Planning the Perfect Wood Burning Fire Pit

By Katie Conaway | Fire Pit
Mar. 152018

Wood burning fire pits are wonderful ways to gather with family and friends in the comfort of your own backyard. What better way to celebrate the seasons (no matter the temperature!) with a crackling, aromatic, visually comforting focal point! However, before grabbing a shovel and digging a hole, it’s important to take a moment and establish a fire pit plan. Otherwise, what was started in a hasty zeal of enthusiasm, could end up as a costly nightmare.

Portable or Permanent

According to the American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA), fire pits and/or fireplaces are the #1 requested design feature for backyard remodeling. However, fire pit styles, sizes and materials are immense. The kind of fire pit to buy and/or build should be based on:

  • Space at hand
  • Budget
  • Local ordinances. (Some municipalities ban open burning of any kind)

Begin by asking the question, will the fire pit be best served in one location or would it be used more if it could be moved from place to place? When considering the type of wood burning fire pit to implement in the backyard this year, make sure to explore the best option for all who plan to use it.


Portable wood burning fire pits are very easy to implement. Basically you buy it, assemble it and light it. There are a lot of options for look and feel to choose from to achieve the desired design/function.

Fire bowls made of copper or stainless steel are usually lighter, easy to move from spot to spot. However, portable fire pits made from cast iron are good options for radiating the most heat.

“Movable” fire pits can also reside within a table (usually coffee table height, but can also be dinner table height when utilized as a grill). Fire pits are not always “open fire” style. If you desire a fireplace look and feel, some portable fire pits have chimneys, a.k.a. “chimineas”.

Aside from the look and feel, it is important to keep any portable fire pit on a fire appropriate natural surface including:

  • Concrete
  • Stone
  • Gravel
  • Brick
  • Slate
  • Fire-resistant composite

They should never be place too close to buildings, on top of a wood deck or under overhanging foliage or powerlines.


Built-in, permanent wood burning fire pits are obviously more involved. Just like portable fire pits, they should never reside beside existing dwellings, under foliage or powerlines of any kind (good rule of thumb is 10-20 feet of clearance). Since these fire pits are usually below ground surface level check before you dig! Make sure to avoid putting them:

  • Over or near a septic tank
  • Leaching field
  • Well head
  • Property lines (local laws stipulate how close fire pits can be built to a neighboring property, check with your local town hall and/or fire department)

Permanent wood burning fire pits can increase the value of your home if planned and constructed to match the look and feel of the residence. Try to match the brick, stone and/or concrete for a seamless transition to the backyard space. Also consider built-in seating and/or leveled surface area around the fire pit for comfortable seating arrangements.

Plan to Succeed

Failing to plan is planning to fail, after all. When it comes to home improvement and/or home projects there are a lot of things to consider in addition to time and money. First time determine whether or not you want a portable or permanent wood burning fire pit. Then choose the safest location(s) to ensure the backyard enhancement does not become a backyard headache. Safety should be first, last and always!

Premier Firewood Has the Perfect Fire Pit Firewood

We can deliver your fire pit wood straight to your home in New York or Connecticut. No more mess, no more hassle, and no more hauling wood. Just quick, easy service; we’ll even stack up your firewood for you, too! Order online, or call us at 203-866-4252 today, and we’ll tell you more about why Premier’s kiln dried firewood is the best wood for your backyard fire pit.

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