With the weather changing there’s no better time than to enjoy the outdoors, day or night. It’s a great time to entertain guests, taking in the delight of the wonderful breeze coming off the Gulf of Mexico, winding its way through the shores to inland Sarasota.
Now is the time to get your backyard ready and looking its best. Aesthetics and function will be the center focus of creating an outdoor oasis, complete with one of the most versatile features of any home, the fire pit. It can serve more than one function, from a heat source, to an aesthetic, to a cooking appliance, to a place to gather around and roast marshmallows.
Fortunately, fire pits come in all shapes and sizes, which presents a predicament in choosing the right one. They come in portable models, made of copper and cast iron, as well as stone fire pits, which are often built in a particular spot. Generally, those hardscape features are surrounded by seating, which too, can be portable or fixed in position.
Where You should Put Your Fire Pit
When deciding what type of fire pit you’d like to add to your outdoor living space, you definitely ought to factor location into the equation. It must be a level location and one that’s at least seven feet away from combustibles, such as wood, plants, and even structures like your home, your pergola, or pool house. Other factors you must consider is prevailing wind direction and the local fire codes as to where it can be placed, how large it can be, and what you are allowed and not allowed to burn inside it.
[Fall] is here and that means backyard parties, get-togethers, bbq’s and relaxing evenings outside. Only one thing can make any of these events even better and that is a fire pit. Outdoor fire pits can be used as a gathering spot for socializing with guests at a party or a place to simply de-stress after a long day at work. Very few patio adornments are as multi-dimensional as fire pits. —Garden.com
In addition to these factors, you’ll also need to take into account how it will most be used and seating arrangement. Some of your guests will opt to sit closer to enjoy the heat while other will choose to sit a bit further away to avoid smoke. Be sure to leave plenty of space for people to walk, because too little space presents a safety hazard. Spacing between seats is likewise important, giving people elbow room so not to be too cramped, seated too close to one another.
How to Choose a Fire Pit
The type of fire pit you choose will ultimately come down to your budget, for a simple solution, chimineas are a nice, inexpensive choice. Free-standing fire pits are typically larger and a bit more expensive than chimineas, but come in a great variety of sizes and constructed material, from aluminum, to stainless steel, to copper, to stone and metal. They also vary in shape, usually circular or square, while a few will be other shapes. These are the most popular choices available:
- Electric fire pits are no-fuss models, generally costing more than chimineas and free-standing models, and are ideal for people who like to flip a switch to turn the flames on or off. These are a great choice for homeowners who don’t want to deal with lingering coals and cleaning-up ashes. These are made with weather resistant materials, like other models, and have a long lifespan.
- Gas fire pits cost about as much as electric models and also come in a wide variety of materials, shapes, and sizes. The shapes and aesthetics are quite diverse, square, round, octangular, rectangular, and so on. Some are fitted with stone or brick, while others made to look more modern.
- Outdoor fireplaces are at the top of the luxury list, offering stunning aesthetics with plenty of function. These can be pre-made or built from the ground up and are the most costly of models. Akin to these models are fire pit tables, which are great for entertaining because they are specifically designed to accommodate plates and glasses.
Choosing the Right Fire Pit
As stated, this will come down to budget, as well as how much time and effort you’re willing to put into the project. You can choose a portable model, one that’s free-standing, or build one in a particular place. You should choose one that fits your outdoor theme and fits your desired use. In addition, consider size and space requirements, as well as seating arrangement and capacity.
When you have your fire pit set up, always keep a garden hose and a fire extinguisher nearby. Clean it regularly to avoid any unpleasant surprises, you might accidentally cook something unexpected.