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Fire Pit Buying Guide

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Fire pits are a safe way to transport the rustic feeling of a campfire into your backyard, patio, or deck. Used year-round, a fire pit offers a cozy focal point outdoors where family and friends can come together. Unlike other outdoor heaters, fire pits bring 360 degrees of open flames to your outdoor entertaining area. Bring a style home that fits your outdoor decor, whether it is portable or permanent, metal or stone, wood or gas burning. We have come up with a list of popular fire pit styles and features that will work in any outdoor living area.
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Functions

  1. Grilling: Some fire pits come with a cooking grate doubling as a grill, too. If it does not, there are plenty of cooking grate options that will fit over the top of your new or existing fire pit.
  2. Tables: Fire pit tables allow family and guests to enjoy eating and drinking in the warmth of a roaring fire. This feature ranges in styles and size from coffee table to bar table height.
  3. Decorative: Lit or unlit, decorative fire pits act as an outdoor accent. Decorative options include landscape scenes, inscriptions, or even customized motifs. 



Materials

fire pit

Steel

Embellished or clean-lined, steel fire pits come in various shapes because of the easy-to-mold metal and are commonly stained or finished for a range of looks.

Key Facts:
  • Available in a variety of shapes
  • Plenty of stain choices, such as copper, brass, and burnished brass
  • Susceptible to rust; look for powder-coated options

fire pit

Stainless Steel

A contemporary, sometimes industrial look, stainless steel fire pits come in above ground and built into ground level models. The fire pit should be cleaned periodically to maintain its finish.

Key Facts:
  • Durable, lightweight metal
  • Rust-free and weather- and heat-resistant
  • Availale in various finishes, including brushed and shiny
  • Can be more expensive

fire pit

Copper

For a copper fire pit, one of the most popular styles is a bowl shaped design featuring a flat lip that runs around the circumference of the fire pit. If you do not want the fire pit to look aged, there are cleaning remedies to maintain the copper's original color. 

Key Facts
  • Durable
  • ​Does not rust, develops nice patina over time
  • Available in a variety of shapes
  • Can be more expensive

fire pit

Cast Iron

Get the look of a more expensive metal with an affordable cast iron fire pit. Cast iron fire pits come in two common shapes: bowl and bucket. Unlike the shallow bowl shape, a bucket fire pit has as a deeper fuel source area. A bowl shaped design typically offers a top metal screen, while the bucket style does not. 

Key Facts
  • Sturdy
  • ​Rust-Resistant option that's ideal for cooking
  • Affordable option that is easy to find
  • Excellent heat conductor
  • Lightweight enough to move around

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Aluminum


One of the most common materials for these outdoor heaters, aluminum fire pits are an affordable, lightweight, and durable option. Aluminum does not reabsorb heat from the fire, making them . 

Key Facts


  • Lightweight and easy-to-move
  • Heat-conducive material that will last for years
  • Requires little maintenance​
  • Will not rust, warp, or crack

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Glass


Reflective pebbles give a distinctive look to glass fire pits. This highly tempered glass is melted to remove all chemicals and bubbles, then cooled, and tumbled to remove hard edges. The result is crystal clear pebbles that rest in the fire pit. The glass is a heat conductor and keeps the entire space consistently warm when the fire pit is on. 

Key Facts

  • Tolerates high temperatures without burning or discoloring
  • Very stylish
  • Many colors to choose from

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Polyresin
These firepits are molded to emulate the aesthetic of natural stone. Polyresin firepits allow for intricate detail while still maintaining sturdiness.
  • Sturdy
  • ​Lightweight option that's low-maintenance

Types of Fuel

  1. ​Propane: Propane fed fire pits have tanks attached to them, making them portable. Propane can be more expensive upfront, but can out perform natural gas by more than double.
  2. Wood: Depending on how big your fire pit is, you'll need to use different sized logs and kindling. Start stocking up!​​
  3. Natural Gas: Fire pits that run on natural gas generally need to be built-in, and connect to a natural gas line located in your home. Natural gas is significantly less expensive than other fuel options, but may cost more upfront as it must be installed by a professional.​​
  4. Charcoal: Produces controlled, even heat with a smaller flame.
  5. Bio-Ethanol: A clean-burning and efficient fuel that emits no smoke, ash, or embers. 
  6. ​Gel: A Chemical that does not emit smoke or odors.


See examples of fire pits below which run on these types of fuel; from left to right (propane, wood, natural gas, and bio-ethanol). 
fire pits
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Features

Spark Screen Included: A spark screen keeps burning embers and sparks inside the pit. 

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Wood Grate Included:
 
Circulates air beneath the wood for better combustion. The wood grate allows for better air flow to get your outdoor fire roaring.

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    Pizza Oven:

    Fireplace can double as a pizza oven. This is a multifunctional firepit that combines the fun of cooking with staying toasty warm. These firepits are great for entertaining a crowd of hungry people. 

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    Mosaic Top: 
    Features a decorative surface made with small pieces of tile or glass. These Mosaic tops add a subtle decorative aesthetic to your firepit. 


    Other special features


    Eco-Friendly: Burns more sustainable fuel types. Eco-friendly firepits are a way to stay concious of the environment and your surroundings. 

    Novelty Theme: Features a unique design. Novelty themed firepits can range anywhere from a deer cut out in the steel base of the pit to an intricate rose design on the neck of a chiminea. 

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