How to Construct Gas Fire Pits


A gas fire pit offers a natural focal point for outdoor entertaining and activities. A fire pit can extend outdoor time by warming up cool summer evenings and chilly autumn days. Though some fire pits may use wood for fuel, homeowners may prefer the convenience of a gas fire pit that does not require ordering, chopping or storing firewood. Gas fire pits also burn cleanly and efficiently, causing less pollution. Do-it-yourselfers can construct their own natural or propane gas fire pit from a product that has all of the necessary elements included.

Things You'll Need

  • Shovel
  • Stones
  • Base plate material, non-combustible
  • Pipe wrench
  • Additional pipe for extension
  • Gas pipe thread tape
  • Shut-off valve
  • Dishwashing liquid
  • Determine the location of the fire pit. This site should be in the yard or patio, not far from a gas connection. The site also should not be close to the house where combustible materials may catch fire from sparks.

  • Remove the decking, pavers or other floor material from the area chosen for the fire pit.

  • Dig a pit to a depth at least 4 inches below the surface of the surrounding materials, but not deeper than 8 inches.

  • Lay down a solid base for the burning unit with a non-combustible material such as metal, concrete or tamped-down soil.

  • Line the sides of the pit with stones, leaving a small opening for the entry of the gas pipe. Turn off the gas valve to the house.

  • Pipe in the gas line from the house to the gas burner. Use a pipe wrench to connect the pipe extension to the fire pit, and use yellow gas connection tape to secure the threads, wrapping them from the end inward.

  • Install a shut-off valve within 3 feet of the fire pit, according to the Fireplace Distributor website. Connect the valve to the gas pipe with a pipe wrench, first sealing the threads with yellow gas tape to prevent leaks.

  • Connect the gas line to the burner and secure it with gas tape.

  • Turn on the gas to the unit and test for proper connection with a solution of soap and water to detect leaks.

Tips & Warnings

  • Gas fire pit burners can use either propane or natural gas. Consult your owner’s manual to determine whether any adjustments are necessary for adapting the unit to each gas type.
  • Many types of material can be used to line and surround the fire pit, including brick, glass, lava rock or concrete blocks. Each of these materials provides a different look for the fire pit and can be a matter of taste.
  • Propane gas is heavier than air and may be more difficult to light from above. If the burner can be positioned in various ways, install it so that the holes are facing up. For natural gas, the holes can be either up or down.

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