Can you put a fire pit on a wood deck? The answer is yes but there are some strategies you need to put in place before you do.
You need to first ensure there is a no-burn zone beneath as well as around the fire pit. In addition, it is also very wise to invest in a fire pit heat mat. The reason being is that these heat shields are designed to withstand temperatures up to 1400 degrees F. As a last resort, you can use pavers, metal or bricks and place them underneath the fire pit as well.
We have featured some of the best gas fire pits for wooden decks here at Delta. These recommendations will help you in your decision on which are the best fire pits to invest in. Lastly, they will at least guide you in the right direction for the highest return on your investment.
There is no better way to add to the ambience of your experience than investing in a quality fire pit. Are fire pits a natural fit for wooden decks? Well, the problem lies in the fact that most wooden decks are highly flammable. So, you have to really be cognizant of the types of fire pits you choose to use on your wooden deck.
We highly recommend steering clear of using wood-burning fire pits on wooden decks. Why? Well, all it takes is one wild ember or spark that you miss to start a fire. Fire pits should always be operated at least 20 feet away from your home. That being said, there are quality gas fire pits you can invest in under $300.
Is Operating a Gas Fire Pit on a Wooden Deck Safe?
Yes, as long as you take safety precautions prior to use. Remember, make sure to check with your city ordinances to see what they say about open flames. In addition, find out the specifics of what they state in regards to use of a fire pit on wooden decks in your area.
The majority of most county or city codes state that open flame fire pits are not permissible for use on wooden decks. That being said, they are permissible for use if over 20 feet from your home.
The biggest concern for fire pit use on wooden decks are flying embers or sparks. So, if an undetected spark or ember lands on dry leaf bits in the drains of your roof this could cause a fire. In addition, if one lands near your home or on your lawn it could also cause damage you do not need. Lastly, what would happen if one landed between your deck boards? You guessed it, fire hazard and possible unrepairable damage to your home.
Fire pits that sit low to the ground are also a hazard to any wooden deck. The reason is the high radiant heat that most fire pits give off. So, you really have to be mindful of these things. Investing in a fire pit heat shield is a wise decision over the long-term use of your fire pit. Can you put a fire pit on a wood deck? Yes but safety measures have to be put in place before getting started.
What To Do Once Your Receive The All-Clear From The City
The best option is investing in a gas fire pit. The reason being is there is no clean up afterward. Also, they are not as risky as using a wood-burning fire pit and no chance of a spark or wild ember flying off without you noticing. Remember, look for gas fire pits that are specifically designed for wooden deck use. This should be stated in the instruction manual of the fire pit. If, for any reason, you are unsure, make contact with the manufacturer.
How strong is your wooden deck? This is another safety precaution as some fire pits are heavier than others. Also, some are far less mobile than larger models. You can always check with a local construction contractor if you are unsure and need assistance with this. It is always wise to consult with someone who specializes in fire pit design rather than going at it alone. A good structural engineer is always a great return on your investment.
Create A No-Burn Zone
So, first start by creating that no-burn safety zone around and below your fire pit. In addition, make sure there are no plants, railings or furniture nearby. The reason is anything in close proximity to the fire pit can be characterized as a fire hazard. You want to reduce any chance of anything flammable catching on fire at all times. Lastly, you may want to install a flame-resistant surface to catch sparks and hold the fire pit in place.
Again, if you invest in a quality gas fire pit you will not have to worry about embers or sparks. You may want to use pavers, bricks or metal if you do not want to invest in a fire pit heat mat. The mat should extend at the very least 24 inches beyond the fire pit and in all directions. Lastly, make sure your wooden deck can handle the weight of the fire pit you choose.
There are fire pits that come with screens. Always ensure that it is closed as often as possible. The reason is you will reduce any chance of wild sparks or flying embers. This is mainly for homeowners choosing to invest in a wood-burning fire pit as opposed to a gas or propane powered fire pit.
Accidents can and still do occur despite people being cognizant of safety hazards. You always want to ensure a fire extinguisher is nearby at all times including water containers. Lastly, use of a hose is also a great option just in case a fire ever were to break out. You want to extinguish any and all burning embers immediately. The last thing any homeowner wants is damage to his or her property. In addition to that, nothing can replace the safety of your loved ones and guests so always be mindful of the above mentioned safety precautions.
A quality gas fire pit can bring many years of enjoyment to any homeowner. Use of a fire pit is great for adding to the ambience of your home. They were are perfect for decks, patios, porch or lawn. That being said, you have to ensure safety measures are put in place before moving forward.
So, you can put a fire pit on a wood deck if you have checked the box on all safety measures listed above. You will be setting yourself up for success if you do. In addition, you'll be able to enjoy your time with family and guests without the worry and concerns had you not.