Backyard Fire Pit Ideas
Looking to upgrade your outdoor space with a heating option? Try one of these Backyard Fire Pit Ideas to give your patio area some pazzazz. Each outdoor space will give itself to the type of fire pit or fireplace that will work best.
I will go over each style and give some points of interest to help in making a decision on what will work best for you. The size and surface material will have a lot to do with the style of heating you choose.
Now let us look at the details of each fire option and see what works best for you.
An outdoor fireplace is a structure that cannot be moved and is normally very large. You will need a solid foundation to build a fireplace. Starting off with a concrete pad or solid rock floor is the best way to start. You will need a lot of floor space for one of these fireplaces in your outdoor area.
Below you will find the most popular finishes for outdoor fireplaces. All of the examples below will use firewood for fuel, you can use electric or gas also if you have the ability to get that type of power out to your location for your fireplace.
Having a stone finish will involve starting with a concrete or brick foundation. Normally the stone will just be a facia that is put on with a mortar mix and has a grout between the stones for a contrasting finish.
Having a stone finish is a solid look and can make for a very outdoorsy look.
Used as a foundation for many fireplaces, having a brick finish that matches the brick on your house will make your fireplace fit in very well. You can choose many different colors of bricks or go with a used older style that makes your fireplace look like it has been there for a long time.
My fireplace in the house had a brick finish when I moved in. I have since changed the look to a tile finish to modernize it and give it cleaner lines. See my video below on how I did it.
A Tile finish will just be a facial on a foundation of brick or cement block. The tile you choose will be up to you, many styles and colors are available today. The tile will be put on with mastic, a sticky mortar that will keep your tiles on a vertical surface.
Having a tile fireplace in your outdoor space will give you plenty of styles for your guests to enjoy. It will make your outdoor space look and feel more like an extension of your indoor space.
A moveable fire pit will allow the person to have it in many locations and even take it with them when camping or tailgating. Some will be bigger and cannot be moved without two people to move it.
Many types of energy can be used in this type of fire pit, look at my information below on each style and its advantages or disadvantages.
This is the most popular type of fire pit for any outdoor area. It does come with some things that will make it more work than other options.
You will need to have a surface that will not burn to sit the fire pit on, a source of dry firewood, have an option for getting a fire going, have a tool to move wood while fire is burning to keep flame going, and clean up ashes when the fire is over. Ashes should be cleaned out to prevent rust from starting on the bottom of your burn bowl.
The thing you get from this type of fire pit is the smell and feel of a wood-burning fire.
I have written many articles on woodburning fire pits, see my post here.
This an easier fire pit on your time while outside. The fire may not smell the same and the heat output is not as much either.
The simple part is just adding a propane tank and start the fire. You can use on almost every surface, just maintain a small clearance on the side from any material that could melt or burn. Cleanup will be just turn off, wait for it to cool and put away. No mess or firewood to mess with.
For more ideas on a gas fire pit, see my post here.
This example will attach to an umbrella post, many other styles are available today. Just plugin and turn on, you will have a heat source.
The disadvantage of this style is that you need to be close to a 110-volt electric power source. Extension cords are not recommended for any type of electric heater.
This style of heat is very clean and works best on small decks, balconies, or patio areas that are close to the home.
For more information on any electric styles of heat for your outdoor area, see my post here.
A fire pit that is built into the outdoor space will not be moved. My neighbor has one that he uses when guest are over. He did pull up all of the stones after the last party in the fall to give his back yard a cleaner look.
The following are the two most popular styles available today, most can be purchased in kits or you can build your own out of landscaping stones.
Fire rings are the favorite for a wood-burning fire pit that you just build and leave until you need the next fire. This is the type of fire pit that I have at the lake. I can be as simple as rocks in a circle or you can purchase a kit to build one at your local stone outlet.
The advantage is that you have the aroma of the wood-burning and can cook your favorite foods in the fire. The things you have to look at are the firewood that you will need and tools to stir the fire. Most will not have to clean ashes, as the bottom of the fire pit will be dirt that will not rust if moisture is attracted by the ashes.
This type of gas fire pit will have a hose that is normally about 10-foot long to have the tank sit in a remote location. This can give a lower profile to your fire pit. The stone look is very modern looking and can still be moved with a little work.
If you want a clean look for your conversation area and want a good heat source, this style of the gas-powered fire pit will work well.
For more information on this gas fire pit, see my article here.
My recommendation for a fire pit
I have several places to burn a fire pit in my outdoor space. In researching Backyard Fire Pit Ideas, I found a few ideas that I have not used yet. My favorite is the two wood-burning fire pits that I have. One is permanent at the lake and the other is a portable one that I move to the location where I use it. I can take it to the driveway on Halloween and have a fire with the neighbors over waiting on the kiddos from the area to come and get treats.
Your outdoor space may dictate the size and style of fuel that you use. For those with very small spaces, a small tabletop gas fire pit or electric will be all that you can fit in. If you have a large space with a lot of flat surfaces, a fireplace may be the one for you.
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