How Much Does Chimney Or Fireplace Removal Cost?

Typical Range:

$4,000 - $10,000

Find out how much your project will cost.

Cost data is based on research by HomeAdvisor.

Updated August 17, 2022

Written by HomeAdvisor.

Removing a chimney or fireplace is a large undertaking. Your costs will vary depending on the make of your chimney and fireplace, your fireplace insert, and whether you remove the chimney stack and breast. For a partial chimney or fireplace removal, expect to pay around $500 to $2,500. For a full demolition, expect to pay approximately $2,500 to $7,500, with an average of $4,500.

Because chimneys are often deeply integrated into the structure of your home, find a reputable structural engineer to guide you and your chimney pro through the renovation process. This will add an extra $500 to your project.

Diagram of the parts of a fireplace and chimney, including the flue, damper, and firebox

Chimney Removal Costs

A chimney removal averages between $800 to $7,500, depending on its size and the extent of the demolition. A full demo most likely means that your home is experiencing structural integrity and spatial issues.

Partial removal may stem from your chimney stack leaning away from your home. You can either remove or replace the stack and leave the chimney breast (the lower part) in place.

Chimney Removal OptionsAverage Price Range
Full chimney demolition$2,500 – $7,500
Stack removal$800 – $2,000
Breast removal$1,500 – $2,500
Chimney liner replacement$1,600 – $5,000

Full Demolition

For a complete chimney demolition, you can expect to pay between $2,500 to $7,500. You'll need to plan and budget for reinforcements, debris disposal, reconstructing floors, walls, and ceilings, and additional time. 

A full chimney demo includes the removal of the chimney stack (above the roof line) and the breast (below the roof line), flue or liner, firebox (the area where you light fires), and hearth.

Before hiring a pro for a full chimney demolition, you must consult a structural engineer who can tell you what you need to reinforce and maintain for structural safety. Once you have your engineering plans, you can move forward with hiring a local demolition expert.

Stack/Above-Roof Removal

The stack is the outside portion of the chimney, which noticeably sticks out from the roof and has a cap on top. The cost of removing a stack averages between $800 and $2,000.

Traditional stacks use brick or cement blocks. Pros remove chimney stacks when the structure is compromised or leaking. The process involves taking it down brick by brick and covering the hole in the roof where the stack was.

This project will take two pros half a day to up to a day and a half for larger stacks. You’ll need to budget for scaffolding, demolition, and debris removal, including the flue liner, chimney sealing, and roof repairs. 


The chimney breast is the visible portion of the chimney that encases the flue and internal parts of the fireplace. The breast is also a major structural component, with the average demolition cost of $1,500 to $2,500. Because chimney breasts typically take up valuable square footage, homeowners may opt to remove the breast and leave the stack in place.

You can expect this project to take two to four days to complete. When removing the breast, plan on paying structural engineer fees, the cost to install steel beams (which is between $300 and $9,000) for structural support, and refinishing a room with new drywall or patching walls, floors, and ceilings.

Flue & Liner Removal and Replacement

The flue is the duct inside the chimney where smoke and combustion gases vent outside. The liner protects the brick and mortar because it’s resistant to corrosion and provides a barrier between the gases and masonry materials. You can find flue liners in stainless steel, clay/terra-cotta, aluminum, cast-in-place, or thermocrete.

Installing a chimney liner costs between $1,600 and $5,000. The price will depend on the liner size and condition, type of material for installation, and whether your existing flue has asbestos or other harmful contaminants. 

Old-fashioned flues may not have liners, which poses a fire risk. Also, if a liner isn’t up to standard, it may require an upgrade or replacement.

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Chimney Removal Cost Factors

Chimney removal costs vary depending on several factors, such as its location in your house, the materials used, fuel type, and the extent of the damage. You may want to look into chimney repair costs before taking on a whole removal project.

Other factors include wiring and electrical components, health hazards and chemical exposure, hiring a structural engineer, and adding structural beams once the removal is complete. We discuss major cost factors for removing a chimney below.


Chimney removal costs will depend on how many floors or stories a chimney passes through and its width and depth. A chimney located in the basement will cost more in labor and debris removal. In contrast, chimneys built with brick, masonry, or stone will average $25 to $50 per vertical linear foot for demolition. 

Location in Your Home

Various aspects of the chimney location can impact your budget:

  • Indoor vs. outdoor: It’s less costly to remove a chimney bolted to the outside of the home than to remove an indoor chimney built into an interior wall, especially if the wall is load-bearing. 

  • Interior fireplace: It costs less to remove an interior fireplace because you don’t need to repair an exterior wall.

  • Location of the stack: It’s less expensive to remove a stack near the eaves (the edge of the roof that overhangs on the exterior side) than at the very peak of your roof.

  • Structural integrity: If your home is attached to your neighbor’s, you’ll need an engineer to ensure both places can withstand a chimney demo.

  • Where you live: Metropolitan area demolition pros will charge more for chimney removal, especially if your home requires elevator, stair, or specialty roof access.


You won’t pay as much for stack removal if you have a metal chimney. But chimney stacks built with masonry materials like brick will be more time-consuming and demand more waste removal than their metal counterparts. 


It’s less expensive to remove a fireplace and chimney breast blocking off the flue and leaving the chimney stack than to remove an entire fireplace and chimney. The cost of labor and rebuilding materials also factor in. 

If you move the chimney to another location within your home, you’ll have to price in the cost of removing the old stack and the cost to rebuild a chimney stack, averaging $1,000 to $3,500. You’ll also need to factor in the price of installing support beams when removing the chimney stack, which ranges from $50 to $500 per square foot. Moving a freestanding chimney will be less costly, as you only need to move the vent pipe and repair the roof, flooring, ceiling, and walls.

Fireplace Removal Cost

Demolishing a fireplace costs about $500 to $2,500 but can vary depending on the type and placement in your home. You can expect to pay more to demolish a custom-built brick fireplace than a prefab fireplace insert.

It’s possible to remove the fireplace by itself and leave the stack or chimney flue, but you’ll need major reinforcements. It’ll also require support beams to maintain the structural integrity of your home. 

Here are the average prices to remove different types of fireplaces:

Fireplace TypeAverage Price Range to RemoveAssociated Costs
Wood stove$500 – $1,000Labor; debris removal; patching the ceiling; capping off the chimney
Electric or gas fireplace insert$500 – $2,500Removing the electric insert; turning off and dismantling the gas line
Ventless fireplace$750 – $1,500Hiring a gas removal expert
Outdoor fireplace$500 – $2,000Hiring a contractor

Here are some considerations to keep in mind:

  • Wood stove: Older wood stoves pose a health hazard and increase air pollution indoors. Switching to a newer U.S. Environmental Protection Agency-certified wood stove helps burn smoke more efficiently and decreases creosote and smoke buildup. 

  • Electric or gas fireplace insert:An electric fireplace is easier to remove, but you'll need to hire a local electrician to remove the wiring. A gas fireplace is more involved since you'll need to either cap the chimney or remove the chimney breast entirely.

  • Ventless fireplace: You’ll need to hire a pro to disconnect the gas line. Other costs will depend on whether your fireplace is wall-mounted, prefabricated, or inserted.

  • Outdoor fireplace: You’ll need to hire a contractor to disconnect the gas and wiring. Other costs depend on the materials, structure, fuel source, accessibility, structural support, and framing. 

Cost Considerations

Different elements factor into your overall project cost. Wiring and material are two significant ones that could drive your final price in one direction or another, so speak to a residential structural engineer before starting your project.

Here are some other cost factors to keep in mind:

  • Location: Removing and structurally maintaining interior walls will cost more than fireplaces on exterior walls. Removing an interior wall involves as much work as removing the front pieces of the fireplace. 

  • Wiring: If your fireplace is electric, you'll want to pay electrician fees so they can safely handle the wiring for about $300.

  • Damage: Several types of damage could raise your project cost. Asbestos, for example, was a key element in building fireplaces before the 1980s. The average cost to remove asbestos is $2,000. Another common issue is with the gallows brackets, which may need to be replaced with stronger reinforcements if they're insufficient after removing the chimney breast. 

  • Regulations: A chimney removal may require permission from your zoning area, so consult an engineer who understands building codes. You'll also want to talk to your contractor to ensure they include the necessary building permits in their fees. You'll need to submit a detailed plan to get your permit approved.

Cost to Remove a Brick Fireplace

Removing a brick fireplace is labor- and cost-intensive, and only experienced DIY-ers should tackle this project. Otherwise, you’ll want to hire professional contractors and demolitionists to take on this job. 

The cost to remove a brick fireplace includes the following steps:

  • A chimney inspection costs an average of $450

  • Hire a structural engineer to ensure the chimney breast doesn’t support any framing. You may also need to seek a building permit.

  • Procure eye protection, dust masks, and protective clothing.

  • Remove all furniture or cover them with plastic sheeting and seal off all doors and vents.

  • Seal or plug up the fireplace above the damper (a small door inside the fireplace located near the chimney base). 

  • Disconnect the gas and any wiring, and cap the gas pipe and the ends of the wires.

  • Demo any interior walls needed to get to the chimney.

  • Use a chisel, hammer, or a small electric demolition hammer to remove bricks and mortar one piece at a time.

  • Have a team of at least two demolitionists to catch the falling bricks and move them outside. 

Once you remove all the bricks, you’ll want to reframe the fireplace with new noncombustible material and install drywall and new flooring around the fireplace.

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Why Remove a Chimney or Fireplace?

You may want to remove your chimney or fireplace for many reasons, such as damage, structural issues, aesthetics, or lack of use. We discuss some of the reasons in more detail below.

Upgrading or Replacement

Replacing an outdated fireplace can have significant returns on investment, especially in colder climates. Replacing an older, wood-burning fireplace with a more efficient gas or electric model will reduce costly maintenance and provide a cleaner air environment. Budget around $1,000 to $4,000 for a new fireplace installation.

Damage to Stack or Fireplace

A leaning or crumbling stack is dangerous because it can lead to moisture damage or creosote buildup, resulting in a fire. Cracks and water leaks can be patched and managed, and you can invest in a high-quality flue liner to protect your chimney. A structural engineer can help you decide if the damage is fixable or beyond repair. According to the National Fire Protection Association, investing in an annual chimney sweep near you for about $250 can keep your chimney in working order.

Moisture Issues

You may notice moisture when you see water stains, rotting wood, dampness on your walls, rusty metals, and condensation in your fireplace. Although this major issue can lead to harmful mold growth, you may only need a partial chimney demo. In this case, you’ll need to remove the stack and roofing over the hole to eliminate the entry for moisture or repair and replace the roof flashing, chimney crown, chimney mortar, and chimney cap.

Repurposing Space

Chimney breasts can take up a lot of room and limit where you place your furniture and valuables. Many people repurpose this space for shelving, storage, and entertainment centers. You’ll want to budget for drywall installation, which averages $40 to $60per panel, including labor and materials.

Efficiency Expense

Many abandoned chimneys lead to heat loss, leaks, rot, mold and mildew, and unpleasant odors from critters once living inside. Removing the remaining structure completely is more cost-effective than repairing it.

What to Expect When Hiring a Pro?

When taking on a project of this magnitude, you’ll want to do extensive research, hire a local residential structural engineer, and consult at least three demolition contractor pros in your area. Removing a chimney will take at least two workers because there’s the potential to compromise the structural stability, which must be dealt with carefully. 

Here are some questions to ask before hiring a demolition contractor:

  • Are scaffolding and waste removal included in your quote?

  • Do you reconstruct the walls, floors, roof, and ceiling after demolition?

  • Do you move or cover furniture, and what’s your plan for dust control?

  • Are you licensed, bonded, and have insurance?

  • Will you obtain the permits from the structural engineer’s plans?

  • Will you supervise the job or subcontract?


How long does it take to remove a chimney or fireplace?

With at least two workers, you can expect a full chimney or fireplace removal to take two to five days. A partial removal will take half a day to two days. Prices will depend on the chimney’s age, size, condition, materials, and the required repairs to interior and exterior walls, floors, ceilings, and roofing.

Can you move a chimney?

You can move a freestanding chimney or gas fireplace more easily than a brick chimney. With a freestanding or gas model, you’ll have to move the vent pipe and repair the spot where the original chimney once stood. In contrast, you’ll need permission from a structural engineer, building permits, and a demolition expert to move a brick chimney. You’ll also need to build an entirely new stack.

Does removing a chimney affect the home value?

Fireplaces are sought-after by 63% of homebuyers. The National Association of Realtors estimates that your home’s value may decrease as much as $1,000 to $5,000 and affect the selling price by 12% after removing a fireplace.

How much does it cost to rebuild a chimney?

The cost to rebuild a chimney depends on whether you need a total rebuild or only need to replace certain parts. To rebuild a chimney stack, you can expect to pay $150 per linear foot, and you should add $1,000 to $1,600 for the hauling and disposal of the entire stack. To rebuild an entire chimney, budget for around $10,000.

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