Can You Sit a TV on a Fireplace Mantle?

The mantel is a small piece of wood that juts out from the top of your fireplace. Although many people consider this fireplace component as purely a decoration, this is not accurate. The mantel serves two critical functions: as a place for placing other objects and protection for your TV.

In addition, the mantel helps to prevent the heat from your fireplace from reaching the bottom of your TV if you decide to either mount the TV over the fireplace or sit it on the mantel itself. However, sitting your TV on the mantel requires that you consider the TV’s weight and methods of keeping the heat off your device effectively.

Can a TV Sit on a Fireplace Mantel?

Yes, you can set a TV on a mantle. Nevertheless, it would help if you were wary of two things: the depth of the mantel and the heat that comes from the fireplace. You may have to extend your mantle to accommodate a giant TV. In addition, you may need to redirect the heat from the fireplace to keep the TV on the mantle safe.

How Much Weight Can a Mantel Hold?

The weight that a mantel can hold depends on its length. A mantel that measures 72 inches can comfortably hold 180lbs of weight. A mantel that measures 60 inches can hold about 60lbs of weight without breaking under the weight.

Can You Sit a TV on a Mantle?

It is possible and acceptable to sit a TV on the mantel of your fireplace. However, doing this is not a straightforward matter. It would help if you considered the maximum weight that your mantel can hold before deciding to sit the TV atop it.

 If you put on the mantel a very heavy TV, the mantel may end up breaking and damaging your fireplace. In addition, some mantels are pretty thin that they cannot correctly support large TV sets.

Why It Is a Mistake to Mount a TV Above a Fireplace

Although placing a TV above your fireplace may sound like an excellent idea, however, this may not be the right thing to do. The following are some reasons why it may be a mistake to mount your TV above the fireplace.

The risk of damaging the electronic components of your TV

Your TV has highly delicate electronic components inside. The electronic components are susceptible to water and heat. Regardless of the measures you take after mounting your TV above the fireplace, the heat will eventually reach it. The heat may gradually damage the internal components of your TV.

Viewing angle

Your TV should not be higher than 65 inches from the floor. This height allows people to watch your TV comfortably from their sitting positions in the room. If you mount it above the fireplace, you may end up not getting the perfect viewing angle for the TV for everyone who may be in any corner of your house.  

How Much Weight Can a Fireplace Mantel Hold?

The weight that a fireplace mantel can hold depends on the size of the mantel. Generally, the bigger the mantel, the heavier the load it can hold without breaking. For example, a mantel that measures 60 inches can hold a load of up to 150lbs without encountering any problem. On the other hand, a mantel that measures 72 inches can hold a load of up to 180 lbs. therefore, to determine if your mantel can hold the load of your TV, measure its length and compare it with the weight of your TV.

How Far Away Should Mantel Be from Fireplace?

The primary distance between your mantel and the fireplace should be 12 inches. This is the distance between the fireplace opening and the mantel. To get the actual distance between the firebox and the mantel, add the equivalent of the distance of protrusion of the mantel to 12 inches.

For example, if a fireplace mantel protrudes 8 inches, the distance between the fireplace mantel and the fireplace firebox should be 20 inches.

 The 20 inches is the sum of the standard 12 inches and the additional 8 inches, which is equivalent to the distance of the mantel’s protrusion. Observing these distances is essential because it helps to keep the mantel in good condition for a long time.

In addition, if you intend to mount a TV over the fireplace or even sit it on the mantel, observing these clearance distances will help keep your TV safe from the heat that comes off your fireplace.

Will a Mantle Protect the TV from Fireplace Heat?

A mantel protects your TV from the heat that comes off your fireplace. However, the protection may not be all you need to keep your TV safe for a long time. Eventually, the heat from the fireplace will reach your TV even when the television set is mounted over the fireplace.

 Therefore, if you decide to either sit your TV on your mantel or mount it over the fireplace, consider taking precautionary measures to protect the TV. Some of the preventive measures that you can take include using a heat projector or ensuring that the doors of your fireplace are closed whenever the heating device is operating.

Things to Consider Before Putting a TV on a Mantle

Although mounting your TV on a mantel sounds like a beautiful idea, implementing it may be a little problematic. You can quickly run into problems if you are not careful when planning and mounting your TV on the mantel. Before putting your TV on a mantel, remember to consider the following essential things.

How to Hide the Cables of Your TV

The cables usually connect your TV to the source of power or the sound system. The cables may be an eyesore if they are let to run behind or beside your TV. The cables may also pose a security risk if entangled in them when they pass or work near the TV.

If this is the case in your home, consider using bridges to control and hide the wires. Your technician may even paint the bridges in a color that matches your indoor walls to hide them from view.  

Check the Temperature of the Place Where You Would Like to Place the TV

TVs have specific levels of heat resistance. You can find this on the technical specifications that come with your TV. Alternatively, you can check the heat tolerance levels of your TV by visiting the manufacturers’ sites.

Finally, you can test the temperature at the location where you would like to place your TV by taping a simple thermometer. Set up the fireplace to the highest temperature level and determine whether the heat at the point where you would like to install your TV exceeds the recommended levels.

Consider the Viewing Angle of Your TV

The viewing angle of your TV is critical because it determines how easily and comfortably people will find watching your TV. Ideally, your TV should not be higher than 65 inches from the floor. This mounting height is ideal for anyone on the chair to watch the TV comfortably.

You may also consider turning the TV a little so that everyone can have a clear view of the screen. These details are essential because they determine how you end up mounting your TV on the mantel of your fireplace.

Carefully Select the Most Appropriate Mounting Style

There are many different styles of mounting TVs. Your style choice will be based on the weight of the TV and the kind of wall you have. Choose the style that can provide all the support your TV needs without exposing it to the risk of falling off the wall.

How to Protect the TV from Fireplace Heat

Although an ordinary mantel protects your TV from the heat that comes from the fireplace’s opening, the degree of protection is limited. Therefore, you need to take a few extra measures to protect your TV from the fireplace heat fully.

  • Convert from a wood-burning to a gas-burning fireplace: If you are keen on having a real flame and using a wood-burning fireplace, consider using a gas-burning fireplace. A gas-burning fireplace is more convenient and effective than a wood-burning fireplace. Alternatively, you may use an electric fireplace. However, an electric fireplace does not produce a real flame like a gas or wood-burning fireplace. The good news is that both an electric and a gas-burning fireplace are less dangerous to a TV mounted over them than a wood-burning fireplace is.
  • Close the fireplace doors: You can reduce the amount of heat that escapes from the opening of your fireplace by always closing the doors when the fireplace is operating. The heat that escapes to the outside of the fireplace when the doors are open heats up the air near the TV. Thus, closing the door protects your TV from the heat.
  • Use a heat projection above the fireplace opening: A heat projection, just like a mantel, helps to minimize the amount of heat that gets up to your TV. However, a heat projector performs much better because it redirects the heat away from the top part of your fireplace. Thus, the heat projector helps protect your TV because it prevents the excessively hot air from reaching the bottom or front surface of your TV.
  • Obtain a fire-resistant mantel: Fire-resistant mantels are more expensive than ordinary wood mantels. More so, fire-resistant mantels can withstand far much higher temperatures than wood mantels can. Thus, installing a fire-resistant mantel will go a long way in protecting your TV from the heat that the fireplace generates.


You can set your TV on the mantel of the fireplace. First, however, you need to check the risk of the heat from your fireplace reaching your TV and the ability of the mantel to withstand the weight of the TV.

It is proper to ensure that the mantel projects to at least 2.5 inches from the fireplace for it to be sturdy enough to withstand the TV’s weight and keep off the heat.

You can also take various measures to ensure that the heat from your fireplace does not damage the TV that may be sitting on the mantel. The most obvious one is to use an electric or a gas-burning fireplace instead of a wood-burning one.