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Fire Pits - A Much Needed Patio Addition

Jan 3, 2008
How many times have you looked at those spectacular stone or masonry fireplaces and thought how wonderful it would be to have one sitting at the end of your own patio? Then reality sets in and you realize the expense of adding such fireplace is prohibitive. Or maybe you just don't have the space handle a large structure like that. Well all certainly is not lost. You still can have that outdoor fireplace that will fit any space and budget. The solution lies in one of the many types of fire pits or fire tables as they are often called.

The extremely popular chiminea was one of the first of this category to appear some years ago. Made of clay, cast iron or steel they are characterized by their large round fire chamber and tall thin chimney. They bring a piece of the old world charm to the patio or deck area. And now you have available many varieties of these smaller outdoor fire pits that can bring the warmth and ambiance of an outdoor fireplace at a fraction of the cost.

The fire pit can be permanently installed in your backyard, but the portable models available can meet almost any situation and budget requirement. Most will burn wood, natural gas or propane. Whether you choose a built in or portable fire pit they are much smaller, easier to install and far less expensive than an elaborate outdoor stone fireplace. Now if you chose to build one, be sure to use a fire pit kit. With these you can build up a brick or concrete enclosure that will be spectacular. These kits will include everything you need to get the job done right and without a lot hassle. If you don't go the kit route, you can buy the needed components individually but you have to make sure they all work together. The major components needed include a frame, fire ring for dispersing the natural or propane gas, ignition system (match lit or electronic ignition) and log set. Do your research if you choose to go this route.

There is an even more popular option and one that gives you more flexibility and versatility. That is the portable option. This is one of my favorites. They come in a variety of styles models and price ranges. Many are simply a metal fire bowel made of copper suitable for burning wood or charcoal. Equipped with a grill they are perfect for cookouts. Being portable they can go just about anywhere. Those family outings to the beach will never be the same.

If you want something a little more formal, there are many alternatives to choose from. Models come in many different designs. Some of my favorites are made from glass fiber reinforced concrete. The come in a wide variety of styles and models. Choose you preferred color such as grey, white, terracotta, etc. and you will have a spectacular addition to your patio. Another common material is granite. With the weight of granite these won't be as portable so you want to decide where they are going to go ahead of time. Once in place they will be spectacular.

The fire pit is a perfect addition as our outdoor environments are transformed into truly outdoor entertainment centers. The fire pit is small enough to fit into anyone's budget yet dramatic enough to be an outdoor focal point. If you have enough space, consider adding more than one. With variety of styles and functional designs, they can create vastly different settings around the patio.

What ever your particular needs are, the fire pit has become a very elegant and versatile way to add the charm and warmth of a cozy fire to your patio or outdoor living space. If you haven't considered them, you really should. They will make your patio the envy of all your friends.
About the Author
John Stoner is the owner of Patio Furniture, Fountains and Fireplaces a website featuring decorating tips and ideas for the home, patio, deck and garden. Here you'll find more information on outdoor fire pits and fire tables .
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