Create your own backyard fire pit

The backyard fire pit trend is on the rise, and for good reason! Outdoor fire pits mean you can spend more time entertaining and relaxing in your yard as the night sets in and things cool off. Imagine your friends and family gathered around enjoying an ambience of flame and warmth. Fire pits are also a great visual focal point for backyards. The more permanent versions can even add value to your property.

Decision time: What kind of fire pit do you want?

DIY fire pits can be inexpensive to put together, starting at around $100 or less for materials. If you want to go all out, including a patio, seating and using gorgeous natural stone, the costs can be higher. Decide what’s important to you and get started!

DIY Basic Building Block Fire Pit

All you need for this type of fire pit are concrete retaining wall blocks with angled sides, also known as masonry blocks, and a bit of gravel or lava rocks for the base of the pit. Simply place the blocks up next to one another, letting the natural angles create a complete circle. You can add a steel ring inside for further protection, and use masonry adhesive to make the fire pit ring more stable as you stack the blocks. Leave a couple of small gaps half way up your fire pit to aid in air flow.

Quick tip: remember to stack each layer so that the center of each block is over the crack in between the two blocks beneath it.

Concrete Fire Pit

To make a concrete fire pit, build two square frames (one fits inside the other) out of two-by-fours, then fill with concrete. Line the inside with a few fire bricks and lay lava “fire rocks” for the base to keep your concrete from taking too much direct heat.

Quick tip: Dress up a concrete fire pit by adding slate or flagstone flat on top.

Fully Landscaped Fire Pit

If you want to go all out, you may want to consult a landscape designer and employ a contractor to help with your fire pit. You can add walls around two of the sides, with built-in seating, to create a cozy and attractive nook for guests to enjoy and socialize in. Use a patio flagstone like Gold Quartzite to pave the area surrounding your fire pit. This will provide a uniform look and improve the fire safety around your pit, eliminating any flammable grass or surfaces. Then you can use ledgestone or natural thin veneer to dress up surfaces around your seating areas and fire pit. For the finishing touch, especially if you have a modern look and a gas fire pit, pick up some fire glass to give your focal point some color and pop.

Fire safety considerations

  • Some areas have restrictions on certain types of fire pits, or any open flame. Check with your local municipality or fire department before getting started. 
  • We are not fire pit or construction experts and this information should be taken only to get ideas for fire pits, not as direct advice for your situation. Pease consult a professional with your fire pit build if you have any concerns. 
  • Keep fire pits at least 10 feet away from buildings, trees and other combustible materials.
  • Check the weather before using your fire pit; windy weather can blow embers. 
  • Keep the fire small and never leave it unattended. 
  • Put your fire completely out when you are done.

Need more help with creating your backyard fire pit? Pinterest, Houzz, DIY Network, eHow and others can give you step-by-step processes on the fire pit of your choice. Or, if you’d like to find a professional, give us a call and we’ll recommend one in your area.

So, what type of fire pit do you want to build in your backyard? Let us know in the comments!

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