If you're in the market for an outdoor fire pit, you've got many options. From the ultra-portable and sometimes semi-disposable chiminea to the traditional stone-built fireplace, homeowners make a series of decisions about their needs to select an outdoor fire pit. Maintenance issues figure high on the list of issues that a homeowner thinks about when considering an outdoor fireplace for a lawn or patio. Outdoor fire pit contractors can help make decisions on what's best for your yard or patio according to use and style.
Outdoor Fireplace Maintenance: Chimineas
These portable ovens have become fashionable for porches or patios. There are obvious benefits of selecting a chiminea for an outdoor fireplace. They can be easily moved and are not a large investment.
Chimineas come in many shapes, sizes, colors and materials. To consider maintenance for a chiminea, think about what happens to each material over time.
Clay chimineas don't need a lot of maintenance, but they're easily broken. Copper tends to turn green. Both should be kept covered to avoid damage from water.
Cast iron chimineas last a long time if well maintained. A good thick coat of paint will keep your cast iron outdoor fireplace in good condition.
Outdoor Fireplace Maintenance: Fire Pits
The fire pit is a great choice for many yards and patios. Table-style fire pits are also portable, and the design gives you a more dispersed heat pattern.
But fire pits can also be pretty high-maintenance. You'll have to take care of the burned materials to prevent embers and soot from being strewed all over your patio space. A few tips will help you out on this.
Keep the fire pit in a place where it won't be knocked over, away from high traffic areas, and away from winds, which can carry your residual ash across your yard. It also helps to buy a heavier model that might stand up better to the elements.
If you fire pit is on the patio and exposed to rain, empty it promptly after use. Rain storms will carry your ash across your space in streaks and puddles.
A metal fire pit needs a lot of the same care as a chiminea. You'll want to prevent rust by applying sealer or paint, and clean out the trap every once in awhile.
Outdoor Fireplace Maintenance: Stone or Brick
When considering an outdoor fireplace, homeowners can also choose to go with the traditional option. A stone or brick standing fireplace is an altogether different kind of buy than the portable types, but it comes with its own benefits, giving properties authenticity and historic appearance. There's no substitute for a well-built stone or brick fireplace in your yard or open space, but at some point, whether it's in 10, 50 or 100 years, the project will eventually need a major overhaul. If you're confused about design, fire pit contractors can help you with outdoor fireplace and fire pit ideas.
When it comes to maintenance for a stone or brick outdoor fireplace, a few tips apply. Consider how well your mortar will stand up to the elements over time: less porous, tougher materials will keep your project solvent longer.
Another thing to consider is the relative pointing of the project. "Pointing" refers to maintaining the mortar in between the bricks or stones. Some stone projects can be easy to point, but generally, brick is a more straightforward design.
Your Outdoor Fireplace Project
For more on what other homeowners have done to incorporate an outdoor fireplace into their property, check out outdoor fire pit photo galleries or talk to a fire pit contractor to get ideas for your own project.
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