Safety Tips for Fire Pits

There’s truly nothing better than a blazing hot summer night spent around a fire pit with the ones you loved cozied close together around the flickering flames. It feels primal, almost religious to some people to gather at the hearth and tell stories of ghosts and loves lost and forgotten. Get back to those roots this summer, and in style!

There’s wisdom in age, my father always says. He also always says to trust anything and everything that comes out of Bob Villa’s face. In this case, he’s probably right, as Bob has a great list of safety tips here: He’s one of the top guys in the game, so I definitely take his word for it.

Another important thing to keep in mind before you even think about stepping outside near an open flame is what direction the wind is flowing in your yard. It is inadvisable to start one in any high-wind situation, but otherwise just make sure your friends don’t sit down-wind from the fire and they’ll be clear of the smoke, for sure.

Keep It Away From Structures and Trees or Other Nature

One of the worst things you can do in a dry climate is starting a flame beneath something like a tree or the roof of your home. You wouldn’t believe how many house fires start from external sources such as these designated places being too close to shrubbery or the home.

Not only that, consider the fact that even if you don’t blow up the tree, even a stray spark can blow off of a bush and start a forest fire. It’s becoming more common for these types of things to spread as the earth slowly dries up.

Only Burn Environmentally-Friendly, Safe Items

As long as you’re using certified firewood, you’re educated in the matter of the correct types of trees and wood to burn, and you’re abiding by the other safety rules, then you should be fine. The problems start to arise when people try to use any old wood they find to ignite in their pit.

Listen, you have no idea what chemicals were used to treat that wood. You absolutely don’t want to be inhaling things like formaldehyde or wood stain as these things would easily poison the environment and possibly hurt or sicken your family. This also includes items such as plastic, certain types of paper, and metal.

Use Responsibly (Flames and Otherwise)

Alcohol and open flames are a (literally) explosive combination in every sense of the word. Don’t let you or your loved ones get too messy around an open flame this summer, it’s really not worth the costly hospital bills.

Inevitably, some drunken idiot is going to fall into it and get seriously injured. It always happens and it’s always some guy named Mike or Chad, without fail. In that case, go to the Mayo Clinic’s website detailing burns and treatment by clicking here and hopefully you won’t have to go to the hospital. If you do, good luck with the skin grafts!

Make Sure Nothing Flammable is Too Close

You’d think that by the time we reach puberty that our brains will have taught us, and retained enough knowledge of, flames and heat but you’d also, then, be surprised how many things people accidentally burn down around their pits in the summertime. Not only is there flammable wood furniture, there’s plastic coolers, alcohol bottles, and anything you can imagine at a backyard barbeque.

It’s really not rocket science, people. If you love it and hold it close to you, don’t keep it near the flames or it will burn. Like, does someone really have to tell you to not put your hand on a hot stove top burner? I sure hope not.

Be Prepared and Don’t Be Hesitant to Extinguish Flames

If you don’t have a pit yet, you have the chance to fix this issue before it even begins. You can look around for metal fire pits for sale as these can be a safer alternative to items made with natural materials such as stone or finished, fire-retardant wood (unlikely, but possible).

However, if the pit itself actually catches alight, you may be in a little bit more of a pickle. Depending on the building material, now you have to deal with extinguishing brick or mortar. It can be done, but may be tedious and taxing on your yard.

Yes, if anyone knows that ignition can be alluring and magical it’s me as I love fire. It gives people warm cozy feelings, keeps us alight, provides illumination and brings joy, happiness, and romance to any space that needs it. But, as everyone knows, it can also be a deadly force to be reckoned with. One of the most unpredictable forces in nature, fire should be respected and cared for when totally out of control.