We have been programmed to think that “bigger is always better” when it comes to just about anything in the home improvement world. However, some smaller and less dramatic changes to our living spaces can have some of the biggest payoffs. Adding a fire pit to your outdoor space is one of those small risk, big reward items.
Adding a fire pit can quickly rejuvenate your outdoor space and provide a beautiful setting to create memories with your family and friends, all without leaving the comfort of your own home! Plus, there is the added benefit of being able to make that outdoor time last even longer as we move into the crisper days and evenings of autumn.
There are typically two choices in types of fire pits – wood or gas. There are benefits to both kinds, and choosing what’s best for your home requires a little forethought and planning. Some items that need to be considered are:
- Fuel & storage – wood fire pits tend to be a little larger than gas fire pits because they need to contain large logs. These logs also need to be stored somewhere, preferably some distance from the home in case of termites. Gas fire pits require the use of either liquid propane or natural gas, meaning that there will need to be a storage tank somewhere in order for the gas fire pit to run. When choosing a gas fire pit, consider a landscape plan to hide the storage tank as well.
- Time – gas fire pits are easier to light (generally a button needs to be pressed in order to light) and provide continuous heat. Wood fire pits require the effort of building a fire, and getting to the point of having continuous heat can take longer than with a gas fire pit.
- Energy efficiency – gas fire pits are always going to win out in this category as they burn cleaner and produce fewer emissions.
- Installation & maintenance – gas fire pits can be more difficult to install since gas lines need to be run to the pit. This should be done by a professional. Wood pits can be more of a DIY project; however, it is always best to use a professional to install it due to safety reasons. Wood pits are also more difficult to maintain because they contain soot, ash, and logs. If these items aren’t shoveled out and cleaned regularly, it can cause a fire outside of the pit. Gas fire pits do not require much maintenance at all after the initial installation since they burn clean; a simple wipe down cleaning will do the trick.
- Environmental concerns – wood is a renewable resource that is ideal for the environment; however, gas is the cleaner choice and better for people to breathe in, especially for people with asthma or other breathing issues. Gas fire pits also do not provide smells that will cling to your clothes the way that a wood fire pit will.
- Safety – for gas pits, routine maintenance of the gas lines will prevent any leak issues that may occur. For wood pits, make sure that the fire is completely out each time when done using it.
Chesapeake Landscapes has the experience and know-how to help navigate you through choosing which type of pit is better for your home’s backyard aesthetic, as well as which choice is better for you and your family. Contact us to learn more about our fire pit design and installation services. Contact us today to start planning your new and improved outdoor entertainment space!