Lowering fireplace mantle to mount flatscreen - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 22 Old 11-28-2006, 09:47 PM - Thread Starter
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I am in discussions with my wife about mounting a flatscreen TV above the fireplace in our new home...

The fireplace was built to support a flatscreen, i.e. power and cabling are available.
But I don't understand why the builder accounted for the flatscreen above the fireplace but did not account for a comfortable viewing angle?

We are considering getting a contractor to lower the fireplace mantle, and make the mantle smaller, does this seem like a reasonable idea?

What would your recommendations be for establishing a more comfortable viewing angle?

A pic is attached.


Regards
Pieter
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post #2 of 22 Old 11-28-2006, 09:54 PM
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you could do an articulating mount and just have it hang out over the overhang.
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post #3 of 22 Old 11-28-2006, 10:01 PM
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It does seem to be somewhat high....you might just need to get rid of some of the woodwork above the stone - have a different crown made?....my fireplace mantle is 40" high from the floor and is perfect for my veiwing of the 50"plasma.....I used a low profile flush mount (no angled mount needed) in your case you may need to use a mount that can be angled down....just my 2 cents

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post #4 of 22 Old 11-29-2006, 06:22 AM
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It does not look too high to me, not for a decent sized screen. and I also would use a mount that allows angling it down.

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post #5 of 22 Old 11-29-2006, 09:45 AM
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Its alot of work to lower that bad boy. I am with McCall. Try it first, you can always lower it later and reuse the mount.

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post #6 of 22 Old 11-29-2006, 10:01 AM
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Alot less headaches going with a Tilt Mount as mentioned:
Mount
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post #7 of 22 Old 11-29-2006, 01:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ptr727
I am in discussions with my wife about mounting a flatscreen TV above the fireplace in our new home...

The fireplace was built to support a flatscreen, i.e. power and cabling are available.
But I don't understand why the builder accounted for the flatscreen above the fireplace but did not account for a comfortable viewing angle?

We are considering getting a contractor to lower the fireplace mantle, and make the mantle smaller, does this seem like a reasonable idea?

What would your recommendations be for establishing a more comfortable viewing angle?

A pic is attached.


Regards
Pieter
If it was me, I'd leave the mantle alone and go with a tilt mount as others have stated. I have the same situation in my house with a gas fireplace, but T.V. sits 54" above floor level, much too high for my liking, but nothing that I can do about it.
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post #8 of 22 Old 11-29-2006, 02:34 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks for all the replies.

I'll ask a fireplace contractor what it will cost to lower the mantle and / or make it smaller, but if too much money or effort I'll just mount and tilt it and see how it works out for us.

Apparently, based on conversations with coworkers, there are some rules / laws about the distance the mantle is to extend in front of fireplace based on the distance from the top of the fireplace, does anybody have any info or references to such rules or laws?


Regards
Pieter
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post #9 of 22 Old 11-29-2006, 02:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ptr727
Thanks for all the replies.

I'll ask a fireplace contractor what it will cost to lower the mantle and / or make it smaller, but if too much money or effort I'll just mount and tilt it and see how it works out for us.

Apparently, based on conversations with coworkers, there are some rules / laws about the distance the mantle is to extend in front of fireplace based on the distance from the top of the fireplace, does anybody have any info or references to such rules or laws?


Regards
Pieter
Your Fireplace Contractor should know?
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post #10 of 22 Old 11-29-2006, 03:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ptr727
Thanks for all the replies.

I'll ask a fireplace contractor what it will cost to lower the mantle and / or make it smaller, but if too much money or effort I'll just mount and tilt it and see how it works out for us.

Apparently, based on conversations with coworkers, there are some rules / laws about the distance the mantle is to extend in front of fireplace based on the distance from the top of the fireplace, does anybody have any info or references to such rules or laws?


Regards
Pieter
The Uniform Building Code has standards for the minimum spacing for combustible trim and for mantels, but every state, county and town may have differing local codes. Get out the phone book, look in the government listings for building inspection, or building permits, call and ask. I would call just to double check the contractor, as he may be working to a rule of thumb designed to always pass inspection.

By the way your mantel is does not seem unusual. The tilt mount is a good suggestion. Lower might be better but it certainly won't be cheaper. One other thought- do you even need a mantle?

The fact that an opinion has been widely held is no evidence whatever that it is not utterly absurd.
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post #11 of 22 Old 11-30-2006, 09:57 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trekguy
By the way your mantel is does not seem unusual. The tilt mount is a good suggestion. Lower might be better but it certainly won't be cheaper. One other thought- do you even need a mantle?
If I can I want to get rid of the mantle, it is big and ugly and we want to see the TV, not decorations, as far as I'm concerned the mantle is just in the way.

We are having a home inspection tomorrow, I'll ask the inspector so I can compare notes when we talk to a contractor.

Regards
Pieter
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post #12 of 22 Old 12-01-2006, 07:53 AM
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I would have some kind of mantle. I have a tv over my fireplace the mantle blocks the heat from hitting the screen directly.
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post #13 of 22 Old 12-01-2006, 08:09 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ptr727
Thanks for all the replies.


Apparently, based on conversations with coworkers, there are some rules / laws about the distance the mantle is to extend in front of fireplace based on the distance from the top of the fireplace, does anybody have any info or references to such rules or laws?


Regards
Pieter
There are two issues, what your local building code requires and what the fireplace manufacturer requires for your model of fireplace (assuming a gas fireplace). This should be spelled out in your installation manual and varies significantly between fireplaces. You should never go closer than what the fireplace mfg requires.
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post #14 of 22 Old 12-01-2006, 08:24 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ptr727
Thanks for all the replies.

I'll ask a fireplace contractor what it will cost to lower the mantle and / or make it smaller, but if too much money or effort I'll just mount and tilt it and see how it works out for us.

Apparently, based on conversations with coworkers, there are some rules / laws about the distance the mantle is to extend in front of fireplace based on the distance from the top of the fireplace, does anybody have any info or references to such rules or laws?


Regards
Pieter
Might want to check with the trim sub - he most likley did the wood work on the mantle, not the fireplace sub.....your general contractor would be a good source for the codes.

Rick -
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post #15 of 22 Old 12-01-2006, 08:27 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by w84no1
I would have some kind of mantle. I have a tv over my fireplace the mantle blocks the heat from hitting the screen directly.
Also having a blower is a big help with regard to this.....works great and never notice the fan noise... :)

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post #16 of 22 Old 12-03-2006, 10:31 AM - Thread Starter
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FYI...

We had the house inspection yesterday, and while I had the building contract supervisor there I asked him a few questions (he referred to Redondo Beach regulations):
- The fireplace is wood burning, and the gas outlet is for starting the fire only. Shows you how much I know about fireplaces ;)
- For a wood burning fireplace there must be a 12" gap between the top of the fireplace opening and the end of the brickwork. For a gas only fireplace the gap need only be 2".
- The mantle can easily be replaced with something smaller with less of an overhang, but he could not tell me how small.
- Converting the fireplace to gas with electrical controls will require extensive rebuilding.


Regards
Pieter
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post #17 of 22 Old 12-07-2006, 10:48 PM
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fireplaces are just generally irritating for any sort of living room home theater installation. Consider buying a large piece of plasma furniture and simply cover the whole fireplace if you don't need the fireplace.

Blazar!
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post #18 of 22 Old 12-11-2006, 12:38 PM
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Your fireplace and mantle is exactly what I want to do in my basement, only lower. My wife wants a fireplace in the Rec Room and I want a big tv. I think the only compromise i can make is hanging a plasma above the fireplace. My design would be similar to yours, except I wouldn't have that 12" or so riser at the bottom, I think that's what really hurts you.

Is there a possibility of making your mantle/shelf on the top stone? Since that isn't combustible, can it be closer to the fireplace? I think that's what I'm going to try. I'll have the fireplace as close to the floor as possible, then a stone mantle above the fireplace about 6 inches or so, then recessed and offset the wall behind the mantle about another 6 or 8 inches, and drywall that and mount the tv there.
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post #19 of 22 Old 12-19-2006, 08:32 PM
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I have a recess over a gas fireplace - I gotta say that who every designed my cookie cutter townhouse sure doesn't know a thing about proper TV placement - I also considered lowering the mantle, but wife says no (probably not a bad idea since we'll probably move in a few years...)

Ended up putting a 50" DLP and had to put some books in the recess so the DLP tilts down, especially since the DLP viewing angles are more limited.

But even if you tilt down the DLP or the plasma, it doesn't really solve the problem because the screen is still high. You may get a better view of the screen, but it's still high....

moving the seating back helps a bit.
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post #20 of 22 Old 12-20-2006, 10:26 AM - Thread Starter
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Just an update...

We are moving in tomorrow, and the fireplace is just too high and our options for lowering the mantle too limited.
We decided to mount the TV on the opposite wall and figure something out to keep the room flowing.

Regards
Pieter
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post #21 of 22 Old 12-22-2006, 05:41 PM
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We have pretty much the same situation at my house. One difference is we have a ventless gas fireplace and there is a "alcove" above the fireplace. We set the TV in there, but I can't stand it. I end up watching TV standing up most of the time...

The stairs leading to the basement are on the opposite wall at our house so that's not really an option. Even if we did move the TV there really isn't a good place to put furniture.

So just to sum it up, yes mounting the TV over the fireplace is to high. Don't do it you will not be happy, in my experience.
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post #22 of 22 Old 12-22-2006, 05:58 PM
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Mantle 12 inches above fireplace opening. NFPA 211. You have asked this before.

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