Can I Put a TV Above a Fireplace? – The Ultimate Guide

Placing a TV above a fireplace has become a popular trend in many homes. It offers a space-saving solution and creates a focal point in the room.

However, before making this decision, it’s crucial to consider various factors to ensure both the safety of your TV and optimal viewing experience.

In this article, we’ll explore the concerns associated with mounting a TV above a fireplace, discuss safety measures, explore different mounting options, provide guidance on choosing the right TV, explain the installation process, and offer alternative placement options.

Estimated reading time: 14 minutes

Can I put a TV above a fireplace?

The short answer is yes! – However, it is crucial to abide by tv manufacturers guidelines and distance to combustibles when installing a tv above a fireplace. It is essential to redirect the heat away to avoid damage to the TV due to the heat output of some fireplaces.

This can be achieved by installing a fireplace mantel, beam or building a recess for the television. Furthermore, it is recommended for a television to be installed with clearances of 600mm for solid fuel and gas appliances as a MINIMUM.

Require guidance for your fireplace? Speak to a professional – contact us here

TV with electric inset fireplace.

The allure of a TV above the fireplace is undeniable. It combines the cosy ambiance of a fireplace with the entertainment of a television, creating a harmonious and functional living space.

However, several factors need to be considered before going ahead with this arrangement. Understanding the potential challenges and taking necessary precautions is essential to protect your investment and enjoy your TV to the fullest.

What are the clearances?

As fireplaces come in different styles, sizes and carry different heat outputs it is good to understand the clearances from a tv to a specific fuel type.

Below is a table that shows the minimum clearances of each fuel type:

ApplianceHeat OutputMinimum Distance to TV
Electric Fireplace1-2kW200mm
Gas Fireplace3+ kW600mm
Wood Burning Stove (Log Burner)3+kW600mm

Please note: Guidelines, distance to combustibles and manufacturers guidelines will differ from product to product.

If the heat output exceeds more than 3kW then a minimum clearance to the tv should be 600mm. The higher the heat output, the larger the distance required.

The distance can be reduced with the use of a fireplace fan, shelf, beam or by recessing the tv into an aperture. This is because these items deflect the heat from the television.

Fireplace Beam Clearances

Even though a fireplace beam may reduce the clearances, all fireplace beams have their own set of rules that should be followed for safety reasons.

Photograph via Facebook @David Rowlands

For combustible fireplace beams or shelves a minimum clearance of 400mm is required to a solid fuel or gas appliance, this does however differ for each manufacturer.

The larger the clearance, the better.

Moreover, for an inset or cassette fireplace this is slightly lower with a minimum clearance of 300mm to a combustible fireplace beam or shelf.

Furthermore, the standard clearance for a non combustible (faux) fireplace beam is a minimum of 250mm which does differ for each manufacturer. In some cases, the plaster crackes and the beam becomes brittle, if installed too closely.

Understanding the Concerns

Heat and Electronics

Fireplaces generate heat, and excessive heat can damage electronic devices, including TVs. Heat is a primary concern when considering TV placement above a fireplace.

It’s important to assess the heat generated by your fireplace and how it may affect the TV. Heat can be particularly damaging for LCD/OLed screens.

Heat regulations for different fireplace types:

  • Electric Fires – only produce around 1-2kW of heat output which is similar to a small household heater. Little heat deflection is required but precautions should still be followed.
  • Gas Fires – can produce enough heat to damage a TV, especially in the direct heat path. Manufacturers guidelines and distance to combustibles should be followed at all times when placing a tv above.
  • Wood Burning Stoves – similar to gas fires, log burners can also damage a TV. Precautions, manufacturers guidelines and distance to combustibles should be followed at all times when positioning your TV above.

Upon the installation of a new fireplace, it is crucial to pay close attention to the heat dispersal over the next few uses. Behind the TV is a known area to get quite warm.

In the event that the wall is too hot to touch, than you should turn off/ down your fireplace to regulate the heat and a solution will need to be found to prevent this happening in future. (please read on for safety measures/ prevention).

Additional works may be required to insulate or deflect the heat from the TV if the wall seems too hot and are reaching temperatures above manufacturers guidelines.

You can check the temperature using a thermal heat temperature gun.

Viewing Angle

Placing a TV above a fireplace may result in a less-than-ideal viewing angle. When the TV is mounted too high, it can strain your neck and make viewing uncomfortable.

TV placement above log burner diagram.

According to The Spruce the perfect viewing height is “42 inches from the floor to the center of your TV.

This aspect should be taken into account to ensure an enjoyable TV watching experience.

Aesthetics

While the aesthetics of a TV above a fireplace can be visually appealing, it may not be the best choice for everyone. Some individuals prefer to keep the fireplace as the focal point, while others find the TV placement distracting.

The focal point should be the fire not the TV

John Woolvine via Facebook

Personal preference and the overall design of the room play a significant role in deciding whether this arrangement is suitable.

Assessing the Fireplace and Wall Structure

Before proceeding with TV installation, it’s important to assess the specific characteristics of your fireplace and the wall above it.

Heat from the Fireplace

Fireplaces can generate varying degrees of heat, depending on the type and fuel source. It’s crucial to evaluate how close the TV would be to the source of heat. Excessive heat can damage the TV components over time.

Wall Material and Stud Placement

The wall material and stud placement are crucial factors in determining the stability and safety of the TV installation. Ensure that the wall is sturdy enough to support the TV’s weight and any additional equipment, such as a soundbar or media devices. Locate the wall studs for secure mounting.

Safety Measures/ Prevention

To mitigate the potential risks associated with mounting a TV above a fireplace, certain safety measures should be taken into consideration.

Heat Shield

Installing a heat shield between the fireplace and TV can help protect the television from excessive heat. Heat shields are designed to redirect the heat away from the TV, ensuring safer operation.

A1 rated fire board for underneath a fireplace opening for heat protection.
A1 Rated Magply Fire Board

Vermiculite board or A1 Rated fire board are just a few boards that can be used to shield a TV from heat exposure. This would be installed onto the underside of a surface to redirect the heat.

Yes it’s fine. That tv’s been there 12 years no problems. The flue is lined and also filled with vermiculite which probably helps with preventing heat transfer.

Liam Ruairi Gerrard via Facebook

Learn more about using a heat shield on a log burner here.

Fireplace Beam/ Shelves

Using a fireplace beam to deflect heat is a clever way to contain the heat exposure to a TV without looking out of place.

A fireplace beam, typically made of sturdy materials like wood or metal, is installed above the fireplace opening.

Fireplace Beam

The beam acts as a heat shield, preventing the heat from rising directly towards the ceiling and instead directing it outwards into the room.

Shop all of our beams here

Fireplace Fans

For free standing appliances such as wood burning or multi fuel stoves, fireplace fans are ideal for deflecting the heat into the room.

Fireplace fan ontop of log burner.

Designed to increase the efficiency and heat output of a fireplace. The fan operates by circulating the warm air produced by the fire into the room, rather than allowing it to escape through the chimney.

They’re a few low cost expense in comparison to other forms of deflecting heat onto a tv.

Shop log burner fans here

Ventilation

Proper ventilation is crucial for the longevity and performance of the TV. Adequate airflow helps dissipate heat generated by the TV itself and ensures optimal functioning.

Plastic vents should be installed to the bottom and top of a chimney breast if the appliance is exceeding anymore than 3kW heat output.

Require installation help for your project?

Wiring and Cable Management

Ensure that the wiring and cables are safely concealed and managed. Use cable management solutions such as wall-mounted cable covers or in-wall cable management systems to prevent accidents and maintain a clean and organized appearance.

Mounting Options

Several mounting options are available to safely secure the TV above a fireplace. Consider the following options based on your specific requirements and the room layout.

Wall Mounts

Wall mounts are the most common option for installing a TV above a fireplace. They offer stability and flexibility, allowing you to adjust the viewing angle. Choose a high-quality wall mount that can handle the weight of your TV.

Mantel Mounts

Mantel mounts are designed to accommodate fireplaces with a mantel or shelf. They provide vertical adjustment, allowing you to lower the TV to a comfortable viewing height and raise it when not in use.

Pull-Down Mounts

Pull-down mounts offer a unique solution for optimising the viewing angle.

Pull down tv wall mount above fireplace.

They allow you to lower the TV to a comfortable height when watching and lift it back up when not in use, providing an optimal viewing experience and preserving the aesthetic appeal of the fireplace.

Choosing the Right TV

Choosing the appropriate TV for mounting above a fireplace involves considering various factors.

Size and Weight

Ensure that the size and weight of the TV are compatible with the mounting solution and the structural integrity of the wall. Refer to the TV’s specifications and seek professional advice if needed.

Heat Resistance

Opt for a TV model that is designed to withstand higher temperatures. Look for TVs with built-in cooling systems or heat-resistant components to minimize the risk of damage due to the fireplace’s heat.

TV temperatures:
  • LCD and Plasma operating temperature: 4 to 35 degrees celsius.
  • LCD and Plasma storage temperature: -20 to 50 degrees celsius.

Warranty Considerations

Check the manufacturer’s warranty guidelines regarding TV placement above a fireplace. Some warranties may not cover damages resulting from this specific installation location.

Photograph via Facebook @Ross Duke

Installation Process

The installation process can be complex, and it’s crucial to follow the necessary steps for a secure and successful setup.

Professional Assistance

If you are unsure about the technical aspects or concerned about safety, it’s recommended to seek professional assistance. Professional installers have the expertise to handle the installation and ensure the TV is mounted securely.

Require professional help? Contact our team here

DIY Approach

For experienced individuals comfortable with DIY projects, installing the TV above a fireplace can be a rewarding endeavor. However, make sure to carefully read the instructions provided by the manufacturer and use appropriate tools and safety equipment.

Maintenance and Care

Proper maintenance and care contribute to the longevity and performance of the TV.

Cleaning

With the placement of a solid fuel appliance underneath a tv, mirror or painting more frequent cleaning will be required. Regularly clean the TV screen and the surrounding area to remove dust and debris. Avoid using harsh chemicals or abrasive materials that may damage the TV.

Temperature Monitoring

Monitor the temperature around the TV regularly to ensure it remains within safe limits. Use a digital thermometer to measure the ambient temperature and take appropriate action if necessary.

Alternatives to Fireplace TV Placement

If mounting a TV above the fireplace is not ideal for your situation, consider alternative placement options that still provide an enjoyable viewing experience.

TV in a Built-in Cabinet

Installing a built-in cabinet specifically designed for a TV can provide an elegant and practical solution. The TV remains concealed when not in use, and the fireplace retains its prominence.

Corner Placement

Placing the TV in a corner of the room can be an alternative to the fireplace location. This arrangement allows for a comfortable viewing angle and can enhance the overall aesthetics of the space.

Pros and Cons of Mounting a TV Above a Fireplace

Before making a decision, it’s essential to weigh the advantages and disadvantages of mounting a TV above a fireplace.

Pros:

  • Space-saving solution
  • Focal point creation
  • Cosy ambiance

Cons:

  • Potential heat damage
  • Suboptimal viewing angle
  • Wiring to be concealed
  • TV may get more dirty (from dust and debris from a solid fuel appliance)

Conclusion

Mounting a TV above a fireplace can be a visually appealing and functional choice for many homeowners.

However, it’s important to consider factors such as heat, viewing angle, and safety measures. Assess your fireplace and wall structure, choose the right mounting option, and select a TV suitable for this arrangement.

If unsure, seek professional advice to ensure a successful installation. Remember to maintain and care for your TV appropriately to prolong its lifespan.

FAQs about Mounting a TV Above a Fireplace

Can the heat from the fireplace damage my TV?

While heat can be a concern, most modern TVs are designed to withstand normal levels of heat. However, it’s important to follow the manufacturer’s guidelines and consider additional heat protection measures.

What should I do if there’s no stud in the desired mounting location?

If there are no studs where you want to mount your TV, you can use wall anchors specifically designed for heavy loads. Consult with a professional if you’re unsure about the installation process.

Is it possible to hide the cables effectively?

Yes, there are several cable management options available to hide the cables and create a clean look. In-wall cable management systems and wire covers are popular choices.

How high should I mount the TV above the fireplace?

The ideal height will depend on your seating arrangement and personal preference. As a general rule, the center of the TV screen should be at eye level when seated.

Can I use a fireplace with a TV mounted above it simultaneously?

Yes, it’s generally safe to use a fireplace while the TV is mounted above it. However, ensure that the heat shield and other protective measures are in place to safeguard your TV.

Can I mount any TV above a fireplace?

Most TVs can be mounted above a fireplace, but it’s crucial to check the manufacturer’s recommendations and ensure the TV is compatible with the heat and ventilation conditions.

What should I do if my tv gets too hot?

You should use a fireplace beam or shelf or recess the tv to deflect the heat from the tv.

Bonfire is not responsible for any damage to any TV from a fireplace, gas fire, electric fire, or log burner. A TV above a fireplace is installed at the owners discretion.

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