There are over 5,300 fire pit injuries every year in the U.S. Most of these injuries are preventable with fire pit safety practices. Check out these tips to protect your family, property, and landscaping this fall.
Check for Burn Bans in Your Area before Using Your Fire Pit
Before lighting your fire pit, verify that there are no active burn bans in your area. Each state provides a burn ban map online, updated every day. Here is the Michigan burn ban map for easy reference.
If there is an active restriction in your area, do not use your fire pit until the ban is lifted.
Do Not Use a Fire Pit in a Covered Area
Your fire pit should be in an open area, not under an awning or covered porch. Flames can get out of control. The last thing you want is a small fire to ignite the entire house. Be aware of nearby trees, sheds, fencing, etc. Keep the fireplace a safe distance from anything flammable.
Use a Spark Screen to Contain Embers
Embers fly in the wind. When they hit something flammable, like a pile of dry leaves, they can spark a new fire. Spark screens are designed to keep embers in the pit. They allow smoke and some flames to escape, but the sparks and embers remain inside. You still need to monitor the fire, but this can minimize risks.
Keep Chairs and Potted Plants at an Appropriate Distance away
Avoid sitting right by the fire pit, and move any potted plants in the area away from the pit while in use. You can keep the pots and chairs nearby for decoration, but when the fire is going on, you’ll want those items protected. Be particularly careful about seating when you first light the fire or add new kindling to it. The flames will be taller than they are otherwise.
Do Not Leave the Fire Unattended
This goes without saying, but keep an eye on the fire at all times. Do not leave children or pets unsupervised near the fire. Keep water or a fire extinguisher available in case of emergencies. Do not assume the fire is out because the flames have stopped. The logs can continue burning long into the night.
Make Sure Your Fire Pit Is Fire Rated
Not all bricks or blocks are designed for fire pits. If you’re building a custom fire pit, make sure the materials are fire rated. Berns Landscaping offers hardscaping services, landscape design, and outdoor fire pits in Michigan. We utilize premium materials that are tested for durability. Contact us at(586) 756-1145 to schedule a quote for outdoor living design.
Confirm That the Fire Is Fully Extinguished
Douse the fire in water until it is fully saturated. There should be no visible heat of any kind. Do not leave the fire to burn out on its own. Smother it completely to prevent accidents at night.
Follow these fire pit safety tips, and you can enjoy a safe outdoor experience this autumn.