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safe clearances around built-in fireplace?

17 years ago

Our new (to us) home has a built-in fireplace manufactured by Preway in 1986. I understand that the company has since gone out of business, there is no manual available, and I'm looking for help in determining what the clearances should be for this FP.

When we bought the house, the FP was trimmed in pine so that the wood covered the places where the manufactured FP met the sheetrock wall on the sides and top. Is that safe??? We have since removed the pine, and would like to install a mantle above the FP and a tile surround. Can we install a wooden mantle at the same height where the wood trim used to be?

The town building inspector says that with an older unit, we can replace everything with the same clearances that were originally in place. Any thoughts???

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