Propane Fire-pit FAQ's

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25 Questions You Need The Answers To Right Now

Knowing the answers to the following FAQ on propane fire pits can help you make better decisions, keep you and your family safe and set your mind at rest.

  • What they are?
  • How to use them, Are they safe?
  • Can you cook on them? and much more. 

Whether you own a Fire Bowl already or you’re just thinking about purchasing one, the answers to the FAQ about propane fire pits in this post are meant to help relieve any niggling doubts or anxieties that you may have about purchasing or using portable propane fire pits.

Click in the table of contents right now to go directly to the answers you’re looking for. 

 

heininger-5995-portable-propane-fire-pit.A portable propane fire pit is a fire feature that you can take with you wherever you go.

  • No wood, no smoke, no matches,
  • easy to clean, easy to use,
  • convenient, and portable.

They may allow them on most campsites where fire ban restrictions apply, subject to local authority approval.

To use a fire pit, start by placing it on a flat, non-combustible surface, a safe distance from your home, (minimum 10  feet).

Also, clear away any sticks, dry leaves, or flammable substances in the area around the pit.

Make sure the fire pit is off and cooled down properly before putting it away.

Once you have connected the hose to the propane tank, and the flow of propane moves down the hose into the fire pit, then, either turn the automatic ignition to the on position or use a barbeque lighter if it’s manual.

You are now ready to enjoy your fire pit.

Gas or Propane fire pits like most products are not all the same, therefore, when choosing a gas fire bowl, keep these considerations in mind:

  1. Purchase from a reputable company that puts safety first.
  2. Check that the product has been “CSA approved” and tested for safety.

If a product is certified by the CSAit means it was tested by a global testing factory known as the Canadian Standards Association. 

They only use their stamp of approval on products that are safe and working properly before they leave the factory.

They also pre-install and test the ignition on your portable propane fire pit at the factory for safety.

Gas fire pits are generally safe to use on non-combustible decks.

You need to check the manufacturer requirements and your city’s code before putting any type of fire pit on top of your deck.

Tip:    Place your fire pit in an open area that doesn’t get a lot of wind if you can as this can affect the flame and produce less heat.

All fire pits should be at least 10 to 20 feet away from a house or other structure.

This is the recommended minimum distance, but the farther away you install your fire pit, the less likely a fire hazard it will become.

 

The answer here is a; Definite NO.

Using them indoors would be dangerous, as gas fire pits need proper ventilation.

Please read safety precautions in the manufacturer’s manual for your particular model.

If you are planning to use a gas fire pit under a covered patio, you need to check the manufacturer’s minimum required height clearance and your city’s codes and regulations to make sure it’s okay.

toasting-marshmallows-over-a-firepitYou can, however, it’s not advised.  Some people do use it for toasting marshmallows.

When cooking food, grease or other substances may drip down and cause damage to some of the interior parts as well as create a sticky mess,

That you would have to clean up afterward. ( I’m sure you wouldn’t want that) 

An Outdoor BBQ grill would be more suitable for cooking outdoors.

Some use Wood/Charcoal burning firepits along with a grill plate to cook on

There’s plenty of choice from  Charcoal ElectricWood Pellet or Propane grills

Like any appliance with an open flame there is always a risk of danger, but with common sense, and paying attention to the safety rules in the user manual, all should be good.

 Safety Precautions:

  • Please read safety instructions in the user manual that comes with your gas model before you set-up the fire pit.
  • It is very important to check the hose for any damage such as holes as this could cause gas leaks.
  • Open the valve slowly so as not to release too much fuel, this could cause flames to shoot up suddenly.
  • Young children are attracted to switches, knobs, and handles and can’t resist turning them, please be aware, these on and off valves are very easy to turn.

Warning: 
Never leave a fire burning unattended and do not place your fire pit near any combustible materials.

Yes, you can combine fire glass with lava rock.

I recommend you check with the manufacturer’s instructions and safety rules before doing so, to make sure it doesn’t affect the fire pit warranty.

Lava rock should only be used with natural gas or propane fire features. If using lava rock outdoors, make sure to keep your fire pit covered when not in use to prevent moisture from entering the unit.

For best results make sure the lava rock is dry, then pour one inch of sand on the bottom of the fire pit, take the lava rocks and place them around the fire pit so they just cover the burner then light up and enjoy.

Lava rock is virtually maintenance free, but we do suggest removing the rock from your firepit once a year and rinse it off with clean water.

Allow to dry thoroughly before putting back in the fire pit.

Each ten-pound bag covers approximately 0.5 square feet.

The recommendation is two to four inches for most fire bowls, but check the manufacturer’s instructions for your model.

Burning wood in a propane fire pit is a definite NO!  It would be dangerous and cause untold damage to the fire pit.

If you can’t live without a wood fire you may want to consider buying a Wood-Burning-Firepit instead.

The BTU output varies with the many different makes of fire pits and generally range from 30,000 to 100,000 BTU.

The higher the BTU the more warmth it will produce.

This varies, and depends on different factors:

  •  BTU Output: the higher the BTU the more propane it uses.
  • Usage: How often you use it and for how many hours.
  • Setting: The higher the setting the more propane your fire pit will use.

If run on the highest setting a 20-pound tank will run for approx. 7.5 hours to 11 hours.

Tip:    Above all, keep a backup at the ready.  It’s not very nice when you run out of gas and the fun is just beginning.

Voice of experience talking here.

No. First, propane fire pits don’t produce noxious fumes or represent any real threat of forest fires as they don’t give off any embers or smoke.

Yes, propane cylinders can withstand temperatures as low as -50 degrees Fahrenheit.

Propane is a highly flammable gas it needs storing safely outdoors using the proper storage techniques.

  • Store Propane tanks at least 10 feet from the house.
  • Keep well away from other flammable items.
  • Storing a propane tank vertically will protect the valve from damage and prevent the gas from leaking.
  • Stand the gas cylinder inside a box or crate, this will help it from tipping over.
  • Always check the installation manual for safety details.

Propane tanks freeze, as a result of high humidity or the regulator feeding the propane too quickly, but there’s no need for alarm.

However, you will have to wait until the tank has defrosted.

I hope these answers have helped relieve any fears or anxieties you may have had about Propane Fire Pits.

We are always here to help, so if you have any other questions you would like to ask that’s not on the list, I would be delighted to hear from you.

You can contact me here.