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Guide to Buying a Fire Pit

A fire pit creates a real hotspot in your backyard, a central gathering point that draws friends and family in with warmth, crackle, and a magical glow. There are many ways to build a fire, though, and plenty of choices to make when choosing a fire pit. Read our helpful guide and find the right type for your yard, your social situations, and your fire-building abilities.

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Fire Pit Types


The traditional fuel source in a backyard fire pit is, of course, wood. It's cheap, easy, and natural, and brings the nostalgic warmth and glow of a campfire to any gathering. There's nothing hotter, but wood fires do have a couple of downsides - they're more difficult to start and maintain and the smoke bothers some people's eyes.


Gas-powered fire pits may use propane tanks or your home's natural gas source, and provide a level of control over fire that you won't get with wood. With instant start-up via a switch or knob and easily controlled flames, these are perfect as ambiance during dinner or more formal gatherings. They do cost much more to run, though, and produce less heat than wood-burning fires.

Fire Pit Types

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For a bit of personal flair, check out fire pits with cutouts of animals, sports teams, starry nights, and more...

Shop All Fire Pits & Tables

A fire pit is the simplest and most popular type we carry - it's most often a simple large bowl supported by 3 or 4 legs. The best choices feature cutouts and screens for optimal air flow, stable designs and durable metal builds, and size options to fit your space. Many also come with accessories like domed screen covers and matching pokers.

Fire Tables & Chat Sets
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Many tables feature clean metal bowls that can be alternately filled with ice and beverages for a refreshing change.

Fire tables have a big bowl in the middle, but offer more for folks to gather around. The best ones will feature a ring of at least a few inches for drinks, snacks, and more. The table design creates a natural place for a set of chairs, kindling conversation and get-togethers.

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Many of our most popular fire pits are available with an add-on grill.

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Cook on the grill or have an open fire? Create the best of both worlds by choosing a fire pit that comes with a grill grate. These easy models quickly convert your campfire into a cooking station, letting you cook burgers, brats, and more without leaving your seat.

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A fire ring is the simplest version available.

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These are simple metal rings place on the ground that prevent your burning logs and embers from spreading dangerously.

Use and Safety


Your fire pit can go any number of places in the yard, but it must be at least six feet away from any flammable structure - the house, the deck, landscaping, overhangs, etc. Never use one on a wooden deck. Sweep the area clear of dried leaves and other flammable debris, and consider an area that's at least partially protected from wind. Also, make sure you area is spacious and flat - you're going to want to surround your pit with comfortable chairs.

Starting A Wood Fire

Step 1: Make sure you don't overload it - a fire that's too large is dangerous.

Step 2: Cover a piece of paper or cardboard with nicely stacked kindling, allowing for air flow.

Step 3: As the kindling ignites, build a teepee of firewood on top of it.

Step 4: Once you have a solid fire going, it'll start to create nice, red-hot glowing embers.

Step 5: As the flames die down, place the mesh cover on top to manage sparks and only add a log or two when necessary.

Putting A Fire Out

Never leave a pit unattended, and always fully extinguish your fire when you're done. But not with water! Keep a bucket of sand or dirt nearby and use it with a rake or shovel to safely smother the coals.

"Place at least six feet away from any flammable structure."