Traditionally, the fireback protects the back wall of the fire as a heat shield from cracking and crumbling. In addition, the cast iron fireback absorbs heat (which would otherwise be lost) and releases it back into the room. In this way, a fire back acts like a radiator and can therefore increase the the efficiency of the fireplace by 50%. Furthermore, the fireback also has a decorative function in the fireplace, by the stove, in the kitchen as a backsplash, or as an art piece on the wall. Below you can select our 500+ firebacks by width, height, price, style, age and origin. Read also: Everything you need to know to choose a fireback
Assessment of the quality of firebacks
We give all our products a quality rating by giving them a condition *, ** or ***. Of course, we cannot provide a 100% guarantee for the above ratings. But if a cast iron fireback from 1700 has survived for centuries without a crack, there is little chance it will do so soon. Do not worry about rust; it does not affect the quality of the fireback in any way. There are often horizontal or vertical stripes across old firebacks. These are not cracks but the imprints of the mold planks used to make it.
Brown and black firebacks
If an old or antique fireback has a nice brown patina of rust, we tend to preserve it; then, the fireback stays brown. In all other cases, our firebacks are treated with stove polish, giving them a black/greyish color. A brown fireback can always be made black. The other way around is not possible. The central part of a fireback will turn black again as a result of the fire.
Black and grey firebacks
Most of our black/grey firebacks are treated with stove polish. The color variations in the website photos depend largely on the light cast on the fireback. A fireback in bright light or sunlight will look gray, while less strong light will show the fireback black.
Precautions when making a fire
The most important tip for using a fireback is to let a fireback get hot gradually when it is cold (usually at the beginning of the heating season or when you have not stoked for 1-2 weeks). This means stoking a limited fire at the beginning of the season. If the fireback is faced with a very hot fire when cold, it can suffer what is known as "thermoshock" and start to crack. For the same reason, the fire should never be extinguished with water.
A fire always produces soot. The soot can be removed with a wire brush. If necessary, the fire back can be refurbished by putting it in the stove polish. Stove polish is available from any do-it-yourselfer. The latter is not required for the preservation of the fireback though.
Installing a fireback
In principle, the fireback can just be put down against the back wall. To prevent the fireback from toppling over, cast iron breaks if it falls, it is advisable to fasten one or two brackets in the wall at the top. We sell special mounting brackets for this purpose. Sometimes it is nicer to place a back a little higher to keep it better in sight. This can be done by placing the back on refractory bricks or with 2 pairs of our special mounting brackets.
If you have any doubts about the right fireback, it is always possible to contact us (see below). With the measurements of the fireplace or stove and possibly a picture, we can certainly give some good advice.