A firepit is a great way to add interest and entertainment to your yard and provides endless outdoor comfort in any season. If you’re considering adding a fire pit to your backyard, you might want to try to build it yourself. But be careful – there are a few things you should know before you get started. Keep reading for some great tips and advice on how to build a fire pit.
No matter where you’re building your new fire pit or how large it is, you’ll likely need to check with local authorities about any restrictions they may have on this type of feature. Check with the city government, homeowners’ association or other authorities to see what kind of restrictions they have. Ask about size, material, and fuel to get a good idea of where to start on your design. Once you have the rules, make sure you stick to them, or you could face fines.
Think About Seating and Size
A fire pit isn’t going to be the addition you expect if you don’t think ahead to seating. After all, the best way to enjoy a backyard fire pit is with intimate, comfortable seating options. To get started, consider how many people will generally be gathered around the pit. Will it be used for a small family or large groups of friends? Parties or casual hangouts?
Then, you’ll need to think about the overall size you’d like your fire pit to be. Most pits are between 36 and 45 inches wide and between 12 and 15 inches high, including the walls. This size will suit standard 18-inch-high chairs, so you may need to adjust according to the seating type that you’ll be using.
Avoid Crowding and Wind
An active fire can be a hazard, even if it’s in a well-built pit if it is too close to other things. Choose a site to build at least ten feet away from houses, sheds, trees, and property lines. Once you’ve chosen your location for installation, you should identify the prevailing wind direction and speed in that location. Too much wind in the wrong direction could cause smoke to enter your or your neighbor’s homes through open windows or doors.
Choose Materials Wisely
When you build a fire pit, you’ll build an outer wall, an inner wall, and a “cap” that tops those two walls off together at the top of the fire pit. You may also choose to use decorative stones around the base of the pit for extra protection (and style).
Look at fireproof materials like fire brick for the inner wall, at least. The outer wall should still have some level of heat resistance, too, like concrete, stone, or masonry blocks. Finally, the cap can be made of flagstone or even outdoor heat-resistant tile.
Get the Right Fuel
A fire pit doesn’t mean you’re stuck with wood or other solid fuel. In fact, natural gas is an excellent option for fire pits because they’re clean burning; no smoke, no ashes, no embers. However, if you decide to go with gas as your fuel, you’ll need to have a professional install the supply line to prevent any accidents.
Wood offers a more traditional fire pit experience, but it will leave behind a lot of ashes that should be cleaned up. Smoke could also become a problem, especially if you have neighbors close by.
If your yard is ready for a fire pit, but you aren’t quite ready to tackle the project yourself, the pros at GCS Outdoors are here to help. From design to building, these fire pit experts will ensure that you get exactly what you’re looking for. Get in touch today!