Fire pit safety is a crucial consideration for homeowners and cottagers who look to enjoy their outdoor gatherings while protecting their loved ones, their homes, and the surrounding environment. On summer evenings, the warmth and ambiance of a fire pit are unmatched, and it is a perfect addition to any outdoor space. However, there are some precautions you need to take when setting up your fire pit, maintaining a fire, and extinguishing it, to ensure that you and your guests are safe.

In this comprehensive article, we will look at the various safety measures you should take when using an outdoor fire pit; including the type of fuel to use, keeping a fire extinguisher on-hand, supervising children and pets, and more. By being diligent and practicing these safety measures, you too can enjoy the ambiance of a crackling fire with peace of mind.


Failing to Plan is Planning to Fail

Knowledge is power, and a great starting point for understanding what is safe in your setting. Regions or municipalities have guidelines that residents must adhere to when they are burning outdoors, and these bylaws are usually enforced by the local fire department. Understanding your town’s bylaws and consulting with your local fire department is the most important precautionary consideration that you can make.

Reading government articles and weeding through the red tape can be a daunting endeavour, which is why the Iron Embers Sales team is available to help with the bylaw research portion and help you get in contact with the correct local resources.

Some common bylaw restrictions may be:

  • Fire pits may not be within 10’ of buildings, fences, or trees
  • Fire pits must be used for cooking
  • Fire pits must be enclosed with a spark arrester
  • Fire pits must have permits

Once your fire pit is placed and determined to be compliant with bylaws, it is time to consider the safety measures associated with regular use.

A custom outdoor fire pit with a grill and spark screen

Light ‘r Up

You’ve checked your bylaws, set up the firepit, and sent invites to your friends for a backyard party this weekend. Good to go, right? Wrong!

Before your friends arrive to sit fireside, consider these points to keep everyone safe:
Burn only seasoned wood. Seasoned wood is cut firewood that has been dried out to remove as much of the moisture content on the logs as possible. Burning seasoned wood will reduce smoke and make ignition easier.

Build a sturdy structure. Build your fire in a manner that allows for airflow while being stable. A stable structure will not be falling over and sending sparks flying, and the best way to accomplish that is to build a structure just as wide as it is tall.

3 different campfire types

Expert Advice: Campfire Basics Guide

Clean burning only. It is important to use clean ignition sources (matches, bbq lighter, paper, etc…), and to never introduce chemicals, gasoline, or other combustibles to your fire. Not only is this dangerous to humans and pets, but also the outdoor environment. Burning plastics can also release toxic fumes into the air and pollute the ash that is left behind.

Have a backup plan. In case of emergency, have ample water nearby and a shovel to smother an out-of-control fire with dirt. Also know where your nearest fire extinguisher and first-aid kits are located.

Appoint a designated adult. Campfires are often accompanied with friends having a few drinks, or children and pets running around. And that’s okay, there is nothing wrong with having a good time. But make sure that you are drinking responsibly, and that there is at least one designated adult that can keep a clear head and a quick mind.

Logs burning inside a contained fire pit


Shut it Down

Before snuggling into bed at the end of a fun evening of campfire games and smores, never forget to adequately extinguish your blaze. Leaving a fire unattended is irresponsible and dangerous. Complete extinguishment can be accomplished by dousing flames with water, smothering with dirt, snuffing it out, or supervising it until it burns out naturally.

Iron Embers offers a robust collection of firepit accessories to keep your fireside experience as safe as possible. From our grilling accessories that be used without leaning over open flames, to Spark Screens that can keep rogue sparks at bay, and the Steel Lids that can quickly snuff a flame – we have what you’ll need to have a safe and enjoyable experience.


Spread Safety, not Sparks

For kids, nothing can beat the memories made during trips to the lake or overnight camping. Keep their memories positive ones by teaching them early about fire safety. Learning about safe practices has never been easier (or more fun!) than with the resources online at Visit online today and ensure that the whole family is ready to practice fire safety. And remember that Smokey the Bear says it best, “Only you can prevent (wild)fires.”

Smokey Bear Highlight Reel

And there you have it! Everything that you will need to make your fireside experience a safe one. With a little thought, planning, and sensibility you too can be ready to light up the night without a fright.