Learn how to quickly and easily paint the inside of your fireplace with heat-safe paint. Painting the firebox is a great way to improve the look of non-working fireplaces, too!
Is the inside of your fireplace looking dirty, old, and dingy? Or, maybe you have a non-working fireplace that is sitting empty, collecting dust, and becoming an eyesore. In either case, you might want to update the inside of your fireplace with a fresh coat of paint!
Painting the inside of a fireplace is a beginner DIY project. The entire project will take only a few hours, including dry time.
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Before we jump into the tutorial, let’s familiarize ourselves with fireplace terminology and discuss the right type of paint to use inside a fireplace.
What is the Inside of the Fireplace Called?
The inside of the fireplace is called the firebox. The firebox is where logs are located and where the fire burns.
In this post, we’ll also reference the mantel, hearth and surround. Take a look at this fireplace diagram to identify the parts of a fireplace.
What Type of Paint do you use on the Inside of a Fireplace?
In the firebox, you should only use paint that is made for high temperatures. At your local hardware store, you can purchase spray paint which is suitable for high temperatures. This spray paint is commonly used on backyard fire pits, grills, stove top grates, and fireplaces.
If your fireplace doesn’t work, you don’t technically have to use high temperature spray paint. However, I find it is still best practice to use high heat spray paint. Just in case you (or a future homeowner) ever has the fireplace fixed, it is best to use the right paint.
What Color Paint should you use on a Firebox?
I prefer to use a black spray paint on the inside of a fireplace, though there are other colors available. Black is a great option for the firebox because it hides soot, creates depth, and complements most any fireplace surround (brick, stone, etc.).
Select a matte or flat finish so that it does not reflect light.
Psst… like the finish on the brick fireplace surround? Learn how to apply a german schmear finish to brick. If the german schmear technique is new to you, start by learning the difference between whitewash, german schmear, and mortar wash.
How to Paint the Inside of a Fireplace
Now, let’s get to the tutorial. This simple project will take only a few hours, including dry time. In fact, you might spend more time doing prep, than you’ll spend on the actual project!
Before beginning this project, remove the fireplace screen.
Clean the Firebox
First, sweep out debris inside the fireplace. Once swept, use a vacuum to remove any remaining dust inside the fireplace. Make sure to vacuum the floor, walls, and ceiling of the firebox.
Prepare for Painting
Next, tape off and/or tarp any surfaces that should be protected from the paint. This might include: the fireplace surround, the mantel, the hearth, and nearby walls or flooring.
Since we’ll be using spray paint, there will be overspray. Therefore, it’s important to protect any surfaces surrounding the fireplace.
Paint the Inside of the Fireplace
Once all of the surfaces are protected, begin spray painting. Use a heat safe black spray paint in a flat or matte finish.
Spray one coat and let dry. Once the paint is dry, apply a second coat of spray paint.
That’s it! So simple and quick, right?
If you’re fireplace doesn’t work, you might also be stuck trying to decide what to do with a non-working fireplace. There are several options:
- place realistic electric fire logs in the firebox
- set a ventless gel fuel fire log insert in the fireplace
- place decorative birch logs on a fireplace grate in the firebox
- add a fireplace screen
- decorate the inside of the firebox
If you decide to go with option #5, here are 3 options for decorating the inside of a non-working fireplace.
1. Remove the fireplace screen.
2. Sweep out any debris from inside the fireplace.
3. Vacuum to remove dust from inside the fireplace. Make sure to vacuum the floor, walls, and ceiling of the firebox.
4. Tarp or tape any surfaces that should be protected from the spray paint overspray (such as the fireplace surround, mantel, hearth, or nearby walls and flooring).
5. Spray a coat of heat safe black spray paint over the floor, ceiling, and walls of the firebox.
6. Let dry.
7. Spray a second coat of heat safe black spray paint over the floor, ceiling, and walls of the firebox.
If you like these DIY fireplace ideas, you might also like:
- Before and After Photos of German Schmear Fireplaces
- How to Paint a Brick Fireplace (with examples!)
- Blue and Gold Christmas Decorations for the Fireplace