Project Planning & Tips

Choosing a Fire Pit: Points to consider

Patios should be designed like rooms, with attention paid to elements like shape and height, color and function. Fire pits add a wealth of choices for the space.

Design is basically drawing with shapes. A cohesive and useful patio design considers how patio furniture and Hardscape elements combine to make a room. Fire pits are excellent additions to patios. Much like indoor fireplaces, fire pits serve as natural focal points. Your patio design will greatly benefit by finding the right size, shape and color for your fire pit.

The shape is the first consideration. Your space will determine if round, rectangular or square is the best fit. Many fire pit kits may fit your needs, but custom designs are also easily accommodated. The shape may be determined by the existing furniture, Hardscape structures, or the design of the house. In general, curves go with curves and angles go with angles, but a good landscape designer will tell you that a bit of variety in shape can make a space interesting and pleasing to the eye. Make some big cardboard silhouettes or tape off the shape of the potential fire pit on the patio. Take a look at how the edges flow with the rest of the patio.

The next consideration is height. The height of the fire pit is largely determined by taste, but also by other considerations like child safety, furniture height or environmental elements. A general rule is to have chairs that allow the eye to look somewhat down on the flame, e.g., a low-profile fire pit is perfect for Adirondack chairs. The height of the kit fire pit can be customized. Constructed in ‘courses’ (layers of block), homeowners can adjust the height of the fire pit by using fewer courses.

Environmental factors like strong breezes or privacy screens can also dictate the height and shape of the fire pit. A three-tiered circular wall around a circular fire pit is a great solution to keep strong winds from extinguishing the flames and freezing the guests at night. A modern and sleek extended rectangular design adds a chic, urban vibe to a once-simple space.

Color adds complexity and depth to any patio. If the fire pit is wood-burning, it can be added after the patio is built. The color can be matched to the original pavers or you can use a complementary color. A gas-fueled fire pit requires the digging and laying of gas lines and are best constructed at the same time as the patio, but it can still be a complementary color if that’s what fans your flame. For safety’s sake, make sure the firepit is positioned away from the home and other structures. Always use a fire screen and take special note of wind patterns on the patio, especially at shore homes, to make sure embers do not travel too close to the home.

The creative options for fire pits are hot, hot, hot! Take a look through the catalog to spark some ideas for your outdoor room.



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