If you’ve decided to add a built-in fire pit and all you can think about now is s’mores, we don’t blame you.
In fact, save us a couple, will you?
Meanwhile, there are a few things to keep in mind, besides watching for a sale on graham crackers.
Function is really important when it comes to installing a built-in fire pit.
Here’s what we mean:
First, Consider How You’ll Actually Use It
Should your built-in fire pit be fueled by gas or wood?
Are you the rustic type who can’t wait to toss some logs on the fire, watch the sparks fly, and rustle up some cowboy-style grub over the open flames?
Then a wood burning pit is perfect for you. A wood burning fire pit offers a campfire feel and emits more heat for cooking.
Or do you picture yourself strolling out to the fire pit with a bottle of nice wine and a tray of fancy appetizers, igniting the gas-powered flames with a simple click on your smartphone?
Most homeowners choose gas. It’s easier. Fueled by natural gas or propane, gas fire pits burn clean without smoke.
Next Up: Design Time
Brick, natural stone, and concrete blocks are all popular options for built-in fire pits.
Although design options are endless, most fire pits are either round or square, good for gathering around.
A good landscape designer can help you choose the perfect materials and shape to complement your house and blend in with your landscaping.
They’ll also think of things you might not, from wind direction issues to the best combination of built-in and movable seating.
Where to Put That Built-in Fire Pit?
Give some solid thought to location.
Install your built-in fire pit away from the house for a more rustic feel, where taking a stroll out to roast marshmallows is a bit of an adventure.
Or add one right on your patio, a few convenient steps from your door. Built-in fire pits are also great additions to your pool area, offering warmth and drama for your evening swim and backyard entertaining.
Location is important. Put your fire pit too close to a bedroom window, for instance, and you’ll have a smoke-scented pillow.
How Big Should Your Built-in Fire Pit Be?
Here are some things to think about that will affect the size of your fire pit:
- How many people do you want to be able to sit around it?
- Are you creating a more intimate space, or is it meant to entertain large groups?
- How big is your patio or landscaped space where you’ll add the fire pit?
Smaller, more intimate built-in fire pits are about two to three feet wide, while larger fire pits for entertaining groups can be up to four to six feet wide.
How tall? About 12 to 14 inches — a few inches shorter than standard patio furniture seat height. That’s perfect for feet-propping.
If you plan to use the edge of the pit as a sitting wall, plan on about 20 inches to best enjoy the flicker and the warmth.
Built-In Fire Pit Safety
You’re dealing with fire here, so some safety precautions are important:
- Install your fire pit at least 15 feet away from your house, other structures, and combustible materials like leaves, wood, or chemicals.
- Avoid lighting the fire pit during extremely windy weather, so embers don’t go flying.
- Make sure you have a bucket of water, a hose with a sprayer, or a fire extinguisher nearby before lighting the fire. Sand works, too, by smothering flames, and won’t create hot steam the way water will.
- Keep the flame small: The larger it is, the bigger chance you have for it to get out of hand.
- A fire screen is a good idea to contain flying sparks and embers.
- Don't leave fires unattended, and don't leave small children unattended near the fire.
Leave Your Built-in Fire Pit to the Pros
A built-in fire pit seems like a pretty simple project, but construction includes a lot of important details, from using the right fireproof materials to running a gas line if needed to securing any necessary permits.
A skilled landscape designer can help you create a one-of-a-kind design perfect for your space and your lifestyle — and handle any hassles to keep your project stress free.
A Built-in Fire Pit Is Just the Beginning
A fire pit adds a magical quality to your yard, but if it’s just sitting there by itself, it’s not so magical.
Make it an integral part of your backyard experience.
Think built-in seating. A hardscape patio that extends your living space. Plants that offer privacy and soften the edges of your new outdoor hangout. String lights that make the whole scene festive.
Ready for Fun with a Built-in Fire Pit? Trust Ground Source
It’s easy to get caught up in details like how much wine and cheese you’ll need for your first fire pit party.
You handle the appetizers. Leave the fire pit design and installation to us.
We’re landscape design experts, but our skills don’t stop there. We’re with you every step of the way as you plan your perfect outdoor space.
Sod, irrigation, landscape design: Let us transform your yard from an embarrassing eyesore to a place you spend every spare minute.
Are you ready to enjoy the vibrant, impressive yard you've always wanted? Request a quote today! We’ll help you review your options and then transform your property.