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The Home Depot

How to Create Inspiring DIY Fire Pits

Pro Referral > Home Guides > Patio & Walkway > How to Create Inspiring DIY Fire Pits
How to Create Inspiring DIY Fire Pits

Creating a fire pit is not simply a matter of digging a hole in the ground, tossing in some wood, and then setting it on fire. The fire pit must add to the look and character of the yard and be made such that you can use it for all the purposes that you may have in mind. The key elements of fire pit design are light, warmth, what it will be used for and how it blends in with the look of your house. While a well-designed and made fire pit can add immensely to the look of your home and the fun you have there; a badly designed one will be an eyesore, and if it is not fabricated properly, become an unending source of unhappiness.


Making a fire pit is not only about shoveling up earth. You should know how to work with brick or stone, depending on the material you will be using. You will need to design the pit so that you can use it for the multiple purpose you have in mind. For example, a decorative fire pit that is meant to be a focal point of the landscape will not be suitable for cooking. If you are planning on installing a fire pit in your home and are not sure of how to go about it, you will find information on fire pit experts in your area online. Whether you decide to do it yourself of contracting out to a professional to complete the job, here are 10 important factors to keep in mind.

  1. 1.Prepping the Land

    There are no specific types of soil where a fire pit may be dug. You can do it anywhere. But there are preparatory steps you need to take before you begin. First of all, check your local laws. Fire pits are illegal in some places and there may be various safety regulations that have to be adhered to. You will also need to ensure that the location is such that smoke does not blow into your house or onto a neighbor’s property.

  2. 2.Brick or Stone?

    Both brick and stone can be used for a fire pit, the choice is yours. Stone is the traditional material and it can give the fire pit a nice rustic look. Stones also retain heat longer so if your aim is to use the fire pit as a heat source, then stone may be the better alternative. Bricks, on the other hand, are easy to work with and laying them is a simple job. However, you need to ensure that you are using fire bricks or another type of brick that will be able to withstand the heat that it will be subjected to.

  3. 3.Circular or Square Designs

    Theoretically, a fire pit can be of any shape but circular and square are the most common. The reason for this is that the shapes allow for an even burn and they are easier to clean.

  4. 4.Laying Bricks or Stone

    A fantastic fire pit always has a wall around it both as a safety measure and to keep the wind from directly blowing onto the fire. A normal wall will be between 12 to 18 inches high and this can be made out of either stones or bricks. Care needs to be taken with stones because their irregular shapes make arranging them into a wall securely difficult. Bricks, on the other hand, are of a fixed shape and size and are designed to be placed on top of each other so creating the wall is simple. Some bricks are designed to be interlocking which will give the structure added strength.

  5. 5.Seating Arrangements

    Make use that there is enough clear space around the fire pit for seating. Keep in mind that once you have the pit working, you will have a lot of friends and neighbors dropping in so take that into account when planning your space and seating arrangements.

  6. 6.The Fire Pit Interior

    The interior of the fire pit should be lined with a thick steel ring like the kind you find used for park campfires. This will keep moisture from the soil from entering the fire pit and also ensure that the sides of the pit do not erode and give way.

  7. 7.The Pre-Made Route

    You could also opt for a pre made fire pit. All you need to do is dig a hole to the right size and drop the ready-made pit in. Pre-made fire pits are available in various shapes and sizes and with a myriad of optional attachments. Spend some time online searching for the options available and compare process before making any decision.

  8. 8.Don’t Ignore the Surroundings

    Although a well-designed fire pit is safe, there is always danger when there are open flames. Make sure that your fire pit is located in a place where there are no bushes that could catch fire from blowing embers nearby. Also make sure that the area around the fire pit is kept clear of twigs, dry grass, and anything else that could easily catch fire.

  9. 9.Fuel Storage

    You will be burning wood or charcoal in your fire pit. These are both heavy and dirty and lugging from a distant location to the fire pit can be a problem. Having a small weather proof shed or large box near the fire pit to store fuel is a prudent idea.

  10. 10.Furniture

    Since the seating is in the open, it makes sense to use weather resistant garden furniture. Avoid using furniture that is made of plastic, fiberglass, or other flammable materials. Similarly, do not use cushions and upholstery material that can easily catch fire or get holes burnt in them by sparks and flying embers.

Don’t rush into installing a fire pit. Spend time looking at various different types of fire pits, the material that can be used and also look at the pre-made options that are available to be sure that what you are installing is right for you. Also think about what the surrounding area should look like and whether you need any outdoor furniture to go with it. The better you fire pit looks, the more pleasure you will derive from it. Now go find some sticks for roasting marshmallows.

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