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Brick fireplace facade pulling away from wall - fixable?

I've noticed the brick fireplace facade in my living room is pulling away from the wall. My house was built in the early 1900s and there is a good bit of sag in my floors including the joists supporting the facade.

The fireplace is actually an original gas fireplace and not a traditional wood burning fireplace. The top of the facade has pulled away somewhere between one to two inches at the widest part of the gap from the wall and decreases as it nears the floor. In the past someone patched up the side gap between the brick and the wall with spackle and over the time I have been here (around 5 years) the gap has only increased by a very small amount, as in a millimeter or two.

It seems to sit on the brick box where the gas insert - or what passed as one in the early 1900s - and I think that is helping to hold it in place at this point. I gave a little bit of a push and a pull on it and it didn't seem to move at all, but ultimately it does not look like something that should be left unattended.

So my question is, is there a way to anchor this at all? Or should it just come down? I don't see that there is an easy way to do anything behind it without just taking the whole thing down.


Re: Brick fireplace facade pulling away from wall - fixable?

Bandaid solutions will be a waste of money, time and energy.

Take it down and start anew or do something else there.

Re: Brick fireplace facade pulling away from wall - fixable?

The foundation under the fireplace and hearth has settled- that's pretty common. While there may be an 'easy fix', the best one is to tear it down and re-do it, starting with a much larger foundation. The 'easy fix" may be "Mudjacking", where concrete is pumped under pressure beneath the foundation, which raises things. This may or may not take all the sag out and it may or may not last. With the other sag issues you refer to, I think you'd do well to have a contractor take a look at what's going on so you can develop a plan to take care of everything over time. Problems never get better on their own and the longer you wait to address them the tougher and more costly they are to fix.


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