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What to Know When Considering a Backyard Fire Pit

When contemplating a backyard fire pit, it can’t be digging a hole in the backyard, throwing in some logs and a match. Just as when you choose a fireplace, inserts or stove, several factors need to be put into the equation to have a successful outcome.

fire pit, avon ctThings To Consider About Fire-Pits

  • Personal taste
  • Budget
  • Ample space
  • DIY or professionally built
  • Local Fire Codes
  • Insurance considerations
  • Type of fire pit

Personal taste and budget go hand-in-hand when contemplating any home improvement project.  Search the internet or home improvement publications to get some ideas for the type of materials (stone or brick) available.  Before reaching a final decision, make sure the components you need are available in your area.

Budget:  This one bullet point is most often the deciding factor on size, style, and design.  There is little satisfaction in putting a budget-breaking fire pit in if it will cause financial ruin.  Keep all goals realistic.

Is there ample space to enjoy the fire pit?  Many municipalities require the fire pit to be a certain distance from homes (including neighbors), outbuildings, fences, and trees.  Fire pits need to have room between the fire itself and seating.  No one wants to get burned from sitting close to the fire.

The choice between a Do-it-Yourself or a professional project is many times the easiest decision.   Is there enough time to complete the project?  What kind of family disruptions will be created in the process of conclusion?  If the budget permits, many times, it’s just easier to let someone else do it.

Local Fire Codes may prevent you from having a fire pit at all.  Check with the fire department in your area.  Each region has specific fire codes that must be followed.  Spending the money to build the fire pit and having the fire department say it’s not up to code and you must move it is not a pleasant scenario.  If you live in a wildfire area, these fire mandates may shut down the fire pit before it gets started.

Insurance considerations may have a say in how much you pay to insure your home and property.   Once again, if you live in a high wildfire, insurance rates may increase.  Often the addition of a sizable fire pit may increase the value of your home and cause rates to escalate.

backyard fire pit, farmington ctThe type of fire pit, not the design, but the fuel, is an option.  This decision cannot be after the firepit has been built but in the planning.  Many people enjoy a crackling fire; with its smells and sounds, it is relaxing.  The drawback is having to have a steady supply of firewood.  There is a propane or natural gas-powered fire pit; some would say it has no romance.  That may be true but, changing the propane tank takes a lot less effort than stacking wood.

Check With Zoning

Many homeowners think only of the design and the surroundings of a fire pit.  Consider all the above, ask around, and ask the local zoning commission when you have a strategy.  Make sure the design and type of fuel you are planning to use are within the building code.

For more questions, professional chimney care advice, and estimates, contact Northeastern Chimney, LLC.

Northeastern Chimney, LLC

37 Cody Street

West Hartford, Connecticut 06110

Phone: 860-233-5770

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