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This is the last installment of our guide on finding the perfect fire pit. If you haven’t yet read our previous articles, please refer to the Buyer’s Guide to Fire Pits Part I for advice on technical considerations such as your local building codes, where your fire feature will be placed and whether or not it will become a permanent fixture in your backyard oasis. Buyer’s Guide to Fire Pits Part II goes over cost, permitting (if necessary), type of fuel and safety concerns. In this third and final installment of the buyer’s guide to fire pits, we go over the “fun” stuff: style, size and material of your fire pit.

Your Fire Style

Arguably the most pleasant task of picking out the perfect fire pit for your outdoor living space is the style and shape. Luckily today you have plenty of options, whether you enjoy sleek and contemporary design, more traditional and ornate styles or something in between.

A fire bowl with turquoise fire glass is a perfect fire pit for a contemporary backyard

Unless you want to completely renovate your backyard or patio, try to find a fire feature that coordinates with what you already have. Neutral tones of tan or gray are usually preferable in a modern setting, although you can add a bit of color by choosing jewel-toned fire media; fire balls or lava rock are additional options to change the look. Opt for an unusual, sleek shape for a truly contemporary look.

This fire table is traditionally designed.

Many of our more traditional, larger fire pits are available in shades of brown, which blend in with the landscape but that does not mean they are boring. Look at this beauty from

Firetainment Malibu cooking fire pit

A fire table may be more your style and it would fit in nicely with nearly any type of outdoor décor, plus this is a great option if you enjoy entertaining. How you wish to use the fire pit is an important part of style consideration.

How Big a Fire Pit Do You Need?

Along with style and shape, size is an important factor. Always take good measurements to ensure your perfect fire pit will fit the space allotted. This can be anywhere from a few feet to a large circumference big enough for a grand outdoor fireplace.

chiseled fire pit

Generally, models range from 24 to 58 inches in width and can be several feet in height. Always be sure however, that there is adequate room to keep the fire feature 5 – 7 feet away from flammable materials such as trees, house siding and the like with enough room for people to move behind chairs and through the outdoor space with ease. If you are using built-in seating, budget for about 4’ between the back of the seat and the lip of the fire pit.

fire pit with seating arrangement

If you will be enjoying the fire pit while seated, choose a model that is lower to the ground so you can easily reach out your hands and feel the warmth. If propping your feet up on the edge sounds comfy, ensure that the lip of the fire pit is about the same or slightly lower than seat height (usually around 1 ½’).

Best Materials for a Fire Pit

Today you have many choices when it comes to the material of your fire pit. Due to its ability to be formed into circular and rounded shapes, concrete is a popular modern choice. But you can also opt for natural or manufactured stone or various types of metal.

The key is to select a material that will withstand the weather and hold up to many years of continued use. While concrete and natural stone are both great picks for the San Diego area, they are prone to staining while a fire pit made from metal gets very hot to the touch and could present a safety risk especially if you have young children. A mix of stone tile top and powder-coated metal base might make the perfect fire pit.

We hope you have found this 3-part buyers guide to find the perfect fire pit to be informative and useful. As always, if you have additional questions or concerns, please contact any of the sales professionals at Hauser’s Patio to help you find the perfect fire pit for your coastal home.

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