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Old 04-03-2011, 12:51 AM
 
42 posts, read 77,545 times
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We have two options on where we can put the TV in the remodel we are doing of our house. We can put [hang] the TV on the east wall above the fireplace, or hang it on the south wall, which is just a blank wall.

The original plan was to put it on the west wall above the fireplace but we don't want to strain our necks looking up above the fireplace. So we decided to switch the TV to the south wall. Our home designer isn't as thrilled with putting the TV on the south wall. One of the reasons being that the view is out the backyard on the north wall and that there will be glare (but we'll get window coverings). So we asked him about boarding up the fireplace and just not having one. Thoughts? Is it weird not to have a fireplace?

This isn't necessarily our forever-house but we plan to stay for at least 20 years, to raise our kids through high school.

P.S. The house is currently 1500 sf, 1 story. We are adding a second story and moving all the bedrooms upstairs. New house will be 3200 sf. Our floor plan is fairly open and the kitchen/dining/living all run straight the entire length of the back of the house (from east to west).
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Old 04-03-2011, 01:17 AM
 
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A fireplace is nice to have but to me it's also a utility, we have two here and haven't used either yet because it's new house to us. I'd never consider taking them out because it's a semi rural area and can be used for heat in an emergency. They won't keep the house super warm but at least it will be livable and the pipes won't freeze if there is extended power outage. We're getting a generator at some point in time but even with that I still wouldn't consider getting rid of them.

That would be the first thing I would consider if you live in a colder climate even if you live in town. Most heating appliances require electric to operate, no power, no heat.
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Old 04-03-2011, 02:28 AM
 
Location: Southern California
3,115 posts, read 6,768,007 times
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I have my TV mounted over a fireplace, and I don't strain my neck - or anything else - to view it. It's not a big deal at all. I've seen those tutorials on the way to mount a TV, at the perfect height - but as far as I'm concerned it works just as well to mount it higher.

If you really hate the fireplace, and plan to stay in the house 20 years, then yeah, cover it up! But if you're thinking at all about re-sale value? Don't do it.

And as far as decorating? The fireplace is usually the main focal point in a living room - do you have some other architectural feature that you can highlight instead? If removing the fireplace means you end up with a room where the TV is the focal point? That may be disappointing when you complete the remodel...
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Old 04-03-2011, 02:35 AM
 
Location: Southern California
3,115 posts, read 6,768,007 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thecoalman View Post
A fireplace is nice to have but to me it's also a utility, we have two here and haven't used either yet because it's new house to us. I'd never consider taking them out because it's a semi rural area and can be used for heat in an emergency. They won't keep the house super warm but at least it will be livable and the pipes won't freeze if there is extended power outage. We're getting a generator at some point in time but even with that I still wouldn't consider getting rid of them.

That would be the first thing I would consider if you live in a colder climate even if you live in town. Most heating appliances require electric to operate, no power, no heat.
Good point! I lived up in the mountains the winter before last, and we spent a week without power, after getting three feet of snow. We couldn't get out of the house, since there was three feet of snow and the roads were all blocked - and the only heat and light we had came from the fireplace. It was not a fun week - but it would have been hellish without the fireplace. And I live in Southern California, so not an area you associate with that kind of weather.

If there's any chance at all you might ever get snowed in...
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Old 04-03-2011, 09:58 AM
 
Location: El Dorado Hills, CA
3,651 posts, read 7,662,522 times
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We also have our TV mounted over the fireplace. It is just fine, no neck strain. The mounting brackets allow you to tilt the TV down just a bit for a good angle. It totally solves the issue of how to set up your furniture to focus on the fireplace and the TV. If you decide to do this, remember that you will need some type of tube in the wall to get your wires set up. You can install a plug above the fireplace, but you will need to connect to DVD, cable box, etc and you don't want that stuff sitting on your mantle. Be sure to plan for a place to put all the electronics, we put a console next to the fireplace and a tube through the wall. It works great.
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Old 04-03-2011, 12:05 PM
 
Location: South Park, San Diego
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There shouldn't be too much glare from north facing windows unless you will be getting reflected light from a nearby wall or fence. I'm not a big fan of TVs over the fireplace, just seems like too much going on for one space, and the height can be problematic.

Typically fireplaces are one of the most prominent interior architectural features in a house (along with stairways) so I would vote to keep it, upgrade it if you feel it needs it to reflect the newer upgrades with your bigger and better house design. If you can furnish the room to have good seating for TV viewing and still acknowledge the fireplace I would go with that. Remember that TV viewing requires constant attention and the fireplace, along with the view, is something that you occasionally glance at so the furniture placement should reflect that.

You're not going to get snowed in in La Jolla haha but its nice to have a room that still has a prominant focal point when the TV is off, and sometimes even in our cool summer nights its fun to hang out with the fireplace on.
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Old 04-03-2011, 12:50 PM
 
Location: Somewhere in northern Alabama
16,225 posts, read 48,997,062 times
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Recliner.
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Old 04-03-2011, 01:16 PM
 
Location: SW Missouri
15,111 posts, read 28,248,166 times
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I have never been fond of the look of a television over the fireplace. But the bottom line is, I guess, whatever makes you happy is the most important thing. Not being a TV owner myself, I can't quite grasp the concept that it would be an important consideration at all.

Have you considered making one of the other rooms into a den where you can watch television? My mil has one of these TV rooms and it works out well and does not ruin the look of the living room.

20yrsinBranson
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Old 04-03-2011, 05:33 PM
 
Location: SE Michigan
1,213 posts, read 4,149,837 times
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I also have my tv above the fireplace. No neck strain at all. But to be fair, our room is rather oblong instead of a perfect square. The tv/fireplace is on one end of the long end and the seating is at the other end. So we have probably 6 feet before you get to the edge of the couch and so 7-9 feet is where most we mostly sit. No neck strain. It is only a shift of the eyes.

It is like standing on a beach looking toward the ocean; dead straight your eyes are looking at the water and a small shift of the eyes and you are looking at the clouds. you don't have to crane your neck upward to look at the clouds.
Same thing with the tv above the fireplace.
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Old 04-04-2011, 06:27 AM
 
Location: Johns Creek, GA
11,295 posts, read 43,263,851 times
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"Is fireplace necessary?"

Not in San Diego. At least in the literal form.
Since the advent of electricity, huddling around the fireplace for warmth and conversation has morphed into around the radio for entertainment, and now to television.
A fireplace is just not a dominant feature for a home today. It's more of a design element- it's ambiance.
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