you have a full flame the draft takes the gasses up the chimney. When you just have a pilot light maybe there isn't enough draft or something else is drawing air. Try leaving a window open near the fireplace and see if that make a difference.
     
  18. Oct 9, 2013 #38

    condoowner

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    The draft takes the gasses up the chimney? The firebox shouldn't be fully isolated from the outside of the fireplace? By gasses, do you mean carbon monoxide and other combustion gasses???? These are fatal and extremely dangerous..

    CO detectors have not picked up anything either... I stuck the explosive gasses ensor and CO sensor right on the louver where the smells comes from , none have picked up anything..
     
  19. Oct 10, 2013 #39

    nealtw

    nealtw

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    By gasses I ment anything that is intended to go up the chimney. They add the smell to nat gas and maybe it is heavier than other products that do go up the chimney. Like I said, I am guessing, take it for what its worth.;)
     
  20. Nov 8, 2013 #40

    condoowner

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    OK back to this thread for a while now! ;)

    The smell issue is mostly gone now. I am thinking, since the fireplace has been functioning automatically for a few weeks now, that the heat must have helped the gaskets of the two top traps to replace and stopped whatever pinhole leak may have been present... Who knows. Anyway for me its case closed until I smell something again.

    Ive got 2 gas nmonitors on each side of the fireplace, so if there's something harmfull, they will warn me.

    Now to the other questions:

    I am ready to cap the fireplace box with the metal studs I have installed last winter... The box is very strong as I was careful to build it properly. Now I need to cap the box, and having access to cheap Durock panels, I am leaning toward concrete boards to cap the fireplace.

    Ive never worked with these before, but worked with hundreds of drywall panels...

    Other than special screws:

    Do I need to predrill in the cement boards?

    How spaced the screws should be? Like every 8 or 10 inch?
    Do I need to finish the corners like drywall corners are finished? I am refering to the sheet metal angle piece drywallers put on the corners..

    I intend to install tile on the fireplace. Probably 24x24 hardened & enameled porcelain slate. I am scared of the contraction/expansion the fireplace box will see over the next years due to the heat and cooling off cycles... Should I put Ditra or something similar to uncouple the movement of the cement boards and avoid the tiles from falling off or worst breaking? what about the grout lines?
     

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