Backyard Fire Pits
Be Careful When You Play with Fire, Even in the Backyard
It’s a great feeling to hang out with friends and family around a blazing fire in your backyard unless, of course, that fire blazes a little too much.
While a fire pit can be a wonderful addition to your home, all fires are potentially dangerous. So, before you sit down with some marshmallows to roast, consider some tips to help you keep that fire in the pit (and away from everything else).
Are you legal?
- Before building or buying a fire pit, check the regulations in your area to learn about restrictions.
- Your fire pit may be legal, but a fire might not always be. Monitor and follow community burn bans.
- Be respectful. Nothing can extinguish the good vibes of a nice fire more quickly than police complaints from smoked-out neighbors.
What kind of pit do you want?
- You can buy a fire pit or build one. If you choose the latter, there are plenty of resources online to help you design it. Don’t dig a hole just anywhere and throw some rocks down. Put some thought into it and you’ll have a better — and safer — spot to enjoy.
- If you want convenience, a propane model might be right for you. They produce less smoke and have an adjustable flame.
Ready to build your fire?
- First, ensure the area under and around the fire pit is clear of flammable materials. Keep the pit itself at least 10 feet from any structures.
- Before you start the fire, have a fire extinguisher or a garden hose handy.
Okay, now are you ready to build your fire?
- Choose hard, seasoned woods. Sparks from softer woods like cedar can increase the danger of igniting something nearby.
- If you have a metal fire pit, don’t overload it and always use the included safety screen.
Is the fire out?
- When you’re done, spread out the ashes and let them cool off for a bit. Then gently pour water or sand over them. Stick around for a little while to watch for flare-ups.
Here’s to making memories around the fire!