How to Build a Fire Pit

Sep 11, 2017 by

How to Build a Fire Pit

If you like cooking over a campfire, then adding a fire pit to your backyard will make it easy to cook hot dogs or make s’mores whenever you like. The good news is the learning how to build a fire pit does not take long and you can use it repeatedly for years to come. Here are the steps needed to create a permanent fire pit in your backyard that is safe and simple to use.

Get the Right Tools

You probably have picked out a spot which should be a good distance away from your home, shed, fence, and anything else that might be compromised. Check with local guidelines and ordinances to confirm the minimum distance from structures. The next step is getting the proper tools so you can create your fire pit.

  • Bricks and Gravel
  • Twine, Tape Measure, and Stake
  • Shovel, Tamp, Trowel, and a Level

The bricks should be strong like concrete pavers, wall bricks, or better yet fire bricks that are designed for fire pits. Your goal is to create two different layers to minimize heat penetration.

Make a Circle

Take your stake and plant it in the center. Tie a piece of twine to the stake that represents the size of the pit. Tie the other end to the trowel and dig the outer rim of the pit. Total circumference should be four to five feet.

Dig Out the Grass, Tamp Down the Dirt, and Make It Level

Now, dig out all the grass on the inside with the shovel to a depth of at least six inches, but 12 inches is recommended. Be sure there are no gas or utility lines below. Once the pit is dug, use the tamp to flatten the dirt. This will create a solid base for your fire pit. When tamping, use the level to ensure that it is even.

Add Gravel and Place the Bricks

Now that it’s ready, put in the gravel until it fills up the bottom two inches of the pit. Make sure that the gravel is relatively level as well, but you don’t have to be too precise. Once the gravel is done, place the bricks in circle just on the inside of the fire pit. The bricks should form a circle with a few inches of gravel on the outside to spare.

You’ll need three layers of bricks and perhaps an inner layer as well. Mortar is an option, but if the bricks are heavy and solid you will not need it. Still, adding fire-resistant mortar between the bricks provides for greater stability and peace of mind that flickers of flame or hot ask will not escape and set fire to the surrounding grass.

Learning how to build a fire pit will turn your backyard into a camping area that you can enjoy with family and friends. A proper fire pit is safe and prevents accidents compared to cooking over a standard campfire. If you love to cook outdoors or just sit by a warm fire, building a fire pit is the answer.

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