Essential Fire Pit Safety Tips | Rules and Regulations

Last Updated on December 6, 2022 by Vernon Scott

Please review these Safety tips for fire pits and become familiar with proper use of fire. You may include some additional resources at the comment section of this page that that I forgot to include in this safety tips for fire pits article.

Preparing Your Fire

  • Careful consideration should be taken to determine the location of your fire pit. Make sure your fire pit is in an open area, away from overhanging tree branches or close to shrubs, building overhangs or anything that can easily catch fire.

  • Check out the wind direction before lighting your fire. Always consider the affect that the wind will have and if your fire pit is portable, consider moving it to a safer area protected from high winds. If winds are too high, it may be best to opt out of an open fire until weather conditions improve.

  • NEVER use gasoline or other flammable liquids to light a fire. Fatwood fire starter is available and is a better choice. See the directions for the proper procedure for using fatwood to start a fire. Never add flammable liquids to a fire that is already lit.

  • Portable fire pits can be used on a wood or other combustible surface ONLY with the use of a fire retardant membrane. This may be a slab of stone or a DeckProtect fire pit or Chiminea pad. In any case, be sure that the overhang cautions above are considered.

  • NEVER overload your wood burning fire pit. If the flame is blazing more than 6″ above the outer rim of your fire pit, it is too high. Get the fire under control by lightly spraying with a garden hose or spray bottle with water. Most fire pits today come with a safety spark screen, alway use this screen to keep embers at bay. PLEASE NOTE: Never assume that embers are completely contained with the spark screen in place, occasional embers may still escape thru the screen. Always have a fire extinguisher or garden hose handy when using your fire pit.

  • NEVER leave any fire unattended. If is is burning, someone should be present with a watchful eye.

Children and Fire

  • A bonfire is an enticing phenomenon for anyone. Children may not understand the danger and wander too close. Always keep an eye on children and do not allow them to touch or get too close to a fire. This is true on the patio, in the backyard or at a campsite. Common sense will go a long way with children present. Children often like to carry a blanket when outdoors. Never allow a blanket to touch a fire pit or even come within a few feet of an opened fire.

  • Children may try to throw foriegn objects into a fire. Never allow this. Toys and other items can be very flammable and in some cases explosive when introduced to open flame.

  • Children should be encouraged to enjoy the excitement of a fire pit, but only under close supervision. Do not allow them to stare at the flame. Too much concentrated exposure of the eyes can cause serious damage.

Putting Out the Fire

  • Never leave a fire to die out on its own. Always extinguish your fire completely at the conclusion of your fire pit activity. This should ONLY be done by a mature adult.

  • Douse the fire completely with plenty of water.

  • Empty the cold ash into a metal ash container with a lid. Even after you douse the fire, the possibility of a lingering ember exist. Placing the ash in a ash container with a lid will help starve the oxygen and insure that all embers die out. NEVER place ash directly into the trash container. This is an extreme fire hazard. See our “Tips for Legal disposal and re-cycleing of Fire Pit Ash”. You can sign up on our mailing list and get a FREE e-book on this subject. Sign-up form is located on the lower left corner of the home page and can be found through the pages of this site.

Using a fire pit is a wonderful family activity. The traditional marshmallow or hot dog roast brings the family together and makes lasting memories. With a portable fire pit this activity can be enjoyed more frequently since it is not necessary to load up the car and gear and travel to the woods.

Careful use of fire pits will insure that the memories are great ones. Please note, the traditional marshmallow or hot dog roast may require you to remove the spark screen.

This is completely safe as long as all proper precautions have been taken and adult supervision is constantly available. It is a good idea to use the spark screen when simply sitting back and enjoying the ambiance of the crackling fire.

I am a Trained HVAC Technician and Author of EmiNick. I have been in the industry for over 10 years and have gained a wealth of knowledge and experience. I have been involved in all aspects of HVAC, from design and installation to repair and maintenance. I am also a certified energy auditor and have experience in conducting energy audits for both residential and commercial customers. In addition to my HVAC experience, I am also a certified home inspector and have conducted many home inspections for both buyers and sellers. Follow Me: Linkedin

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