How to Increase the Life of Your Fire Pit
Fire pits are wonderful additions to a backyard living area and can be used for cooking, warmth or general aesthetics. Here are six tips that will help you increase the life of your fire pit and operate it safely.
When buying a fire pit, consider the material
Fire pits are generally made of cast iron, stainless steel, brick or copper. Here are a few things to know about these materials when it’s time to purchase a new fire pit.
Cast iron is more likely to rust than other metals and is also more prone to denting if dropped while moving
Protective coatings including fire-resistant paint can be applied to all metal fire pits to guard against rusting.
Brick fire pits should use fire-rated bricks and/or include a metal fire ring liner to prevent cracked bricks
Copper fire pits are less likely to rust than stainless steel and iron, but over time the surface will begin to turn greenish-blue. This is natural with copper, and many people like the “worn” look within the material. If you’re not one of them, regular cleaning and polishing can prevent copper discoloration.
Tips to extend the life of your fire pit
Burn only dry firewood
The wood you would normally use in a fireplace is ideal for fire pits. Pressure-treated lumber and non-wood items like trash, clothing, magazines, etc., can produce toxic fumes and chemicals that could damage the fire pit. Dry logs that burn clean and easy are the best fire pit fuel.
Start your fires naturally
Use kindling and a match to get fires started in your fire pit. Never use lighter fluid, charcoal starter, gasoline or other accelerants. These products could damage the fire pit’s surface and injure people near the
Let fires go out on their own
Throwing water on a very hot fire will immediately reduce the temperature, and this could cause structural damage to the fire pit over time. Unless you have an emergency situation, let your fires die out in their own time.
Remove ashes and clean off soot after use
Once the fire is completely out and the ashes are cool, remove them with a shovel and place them in a fire-resistant container. Ash has a corrosive property (especially when mixed with rain) and shouldn’t be left in a fire pit indefinitely. Soot buildup can be wiped off to keep the pit clean and further protect its surface.
Cover the fire pit when not in use
Any kind of sturdy cover will do to prevent rain and snow from causing damage to the interior surfaces of the fire pit. Moisture leads to rust and corrosion, which significantly reduce a fire pit’s lifespan.
Longer life for your cooking grate
If you cook over your fire pit, make sure to clean the grate before and after using it. A wire brush should be sufficient for this task. Also, a layer of vegetable oil added before and after cooking will help to prevent rust and preserve the grate.
Have you been thinking about a nice new fire pit for your backyard? Chimney Solutions of Alpharetta, GA, can help. Learn all about fire pits from our helpful showroom staff at 1155 McFarland 400 Drive, or give us a call at (770) 691-6707.