Which Paint Can I Use Safely Inside a Fireplace

If you’re seeking a new look for your fireplace or something to prevent its decay, find the right paint first! We did some research and found that many paints labelled safe for interior use may not always do well on stone. You can read all about our findings here.

The paint you need to use in order to be safe is, first of all, non-toxic and, of course, heat resistant. High heat paint will resist peeling or blistering when subjected to temperatures over 1,200 degrees Fahrenheit coming from the fireplace. You’ll need to determine the type of fireplace you have and, ideally, go to a local store to be served by a professional.

Safety is always the most important part for every home project. Want to know how to paint your fireplace safely? Read on!

Cleaning is the essential first step

How Safe it is to Paint inside a Fireplace

To paint the inside of your fireplace, it is essential to clean it off well first. Latex paints may last up to a year or two without exposure to direct sunlight; but for those who light fires regularly in their fireplaces, oil-based paints are best because they’re made to handle extreme heat from open flames.

If you choose the right type of paint and follow the indications from the manufacturer, it is, not only completely safe, but advisable as it will maintain your fireplace in good condition.

Do I need to Apply Anything Before the Paint

If you get the right paint, you don’t need to apply any other product but, bear in mind that, since these paints can emit strong fumes and odors, you’ll have to make sure there is enough ventilation in the room while you are painting and after. Also you want to use rubber gloves and, ideally, a face mask.


Cover any surface next to your fireplace for protection and start painting at the top/back and work your way down and towards the front. The odor will be strong, but once the paint dries, it will be gone.

What Colour to Paint inside a Fireplace

You certainly can find different colors when looking for heat resistant paint, from more traditional dark ones to vibrant tones. There are many options out there to satisfy all tastes (check some in here). Some finishes come in flat while others may have a more glossy or semi gloss sheen – which one you pick is totally up to your preferences and your living room decor.

Choose a color that compliments the palette you want to create and the ambiance. This will make the difference between a bold statement piece, or something more subtle that adds detail. For an original look, choose a shade lighter or darker than the room color so that the fireplace does not entirely blend into the room and has its unique space and look.

Should I Paint a Chimney Breast a Different Color

There is so much to consider when decorating a room, isn’t there? The approach to take when painting a chimney breast is going to depend upon your personal taste. If you need some inspiration, you can always check out ideas in Pinterest, for example.

You don’t even have to paint it, instead, you could look into wall paper, vinyl tiles or even, if budget is not a problem, something a little bit more pricey but elegant like this Reclaimed Barnwood Beam Fireplace Mantel to give your fireplace that unique rustic touch.

Rustic chimney

Can I Use the Fireplace After I Painted

It is better to be safe than sorry so you should wait a day or two between painting and using your fireplace to allow the paint to dry completely. Note that the product might give instructions which, usually, is to wait between 4-6 hours but I always advice to double or triple that time to be on the safe side.

Also remember that this same applies if you are applying more than one coat of paint. Ideally leave to dry overnight – then apply a second coat.

To check if your paint is dry and ready for a second coat, use the fingernail test. In an inconspicuous area, press your fingernail into the coating. If it leaves an indent, your paint is not fully dry. If no indent is visible and the surface is hard, your paint is ready!

How Many Coats of Paint Should I Do

The rule of thumb is that you should use two coats, however, this rule changes based on the color, quality of the paint you use, whether or not you used primer, and the type of surface you’re painting.

It will cost you more money to apply two or more coats of paint on a surface, but your coat will last 3-5 times longer. So the conclusion is that, if you can afford it and have the time, your firebox paint will last longer with more coats.

Benefits Of Using A Second (Or Third Coat Of Paint)

  • Your Paint Will Look Nicer: Skimping on layers of paint or using a low-quality paint can cause your paint to peel sooner, leave an uneven finish, and allow the old coat to pollute the new finish. We don’t want that.
  • Your Paint Will Last Longer: Two coats of paint will be far more durable than one. A more durable coat of paint will last longer and cost you less money in the long run.

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