Fireplace Hearth


I’m hoping you might be able to give me some clear advise on how I should proceed in completing my fireplace remodel.

I have attached a photo for reference.

I have a wood burning fireplace, and when we remodeled, we originally had other plans, so we ran the hardwood floors up the edge of the fireplace. Now that we’ve decided to keep this fireplace, we now have to put in a hearth. The area is small and I would love to have a hearth that people don’t trip over. I would love to have a piece of glass, but I think that’s not up to code.

It sounds like I need to have a hearth that’s 16’ deep, 4’ tall, and 8’ past each side; however, I was reading on your website about a hearth extension, not sure exactly what that is, but was worried because I think my hearth extension is now my wood floors. Is this correct?

Ultimately, I’m wondering if I get a slab of stone, to the above mentioned dimension, and place it on top of my wood floors, am I within code? And glass is out of the question…?

I thank you for your time and hope you have a few spare minutes to reply.

Hi Elizabeth,

I do not see your pic but I believe I understand what you are asking. The hearth of the fireplace is the floor of the firebox (where you put the wood for burning). The hearth extension is the non-combustible material which extends out from the front of the hearth at the given dimensions. Yes, it sounds as though you now have a wood floor hearth extension. If you intend to use the fireplace for solid fuel (wood), you will need to remove the wood flooring and put down a suitable, non-combustible material for an extension. I do not know of a glass that can be used for this but there are many types of tile that can be laid over cement board (or right onto the concrete or masonry hearth support).
As a home inspector, I would recommend that you contact a qualified, chimney sweep in your area. Many of these contractors will come out and give your fireplace and chimney a good look over for nothing. I would follow their recommendations on cleaning, repair of any fireplace/chimney issues and hearth extension replacment materials.

Best Regards,

Marble, Granite, Quartz, Stone, Tile, etc…