Why Put Sand in The Bottom of a Fire Pit?

September 16, 2019

By Ronnie


Why put sand in the bottom of a fire pit is often asked but there are many who don't really know why. One of the major reasons is to ensure it soaks in the heat and evenly distributes the heat throughout the fire pit.

We definitely recommend you always follow the instructions from the manufacturer of your fire pit. There are other fire pits you can invest in such as a gas powered fire pit where you won't have to use sand at all. Perhaps, this would be of interest to you. If not, that is fine too because there are still many benefits to a wood-burning fire pit.

There are numerous metal fire pits that recommend you use between a 1 to 2 inch layer of sand at the base of your fire pit. So, always check the user manual first before moving forward with the set-up of your fire pit. You may want to utilize a fire pit heat shield. This is a small investment for any homeowner who is seeking a safe and secure base for their fire pit.

Additional Considerations For Sand Use

Sand is also an outstanding source for heat reduction for any fit pit or metal bowl. The only annoying part of it is the clean up after use. This is why utilizing a gas-powered fire pit is a much better choice in terms of not having to deal with the clean up after every use. In addition, there are still positives to this. Do you love gardening? Ash can be used as fertilization and you will have ample supply of it using a wood-burning fire pit.

You can introduce the nutrients that stem from compost and timber and will be a good fit for your garden. Also, the brown carbon component that is commonly found in ash can help offset the nitrogen grass can add when mixing grass clippings with compost.

Benefits of Putting Sand At The Bottom of a Fire Pit

Sand, as mentioned above, dramatically decreases the effect of heat on the fire pit. In addition, it also protects the metal itself from extreme heat. It even distributes the heat throughout the entire base of the bonfire itself. In addition, it distributes it so its not centered into one place.

So, sand works as an insulator against high temperatures. Also, it serves as a heat dispersion medium.

The Bad

  • Sand retains moisture so this can increase your fire pits exposure to corrode
  • Sand can clog the air circulation found in many metal fire pits hindering their purpose.
  • Cannot be used as a filler option within the fire pit

The Good

  • If your fit pit has drainage holes for the fire and no moisture threat is there you will be fine.
  • You can always invest in a gas-powered fire pit and offset having to deal with the constant purchase of wood and storing of the supply

The only drawback to using sand in your fire pit is the constant clean up process. There are many fire pits you can invest in that do not require this. That being said, we also know there is nothing that can quite take the place of that smoky scent of the outdoors that a genuine, wood-burning fire pit can create.


The use of sand in your fire pit is one of the safest practices you can participate in. That being said, keep in mind that sand will not protect your fire pit from weather conditions. Our advice is to seriously consider rust resistant fire pit that will last for the long-term. This will save you untold amounts of money. In addition, you will also not have to deal with the constant clean up of a wooden fire pit.

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