Paint an indoor fireplace by cleaning the brick, applying an oil-based stain-blocking primer, and painting with a roller for highly textured surfaces. Choose a latex paint that the manufacturer rates for high-heat applications. The process often requires two or more coats and touching up with a brush.
Over time, dust, dirt, soot and smoke collect on the fireplace. Remove them so the paint adheres properly. Use a stiff bristle brush and a solution of trisodium phosphate to clean the brick. Wear gloves and eye protection, and mask any areas you are not painting. After scrubbing the area thoroughly, rinse the TSP and dust away with clean water. Allow the brick to dry completely before proceeding.
The primer helps prevent any soot stains in the future. Use drop cloths for the protection of surrounding areas and masking tape on the walls. Follow the manufacturer’s directions for drying time for the primer before applying the top coat.
Fireplace bricks typically reach temperatures up to 200 degrees Fahrenheit, so the paint must be able to withstand the heat.
Select the appropriate color and finish. Only apply the paint to the facade of the fireplace -- do not use this type of paint on the firebox itself. The temperatures inside the firebox are much higher and require a special paint.