How to Repair Limestone Fireplaces

What You'll Need

If you have some limestone fireplaces which have developed chips or cracks in the surfaces, then you need to be able to repair them quickly without too much effort. Often, when limestone fireplaces are damaged, it can look like a very serious accident, and you might be tempted to replace the fireplaces completely. However, if you have a good-looking fireplace that you want to retain, then a few simple techniques could help you to remove minor damage, and allow the fireplace to look as good as it used to. This type of work should not be too difficult for the experienced home improvements fan.

Step 1 - Clean the Limestone Fireplaces

Before you can perform any kind of repairs, you need to clean the fireplaces as thoroughly as possible. This is to ensure that there is no dirt on the fireplace which could cause scratches, and also so that you can get a better look at the damage. Use a soft brush to sweep around the edges of the fireplace, and examine areas around the crack or scratch to ensure that they are not damaged as well. You could then use some water and a damp cloth to give the fireplaces a quick wipe down.

Step 2 - Removing the Damage

Once you have cleaned the limestone fireplaces, you are then ready to start removing the damage. Take a piece of sandpaper, and rub around the chip or scratch. This should help to soften the edge of the chip. Use a sander to smooth down the surface around the chip, both above the damage, and to both sides. You should then use the sandpaper to finish off the job. Remember not to take the sander too deep into the limestone, as this will create an obvious shallow. Instead, just rub it along the surface until the chip or mark is removed.

Step 3 - Fixing Holes

If you also have a hole near the back of your limestone fireplaces, then you will need to repair this at the same time. Use the sandpaper to smooth around the hole, and then fill in the gap using a suitable caulk. Leave to dry, and then wipe off any excess caulk which is visible on the surface.

Step 4 - Adding a Sealant

In order to properly protect your limestone, you should next add a sealant over the surface. Purchase one which has been designed for use with limestone surfaces, and then open windows and doors in the room where the fireplace is. Clean down your limestone fireplace again, removing all of the sanded particles using a damp cloth. You will then be able to apply the sealant with a small paintbrush, covering all of the surface of your limestone fireplace. Leave the sealant to dry. If may be necessary to add one or two small fans facing the fireplace, as the sealant can smell quite a lot.