Inside every fireplace, is a firebox. It's where you lay the logs and build the fire. The firebox is directly connected to the flue and is constructed of fire-retardant materials like refractory brick and mortar. But over time any firebox will begin to deteriorate. Frequent use will speed the process.
That's what happened in Jacksonville. But instead of repairing their deteriorated firebox properly, with new bricks and mortar, the homeowners used an epoxy, a poor substitute for the real thing. If you think your firebox lace is failing here are some suggestions:
- Have a professional evaluate the situation. Deteriorated brick and mortar should be rebuilt with new brick and mortar.
- Check for cracks and deterioration, at least once a year depending on how often you use the fireplace.
- Keep the firebox clean. This will cut down on the chemical by-products the fire produces that speed deterioration of the firebox.
If your firebox isn't masonry but metal instead, the metal can crack and wear out, in which case the entire box will have to be replaced.