Best Fireplace Screens
If you have a fireplace built into your home, then you probably will need a screen. What is nice is there are screens out there that are specially designed for this purpose. For the most part, the purpose of their design is to help shield those present from the radiating heat being emitted from the fireplace. However, they can also be an ideal way to block any flying embers from landing into your living room. Of course, with children running around, they can also act as a safety precaution. No matter how you slice it, they serve their purpose. Yet, buying one is a different animal and that is why you have stumbled across this guide today.
- Solid steel
- Tri-fold design
- Plow & Hearth
- Rigid frame
- Two hinged doors
- Small Crest
- Magnetic secure closure
- Copper and black styles
10 Best Fireplace Screens
Plow & Hearth 3 Flatguard
Welded to the frame is heavy-duty mesh and this allows the heat to come through while also blocking flying embers from entering into your living room.
This is a three-panel design and all of them are hinged. In addition to this, it is designed to sit flush to your fireplace and the panels have handles integrated onto them.
Instead of hollow tubes, this frame is crafted of solid steel. Adding onto this is the powder-coat finish which adds enhanced protection and durability to the metal.
Overall, this bad boy measures 50 inches in width and 30 inches in height. Now, the center panel measures 30 inches by 30 inches and the two side panels measure 10 inches by 30 inches.
This is not really a decorative piece so be aware of that. Still, the plain black appeal is far from appalling and could actually be considered quite stylish in its own right.
As the top model, it may surprise some of you that it is not overflowing with amazing features. But, as you will learn about these products, it is all about performance and this is as good as it gets.
Constructed from solid steel
The screen is brought closer to the opening
It is a tri-fold design
Not the most stylish option out there
Plow & Hearth Alternating Panels
The design here is quite ingenious. Tempered glass panels are alternated with mesh screening. What this achieves is the luxury of cut glass and the convenience of mesh.
There are two doors in all and each of the doors sports two panels (meaning there are four panels in all). They each have handles and also a magnetic latch to ensure a secure closure.
Not only is the tubular steel frame rigid, strong, and lightweight, it is also coated with a powder finish. However, the glass panels themselves are held together by flimsy tabs.
You have the option of selecting either the small or large model. The former measures 38 inches by 31 inches and the latter measures 44 inches by 33 inches.
This could be the most elegant design on this entire list. Not only does the glass and powder-coat finish add to the appeal, but the decorative design will fit most any décor.
If Plow & Hearth would have engineered this with superior hardware, it would have topped this list as the best model in the world. Still, second is not bad in the slightest.
Will fit flush
The two hinged doors make fire-tending easier
The frame is rigid, lightweight and strong
Overall, the hardware could be improved
Plow & Hearth Small Crest
As with most of the options on this list, this is one that is designed of heavy-duty mesh for the main material.
Being a two-door design with integrated handles, this opens much like a gateway would. It provides you full access to maintain your fire while also sitting flush thanks to the flat guard design.
Much like the previous design, this is another one that utilizes tubular steel and a powder-coat finish. Yet, the stands on the end can be a bit unstable.
Plow & Hearth provides their consumers with multiple size options. You can either select a 38-inch by 31-inch model or one that measures 44 inches by 33 inches.
The scrollwork needs to be applauded here as it completely elevates this design. For sure, this will add necessary beauty to any décor in any season.
Another strong showing from Plow & Hearth and while this is their third best effort, it is still better than most designs out there. That is quite impressive ladies and gentlemen.
Features a magnetic secure closure
Will fit flush for maximum protection
Copper and black styles are available
A few claimed the color was a bit off
The stands are a bit unstable
Adalia Wrought Iron
There is mesh backing integrated into this model and it is welded on the back. If you did not want the mesh, which would defeat the purpose of the design, you could cut it out, though.
Given that this is a traditional design, there are no doors or extra panels. Instead, to gain access to the fire, you must simply move this out of the way. Also, most users agree that it is hard to get this to rest flush.
Provided the fact that this is designed with wrought iron, it is pretty sturdy. A guessing man would say it weighs around 35 to 50 pounds.
As mentioned, this may not fit flush with your fireplace. Still, for your reference, it does measure 47.75 inches by 35.75 inches.
In addition to the natural grace of wrought iron, this has an artistic design and appeal. It is certainly a refined look and will fit in exquisitely with most decors.
For those seeking a multiple door or panel design, look elsewhere. Yet, if you admire the simple one-panel design and the traditional grace, you could really appreciate this option.
Adds a refined look to any home
Built of wrought iron
It is a traditionally inspired design
Many users claim it does not fit flush
Thanks to the steel mesh screening, any sparks or embers that release from your fire will be guarded against.
A lot of you will love the style of this design. There are three panels in total, with a center panel and two side panels. What is nice about this is the side panels can extend to fit different openings.
While the frame is tubular steel, the stability is very questionable. If you make some modifications, which will require a bit of prior expertise, this can be made to be more stable, though.
As a whole, this measures 48 inches by 30 inches. Now, each side panel measures 12 inches so the size can be customized a bit (in regard to the width, not the height).
In terms of appeal, this is a very basic design through and through. Still, the mesh coupled with the black finish is far from unappealing to the eyes.
It is really hard to beat this price. But, if you are not willing to make slight modifications then this is not the best solution if you have animals or kids running around.
Equipped with hinged doors
Designed with steel mesh
The stability issues can be tweaked
Extremely light in weight and easily collapsible without modifications
Verdugo Woodland Wonder
There is metal everywhere here and that typically is never a bad thing. The main material for the screening is mesh.
This is comprised of two doors which can be secured at the bottom with a sliding latch. When needed, raise the latch and the doors can swing open.
Despite being mostly high-quality, the latch itself could have been engineered with better quality. Also, the stands are made of thin metal.
As one buyer noted, the provided dimensions are very accurate. What you get here is a unit that measures 38 inches by 31.25 inches.
Without question, the design is riveting here. The silhouettes of the evergreens and forest creatures coupled with the outer trim of pine cones make for a stunning visual.
For grace and style alone, this is a worthy contender. However, some cheap integrations here and there hurt the overall value but the Woodland Wonder is still more than plausible.
The silhouette appeal is marvelous
Both doors will swing open
The measurements seem to be very accurate
The handles tend to heat up
Not the most high-quality latches in the world
If it is not broke, then why fix it? Deco also decided to go with a mesh structure as it has fantastic benefits.
While this does not have any doors, it does have three panels (with two on the side). Due to this, the hinges allow the gate to open fully.
The solid metal construction is more than noticeable but some buyers have noted this does a feel a bit on the cheaper side.
Remember, there are two panels (one on each side) so you can adjust the width a bit (leaving the panels tucked away). As a whole, this measures 52 inches wide by 31 inches tall.
Be aware that several consumers warn that the actual product is brighter than the photo indicates (also claiming there is more forest green than it looks). Still, the Fleur De Lis accents offer a sophisticated appeal.
For this specific model, the pictures seem to be a bit deceiving. If the tint of forest green is appealing to you, then the design as a whole should be, as well.
Both decorative and functional
The hinges allow the gate to fully open
The scroll work is made of solid metal
Some reviewers have mentioned that the color is brighter in person
Not the toughest design out there
Due to the fact that the mesh screening from the panels is made from wrought iron, it allows for enhanced spreading of heat and overall protection.
This is another design that comes with three single hinged panels and it does so in an arched design.
As just mentioned, this is an excellent combination of wrought iron with a powder-coated finish. This combination is as stylish as it is durable.
When this bad boy is fully expanded, meaning all the panels are extended, it is going to measure 51 inches in width and also 31 inches in height.
In addition to the rustic appeal of the wrought iron, the top border sports a decorative design. All in all, very few consumers will see this as ugly or unattractive.
Due to the overall flimsiness of this design, it is not an adequate solution for protection from children or animals (as they may knock it down). Still, it is going to last and will provide protection.
Backed by a one-year warranty
Made of wrought iron
Performs very well for protection
Some buyers note that it is a bit flimsy
While this is made of mesh, one buyer noted that it appeared like some of the wire was not weaved. Since it is black, though, you may not even notice it.
Consider this one big piece altogether. Due to the fact that it is only one panel, you will need to move it to gain access to your fireplace.
Some customers have actually received this with noticeable damage. But, if it comes unscathed, the wrought iron frame and steel legs should be long-lasting.
At only 44 inches in height, this is not quite as tall as some of the other options on this list. Also, the width measures 33 inches.
There is no way to sugarcoat the fact that this is not a decorative option. It is plain Jane and for some people’s tastes, this will be exactly what the doctor ordered.
Some of you will not put up with the inconvenience of not having convenient access to your fire at all times. Then again, for a single panel option, this is pretty solid.
Features a black finish
It is designed to fit snug and flush
Designed with heavy gauge mesh
Some buyers have received it damaged
There are some miss-weaves in the wire mesh
Pleasant Hearth Arched
This is yet another heavy-duty mesh screen and it safely protects you against sparks and ashes emitting from your fire.
Pleasant Hearth went with a three-panel design and it is hard to argue with that. The side panels will extend out if you need them to.
While this has stability issues and can be tipped over, it is comprised 100 percent of steel. Plus, it does sport a powder-coated finish.
When assembled, which is not required as it comes assembled, this measures 48 inches in width by 30 inches in height.
There is nothing outlandish about this design but the Victorian gothic appeal and black powder-coated finish combine for a stellar appeal, all things considered.
You always have to consider good budget options as sometimes, you simply can’t afford the top-of-the-line designs. In this case, that is exactly what you are looking at.
Provides solid protection
The overall gothic design is appealing
It will fold together
It is a very light model that can be tipped over
Criteria Used For Evaluation
Glass or Mesh
Probably the first major area of concern for you is the main material. Now, this is referring to the actual paneling itself and not the frame. It is going to come down to either mesh or glass. While you will probably see many guides claim that glass is superior, mesh tends to be the more popular option amongst consumers. The claims that glass is superior are certainly not false or unwarranted as for all intents and purposes, it may just be. They will be capable of withstanding unreal temperatures while also being a joy to look at. But, the thing about glass paneling is it requires a lot of maintenance and mesh does not. Not saying that mesh does not need any maintaining, but glass is definitely more high-maintenance.
Another really nice aspect of mesh is that it combines style and durability in its own right. The metal that is typically used for the screens, which can be wrought iron, steel, etc., is both durable and resilient. Some consumers may even prefer the look of mesh over glass, to be honest.
Now it is time to talk about the style. Fireplace screens come in an array of different styles and all of them have their own distinctions. Probably the simplest of all the styles is the single-panel design. This offers more of a streamlined look and typically is designed with integrated handles to make it easier to lift them. Of course, there are also multiple-panel designs and as it sounds, these sport more than one panel. The benefit of this type is that they can be folded when not in use and offer a 3D look (which is ideal for larger rooms).
However, then there are door screens. With this type of design, you can open the doors up and you then have quick access to your fireplace. Clearly, this is the most convenient of the options as with the other types, you have to physically move the unit to gain access to your fire. If you load your fireplace with wood and maintain it often, you may want to shoot for this type.
Overall Build Quality
The main material of the paneling has already been documented and discussed but what about the rest of the design? Indeed, the actual screen itself is simply one part of the overall design as you also need to pay attention to the overall build. One benefit of this type of design is you do not need to worry about weathering as these will not be exposed to the elements. But, this does not mean you should settle for a flimsy type of metal, either. Two of the more popular metals that you will see with this technology are wrought iron and steel. Between the two, steel is harder and stronger than iron but wrought iron has a grainy and rustic appeal.
No matter, look for some type of finish (with the best probably being a powder-coating) as this will protect the metal and enhance its durability. Also, and this becomes important if you have children running around, assess the stability. Some units are quite flimsy and if your child runs into them, may get knocked over.
Size and Dimensions
This is where you need to be smart. You will be doing yourself a disservice if you invest in a screen that does not properly fit in front of your fireplace. So, due to this, you need to do some measuring. What you want to do is measure the opening (both in its width and its height). Now, this is where things can get a little cloudy as you would believe that is it. However, nearly all manufacturers and experts will inform you to add to your existing dimensions. This is because you need an adequate amount of coverage and it is always better to have extra space than not enough.
So, it is typically advised to add around 10 to 12 inches to the width and three to five inches to the height. Once you have your number, write it down as you will need to reference that size. Now, also remember that multiple panel models can extend. So, with these, the sizing can be customized a bit. Keep that in mind if you are interested in that specific type.
Aesthetics and Appeal
If you came into this believing that you were foolish for actually wanting a design that you find appealing, understand that you are not foolish at all. In fact, it is important enough to be a criterion on this list so what does that tell you? When you add any sort of product in your home, the style and appeal will be considered. Whether it is a kitchen appliance or a new piece of furniture, style is as important as function. But, you should never prioritize appeal over function that is for sure.
The key is to look for both. When it comes to the visual design, though, it is all up to you. If you prefer a rustic look, then you may want to go with a wrought iron construction. If you want a decorative appeal, look for decorative screens as they do exist. Or, if you are simply content with simplicity and could care less about all of this then do not allow it to come into the equation.
Q: How to Clean the Screen?
Remember when it was claimed that glass requires more maintenance than mesh? Well, this is where that comes into play. For mesh, which will not need to be cleaned as often, it is probably best to just take a damp cloth to remove all the soot. But, it may not be that easy with glass as glass shows more than mesh. What you can try, and this is a fairly popular solution, is to clean it with a vinegar solution. What you will need is a solution comprised of three cups of warm water, one tablespoon of ammonia and one cup of vinegar.
Ideally, mix it into a spray bottle and spray the solution on the glass. From there, allow it to sit for around 30 seconds. Then, take a clean cloth and scrub the solution until the soot is loosened. You can repeat this process as many times as needed to get the glass as clean as you desire.
Q: Should Glass Doors be Kept Closed?
If you invest in a mesh screen, then this question is not going to concern you. However, if not and you do decide to get a model with glass doors, you need to know that they should be open at certain points. You see, even though certain glass has an insanely high-tolerance to high-temperatures, it can only handle so much. If you have your fire burning at full blaze, then you should probably do so with the doors opened. Not only could it risk the integrity of the glass but also the finish around the glass.
Now, if the fire is not too hot then you could probably get away with leaving them closed. You may end up spending a lot of money on this product so why risk damaging it?
Q: Are they even Necessary?
There is probably someone out there, who asked this question right away, admit it. Some consumer products are simply being designed to add luxury and convenience in your life and the question is, are fireplace screens that type of product? The short answer is no, not really. As was mentioned at the beginning of this guide, there are many different reasons why you need to get a screen for your fireplace.
For starters, even controlled fires can be a safety hazard as what happens if an ember or a coal spits out from the fire and lands in your living room? Oh, and how about this one? With children and pets running around your home, do you really want them to even have a chance of accidentally getting too close to the fire? Yes everyone, they really are necessary.
Q: How to Remove Rust from Them?
Whenever you buy any product that is made of metal and it features any iron at all, even metals that feature iron as an alloy, you have to worry about rust. Sometimes, it can be tough to prevent it and if you notice that it has begun to form, there is a way you can remove it. What you need to do is to take your screen outside and invest in a metal brush. This is probably the easiest way to remove rust and on the areas that have begun to rust, run the metal brush over them.
Do not be afraid to scrub as you need to get as much powder off as you physically can. If you want to avoid this solution, though, you can try to use a specially formulated cleaner to remove the rust.
Q: What is the Difference Between a Spark Guard and a Fireplace Screen?
Something that has not really been discussed yet is what the difference is from a spark guard and this piece of equipment. Well, if you remember, one spark guard actually made an appearance on this list and they are actually pretty much the same type of design. However, they are designed to provide protection all around with single-panel designs fitting snugly. You could almost consider them an enhancement but to be honest, they are pretty much the same thing. In a technical sense, a spark guard could simply be considered a design type.
Q: What Exactly Causes Rust?
Okay, even though this does not have a direct tie-in to the buying process at hand here, it is a question that feels appropriate to answer. Even though you now know how to remove rust if it becomes present on the screen that you invest in, ideally, the key is to never allow the rust to form, in the first place. Again, as long as iron is in the fold, rust can occur.
You may not know this but when a metal rusts, it is actually returning to its natural unrefined state. They all start out as rust so it is always there. But, rust is able to occur when three elements combine. Those being any type of water, oxygen and iron. Now, and this is where it gets scientific, when iron and oxygen combine the iron will lose electronics to oxygen atoms. This is known as oxidation and when it occurs, a chemical reaction is produced and this is formally known as Ferric Oxide. Or, you may know it better as rust.
At the end of the day, and this sums it up perfectly for anyone who has doubts, safety should always come first. If you own a fireplace and it does not already have a screen, then you should invest in one. It really is as simple as that and to be honest, you now should have a clear understanding of how to buy one. All you have to do now is make a choice.