7 Outdoor Fireplace, Fire Pit, and Fire Table Safety Tips

Posted by Michael Dougherty on Nov 10, 2016 8:00:00 AM

Fire pit in an outdoor kitchenThere is something about fire that is just so inviting—maybe it's the warmth, maybe it's the beauty of the dancing flames, but no matter what it is, it brings people together. 

If you're interested in an outdoor fireplace, custom fire pit, or even a state-of-the-art fire table to transform your backyard into the ultimate gathering spot, you'll need to be aware of these basic fire safety tips to guarantee your family and friends stay safe, and that your fire stays contained. 

  1. Familiarize yourself with your town's fire laws: Different cities have different laws regarding fire pit and fireplace styles, use, and location. Be sure to check your local laws before breaking ground on your new fire features!
  2. Make sure your fixture is sturdy and secure: If you opt for a free-standing fire pit, be sure to check that the legs are sturdy. Flimsy fire pits can tip over, turning your innocent bonfire into a dangerous emergency. Permanent fixtures are always going to be safer choices.
  3. Choose your location wisely: Your backyard fire feature should be at least 10 feet away from your home, set up on level ground, and the surrounding area should be clear of dried leaves, debris, or over-hanging branches.
  4. Use caution when installing a fire feature on your deck: If you're planning on having your fire table, fire pit, or fireplace on a wooden deck, it will still need to be 10 feet away from your home or any overhang, and will also need to be installed atop paver stones. Always always use a spark screen to keep embers contained, though it is safer to have a gas-burning fire feature on a deck than a wood-burning one.
  5. Build the flames up slowly: If you opt for a wood-burning fireplace or fire pit, always start the fire with balled-up paper or small, dry sticks. Never try to jump start a wood fire with starter fluid, gasoline, or kerosene as the fire can explode and put you in danger. Once the fire is going steadily, keep it going with seasoned wood; just be careful not to add more than you need.
  6. Don't use your fire pit or fireplace as a trash can: As fun and tempting as it is to throw in used paper plates, napkins, and discarded food into the flames rather than getting up to throw them away, you shouldn't use your fire pit or fireplace as a trash can. We did say it's okay to use a little bit of paper to get a fire started, but carelessly throwing in larger amounts could lead to fires OUTSIDE of the fire pit as still-burning pieces of paper can get swept up by the wind and land on your roof or in nearby trees.
  7. Put out the fire completely: Before heading in for the night, allow all your logs to burn completely and embers to stop smoldering. If you're burning in a fire pit, you can use water to help speed this process along, but you cannot use water in a fireplace as the sudden drop in temperature may cause certain materials to crack.

Keep these tips in mind and your backyard bonfire will be nothing but good clean fun! If you're in the market for a custom outdoor fireplace, fire pit, or fire table we can help make your dreams a reality! Give us a call at (888) 747-4554 or click the banner below to request a free estimate!

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Topics: Fire Pits, Fire Tables, & Fireplaces