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Outdoor Fire Pits

Outdoor fire pits are great if you’re looking for the feel of being around a campfire but you want it in the comfort of your own garden or patio. An fire pit will provide you with a 360 view of the fire and provide a circular area for guests to stand around while enjoying the warmth and glow of the fire.

These pits can be as rustic as a fire ring in the ground surrounding the dancing flames, or something more decorative like a raised metal bowl with shapes cut into it, or a mosaic tile table surrounding a sunken fire bowl. If you can imagine it, it’s probably available somewhere.

Fire Ring

A fire ring, sometimes known as a campfire ring, is a circle of metal, stone or sometimes concrete that wraps around the outside of the fire to help contain it. Certain fire rings are designed to fit a sort of grate over it allowing you to cook over the fire. You can find a fun assortment of fire rings that have designs, like animals or trees, cut into them so you can see the silhouette of the decorative shapes as the fire is burning.

Fire rings shouldn’t be used on any surface that’s not considered fire safe, like a deck. Instead you may want to look into a raised fire pit for those areas.

Wood Burning Fire Pits

Think about the kind of wood you want to burn before buying a wood burning fire pit. If you want to use the same wood you use for your fireplace make sure you buy one that’s big enough for them to fit. You’ll also want to make sure you have a screen or cover for your outdoor fireplace to add a layer of protection from sparks and embers that may be created from the crackling, burning wood.

You can burn different types of wood for different reasons. Pinion wood is popular for it’s nice, pine scent and because it helps repel mosquitoes, but you can burn other woods like apple or hickory. Eco Logs are another great option because they burn longer and are very inexpensive. Never burn pressure treated logs as they release toxic gases when they are burned.

Patio Fire Pits

Outdoor patio fire pits come in a variety of sizes, shapes and materials. There are many benefits of these types of outdoor fireplaces. For starters they generally don’t take up much space. They are also portable, so you can move them if you want to redecorate, rearrange your patio, or of course you can take them with you if you move.

Because they come in so many designs, colors and shapes you can easily find a backyard fire pit that matches the decor of your yard, or if you find one with a look you love you can have fun decorating around the design of the patio fire pit.

Some patio fire pits come with an attachment that will allow you to cook with them. With these you can use a mesquite wood for the fire to add that smokey, outdoor flavor to you foods. One flavor you won’t want is the faint taste of a new fire pit. If you are going to use it for cooking it’s good to have a few fires in it first to burn off that new smell. This is especially important if they are coated with enamel or paint.

Gas Fire Pits

Gas Outdoor Fire Pit
Gas Outdoor Fire Pit

If you’re looking for something that’s easy to light and low maintenance you may want to look at outdoor gas fire pits. Gas fire pits burn cleaner, since you aren’t burning wood you don’t get the smoke you would get from a wood burning option and they are easier to maintain because you aren’t left with ashes after every fire.

They come as outdoor propane fire pits or natural gas fire pits. With these you can use lava rock, ceramic logs or fire pit glass rocks in the bowl. Lava rocks and ceramic logs provide more of a natural, outdoor look, while the colored glass — often called fire glass, fire ice or fireplace glass — has a modern, elegant shimmery quality.

Copper Fire Pits

If you like a warm colored metal, copper fire pits are a fun option. They won’t retain that shiny, light color after a fire or two, but copper is a durable metal that will last for a long time. A copper fire pit won’t rust and it can handle the heat well, unlike some of the cheaper metals used in low quality patio fire pits.

Fire Pit Tables

Fire pit tables are nice because they can be multifunctional. Since they have the table space they can be used at anytime when you’re outside enjoying a drink or a snack, then later you can light a fire in the bowl to keep you warm to watch the sunset. They also make a great portable outdoor fireplace as they are easy to move.

They are often the center piece of the patio furniture and they come in fun designs including mosaic tile table tops. And if you like the idea of a gas fire pit and a table fire pit no problem you can get a propane fire pit table.

Fire Pit Covers

There are a few outdoor fireplace accessories you will want to consider. To keep your patio fire pit protected from the elements so it will remain in good shape you’ll want to look at fire pit covers. If you have a wood burning fireplace a fire pit cover will also keep the ashes from blowing around on your patio.

Safety Considerations

Always check with your local Fire Marshall to see what is allowed in your area before you buy anything. But once you’ve verified you can have an outdoor fireplace there are some fire pit safety considerations.

Do not place an outdoor fire pit on a flammable surface or near anything flammable, like under a tree with low hanging branches. Keep it out in the open away from you house and away from overhangs.

Never leave the fire unattended especially if there are kids nearby and always keep a fire extinguisher handy.

With a little common sense outdoor fire pits can make your evenings cozier and help transform your outdoor living space.

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Outdoor Gas Fireplace

An outdoor gas fireplace is a great option if you want or are restricted to a fireplace that doesn’t use wood for fuel. While many people love the smell of a wood burning fireplace there are some drawbacks to them that you won’t find in gas fireplaces, so a gas fireplace may be the best fit combining both enjoyment and functionality.

Advantages Of Outdoor Gas Fireplaces

One advantage is that outdoor gas fireplaces burn cleaner than wood burning fireplaces. You won’t have the blowing smoke you see with the burning of wood, or the jumping of burning embers. And since some areas have wood burning restrictions an outdoor gas fireplace may be the best way to go, but make sure you check the regulations in your area before you make any plans or start shopping. You need to know what is allowed in your area before you even start the process.

The other big advantage of an outdoor gas fireplace is that it is easy to start; before you know it you can be gathered around the cozy warmth of your own patio fireplace. It’s wood burning cousin takes a little more time and patience, and of course wood which you need to keep on hand. Gas fireplaces are also easy to extinguish when it’s time to go in for the night.

What Type Should I Get?

Outdoor Gas Fireplace
Outdoor Gas Fireplace

The gas versions come as either natural gas or propane fireplaces. When choosing which one is best for you there are a few things to consider. First do you have natural gas running to your home already for an oven or stove? If you do you can just run a line to the area where you want to set up your outdoor fireplace. If you don’t it will be a little more difficult as you will need to find a source for the natural gas and possibly a supplier.

The other option is an outdoor propane fireplace. While natural gas may burn cleaner, propane fireplaces can be more versatile. They can be used in areas where you don’t have access to natural gas, making them a great choice in many rural areas.

If you are looking for a portable outdoor fireplace that uses gas, a propane fireplace is probably the best way to go as it is pretty easy to find portable propane tanks.

Or if you like the feel of an open fire, with a 360 degree view of the flames, you may want to look at a natural gas fire pit or one of the many propane fire pits available. Many of these are portable fire pits making it easy to rearrange your patio or take it with you when you move.

Your Outdoor Gas Fireplace – The Final Touch

Once you’ve chosen the perfect one you’ll want to decide if you want the look of logs, glass or rocks. If you want it to look like a traditional fireplace you may want to use ceramic logs. They have improved dramatically and some look pretty realistic.

If you are looking for a rustic look but you don’t want to use ceramic logs you might consider using fire stones. They come in a variety of shapes and colors that provide a great look for outdoor fireplaces.

Outdoor Gas Fireplace with Fire Glass
Outdoor Gas Fireplace with Fire Glass

If you’re looking for something more modern or distinct you should consider tumbled glass, sometimes called fire ice, fire glass or fireplace glass. Well designed outdoor fireplaces using fire glass can provide a spectacular look, and since the glass comes in different colors it can easily match or accent the look of your outdoor area.

Installing an outdoor gas fireplace is a great way to increase the value of your home, but it also makes your patio a cozy environment for entertaining or for relaxing, quiet evenings.

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Outdoor Propane Fireplace

There are a couple of reasons why you might want an outdoor gas fireplace instead of one fueled by wood. One of the popular options for this is one fueled by propane.

But before you get too attached to any specific outdoor fireplace be sure to see what is allowed in your area, there may be restrictions about what you can and can’t have in that area. Also check with your homeowner’s association if you are a part of one to see what type of patio fireplace is allowed.

Outdoor Gas Fireplaces

Outdoor gas fireplaces are popular in areas where there are wood burning restrictions. Not only do they burn cleaner but they are cleaner to use in general because you don’t have to worry about ashes or soot and you don’t have the mess of wood storage. They don’t provide the sound or smell of crackling wood, but with gas log inserts you can get more of a traditional fireplace look and feel.

Propane fireplaces have a couple of advantages over outdoor natural gas fireplaces. Propane burns hotter than natural gas so you can get more heat from a propane fireplace. This can make a difference when you’re sitting outside where the breeze may be blowing some of the heat away. Another benefit is that propane is available almost everywhere so if you are in a rural area and don’t have access to natural gas you can still enjoy a nicely landscaped patio with a propane outdoor fireplace.

Gas Outdoor Fire Pit
Gas Outdoor Fire Pit

Propane can be turned into a liquid under a lower pressure which makes it easier to store in small containers and transport. Because of this you can easily find a portable fireplace that uses propane. This is nice if you have a couple areas in your yard where you want to use it so you can simply move it around instead of having two separate outdoor fireplaces. A small portable fireplace can also be nice to take on a camping trip.

A propane fireplace is easy to start, generally with a switch or button, and easy to extinguish by turning off its fuel source. This makes it nice option for a portable campfire as well.

Outdoor Gas Fire Pits

You can find outdoor propane fireplaces that are fixed, portable or designed as outdoor fire pits. Outdoor propane fire pits can be installed as a fixed unit in your back yard or you can find portable versions. Either way the fire pit style can provide a different look and feel with a 360 degree view of the fire. Gas fire pits are available in designs ranging from rustic to contemporary. For a really distinct, contemporary look you can even add clear or colored fire glass to many outdoor patio fire pits.

But remember even though you won’t have the cost or hassle of wood when you have an outdoor propane fireplace you need to make sure you have access to propane either through a direct line or with portable propane tanks.

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Outdoor Gas Fire Pit

Whether you’ve seen a fire pit nicely displayed at your local home improvement store or in your neighbor’s yard you may be tempted by them — and it’s not hard not to be. After all outdoor fireplaces provide a great centerpiece for a gathering or a quiet, relaxing evening. They provide a cozy, inviting atmosphere while they also offer comforting warmth on a slightly chilly evening.

While the original style of fire pit was pretty rudimentary with several rocks surrounding a hole in the ground, the outdoor fire pits of today offer a wide range of options from rustic to elegant. You can easily find patio fire pits to match any look you want to create in your back yard patio or outdoor room.

Advantages Of An Outdoor Gas Fire Pit

Outdoor gas fire pits are a good choice if you live in an area that has wood burning fire restrictions, but before you purchase any type of outdoor fireplace make sure you know what is allowed in your specific area.

Outdoor Gas Fire Pit
Outdoor Gas Fire Pit

A gas fire pit has a few advantages over a wood burning fire pit. It burns cleaner so you don’t have to worry about smoke drifting in your face or in your neighbor’s direction, and you also won’t have worry about cleaning the ash from it so it doesn’t blow into your yard. Both starting and extinguishing a fire is easy with gas fire pits, so if you only have a little time to sit outside you can still enjoy your outdoor fireplace without spending too much time lighting it and putting it out. They also allow you to have better control over the size of the fire, often with the easy use of a remote.

With an gas outdoor fire pit you can also make use of fire glass to create a distinct look, instead of using the more commonly seen gas logs or lava rocks.

Types of Gas Fire Pits

When it comes to gas fire pits you have a couple of choices based on the type of fuel you prefer. There are outdoor propane fire pits and natural gas fire pits. A propane fire pit is typically a little more versatile and many styles work well as a portable fireplace. Since varying sizes of propane tanks are usually easy to find a propane portable fire pit is something you can even take to a friend’s house or camping. If you have natural gas in your home you can have a professional run a gas line out to your natural gas fire pit so you have a constant fuel source without having to replace gas tanks.

If you want more of a fixed structure you can find an outdoor fireplace kit that will make it easier to install. Many outdoor fireplace kits provide a base structure that you can customize with things like brick or stone.

Before you start shopping think a little about what you want from your outdoor gas fire pit, and don’t forget to look at fire pit covers to protect your patio fireplace. You’ll be glad you did when you’re sitting around it enjoying a cozy fire.

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