Fire features are a recent trend in outdoor living areas, and many homeowners are realizing the benefits of extending the season with a little heat. A fire pit or fireplace becomes a cozy spot for your family to gather around and relax or toast marshmallows. Before you install a new fire feature, consider how you want to use it and keep safety in mind.
A concrete or stone fire pit is ideal for a back yard or patio. It is low to the ground, provides light, and creates an intimate area for relaxing or conversation. A fire pit is smaller and easier to install than a fireplace and can be square or round. Make sure to select the right size for your space. If it is too big, the heat could drive your guests away from the area. Choose materials that blend in with your home or landscaping.
A fireplace is taller and more dramatic, often creating a focal point for your outdoor area. Because of this, place it against an attractive view to enhance it. While a fireplace is larger than a fire pit, it only heats the area in front of it so consider that when you place it. A fireplace is more versatile and you can outfit it for outdoor cooking.
Before installing a fire feature, consider safety. Don’t place it near flammable objects, such as low hanging tree limbs or awnings. Allow plenty of room for seating so guests can adjust their chairs if it gets too hot or if the wind shifts.
Some cities and counties don’t allow fire pits or fireplaces on a wood deck, so check your municipal codes before you add one. If you do place a fire feature on a wood deck it is crucial to place it on a fire-resistant surface such as a fire pit pad. In other areas, suitable paving prevents stray sparks from catching fire and helps ensure the safety of your family. It also makes the surrounding area attractive and easy to clean. Please contact us for more information about updating your outdoor living areas.