Choosing a Fire Pit For Fall Get-Togethers In The Backyard

Fire pit

Photo: Steve Jurvetson

As summer fades into shorter days and longer evenings, and as the cooler presence of autumn descends, your outdoor living social schedule need not change. All you need to do is to think about accentuating the sweet melancholy of fall by casting a little light (and warmth) on the subject. How do you do that?

Guest writer Alyssa Davis talks about what she added to her outdoor space to make her enjoyment of the great outdoors last well into the fall season.  She added a fire pit. Find out how to add yours …


I love entertaining in the backyard, but in our neck of the woods, the fall of the year has some pretty chilly evenings that are not conducive to having friends and family over.  Not so any longer.

With the addition of a fire pit in my backyard space, I have effectively extended the outdoor entertaining season by at least another month or more.  While the fire pit that I chose for our backyard was fairly inexpensive, it serves the purpose of knocking the chill out of the air so our gang of family and friends can spend evenings by the fire, outside under the stars.

And we can even roast marshmallows with it!  If you are planning on buying or thinking about buying a fire pit for your outdoor space, keep the following tips in mind.

Know where you are going to place the fire pit

You likely already have an idea, but if not, you need to plan where the fire pit will “live”.  Consider the size range of the fire pit and measure the overall space where it is to be placed.  Leave space for seating, furniture, tables, and so on that will be centered on your fire pit.  Decide if you prefer a table top model or if you want a freestanding fire pit.

Determine if you want a fixed fire pit or a portable one

I chose a portable fire pit simply because cost was a factor.  I didn’t want to be out the money for installation, at least not until I determine if we use the backyard enough with the fire pit to warrant the additional outlay of cash.  What’s more, if I decide that I want to use my portable fire pit in another spot, I can just pick it up and head that way!  A fixed fire pit is super nice, however.  They are larger, more visually pleasing, and a lot sturdier.  Which is best for you is a decision that only you can make, based on the value that you place on entertaining outside and how much money you have to spend right now.

Photo: aamylindholm

Choose the type of fuel for your fire pit

 Your choice will be based on preference and on the recommendation of the fire pit manufacturer.  Some folks (including myself) like to burn wood because it creates a natural ambience that makes it seem like you’re camping in the backyard.  Other fuels can be a better option than wood, however, mainly because they burn more cleanly.

Select the material that your pit is made from

My pit is made from clay, but I noticed a wide selection of materials out there when shopping, from wrought iron to flagstone to slate and copper.

Check laws in your area regarding the use of fire pits

You can’t use a fire pit in some locations. The retailer where you purchase the pit should be able to tell you if it is legal in your area to use a fire pit.


Thanks, Alyssa!

Alyssa Davis of specializes in creating stylish interiors with wall mounted coat racks and nautical theme metal art.



1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (No Ratings Yet)


The BuildDirect Product Expert Team is here to support any questions you may have regarding your home improvement project.