Wood deck fire pits are equipped to keep the radiant heat from the flame away from the wooden surface of the deck. This is usually done with heat-resistant base pads placed under the fire pit. Not only that, but a fire pit for wooden decks will have accessories like spark guards that do not allow sparks and embers to jump out and land onto the wood of the deck.
The Best Fire Pits for Wooden Deck
|Image||Fire Pit||Wooden Deck Safe||Fuel Type||
|Solo Stove Bonfire Fire Pit - Editor's Choice||Yes - Solo Stove Bonfire Stand (Sold Separately)||Wood|
|Summit Traditional 30-Inch Fire Pit||Yes||Propane Gas|
|Jaxon Outdoor Fire Table||Yes||Propane Gas|
|Outland Firebowl 863 Cypress||Yes||Propane Gas|
|Campfire Defender Protect Preserve Pop-Up Fire Pit - Editor's Choice||Yes - Heat Shield||Wood|
|Stonecrest Firepit||Yes||Propane Gas|
|Hiland GSF-PR-PC Fire Pit||Yes||Propane Gas|
|Outsunny Wood Burning Fire Pit||Yes - Heat Pads (Sold Separately)||Wood|
|Best Choice Products Fire Pit||Yes||Propane Gas|
|Elizabeth Outdoor Circular Fire Pit||Yes||Propane Gas|
Why use a fire pit designed for wooden deck?
Unless a fire pit has been specifically designed to be used on wooden, composite, or vinyl surfaces, it won’t be safe to use one on them. You may use improvised solutions, but they will never be as safe as a preapproved and tested fire pit for a wooden deck.
With a fire pit designed specifically for use on wooden decks, you can be sure that your deck and your property will be safe. They are likely going to be much more reliable than whatever kind of DIY solution you can come up with, and they also will likely comply with city codes in your area.
With that being said, a fire pit for wooden decks will probably be costlier and more difficult to install and maintain. Not by much, but if you want to have your fire pit on decks made of wood, be prepared to put a little more effort into it.
A fire pit suitable for use on wooden decks is going to come with additional equipment like mesh spark guards and heat-resistant base pads (more about these later). These will add to the overall cost of a wood deck fire pit a bit.
These pieces of equipment also are additional things that you will need to keep clean and take care of in other ways. Setting up all those base pads and spark guards takes a bit more time as well, but it’s usually done only once.
However, all the increased effort, in the end, means that you have a fire pit that can be more safely used on a wooden deck!
Best Fire Pits for Wooden Deck Patio in 2020
Solo Stove Bonfire Fire Pit – Editor’s Choice
- Stainless steel body.
- Vents for improved air circulation.
- Safety stand for patio wooden decks.
- Multiple sizes available.
The Solo Stove Bonfire Fire Pit is one sleek fire pit. The first thing to catch the eye in this fire pit is the stainless steel body which not only ensures durability but also makes the fire pit look good.
The key feature of this fire pit isn’t its body though – rather, it’s that this fire pit is designed to improve air circulation inside.
Solo Stove claims that this fire pit features a 19-inch double-wall design that has raised over $1.7 on Kickstarter. What the double walls allow is freer circulation of air within the fire pit, which in turn makes the wood burn better and produce less smoke.
The vent openings made at the base of the fire pit draw in air and further improve the fire pit’s interior air circulation.
But the most important thing in this fire pit for us today is its safety for patio decks, which is ensured by the Bonfire stand that keeps the heat away from the deck’s surface.
- Sleek design.
- Extremely durable.
- Produces a reduced amount of smoke.
- Safe for wooden decks.
- Won’t be 100% safe without a spark screen.
- Interior storage space for propane tank.
- Rated 40,000 BTU/hour.
- Cast iron finish.
- Light weight concrete.
- Automatic ignition.
If you want smoke-free experience, nothing will beat a propane fire pit like this one produced by Summit Traditional 30-inch fire pit.
Of course, a propane fire pit isn’t going to deliver an authentic wood fire vibe, but it’s going to be much safer because it won’t produce ember or sparks that could end up on the wooden deck.
Not only that, but firing up this fire pit is nearly effort-free – thanks to its automatic push-button spark ignition, it takes seconds to get this fire pit going, while the chrome valve knob allows for quick flame and heat adjustment to up to 40,000 BTUs.
The beautiful design of this fire pit should also be noted – the cast iron finish and lightweight concrete make for quite a spectacle.
This thing is also space-efficient – it doesn’t occupy much room, and it also has a storage compartment where you can conceal your propane tank.
- Produces no sparks, embers, or smoke.
- Very easy to start up.
- Quite space-efficient.
- Quite pricey.
- Smooth concrete build.
- Lava rocks for improved flame visuals.
- Separate tank holder.
This is one beautiful fire pit to put on your deck.
Jaxon has built this fire pit from smoothened lightweight concrete, the bright color of which imparts a sleek look to it. The fire pit looks spectacular by itself, but Jaxon pushed things further with lava rocks placed in the fire pit’s bed which make the flame look more natural.
Aside from imparting a beautiful look to this fire pit, the concrete also makes it durable and weather-resistant.
Operating on propane, this outdoor fire table is excellent for use on wooden decks. And to maintain the sleek look of their fire pit, Jaxon has equipped it with a tank compartment where you could put away your propane tank.
- Smoke-, spark-, and ember-free operation.
- Delivers quite a spectacle.
- Simple and beautiful design.
- Large footprint.
Outland Living Cypress Firebowl Propane Fire Pit – Best Value for Money
- Rated 58,000 BTU/hour.
- 26 pounds of weight.
- 5 pounds of lava rocks included.
- Powder-coated & enamel-finish steel build.
Yet another wood deck fire pit by Outland Living – this time, it’s the Cypress Firebowl!
This is a simpler and more rustic-looking fire pit than the Outland Living 410 fire table, which may be more appealing to some people. Simplicity doesn’t mean ugliness – this fire pit features a steel build with a smooth finish that imparts nice sleekness to this fire pit.
The steel body of this fire pit also features powder coating and an enamel finish, which allows for increased durability and corrosion resistance.
A propane fire pit, the Cypress Firebowl won’t deliver an authentic experience, but it comes with 5.5 pounds of lava rock to slightly enhance the fire’s flickering effect.
For some people, the biggest benefit of this fire pit is going to be its lightness – weighing just 26 pounds, the Cypress Firebowl is 3 to 4 times lighter than the fire pits reviewed so far. Not only that, but this fire pit has a small footprint.
With that being said, this thing doesn’t have any tank compartments, so you may need to improvise to conceal your propane tank.
- Quality and affordability combined.
- Very compact and lightweight.
- Mess-free operation.
- No propane tank compartments.
Campfire Defender Protect Preserve Pop-Up Fire Pit – Editor’s Choice
- Foldable design.
- Holds up to 125 pounds of wood.
- Weight of 8 pounds.
- Heat shield under the pit bottom.
- Steel mesh bottom for increased airflow.
This pop-up wood fire pit employs similar ideas to the Bonfire fire pit we overviewed in the beginning, but it’s drastically different.
The Bonfire weighed around 60 pounds, while this thing just 8, so it’s going to be very easy to carry. Not only that, this fire pit is foldable, which makes it exceptionally storage-efficient and easy to transport.
The key design feature of this fire pit is its steel mesh bottom. It’s fine enough to allow cold air to flow up into the fire, but it doesn’t allow ash and soot to fall through even when being extinguished with water. As a result, you get reduced smoke production, just like in the Bonfire fire pit.
The manufacturer of this fire pit also includes a heat shield that is intended to be installed below the fire pit to protect the ground from heat damage. With that being said, no spark screens are included, so you will need to get one yourself.
What this thing doesn’t have unlike the Bonfire fire pit is the sleek design – this fire pit sure is compact and lightweight, but it may not be the best if you care about style.
- Exceptionally compact and lightweight.
- Reduced heat transfer to the deck below.
- Reduced smoke production.
- No top spark screens included.
- Not the sleekest design.
- Lightweight concrete build.
- Rated 40,000 BTU/hour.
- Lava rocks included.
This propane fire pit by Stonecrest combines some of the main features of the Jaxon fire pit and the Outland Living 410 fire pit we reviewed earlier.
The shape and dimensions of this fire pit are close to those of the Outland Living fire pit, which makes this fire pit space-efficient and compact.
The build is similar to that of that Jaxon fire pit – this fire pit features a lightweight concrete outer around a metal frame. However, this fire pit has a more rustic and rough vibe, partly thanks to the hand-crafted details. Some people are going to like this more than the Jaxon fire pit’s sleek appearance.
Also, the Stonecrest propane fire pit comes with lava rocks to enhance the fire effect, which the Outland Living fire pit didn’t have. Finally, being a propane fire pit, it delivers mess-free operation that is safer than with any wood fire pit.
Also available in round model with the same features:
- Rustic and durable design.
- Mess- and smoke-free operation.
- Hefty price.
- Rated 40,000 BTU/hour.
- Large tabletop.
- Propane tank compartment.
Hiland GSF-PR-PC Fire Pit is like any other propane fire pit – it’s mess-free, doesn’t produce sparks or embers, and is safer to put on a wooden deck than a wood fire pit. But it may be better for you than other fire pits overviewed so far.
The Hiland fire pit is a fairly compact and lightweight propane fire pit. It weighs 45 pounds – nearly half of the weight of some other propane fire pits overviewed – and has a compact 30 x 30 x 24-inch design.
In spite of its compactness, the Hiland fire pit has ample tabletop room, though obviously not as much as larger fire pits. Not only that, by the narrower tank compartment in this fire pit is going to allow for more room for your and your guests’ legs.
This thing is also relatively inexpensive, so it’s going to be a good option for those on a tighter budget. But it isn’t as remarkable in the look department as the previous propane fire pits, which may be a problem for some people.
- Allows for comfortable seating.
- Fairly lightweight and compact.
- Smoke- and mess-free operation.
- The igniter isn’t the most reliable one in the world.
- Powder-coated steel construction.
- Heat-resistant basin.
- Poker, charcoal rack, and spark screen included.
The Outsunny wood fire pit allows you to enjoy the authentic vibe delivered by the crackling fire for not so much money.
This minimalist wood fire pit features a powder-coated steel build that is rust-resistant along with a durable heat-resistant basin. The frame of this fire pit isn’t the thickest and the most rugged in the world, but it is fairly lightweight, weighing 28.6 pounds.
What we like about this fire pit is that it comes with a spark screen to prevent embers and sparks from flying out of the fire pit. Not only that, but it also comes with handy accessories like a poker and a charcoal rack, and there also is a BBQ rack available for it.
With that being said, Outsunny doesn’t include any base heat pads with this thing, so you will want to get one yourself to ensure the full protection of your wooden deck.
- Very inexpensive.
- Fairly compact and lightweight.
- Optional BBQ grate available.
- Keeps embers and sparks in.
- Heat pads not included.
- A bit flimsy.
- Rated 30,000 BTU/hour.
- Lava rocks included.
- Natural stone construction.
- One-step spark ignition.
This propane fire pit will probably appeal to those who like natural designs and elements. In fact, we also highly appreciate that this fire pit looks the closest to a real fire pit among all the products reviewed. It’s too perfect to seem like a hand-built fire pit, but it does give off a rougher and more rustic vibe.
That’s because this fire pit boasts natural stonework on the outside, which to us looks nicer and more natural than the concrete-build propane fire pits we reviewed earlier. And while this is a propane fire pit, the included lava rocks should make the flame look more authentic.
This natural stone fire pit also is fairly inexpensive, as well as has a relatively compact design, which is going to make minimalist people happier about their purchase.
- Fairly inexpensive.
- Quick startup.
- Beautiful rustic design.
- Ember- and smoke-free operation.
- Doesn’t have a propane tank compartment.
- Faux wicker finish
- 40,00 BTU
- Made with lightweight concrete
If you want something more rustic design, then the Elizabeth Outdoor 32″ Circular fire pit may be an excellent option for you.
This fire pit is made with modern technologies from light weight concrete. There is no assembly required which make an advantage. Just set up your propane tank inside the fire pit and lay out the lava rocks and you’re ready to go.
The faux wicker finish adds rustic feel to the fire pit. It is best suited with rustic design patio or backyards. Lava rocks are also included in this package. In addition, the manufacturer adds one year warranty to this fire pit.
- Beautiful design.
- Easy to move around.
- Includes lava rocks.
- One year warranty included.
- Quite expensive.
I already have a fire pit. How should I use it for wood deck?
You can actually place a non-wood fire pit on wooden surfaces. A few precautions can greatly reduce the fire hazard of the fire pit, albeit there is one thing that you should keep in mind.
Your local municipality may have regulations that dictate the use of open flames. Some city and county codes do not allow the use of fire pits on wooden decks no matter what kind of safety measures they are equipped with.
So before even trying to adapt your fire pit for wooden deck use, make sure that open fires on wooden surfaces aren’t forbidden in your area.
If using fire pits is indeed allowed in your locality, then you may use the below tools to adapt your fire pit for use on your wood deck.
Screens & spark guards
As mentioned above, among the dangers coming from a fire pit are sparks and embers. These can jump out of your fire pit and land right onto the wooden surface. And if left unattended, they most likely will cause a fire.
Screens and spark guards are designed to keep sparks, ash, and embers inside the fire pit. But sparks screens can be different – when choosing a spark guard for your fire pit, make sure to pick one with as fine mesh as possible.
But keep in mind that a spark guard may be unable to ensure 100% safety – fine sparks could still fly out. To eliminate the risk of this completely, you would have to cover the fire pit with a solid cover, but this would defeat the purpose of the fire pit. And, of course do not leave your fire pit unattended.
Pads and bases
Then, you need to take care of the heat transfer.
For this, you can use a base or a paver made from stone or metal. Specialized fire pit pads can protect deck surfaces from temperatures as high as 1,400 degrees Fahrenheit.
Commercially available fire pit bases should be more than enough for you, but you may also make a base yourself. To make a DIY pad, you may, for example, cover a cement fiber board in tile.
If making a base yourself, make sure that it extends beyond the fire pit for at least 24 inches in all directions. Not only that, but ensure that the materials used can handle the weight of the fire pit.
Keep an eye on your fire pit at all times
Accidents can occur no matter how safe you think your fire pit is. Even a fire pit designed for wooden deck use isn’t risk-free. Due to this, you need to exercise caution when using a fire pit on wooden or other easily combustible surfaces.
Here are a few safety tips that you may want to follow:
- Do not place your fire pit against the side of your home.
- Dispose of the ashes after the fire pit has cooled down (if you are using a wood fire pit).
- Remember not to place the fire pit on the wooden deck directly.
- Keep water nearby for emergencies.
- Do not use lighter fluid to light up the wood.
- Do not leave your fire pit unattended.
If you follow these tips, you will greatly reduce the risk of fire when using a fire pit.
How to choose the right fire pit for your wooden deck patio?
How do you choose the best wood deck fire pit from those reviewed? Let’s overview the two main types of fire pits – wood and propane – so that you know what you may need to deal with.
Wood fire pits
This is the classical fire pit type and perhaps the most sought-after. Nothing can beat the cozy and authentic feel of a real fire, which is why some people like wood fire pits more.
Not only that, but wood tends to be cheaper to burn than other fuel types, which is a big factor in buyers’ decision-making process.
With that being said, fire pits that take wood as fuel are the least safe ones. When burning, wood produces sparks, embers, and ash. Above, we’ve determined that these are the main risk-generating factors in fire pits.
Not only that, but when wood burns, heat is radiated in all directions – most importantly, downward. A fire pit that isn’t designed to reduce heat transfer to the bottom is going to be a safety hazard when placed on easily combustible surfaces.
And perhaps the biggest downside of wood fire pits is that they require additional equipment for safe operation. If you want to place a fire pit on decks built from wood, then you will need to make sure that it has two crucial pieces of equipment – a spark guard and a base.
We’ve described how these work above – the former keeps embers, ash, and sparks in, while the latter doesn’t allow the heat to spread to the surface of the deck.
Depending on your wood fire pit’s design, you may not need one or both accessories. For example, a wood fire pit may be so deep that embers or sparks just can’t fly out. Or its base may be made from a material that doesn’t transfer heat well.
For safety though, we’d recommend that you get the aforementioned equipment no matter what kind of design your wood fire pit has.
Gas/propane fire pits
Gas or propane fire pits employ propane or gas instead of wood. Most often, non-wood fire pits use propane as fuel.
The advantage of propane fire pits is that propane burners radiate most of the heat upwards, and very little goes to the sides or down. Thanks to this, you may not even need to place any base pads beneath the fire pit. Aside from that, propane/gas fire pits do not produce smoke or sparks if installed correctly.
All this means that propane or gas fire pits tend to be much safer than wood fire pits and often do not need any additional equipment for safe use.
On the other hand, a non-wood fire pit won’t deliver as authentic of an experience. It will deliver a good amount of heat, but it won’t provide, say, that crackling noise wood makes when burning. The natural vibe is thus absent from propane fire pits.
Not only that, but you will need to buy fuel for your fire pit, as well as get a tank for the storage of that fuel. This is not only an additional cost but also means that you’ll need to dedicate additional space for the fuel tank, unless the fire pit has its own tank compartment.
Fire Pits We Don’t Recommend on Wooden Decks
The fire pits above are some that we do not recommend using on your wooden deck. You may be tempted by the designs but you should note that the side cutouts are where sparks may fly out. We don’t recommend them either even with heat pads below.
A very simple accessory for your wooden deck, a fire pit requires a surprising amount of research before buying. You need to first make sure that it’s even allowed to place open fires on wood surfaces in your area, and only then should you proceed to choose the best fire pit for your wooden deck.
Above, we’ve provided you with all the crucial information that you need to know to stay safe when using a fire pit on a wooden deck. Keep our tips in mind, make sure that you are getting the right wood deck fire pit, and enjoy the fire sparkling in your backyard!