An Overview of Concrete Fire Pit Safety

March 9, 2021

Concrete fire pits are common throughout the country, both for in-ground and above-ground fire features. These pits can be made in a variety of different styles, but no matter the style, it’s important to make sure the pit has been constructed safely before beginning to use it.

Here’s a quick overview of some of the most important fire pit safety considerations in Racine, WI.


One of the most common problems with concrete fire pits is that they’re often built only using concrete blocks, which are not designed to be fire safe. Over time, the aggregates will heat up and expand, potentially causing them to explode. Instead, fire pits should be lined with fire brick and fire clay mortar, the same materials used in kilns and furnaces. They’ll be safe to use in a wide range of temperatures, and provide insulation. The materials used to fill the fire pit should also be designed for high temperatures, and not all types of glass or stone fit the bill.


Another important issue to consider when designing a concrete fire pit in Racine, WI is spacing. The pit’s dimensions will influence how close people can sit to the flames. You’ll want at least four inches of clearance between a burner assembly and the edge of the coping. If you’re going to allow people to put up their feet or set down their drinks, that means you’re going to want a larger coping, at least 12 inches wide.

With raised pits, you should have them at least 10 to 12 inches over the surface, which is idea for a footrest height. If you make them much higher than that, there’s a possibility people’s toes will get numb. But maybe you don’t want people to put their feet up, in which cases you can set your fire pits up higher and use a larger coping width to ensure an appropriate distance from the fire.

Manual control

If you’re going to be using a gas assembly, you should build in some manual controls for the flow of gas. This gives you more control over the height of the flames, which is especially beneficial during windy conditions, or if you have varying numbers of people enjoying the flames at any given time. In addition, controlling flames helps for safety, especially when you have small children or drinking adults in the area around the fire, who might accidentally stumble too close to or up against the pit.

If installing a burner, never attempt to make your own burner assembly. Instead, purchase one that’s already been made by a reputable manufacturer, and carefully follow all of the manufacturer’s instructions for installation so you can ensure it will be safe for use.

Interested in learning more about some of the most important issues and processes for concrete fire pit construction and safety in Racine, WI? We encourage you to contact Langenfeld Masonry & Concrete with any questions you have about our services, and we will be happy to provide you with further information.

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