Learn how you can cover a painted brick fireplace with faux stone. Find out why removing paint from brick is not recommended, and discover where to buy faux stone products that look authentic.
LESLIE: Randy in Texas needs some help with a brick project. What happened?
RANDY: Well, I have recently downsized houses  and I’ve got this place that was built, I guess, in the late 70s and it’s got a neat fireplace  in it that goes through – it’s double-sided. It goes from the living room area into the dining room area and I guess whoever had the place before me decided they didn’t like the brick look and painted it all white.
LESLIE: Yay. (Tom chuckles) Terrible.
RANDY: And it’s nice and ugly now and I’m trying to decide whether I want to just take it down to the brick or put on some slate tile or something like that that would make it look better and I just know that I need to get that paint off  before I can do anything to it. So I’m trying to find the best way to get that paint off of there.
LESLIE: How much time and energy you got? (Tom and Leslie laugh)
RANDY: I got all kinds of time and energy-wise, well, it depends on what day you catch me. (Tom chuckles)
LESLIE: I tell you, there is not a thing out there, except professional sandblasting, that’s going to get that paint off.
RANDY: Oh, alright. That’s what I was afraid of.
TOM: Yeah, you might just want to think of a new decorating scheme. (chuckles)
LESLIE: Can’t you adhere a slate or some sort of stone facing on top of the paint?
TOM: Sure. What about one of those Owens Corning products? That would look great.
LESLIE: You know, that’s true. Owens Corning  came out with a new interior product. They had one outside called cultured stone veneer, but there’s an interior version of it that’s far lighter weight and it’s made – I mean it’s not real stone; it’s like compressed concrete to make it look like real stone and the color is all through it and it comes sort of in a swatch of different colors to make up this beautiful tonation and they do river rock and flagstone and it installs super easy and that’s a great application for a fireplace.
TOM: And the thing is, Randy, if you did go through all that work to remove the paint, you might find out that there was a reason that they painted it to begin with.
RANDY: Right. That’s the other thing I’m afraid of.
RANDY: Now what do you have to do to make that product adhere to it, then? I mean do you use a regular mastic?
TOM: It’s a mastic adhesive. It’s very lightweight, it’s easy to do and it’s easy to cut and I think that that’s probably the best solution for you.
LESLIE: Mm-hmm, and their website gives a ton of very detailed directions including what type of adhesive and, you know, how to apply it; depending on which cultured stone you choose. But make sure you look at their interior product.
RANDY: Alright, well I appreciate your help very much. Thank you.
TOM: You’re welcome, Randy. Thanks so much for calling us at 888-MONEY-PIT.