If you’re interested in adding a fire pit to your yard, chances are you’ve probably wondered if it’s something you can tackle as your DIY weekend project or if you should leave it to the professionals. In today’s blog, we’ll discuss the difference between DIY fire pits and ones that are professionally installed.
Installation from a Professional Fire Pit Team
Although everyone likes saving money when they can, hiring a professional team like WNY Fire Pits is the option we recommend for one simple reason: safety.
When you work with a professional team, you know that your fire pit will be built to last and allow you to use it without worrying about fire hazards or accidents happening.
Professional fire pit teams will also be able to help you choose the right type of fire pit for your yard as well as inform you of the city ordinances that could affect the placement and type of fire pit you’re allowed to have. For more information about the safety and types of fire pits that are allowed in Buffalo, NY, please check out this blog.
“Can I DIY a Fire Pit?”
A quick Google search can tell you that, yes, you can DIY a fire pit!
However, things can get complicated when you take into consideration the prep work that goes into placing a fire pit properly.
Building a fire pit is much more than simply buying the type of stone you want and arranging it in a circle.
Here’s what the professionals do:
Use the Right Equipment
When it comes to building a fire pit, quite a bit of work needs to happen before the fire pit can actually be built. This includes picking up the right equipment for the job, which can be costly for an individual homeowner to rent for a one time project.
Many of the tools we use weigh over 100lbs and are exceedingly difficult to fit into a regular car, making the trip from Lowes,Home Depot, or ABC Equipment Rental harder than many people anticipate. The tools themselves, like an electric tamper rammer, are difficult to physically manage while they’re in operation, making them dangerous.
Additionally, fire pits are held together by a special concrete glue, which takes specific tools and proper technique gained from experience in order to lay each stone properly and solidly.
Have an Experienced Team
Usually, weekend DIY projects take just a few hours to finish, leaving the rest of the weekend off for you to relax. However building a fire pit properly, without a team of people, can take days and it won’t be guaranteed to come out exactly how you wanted.
Doing the Grunt Work for You
Placing a fire pit directly on the grass or uneven ground isn’t going to give you a solid and safe foundation to build your pit on. If you choose to DIY your fire pit project, you’ll have to do some landscaping first to ensure the hardscaping is done right so you get the perfect fire pit.
Pre-build landscaping includes pulling up grass and roots, digging to create an even surface, placing a layer of gravel and sand to create a stable foundation, and then tamping it down. From there, you’ll want to build a fire pit pad before building the actual pit on top of it.
All of these tasks could be doable for a DIYer, but you must keep in mind that this is a time consuming project to do on your own, and it rarely justifies the expense.
Perfectly Constructing the Fire Pit
Creating a perfect shape isn’t easy – just try drawing a perfect circle!
The same is true for building something into the perfect shape. Building a fire pit into a circle shape, for example, takes planning, experience, and specific materials that will allow us to build in that shape.
As a DIYer, there are a few guides that can help you create a pit in the correct shape but you are left liable to a fire pit that isn’t exactly what you want after all the time you spent on it.
Take the Right Safety Measures
Building a wood burning fire pit is more of a DIY-friendly project because it doesn’t require you to handle flammable gasses and connect the required electrical systems needed to turn gas-burning fire pits on and off.
However, DIYing a gas-burning fire pit can be a dangerous and complicated process. Because the city of Buffalo doesn’t allow wood burning fire pits, this requires DIYers to build a gas fire pit to comply with city ordinances and avoid fines.
If you want more information about the differences and potential advantages a professional fire pit team like WNY provides please contact us at 716-322-3000. We can go through our process so you can be sure the fire pit you’ve purchased is safe, sturdy, and the decorative piece you’ll feel proud of when entertaining. Together, we can get you get started on the road to owning a fire pit with a free estimate and consult.