What is this hole in the floor

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Old 02-10-20, 10:47 AM
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What is this hole in the floor

We bought a house that was built in 1976. There is no basement, only a crawl space. It had a stone fireplace surround and hearth, similar to the picture attached which we are trying to remove. When breaking the stones of the hearth and getting down to the bottom layer of stones, there is an iron tray that held some of the stones closest to the floor. The length of the tray is the same as the firebox but the width was only about 5 inches and didn't hold all of the stones at that level. The tray has a round protrusion at the base that goes down into a hole in the floor of the room. We want to pull the tray out. The bottom of the protrusion in the hole has a square plate. We cannot see if it is connected to anything. Can you tell me what this is and can we safely remove it. How should we fill the hole if it's okay to remove this.
 
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Old 02-10-20, 05:26 PM
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I suspect that is/was a lintel to support the weight of the masonry. The pipe might be a support column. It it's not supporting anything else you should be safe removing it.
 
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Old 02-10-20, 05:58 PM
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Thank you for the answer. We just wanted to make sure it wasn't connected to something vital.
 
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Old 02-11-20, 12:00 AM
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Well, I think you should not remove that pipe. Because it's holding the metal lintel above. I think you should fill up that hole without removing that pipe.

But if you have access in the basement investigate properly if there is an option to remove the pipe. And removing the pipe will not weaken the lintel structure.
 
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Old 02-11-20, 06:55 AM
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The new hearth will not be stone or brick, probably marble or granite. We want it to flush with the floor. I don't see how to leave the lintel since it is not flat.
 
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Old 02-11-20, 08:22 AM
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Use a grinder to cut it off at the height you want. Can rent one for 1/2 day usually.
 
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Old 02-17-20, 06:21 AM
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Thanks everyone for your replies. I now know what a lintel is and what it does. Learning something new every day. We removed the lintel and filled in the hole.
 
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