How to Build a Corner Hearth Pad

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Hearth pads are a necessity for anyone who wants to add a wood stove to a house or home. They must be made of some type of ceramic, slate or stone tiles that will not burn if an ember or a burning log is dropped on top of them. However, before undertaking an endeavor such as this, you must consult your local government for fire and safety regulations, and all the needed permits, as well as the fact that there might be a minimum size requirement. As a basic construction size, we will build a 36" square hearth pad.

Things You'll Need

  • 9 12" x 12" Ceramic or stone tiles
  • Floor tile mastic adhesive
  • Caulk gun
  • Pencil
  • Tape measure
  • Pre-mixed grout
  • Tile spacers
  • Putty knife
  • Damp sponge
  • Lay out a 3' square at the appropriate distance from your wall. You can use your pencil to mark off the area on the floor. Be careful to ensure that all the sides of the area are the same.

  • Start tiling. Using your caulk gun and mastic adhesive, make a zig-zag on the bottom of your tile and press along a line, flush, in one corner.Place 2 tile spacers on all inner edges of the first tile.

  • Continue tiling with the spacers until you have filled your square. This will take all nine tiles. Caulk more adhesive in a zig-zag pattern on the second tile, and butt it up against the first one along the laid out line. There should be a tiny gap between the tiles due to the spacers. You will need to allow all the tiles to dry in place overnight.

  • Remove all the tile spacers. You should be able to pull them out easily. If not, pry them out gently with the putty knife.

  • Fill in the spaces with grout. With your putty knife and premixed grout, fill in all the spaces by pushing grout into every one. Don't be afraid to use a lot of grout; just make sure each space is fully filled in.

  • Clean up the hearth pad. Once all the grout is in place, use your damp sponge and gently wipe the grout from the front of the tiles. Smooth down each line of grout and remove any grout that has oozed from the spaces.

  • Let your new hearth pad dry for a week. This project needs to sit a week before you put a stove or hearth on top of it. After that, it will be very rugged and completely fireproof to embers and open flames.

Tips & Warnings

  • Always check any type of fire-related plans against building codes and with your local fire station.

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