How To Fireproof A Wall Behind A Wood Stove

If you have a wood-burning stove in your home, you’ve probably noticed that the wall behind it can get extremely hot. This heat can damage the wall and potentially burn it. To protect your wall from this type of damage, you need to add a heat-resistant layer between the wall and the stove.

You can easily fireproof the wall behind your wood-burning stove with the help of a fire and heat-resistant material. Of course, you can decide what material works best for you and your room, but the best part is that there are options. Some of the options include brick, stone, faux panels, cement board, and more.

There are multiple different benefits to fireproofing the wall behind your wood stove. Your wall will remain protected, and you will even notice an increase in efficiency from the wood stove. For more benefits and how to fireproof the wall, keep reading. 

Why do I Need to Fireproof the Wall Behind a Wood Stove?

You must fireproof the wall behind a wood-burning stove for several reasons. First, the protection will prevent the wall from getting too hot and potentially burning or catching on fire. This simple protection can save you and your family from a tragedy.

Fireproofing the wall also can increase the efficiency of the heat that is let out by the wood stove. Since the stove is made of metal, it absorbs the heat from the burning fire and radiates it to the room. The material you use to fireproof the wall can prevent the wall from absorbing heat that could go out to the room instead.

How to Fireproof Wall Behind Wood Stove

There are a few different ways you can fireproof the wall behind a wood stove. As long as the material you choose is fire and heat-resistant, you will be able to experience the benefits. However, no matter what material you choose, you need to make sure it covers the entire surface of the back of the stove. 

If there isn’t sufficient cover, your wall can still experience some damage. It won’t be as severe as if there was no coverage, but it can still be enough damage to ruin the wall. To experience the benefits and protect your wall the best way you can, either cover the entire wall or a large enough area to lower the risk of any heat reaching the wall drastically.

Even with protection for the wall, you still need to respect regulations and make sure you leave plenty of clearance between the wall and the stove. These regulations will vary depending on where you are located. Local regulations can differ from national regulations, so make sure you read up on the proper regulations.

You can attach the material to the wall with the help of brackets. However, you will not want to use glue because it can melt, and the fireproof backing will detach from the wall and fall to the floor. Depending on what you use, this can damage your floor.

What to Put Behind a Wood Burning Stove

There are so many different materials that you can use to fireproof the wall behind your wood stove. Some of these materials include faux panels, brick, a heat shield, firebacks, and more.

1. Faux Panels

Faux panels are most commonly faux stone. They are very different from both natural stone and manufactured stone. These panels are generally made from lightweight foam, making it easy to cut them into shape and apply them to the wall. There will also be a plastic layer on the surface that is impact resistant and will protect the wall from the stove’s heat.

These panels will usually be 2-foot by 4-foot in size but can come as large as 4-foot by 8-foot. When you use larger panels, the installation will go quicker, and you can easily cut them down if you need something smaller. 

Faux panels are installed with highly durable construction glue. This means that even when it heats up, it will not melt. Also, since these panels are made out of foam, they will only weigh a few pounds so that the construction glue will hold them up with no issues.

2. Brick

If you want something that will be a little more sturdy and fireproof, you can build a brick wall behind the wood stove. This will increase the insulation in your home, making it easier for the heat to stay inside instead of escaping outside. However, using bricks is a little more complicated because you need to secure them to the wall and wrap the chimney vent of the stove.

To install a brick wall behind your wood stove, you need to start by screwing in two two-inch metal studs to the wall and connect both to a ceiling joist, floor joist, and the wall with a screwdriver and some three-inch bolts. Make sure you space these two studs as long as you expect to build the brick wall.

Measure the hearth that your wood stove sits on. You will then want to cut a piece of one-inch-thick plywood that is fire-resistant the size of the heart. This will be a base for the bricks that need to go on the floor beneath the stove. For extra protection, you will want to use heat-treated bricks as they will offer even more protection to your wall. 

Using a pre-mixed mortar, apply the first layer of bricks to the plywood. Apply about half an inch of mortar on top of the first row and stagger the second layer of bricks. Continue this process until you are just below the top of the stove. You will then want to drill holes every 16 inches for bolts to stabilize the wall.

Continue building the wall until you reach the desired height of the wall. It is recommended that you take it to at least two inches to the ceiling for the best protection.

3. Firebacks

A fireback is usually a piece of steel or iron that sits at the back of a fireplace to protect the wall. You can also use this to protect the wall behind your wood stove. The design will usually be embossed with old Victorian images and make a great addition to your space.

Firebacks will not only protect your wall, but they will also reflect the heat into the room and make the stove work more efficiently. You will want to attach the fireback to the wall because if it falls, it can break. It is recommended to attach the fireback to the wall with installation brackets designed for the job.

You will need to decide if you want to put the brackets on top of the fireback or the sides. The brackets will be less noticeable if you install them on the side, but either way will hold the fireback just the same. When you attach the brackets to the side, you need to attach the 3.9″ from the top edge. If you attach them to the top, place them 3.9″ from the sides.

You can also mount the fireback to the wall to keep it off the floor. If you want to do this, you will also need two mounting brackets and the brackets. This will ensure that the fireback will not fall off the wall and break.

4. Heat Shield

Heat shields are available in both metal and ceramic materials. Before you install the heat shield, you will need to look at the certification information that came with the wood stove. In some cases, you can find this information on the back of the wood-burning stove. This will tell you what the required clearance is and give you advice on how large the heat shield needs to be.

Next, find the studs in the wall behind the wood stove and mark them with tape. Hold the spacers against the marked studs and mark where the screw holes turn out. Drill holes with a drill bit, so you know where to place the spacer.

Line up the spacer with the holes you drilled and drill in the screws. Mount the heat shield to the spacer with the screws included with your purchase. Make sure you do not cover any of the sides of the heat shield because air needs to move around all sides.

Conclusion

If you have a wood-burning stove in your home, you must fireproof the wall behind it. This can save you from damage to your wall and prevent a tragedy from occurring. You can fireproof the wall in different ways, but the most important thing is to remember to give enough clearance between the newly fireproofed wall and the wood stove.

Some of the most popular ways to fireproof the wall are by using faux panels, building a brick wall, attaching a fireback to the wall, or purchasing a heat shield. Make sure you cover enough of the wall to protect it from the heat and potential damage.