Here at MantelsDirect, we understand determining the exact size of your fireplace mantel can be slightly daunting, especially if you aren’t entirely sure where to begin. So we’ve compiled a short, simple checklist to help you measure the space for the future home of your new mantel.
You will notice there are several steps associated with measuring for your mantel – the height, width, and depth. For your mantel to best fit within your home or office, you will need the facing and opening measurements for both the mantel and firebox cavity. Facing height, widths, and depths are the overall lengths of your mantel as a whole. Opening height, width, and depth measurements, however, measure the firebox area. Remember, all measurements should be recorded in inches.
1) Determine a site for your mantel. Remembering to be mindful of any restrictions to the shelf, hearth, or height sizes of the mantel such as windows, molding etc. If needed, consider a corner mantel piece as well.
2) Next, you will measure the overall height of the fireplace in inches. This height will include the actual shelf of the mantel in the measurements as well.
3) After recording the overall height, you will record the opening height of the mantel. This measurement takes into consideration your firebox opening. Because our fireplace mantels provide for an overlapping of facing materials, you will then subtract a ½ inch from the total.
4) After recording the height of the mantel, you will measure the opening and body widths of the mantel. Similarly to the opening height, the opening width will be determined by the size of the firebox. After doing so, you will subtract 1 inch from that total. Then, you will measure the body width, which will help you determine the entire width of the mantel. The body width should be measured after the opening width is recorded.
5) After recording the width of the entire mantel, you will need to measure the width of the legs, or end, width of the mantel. The legs of the mantel hold the shelf unit of the mantel up.
6) The last measurement of the width will involve measuring the width for the shelf of the mantel. The shelf of the mantel will typically extend past the width; therefore, the shelf width should be the widest portion of the mantel.
7) Like the width measurements, you will need to record multiple depth measurements. To begin the depth measurements, measure the depth of the mantel shelf.
8) Next, you will measure the cavity depth. The cavity depth is the combined total of the firebox and shelving depth measurements. After recording the cavity depth, you will add a ¼ inch to your measurement to compensate for the overlay value.
There you go! You’ve finished the hardest part of the mantel process.