How to Safely Use a Fire Pit on Your Deck

Fall, also known as “bonfire and hoodie season” is quickly approaching as we close out our first week of September. Family and friends will gather around fire pits sharing stories, laughter, and making unforgettable memories. It is important to remember throughout all of the fun, that safety still has to be top priority.

Safely Using a Fire Pit on Your DeckDeck Safety

It is recommended that fire pits be used in areas that are open and away from decks or homes. With portable fire pits becoming more and more popular, it is becoming more frequent for homeowners to place their fire pit on their cozy deck space. It is important to remember that both wood decking and composite decking are flammable and can be damaged from the heat if your decking space is not properly protected. Here are some steps to take to properly protect your deck from fire or damage.

  1. Find a safe location away from deck railings, decorations and your home. You
    want to be sure that if the wind blows the flames of your fire will not come in contact with anything that may increase the risk of starting a fire.
  2. Never place your fire pit directly on your deck. The heat from underneath the fire pit can cause damage to wood decking or composite decking. Damage such as warping, discoloration, or burn spots may occur. To avoid this, you can use fire pit pads, or create your own barrier with patio stones. When creating a barrier, you will want to extend it about two feet in all directions from the edge of your fire pit. This will help with embers or in the event the fire pit tips over, your deck will still be protected.
  3. Start your fire and cover with a fire pit screen. This will reduce flying embers and debris, while still allowing you to enjoy a full bonfire.

Due to the fact that you are starting a fire on a wood surface, it is important to take extra precautions. Something as small as an ember can cause your deck to catch fire. Be sure to have a fire extinguisher and hose readily available in the unfortunate event does occur.