Adding a Heat Shield to the Antique Mantel
We added a mantel shield to our antique mantel so that we won’t burn the house down.
It had been suggested that if you have a blower, it won’t get hot enough to catch fire. That is so not true. We tried the fire for just a few minutes and, even with the blower going full blast, the part of the mantel by the stove was super-hot.
So we ordered a mantel shield and didn’t turn the fire back on until it came. Which was pretty easy to do since it was in the 80s.
I read everything I could find about a number of different options and finally decided on the Copperfield Chimney Supply Home Saver Mantel Shield. The pictures were pretty unconvincing, but the Customer Questions & Answers on Amazon made it seem like the one that would work best for us.
Our mantel is big and this mantel shield is nearly 4-feet wide and 10” deep.
They also said that it can be cut to fit, which it will have to be, since the mantel legs are in the way.
It comes with cement spacers that hold the shield 2.75” off the mantel. That’s what comes in the box. The mantel shield, which is very sturdy and kinda heavy, and cement spacers with the screws long enough to attach it.
At first cliff was going to cut the mantel and then bend it to make edges that would be safe to touch.
I told him that was over complicated and that if anyone was jamming their fingers that far under the mantel they deserved to get cut.
The next morning Cliff presented me with his compromise.
He had just cut out the leg notches, but he had sanded them safe. The metal is pretty heavy. He had also added more screw holes, since he had cut some off.
These are the tools he used to cut and smooth. And I suppose a drill, which he didn’t give me a photo of.
Cliff held the mantel up and had me mark the holes. Then he pre-drilled.
As we marked and drilled, we noticed little marks under the mantel. It seems there had been a mantel shield there before.
Then Cliff had an idea. We could use insulation panels, too.
We had some pieces of Polyshield Expanded polystyrene Foam Board Insulation left over from another project. He layered it between the mantel shield and the mantel.
Now that he has decided to add the insulation, we decided to flip the mantel over to make it easier.
You can see the cement spacer on the screw. Cliff screwed the mantel shield onto the mantel with the insulation panels inside.
It is about an inch further from the mantel than it is designed to be. It most likely would have worked just as well without the extra insulation, which called for the extra space.
We flipped the mantel over and the insulation was visible if you stood at the right angle and looked.
I still had the dark grey paint I had painted the wall with. I used a thin paint brush and brushed it over the edge of the foam board and the spacers until you can’t see them anymore. And I love it! I really, really love it! It is everything I wanted!
This is the mantel shield we bought is the Copperfield Chimney Supply Home Saver Mantel Shield.
I discuss some of the others we considered on this post; Fireplace Hood, Canopy or Heat Deflector >
And no, nobody is paying me for reviews or giving me free stuff.