Buying a propane fire-pit is one of the best choices you can make if you are thinking of getting a fire-pit for your back yard. That is if you don’t mind the hassle of a wood burning one.
Having a fire-pit as an element of your backyard’s natural setting is an excellent decision. Because it will naturally become the central point for recreational activities and enrich any occasion.
The great thing about a fire pit is the way it can pull people together: so they can enjoy each other’s company away from the blare of TV’s and other modern technology.
Also it can bestows a rustic, soothing environment which is encouraging to story-telling and conversation.
Think about it with a fire pit you can establish your own outdoor haven at almost any time of the year.
Propane burning fire-pits are popular right now because they are basically trouble free. But if you are thinking of buying one you should weigh up the pros and cons first, to make sure it is the right design for you and your home.
Some of the great things about a propane fire-pit that makes it very popular with home-owners are that it is very easy to light.
You can light this kind of fire pit quickly with just a flick of a switch and instantly have a nice contained fire in your backyard.
Also there is no messy ash to get rid of afterwards, making it an ideal choice for anyone who wishes to keep their backyard free of messy wood ash, smoke and embers.
Although these advantages are the same as those of a natural gas fire-pit, a propane fire-pit does not need a gas line for it to work.
Because propane is stored in portable cylinder/tanks, so that means it can be used in regions beyond gas mains: which makes it perfect for home-owners that already have a backyard with no running natural gas line.
And also filling an empty propane cylinder/tank, for some people, is usually easier than paying a builder to install a natural gas line form their house to their backyard.
If you want to know where the nearest place in your area is to refill your empty propane cylinder then go here to AmeriGas and type in your zip code for your area.They will then locate where the nearest refill station is to you.
The Pros and Cons of a Propane Fire-Pit
The Pros of a Propane Fire-Pit:
1, Having a propane fire-pit can basically rid you of the drawbacks you may have had with the old-style wood burning fire-pit.
2. Propane fire pits have a built in igniter, so there is no need for any matches, or paper to start a fire.
3. Low maintenance.
4. A propane fire-pit produces a crisp, clean flame.
5. They are clean burning producing little or no smoke when being put on so no more worrying about the neighbours calling the fire department thinking that your backyard is ablaze.
6. You can turn the flame high, or low something you can’t do with an old-style wood burning fire-pit.
7. If you buy a propane fire-pit, there will no longer be any need to buy and store wood to burn.
8. You will no longer have to be concerned about cleaning up wood ash, sparks or burning embers. Or having a bucket of sand or water on hand to put the fire out: because all you will need to do is turn the switch off, and instantly the fire is out. (But, remember with any type of fire pit you should always have a fire extinguisher at hand).
9. Propane burning fire pits are a lot safer than a wood burning fire pits. But, remember you still need to keep fire safety in mind when using your propane fire-pit.
10. Propane is delivered in cylinder shaped tanks that can be connected to a fire-pit or grill, which means you can move your fire-pit to any location you want the central point of your backyard get-together to be located. (Something you cannot do with a natural gas fire-pit). Also with the smaller portable models you can take them on camping trips as well.
11. A propane fire-pit is eco-friendly. Such elements it discharges into the atmosphere are too insignificant to harm the environment. Propane is non-toxic, so it is not harmful to water of soil.
12. They come in such a huge diversity of designs and prices that will suit all taste.
13. As well as being an immense addition to your backyard, a propane fire-pit will also give it personality and style also.
14. Depending on the size and shape, you can place a propane fire-pit just about anywhere you like.
The Cons of a Propane Fire-Pit:
1. The fire ring can sometimes get clogged up which will stop the fire pit from working properly. So it is important to check the ring every now and then to see if it needs cleaning.
2. Another thing about the fire ring is that you will need to cover it so that the fire pit will look natural. Generally most of the propane fire-pits on the market achieve this by arranging decorative artificial ceramic logs, lava rocks or fire-glass over it. But, remember these decorations will need to stay in place to preserve the natural quality.
3. Artificial ceramic logs can look tacky and cheap.
4. A propane fire-pit does not generate the same amount of heat as a wood burning fire-pit.
5. Not good for grilling or cooking. You Cannot Cook on Most propane Fire-Pits, but if you have an Outdoor barbecue or Grill that disadvantage will not bother you. So If you are fond of cooking over a real wood fire, a propane fire will not work for you.
6. The propane tank will need to be refilled which means hauling it into a hardware store that can refill it. This might be problematic for some people. Also In some areas, it is not easy to find a store that can refill a propane tank, so that means that you might need to travel some miles to find one.
7. The cost of refilling the Propane cylinder tank will add up. If you are concerned about the cost, then having a natural gas fire-pit would be more advantageous.
Because in some areas, natural gas is about 1/6th the cost of propane, also most households have a steady source of piped natural gas. But remember with a natural gas fire-pit it will be stationary: so you will not be able to move it about to different locations in your backyard.
8. A propane tank is unsightly, but most fire-pit models made for backyard entertainment now come with a compartment that you can hide the propane tank in.
So if these disadvantages do not bother you and all you want is just a clean (propane is one of the cleanest burning of all fossil fuels) source of heat to enjoy relaxing evenings outdoors with friends and family, then a propane fire-pit might be just the one for you.
Some Tips on Propane Fire-Pit Safety
The popularity of propane fire pits is growing every day. These fire-pits allow you to appreciate the outdoors even on very chilly evenings. Nevertheless, to increase safety and decrease the amount of accidents that might happen, there are some safety tips that every fire-pit user should be knowledgeable about.
1. Select a Safe place for Your fire pit:
The area you select for your propane fire-pit is one of the most crucial considerations of fire-pit safety. Remember, the most visually pleasant area in your backyard may not be the safest.
When you set up you fire pit, select a place that is not less than 7 feet away from your house and any other outdoor constructions, including shrubbery and over hanging trees. Also check to see if there are any electrical wires overhead.
2. Assembling the Fire Pit :
Assembling your newly bought propane fire-pit correctly will guarantee safe operation. Unpack all parts carefully and assemble your fire pit in your chosen outside area, following the manufacturer’s instruction manual. Pay special attention to the propane burner and any other fittings while assembling the construction.
Any sort of damage like any cracking, denting, or connections not fitting properly can cause faulty propane delivery which could result in a weak flame or propane leakage.
Remember, if you do not have the assembly manual for the fire pit, then do not try to put it together without it. Instead, go and download the instruction manual for your model from the manufacture’s website.
3. Have a Fire Extinguisher on Hand:
If a fire gets out of control you must know what actions to take. Rapid action can prevent a disaster. Before using your propane fire pit, acquaint yourself with all its functions and parts.
Make sure you know how to switch off the propane supply and restrain a fire that gets out of control. Have a fire extinguisher at hand and make sure that everyone who lives in your home knows how to operate it. You can also handle most fires by dumping sand or pouring water on the blaze.
4. Always Keep the Area Around Your Propane Fire-Pit Free of any Rubbish:
Having items too near to the fire pit can increase the chances of ignition and then flames that can rapidly get out of control and produce a blaze. So make sure that the space around the fire pit is clear of any combustible liquids and items.
5. Never leave Pets or Children Alone by a Fire Pit.
Remember all kinds of fuel burning fire-pit can be hazardous.
6. Regularly Clean the Pipe and Burner of Your Propane Fire-pit:
A dirty or blocked pipe or burner can bring about a build-up of propane, which could be very hazardous. Occasionally, you will need to give these parts a good clean. This is particularly vital if you have not used the fire pit for a few months. From time to time you might discover insects nesting inside the burner, causing a blockage.
7. Examine the Connections:
Examine the propane tank hose for any leaks before using your fire pit for the first time every year. A liquid soap and water solution sprayed on to the hose will expose leaking propane rapidly by releasing bubbles.
If you do have a hole in the propane hose you will need to get a new one.
Also examine all the other valves and connections for any traces of a leak. You can do this also by spraying a soapy solution on to the connecting valves.
If you see any bubbles forming then turn the propane tank off and tighten the connecting valves and check again. Remember you must never use a naked flame to check for any propane leaks as you may cause an explosion.
8. You Should Never Store Propane Tanks in Garages or Buildings:
If you store a propane fire-pit inside throughout the winter, you must disconnect the propane tank and put it outside.
9. Wear non-flammable clothing:
You must not wear loose-fitting or flammable clothing such as nylon when using your propane fire-pit.
10. Shut off the Propane Supply if There is an Emergency:
If there is an emergency, the first thing you must do is switch off the propane supply. If cannot get access to the propane tank because the fire has gone to big use a fire extinguisher, or dump some sand on it or pour some water on the fire. Then try again. But if you cannot do this, then immediately call the fire department.
11. Never Add Fuel, Paper or Gasoline to your Fire Pit:
A propane fire-pit does not need any accelerators or starters to build-up the strength of the fire. Never burn combustible matter, trash, paper or pour gasoline or any kind of fuel into the fire pit.
Propane Fire-pit Troubleshooting
If you are having trouble lighting your fire pit, or having it stay a light, then there are some steps that you can take to help you to get your fire pit working as it should.
1. Make sure that the propane tank is connected properly to the fire pit by the hose and that the tank valve has been turned on.
2. Make sure that you can hear a clicking sound when you depress the ignition button. If you cannot hear a clicking sound then check that you have fitted the igniter battery in properly and try again.
If you still cannot hear any clicking sound then the electrode wire for the igniter could be detached. Check the connection and try again. If you still cannot hear a clicking sound, then the igniter could need cleaning or even a replacement.
3. If the fire pit lights up but then quickly goes out, then the thermocouple might not be working correctly. Make certain that there are no hindrances close to the thermocouple well (which is situated close to the burner) also that the thermocouple is as clean as possible.
Have a look at the manufacturer’s operating and assembly manual for the location of the thermocouple on the fire pit if you are unsure.
4.If at any time you can smell something like rotting eggs, then you could have a hole in the propane supply hose or a damaged hose connector o-ring. If you find that the hose is damaged in some way, immediately turn off the propane tank as a fire could start from the propane leak. Then you must get a new hose for the fire pit.
For years many American families have got together and sat round their bonfires in their backyard for family get-togethers, social gatherings, or just for an evening of marshmallow roasting, relaxation and fun.
Some years ago there were no rules about having a wood-burning fire-pit in the backyard. If you wanted one you just made a hole in the ground and then lay some bricks round the edge of it and it was done.
But, now everything has changed, there are regulations to stick to if you are going to use an old-style in-ground wood-burning fire-pit, particularly if you live in a city.
Because if you live in the city you will need to call your neighbourhood code to learn about your city’s ordinance regulations: if you do not do that you might get into some trouble for causing smoke pollution and endangering lives within the city limits.
A lot of communities have been banned by city ordinance from outdoor wood burning. That is why the sale of propane and gas fire pits are on the rise because they are safer and do not cause pollution.
Like I said before a propane fire-pit can basically rid you of the complications you may have had with an old-style wood-burning fire-pit. Good Luck!