Different Models On The Market
When making your selection, you should consider the options that are available to you. There are 4 basic styles of fire pits – propane, gel fuel, wood burning, and natural gas. Each has their own pros and cons to help you indicate which would be the best fit for your lifestyle:
Propane: This type of fire pit is easy to use because you can light it in the push of a button. When you are ready to put your fire out, simply press the button again. Sometimes propane fire pits are portable which makes for great versatility.
Gel Fuel: For a smokeless fire pit with no smell, you should opt for one that runs on gel fuel. Although these don’t give off as much heat as other fire pits, they can be easily placed virtually anywhere due to minimal fire danger. Keep in mind that you will need to purchase gel fuel in order to run it, and this may be hard to find.
Wood Burning: The most traditional of the fire pits – simple wood burning. Having one will take you back to your childhood, roasting marshmallows over the campfire flame. Along with the aesthetic value and warmth that this fire pit brings, you may also cook food on top of it if you choose to.
Natural Gas: If you are not concerned about portability, natural gas is the way to go. This is one of the best fire pits that will be housed in a permanent location, and it will never run out of gas. This model is one of the easiest to maintain. One of the biggest expenses could be the installation of the natural gas line in your garden if you do not have one in place already.
Being Budget Conscious
Once you have decided that you would like a garden fire pit, you will likely need to consult your budget. With any fire pit, you not only need to think about the cost of the unit, but also the upkeep and maintenance.
- Propane: $250+ (plus propane)
- Gel Fuel: $50+ (plus gel fuel)
- Wood Burning: $100+ (plus wood)
- Natural Gas: $400+ (plus installation of gas line)
How Will You Use It?
Consider the purpose of your fire pit. Will it be used mainly for decoration? For heat? Perhaps you would like to be able to cook on top of it or move it around your garden. If you do not have a lot of money to work with, going for a basic, self-contained pit will be a nice starter. It will give you the benefit of having one while spending the least amount of money possible. Some units come in the middle of a table giving a nice effect while also giving you the practicality of a space to dine on. If you are only going to be using your fire pit seasonally, you may want to consider one with the option of portability. When you are not using it, you can store it away in your shed or garage so it does not take up space in your garden.
Make the Safe Decision
If you have kids or pets, it would be wise to choose an appropriate model without an open flame so that no one gets burned. There are many self-contained options in any fire pit style. This will also lessen the risk that your flame jumps out of the put during a sudden unexpected gust of wind.
You must also be aware of how close the pit is going to be to your home. The fire pit should always be at least 10 feet away from any structure or flammable area. Check the weather conditions before operation, as well. It is not advised to start a fire when you know that there is a strong chance of wind or lightning.
For maintaining a fire pit on a wooden deck or other hazardous surface, you must prepare adequately. It is essential to set up a no-burn-zone where the fire pit is far away from furniture. Also, setting up a flame-resistant surface to catch sparks and to hold the fire pit in place is greatly advised.