A backyard fire pit is one of the best ways to extend your living space and get outside more often. A fire pit is often the central focal point of the backyard and is easy to build in with seating options and other outdoor furniture. Modern outdoor furniture and fire pit sets are available, but are often expensive when sold as a single piece.
For those interested in building a fire pit who don’t want to spend a fortune, there are a few options for building and setting up a fire pit on your own. There are several safety precautions and checks to make beforehand, and planning out the fire pit before building it is more than half the work.
Building or buying a backyard fire pit will create a great social space for your family or for guests. Get ready to spend the evening outside with these tips for setting up your fire pit setup.
Many neighborhoods, counties, or apartment buildings may have regulations regarding fire pits. Check-in first with your building manager or local homeowners association to determine any restrictions before getting started. Unfortunately, not every backyard can support a fire pit.
Next, look up your local recreational fire codes. There may be fire code restrictions for your city or entire state that prevent the use of fire pits. States such as California and Oregon have been particularly susceptible to fire damage of late, in part due to dry climate and very little rainfall. Many areas of the southwestern United States may also have similar fire danger warnings. Many local fire departments will have corresponding information on their website and may send updates regarding changes to the fire codes for your area.
Next, choose a location within your backyard suitable for the fire pit. It should be in a wide-open space, away from your building and fence. Make sure there are no plants or overhanging trees in the nearby vicinity to ensure that the fire does not escape the fire pit. The location should be on level ground and not backed up into a corner.
Ensure that the materials necessary to extinguish the fire are close, properly stored, and easy to access. Make a plan for extinguishing a fire that everyone within your household understands, and explain the dangers associated with having a fire to younger kids when necessary.
Consider the size of the fire pit you are building, and layout its area before beginning to build. There should be enough room for patio furniture and outdoor seating so that everyone can sit across from each other. Remember that the fire pit is only the center of your new outdoor living space!
To build a fire pit, you will need to dig out any grass or plants that are currently in the fire pit’s space. Do not build on top of grass; it will burn quickly and may lead to the fire expanding beyond the fire pit. Use a shovel to clear the area and level the ground beneath to be as compact as possible. The recommended depth is 6’.
There are a few things you will need to pick up from your local Home Depot, Lowes, or hardware store: a metal fire pit ring, a bag of gravel, and the landscaping stones or bricks that will form the fire pit. You can also add on any materials necessary for sealing the stones if desired. This isn’t strictly necessary for landscaping bricks that fit compactly together, but you may want to use masonry adhesive in certain situations.
Begin by pouring the gravel into the fire pit’s space, then set up the stones with the masonry adhesive on the top of the stones that are not sitting on the top layer. Build the stones around the fire pit ring so that nothing has to move around after the adhesive has set. Use a mallet or small hammer to make sure the stones are flat and held together well. Once assembled, you may want to use a level to check the top of the ring. Here is a more detailed guide to firepit assembly if needed.
There are various outdoor furniture options available, but seating for fire pit areas is often more luxurious than the average patio deck chair. Consider outdoor couches and benches that have cushions, so you can feel comfortable sitting outside for long stretches. Many complete furniture sets also feature pillows and matching side tables.
Make sure to consider the general appearance of your fire pit and backyard before choosing furniture. Backyards with wooden patios and fences will require different furniture than backyards with stucco walls. There is plenty of leeway to get creative with putting together your outdoor living space.
If you are interested in setting up a luxury fire pit in your backyard, look no further than the gas burner fire pit. These fire pits are much more of a set piece for your outdoor space and often feature more modern and artistic designs. They are easier to light and can be instantly turned off so you don’t have to worry about waiting for the coals the die down. Most gas fire pits are able to closely control the flames and smoke they emit, which ultimately makes them safer.
When choosing a gas fire pit, make sure to shop only for outdoor designs. Many interior fire pits with a similar design and appearance cannot be used outdoors or are electric and need to be plugged in. Many minimalist looks for gas or electric fire pits fit any yard and seating situation.
When lighting a fire outdoors, check regulations for your area and stay safe. Setting up a basic fire pit is fairly straightforward, though more modern outdoor firepit options exist if desired. It is always better to check the reviews before getting a firepit. A new fire pit for your backyard can inspire you to spend more time outside and can be a central space for entertaining guests this summer.