Exploding outdoor fireplace walls! [Archive] - Ceramic Tile Advice Forums - John Bridge Ceramic Tile


View Full Version : Exploding outdoor fireplace walls!

08-03-2004, 12:41 AM

I'm curious if anyone here has seen this. Just tried the
outdoor fireplace at my new home for the first time. Within
15 minutes of a nice fire, snapping and popping stucco and
paint came flying out at all of us.

The next morning I could see shallow craters on the side and
back walls where the stucco or concrete had exploded out.

Does this sound familiar? Could the previous owner have been
just building this to sell but not use?

Is there a way for me to fix this and make it safe?



Sponsored Links

08-03-2004, 05:36 AM
They didnt have an air vent is what it sounds like. Fire needs to breath what kind of fireplace is it gas or wood??????

08-03-2004, 07:22 AM
Welcome, Kevin. :)

Sounds like a construction defect to me. We'd need to know a whole lot more detail to make any kind of judgement, though.

A photo (you'll hafta register before the program will let you post one) would certainly help. We like pichers. :D

And a lot more description of the construction of the beast.

The outside of a properly built fire box and chimney should barely be aware there's a fire inside.

My opinion; worth price charged.

08-03-2004, 11:34 AM
I agree that this may be a contruction problem. On the other hand, a well built masonry (real) fireplace does need time to cure prior to building that first fire, and that first fire or two should be rather humble ones. ;) I always told my clients to give the fireplace about 8 weeks to cure (dry out), but since this is a outdoor deal, it could take longer if your climate is wet. You probably need someone who knows their stuff to look at your situation.

08-05-2004, 02:40 AM
Hello again,

I've registered and got some pics of my outdoor fireplace. And I think I was unclear on my original message. It's the interior - sides and back walls of the actual firebox (correct term?) area. You'll see in the pictures. This is what was exploding and shot out at us.

All the pics I have seen online usually show some type of brick on the sides and behind the firebox area (where the fire actually sits)...

This one doesn't appear to have bricks under the stucco either - maybe I just need to light a rip roaring one and stand back and see if it explodes down to brick...

Just curious if this might be:
1) fixable (go over the firebox areas with brick?)
2) not fixable and a hazard
3) ideas ?

Thanks a ton!


08-05-2004, 06:36 AM
Well, I certainly misunderstood. :D

yeah, that looks like it was pookeyed up for re-sale to moi. The only two common materials I know of suitable for a fire box are steel and fire-brick. Don't see any sign of either one there.

Looks like y'all built a far in what would normally be an ash pit, but it doesn't look like the fire box construction is any different. Or maybe it is and is just covered up with that pookey. I think it was all meant to be only decorative at this phase of its life.

I would do just what you suggest: Build a big ol' far in there and let the devil take the hindmost. Or just paint it again and plant some posies in there. :)

My opinion; worth price charged.

John Bridge
08-05-2004, 06:27 PM
Nope, can't see no far brick there. :)