The fireplace is often the focal point of a room. There is nothing better than a beautiful hearth burning, with crackling logs and dancing flames. However, some fireplaces can look a little lackluster, and outdated. But it doesn’t always have to be this way! You can update your old, traditional, brick fireplace by painting it!
These days, there are paints for literally everything, and your fireplace is no different. Why not brighten up an old, cracked brick fireplace with some fresh, white paint, or create a deep contrast by painting it anthracite, or black? The opportunities are endless.
Before you start running away with color swatches, you should know how to paint a brick fireplace, which paint is best, and what the process entails.
Things you will need to paint a brick fireplace:
You will also require a good, oil based primer, painter’s tape , and indoor latex paint in your chosen color for the best results. You may also require safety goggles, rubber gloves, a paintbrush and a paint roller if you do not already have them. We recommend this paint roller set with brushes included to help you. With all of your supplies gathered, you can start thinking about painting the fireplace.
How to paint a brick fireplace
The first step in redecorating and painting your fireplace is to clean it thoroughly. Without cleaning the surface first, there is no point as the paint will not adhere well at all. Use your wire scrubbing brushes to remove dirt, dust and debris, and apply a heavy duty cleaner to get rid of any marks and stains. Then, you should rinse the cleaner off, and leave the fireplace surround to dry fully.
Whilst your fireplace is drying, place your drop cloths down, and cover any areas with painter’s tape that you do not want covered in the new paint. Once this is done, it is time to prime!
It is best to use a stain-blocking, oil based primer as this will also prevent any future stains and marks from soot and ash.
Apply the primer with a roller and paint brush to the entire surface that is being painted, and ensure that every inch is covered. You may have to use a smaller, stiff bristled brush to get at the hard to reach areas or crevices inside of the fireplace. Then, leave to dry fully according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
Once your primer has dried out completely, you can start painting. We recommend a latex based paint that is suitable for indoor use. You can use either flat, gloss or semi gloss depending on your preference. However, you should choose one that is rated as heat resistant to help it withstand when the fireplace is in use.
Keep in mind that this type of paint is only intended for the exterior parts of the brick fireplace, such as the surround, and not the inside of the fireplace. If you want to paint the inside, then you will need to use a specially made heat resistant paint.
To get the job done more quickly and efficiently, try using a paint roller for the surface of the fireplace, and touch up the paint with a smaller paintbrush to cover every single nook and cranny on the fireplace surround. Leave the paint to dry as recommended, and return for a second and third coat if needed.
Just make sure that you follow the recommended drying time in between coats, and you will have a perfectly painted brick fireplace that fits in with your home décor!
Do you have to prime a brick fireplace before painting?
Yes, priming is essential if you are painting your brick fireplace. The primer acts as an extra adhesive to help the paint stick to the surface. Without primer, paint can look streaky, unprofessional, and it just will not cover the whole surface properly. This is particularly important if you are painting your brick fireplace.
To ensure that your brick fireplace is painted evenly and perfectly, it might be worth applying the primer with a roller, as this will cover the surface quicker and more evenly for a smoother finish.
Is it OK to paint a brick fireplace?
Yes, it is perfectly safe to paint a brick fireplace. For the most part, you can use the same primers and interior paint or furniture paint that you use for the walls inside your home. These types of paints will work great for covering an old fireplace.
However, you should be aware that you have to thoroughly clean and prime your fireplace before painting, as the brick surface can be incredibly porous, soft and hard to cover.