Fire pits and outdoor fireplaces are features you can enjoy all year long. There’s really nothing quite like cozying up to a warm fire on a cold winter evening. However, when a fire is involved, you have to keep safety first. Here are our best safety tips for one of our favorite backyard features.
- Check Local Burn Regulations and Alerts- Sometimes the weather and local emissions or pollen counts can make it unsafe to start a fire. Make sure and check the local burn orders to avoid fines or serious health risks.
- Have Water and Extinguishers Handy- Even in the dampest weather, fire can quickly get out of control. Make sure you always have a fire extinguisher close by. Also, keep water and a fire shovel on hand. If the fire grows, you can douse it with water and then use the shovel to cover embers. A fire blanket is also a great tool to keep nearby.
- Check Wind Conditions!- Weather can be unpredictable, especially the wind. Make sure to do a quick check of wind speeds and directions. If there are going to be high wind speeds, put off that fire for another night. Tiny sparks and embers can quickly fly off and start fires outside your pit or fireplace. As you plan your fire pit additions, also consider installing a retaining wall to help cut down on wind exposure.
- Use the Right Wood- You can’t burn just any type of wood. Construction lumber and wood from furniture are both treated with chemicals. Once you burn the wood, you release those chemicals into the air. The toxic fumes can make s’mores dangerous or hurt your lungs. The best bet is to stick with seasoned wood or dried kindling.
- Keep Firewood in a Safe Space- If you want to enjoy a cozy fire, you’ll need enough wood. However, you don’t want to store your wood just anywhere. You can keep your wood nearby, just be certain to put it in a place that is out of range for sparks. Your woodpile should also be in a dry place to avoid damp wood.
- Never, Ever, Leave a Fire Unattended- Even if your fire is dying out, don’t leave it, even for a second. Fires can spark or restart in the flash of an eye. If you have to step away, have a responsible adult watch the flames for you. Put out your fire completely by pouring water on the flames. Then carefully turn each log to be sure all the wood is out before you leave the area.
Fire pits and fireplaces are great additions to any home. With the right safety measures, you can enjoy a beautiful, warm fire all year long. If you’re ready to add an outdoor fire pit or fireplace to your home or office, the professional masons at Landwork Contractors have over 300 years of combined experience. Give them a call today at 914-479-2547 or make an appointment online. We can’t wait to help you design your fire pit or fireplace.