Tue. May 21st, 2024

It all started with the floor.

We tore up the old hardwood and with it came the stone in front of the fireplace (also know as the hearth).

No problem, right? We’d just replace it with something else and be on our merry way. Well, before you replace something, you have to know what to replace it with. And that depends on the type of fireplace you have.

After some googling, we came across some nice wood stoves and were intrigued. They’re quite cute and a lot less messy/dangerous than a wood-burning fireplace (which is what the last owner had).

woodstove

After some googling, we came across some nice wood stoves and were intrigued. They’re quite cute and a lot less messy/dangerous than a wood-burning fireplace (which is what the last owner had).

As we searched for a solution, we learned that we should actually have the chimney inspected to figure out our options. So did we. He determined that our chimney was in good shape but that to pass a WETT inspection, it would be expensive and wouldn’t necessarily pass. Not because our chimney is unsafe, but more because the requirements to confirm it’s WETT-certified are insane and almost impossible to meet on such an old house.

We do have three options though: gas fireplace, electric fireplace or a wood stove.

We then went back to the fireplace store to check out some options. They even came to the house to measure the fireplace and confirm that the stoves could be installed. They’re not cheap though. It’s going to be around $4,000 to buy and install a wood stove. The good thing is that we can make a decision about the hearth and actually buy the stove later.

But making the hearth decision isn’t easy when you live downtown and have limited mobility. All of the stone and tile places are in North Toronto and we can’t get there on our bikes. Well we could… but we might not make it back in one piece.

We found a concrete tile place downtown and we fell in love with concrete hearths.

firep-hearth

But the pre-made tile they had weren’t wide enough to meet the code. So we started investigating custom-made pieces. It turns out anyone can make anything you need, as long as you pay for it.

Most of the quotes we got were $800+ or would take 7 to 8 weeks to make. So we were back to square one.

So we went from ‘simply’ redoing our floors to now having a custom hearth made for a wood stove that we don’t yet have. Ugh. Scope creep.

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