Temperatures are starting to drop, but that doesn’t mean you have to head indoors for the winter. To make the most out of your outdoor space all year long, consider building a fire pit in your backyard. A fire pit is a functional and attractive landscaping feature that will instantly make your backyard look more luxurious and inviting.
Building a fire pit may sound difficult, but it’s surprisingly simple. Transform your backyard by following these steps to build a DIY fire pit:
Gather Tools and Materials
The first step is gathering the tools and materials you will need to complete the project. Here’s what you will need to build a fire pit:
- Tape measure
- General purpose construction adhesive
- Fire pit kit
- Crushed gravel paver base
- Concrete pavers
You should be able to find all of these items at a local home improvement store.
Do Your Research
It’s important to do a bit of research before you begin building a fire pit in your backyard. First, make sure that building a fire pit does not violate any local building codes or homeowners’ association rules. You should also find out if you are required to notify your homeowners’ insurance provider about your plans to build a fire pit.
It’s also wise to call your utility provider to determine the location of buried utility lines in your backyard. You need to do this before you start digging so you know which areas you need to avoid.
Mark the Fire Pit Site
The next step is finding the right spot for your fire pit. Once you settle on a location, use paint or wooden stakes to mark out your work area.
Then, use the shovel to dig into your work space. You will need to dig about seven inches into the ground to prepare the space for your fire pit.
After removing about seven inches of dirt, check to make sure the area is level. Then, use a tamper to pack the dirt.
Create A Gravel Base
Now it’s time to build the foundation for your fire pit using. Pour the crushed gravel paver base into the hole. This gravel base should be about five inches thick, so leave approximately two inches of unfilled space at the top of the hole.
Use a garden hose to thoroughly wet the gravel. Then, use the tamper to pack the crushed gravel tightly.
Check to ensure that the crushed gravel is level before moving onto the next step. If it’s not level, add more crushed gravel to even it out.
Lay the Pavers
Give the gravel base plenty of time to set. Then, begin laying the first layer of concrete pavers. Place the concrete pavers around the perimeter of your work space. Push them together to ensure they are as close to each other as possible.
Make sure the first layer is level before moving onto the next step. If one paver is slightly lower than the rest, use leveling sand to give it more height. If one paver is slightly higher than the rest, use your mallet to gently knock it down into place.
If the first layer is level, move onto the second layer. Do not secure the second layer onto the first layer yet.
Check the Fit
It’s important to check the fit of the fire pit bowl once you have laid out the second layer of concrete pavers.
Place the bowl inside the pavers to see if it fits. If it does, remove it and move onto the next step. If it does not fit, make the necessary adjustments and recheck it.
Secure the Pavers in Place
You will need to secure the layers of pavers in place with general purpose construction adhesive. To do this, remove the second layer of concrete pavers. Apply the adhesive to the top of the first layer of pavers. Then, replace the second layer of concrete pavers to secure them in place.
Finish Building the Fire Pit
Most fire pits are built with three to four layers of concrete pavers. After securing the second layer in place, finish building your fire pit by building a third and fourth layer of concrete pavers.
Be sure to check the fit of the fire pit bowl after laying out each new layer. Do not use the general purpose construction adhesive to secure the third or fourth layer in place until you have confirmed that the bowl fits properly.
That’s all it takes to build a DIY fire pit in your backyard. Once this project is complete, put the finishing touches on your new outdoor space by adding comfortable seating around the fire. Now you’re ready to host an outdoor event for your friends and family!