Enjoying a warm fire on a chilly evening is one of the hallmarks of the fall season. If you want to build a fire pit in your yard, make sure to keep your family and property safe. Here are a few key fire pit safety tips to put into practice.

Fire Pit Location

Before you build your first fire, find an ideal spot to safely install a fire pit. When choosing a location, some things to keep in mind for optimal fire pit safety are:

  • Is the ground level? Don’t build a fire pit on a slope. Doing so makes it more likely that fire or your firewood will spill into areas outside the boundaries of the fire pit.
  • Choose an open area clear of flammable material. Don’t install the fire pit near the house or outbuildings. It should not be positioned under trees, awnings, or adjacent to vegetation.
  • Add non-combustible materials like sand, stone, or bricks under and around the fire pit to prevent stray embers from igniting the grass.

Use the Right Fuel

In a wood-burning fire pit, use seasoned hardwood that has been dried for several months. This prevents problems like a fire that won’t light or that is smoky as it burns.

Don’t burn pressure-treated lumber and never burn garbage in your fire pit. Toxic fumes will be released which can be harmful to your friends and family. Don’t use accelerants like kerosene to start a fire, as this could cause an explosion that may result in injury or property damage.

Fire Pit Safety Means Always Being Prepared

When taking fire pit safety precautions, be prepared for emergencies and unexpected situations. Keep a fire extinguisher close by that is rated for wood-burning fires and make sure you know how to use it.

A garden hose is also helpful in the event the fire gets out of control. If you purchased a premade fire pit, use the included screen to block embers from being carried up with the smoke and starting a fire elsewhere.

When extinguishing the fire at the end of the evening, make sure all the coals are safely out. A store-bought model may need to be extinguished using specific instructions to not cause damage to the fire pit. Save the manual from the fire pit and refer to the directions before using the product.

There are few moments as relaxing as spending quality time next to the fire with friends and family. Follow these fire pit safety guidelines to keep your evenings safe and incident-free.

R. Sorensen Construction and Inspections provides inspection services in Eastern Oregon. Contact us to schedule an appointment.