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Using Outdoor Fireplaces, Fire Pits, and Fire Bowls

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HomeArticle Library >  Using Outdoor Fireplaces, Fire Pits, and Fire Bowls > 

Tips for Using Outdoor Fireplaces,
Fire Pits, and Fire Bowls

© 2007 - 2013, PennVentures Inc.

People have always been drawn to the Outdoor Fireplace, Fire Pits, and Fire Bowls: Gathering around the Firesensory experience of gathering around a fire in the outdoors: The physical warmth of the fire, the visual light show of dancing flames, and the friendly crackling of the fire all signal camaraderie and security to us. It is no surprise, therefore, that as we extend the entertainment use of our outdoor spaces, we are including outdoorHandcrafted Solid Copper Firepit fireplaces, fire pits, and fire bowls in our gardens and outdoor rooms and on our decks and patios.

But maximum enjoyment of your outdoor fire requires some thought. To assure your continued safety and pleasure with an outdoor fireplace, fire pit, or fire bowl, consider these 11 helpful tips:
 

  • Keep safety your first consideration when using an outdoor fireplace, fire pit, or fire bowl. Whether wood, gel, or gas fueled, when in use your outdoor fireplace or fire pit does contain fire. Never leave an outdoor fire unattended. The wind can suddenly increase or shift direction, children or pets can unexpectedly bump into something or fall, and adults can lose focus an inconvenient times.
     
  • Start with a small fire. The first time you use your outdoor fireplace or fire pit, use minimal fuel. Learn how your outdoor fireplace or fire pit draws air, how it responds to changes in wind direction, and how long it burns before you need to add fuel.
     
  • Use a fatwood stick to light your fire. Fatwood is an all-natural product , a selected part of pine trees "fat" with the highly combustible pine resin, sold in convenient sticks. Fatwood sticks light with a single match, even when wet.  Never use chemicals to start your fire, especially gasoline or charcoal firestarters. 
     
  • Select your firewood to minimize smoke. Well-seasoned hardwoods such as oak and hickory produce less smoke than unseasoned wood or softwoods. 
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  • Be prepared to extinguish the fire. Always keep a hose, water supply, sand bucket, or fire extinguisher within reach when using your outdoor fireplace or fire pit. If relying on fire extinguishers, teach all family members how to use a fire extinguisher correctly, and make sure the fire extinguisher is properly charged. At the end of the evening you will want to be sure your fire is completely out before leaving your outdoor fireplace or fire pit.
     
  • Use the screen. Most outdoor fireplaces and fire pits have mesh screens.  After the initial flames have died down, place the screen in front of or over the fire. The screen is meant to control sparks and burning bits of debris, keeping them from exiting the fire area.
     
  • Use safety gloves. The same insulated, leather gloves you use for your indoor fireplace can serve you well with your outdoor fireplace or fire pit.  Of course you know the screen, glass, and all metal parts of the outdoor fireplace or fire pit are hot when in use, but it is surprising how many people forget that detail.
     
  • Use the protective covering. If your outdoor fireplace or fire pit comes with a protective cover, use it to shield your outdoor fireplace or fire pit from the elements.
     
  • Select stainless steel accessories. Stainless steel will not rust, so stainless steel outdoor tool sets which include fireplace tools such as tongs, shovels, and pokers, will be able to withstand the elements.
     
  • Put out the fire when you finish with it. Yes, your outdoor fireplace or fire pit is a safe place for fire, but you never want to leave any fire unattended. Even if the fire is dying down, do not just call it an evening and walk away. Put the fire out, completely out, before you leave it. 
     
  • Use an Ash Bucket when you clean out your outdoor fireplace or fire pit. Remove the ashes to an Ash Bucket for added safety. Also, an Ash Bucket avoids the unpleasantry of having ashes blow into your face or onto your clean deck, sidewalk or patio.
     

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