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A fire pit is a great addition to any backyard. Fire pits are easy to build, fun to use, and add warmth to your outdoor living spaces. Because you are dealing with fire, fire pit safety should be one of your top priorities before getting started. Simple precautions will help you avoid accidents, so here are some tips to be safe while using a fire pit.

Where to Install Your Fire Pit

Build your fire pit at least 10 feet away from any buildings on your property. While 10 feet is the minimum distance, 20-25 feet away from structures is even better if you have the space on your property.

Place your firepit away from outbuildings, fencing, and hot tubs. Make sure there are no trees nearby or overhanging branches. Always place your fire pit on bricks, cinder blocks, or concrete, and never build a fire pit directly on top of the grass or wooden deck.

Take Safety Precautions Before Using Your Fire Pit

When preparing to build a fire, clear the area. Move any seating at least 10 feet away from the flames. Check the weather forecast to make sure the winds will be still. A windy evening can carry embers away and start a fire elsewhere. Before lighting, make sure you have a garden hose or fire extinguisher nearby in case the fire gets out of control.

Starting a Fire

Do not use any flammable liquids (gasoline, kerosene, or lighter fluid) in the place of kindling to get the fire going. Firestarter sticks are relatively safe products to help to light the fire. Wear well-fitted clothing and keep young children away when starting a fire.

Enjoying the Fire Pit

Don’t use more kindling than you need to start the fire. If you’re using a firestarter stick, a small amount will do. As with grilling or using the fireplace, never leave a burning fire unattended, and don’t leave your kids or pets outside alone with the fire.

For safety, do not burn trash like cardboard or paper. These materials can ignite and float out of the pit, causing another fire elsewhere on your or your neighbor’s property.

Putting Out the Fire Safely

Use a bucket of water to douse the fire and then rake or shovel the coals to make sure everything is completely extinguished. Allow the ashes to cool and use a shovel to scoop them into a metal bucket or can. Use this receptacle only for ashes, as some of the ashes may still be hot and flammable.

These tips are a good start to practice fire pit safety. When paired with common sense, you’ll have an accident-free experience while enjoying a warm fire outdoors.

Outlook Home Inspections provides home inspections to Charlotte, NC, and the surrounding area. Contact us to book an appointment.