Fire pits and outdoor fireplaces are increasingly being requested all over the United States as the newest addition for homeowners to add to their backyard. What’s most important in this process though, is that it is created with safety in mind, and the residents of the home take proper precaution the entire time it is in use.
There are many factors to consider when adding a fire pit to the yard. Costs can vary depending on the size, materials, and the safety measures taken. Building a fire pit yourself can cost as low as a few hundred dollars if you want to build it yourself, or as much as a few thousand dollars when hiring a professional masonry contractor to do the work for you. Whichever route you take, just know that the look and appeal is not the most important aspect, it’s all about fire safety when dealing with construction of a fire pit.
One of the keys for our human evolution was by using fire to cook our food, fend off predators, and to warm us up during the cool evenings. Over time, we humans began to truly appreciate the appeal of sitting staring at the fire. For me personally, staring at a controlled fire allows me to get deep into my thought process and gives me some quality thinking time while being mesmerized by something that moves in a mesmerizing way while also being incredibly powerful. There is a reason outdoor fire pits and fireplace construction is the most requested design feature of today’s time.
Firepits are constructed out of many different kinds of materials, but the most important factor to take into account is to use something that is sturdy and will not crack under the heat of the fire. Here are some factors to take into account during the construction of your fire pit or fireplace and during regular usage:
- Common materials used for fire pits that are often fire resistant include concrete, stone, gravel, brick, slate, and other fire resistant composites.
- The fire pit should be at minimum 10 feet in distance from any structure or surface that is combustible, especially trees and plants.
- Only light fires in conditions that allow it. Do not light fires in windy conditions because the wind can blow embers away and start a fire somewhere else.
- Clean up the surrounding area before starting the fire. Things such as leaves and other combustible foliage should be removed.
- Do not use flammable fluid to light the fire.
- Keep an eye on everyone else around the fire. Fire safety helps when looking out for one another.
- Only use wood that has been seasoned. Construction materials and composite wood are not a good idea for burning because they will release toxic fumes.
- Use wood that is smaller than the pit.
- Keep water nearby or have a hose handy before you light the fire.
- To put out the fire, spread the ashes over the fire and slowly pour water over the fire. Monitor the fire before leaving and make sure that it is completely extinguished.
- Know how to get rid of the ashes.
- Check local regulations and laws regarding outdoor fires. You may have to disclose your fire pit to the local establishments.
Be safe when hanging around the fire pit. If any fire begins spreading, take immediate action to put it out yourself and have someone else call 911 in case of an emergency. Fire is not something to mess around with.