Fire Pit Safety Tips: How to Stay Safe and Prevent Wildfires

August 9, 2021 By ,

Conversation, laughter, music, stargazing … whether camping in the woods or lounging around the backyard, fire pits are the perfect gathering place for family and friends.

You should be cautious when lighting, maintaining, and extinguishing a fire pit. Download our Firepit Safety Checklist (pdf) below to keep these safety tips top of mind.

Placing Your Pit

  • Make sure it sits 10-25 feet from any structure or neighboring yards.
  • Do not position it under a covered porch or low-hanging tree.
  • Do not place it on a wooden deck or in the grass. Put it on a non-flammable surface, like concrete or patio blocks.

Preparing Your Pit

  • Make sure it is at least six inches deep at the center and two feet across.
  • Sweep the area for flammable materials; if too windy, do not light a fire.
  • Keep water, fire blankets, and/or extinguishers close.
  • Use logs that are no more than 3/4 the diameter of the pit; keep logs at a safe distance.

Lighting Your Pit

  • Do not use lighter fluid; use kindling or a starter log.
  • Do not put garbage or soft wood in the fire—these can pop and throw sparks.
  • Position seating at a reasonable distance; keep kids and pets 3 feet away.
  • Don’t wear flammable or loose-fitting clothes.

Using Your Fire Pit

  • Never leave your fire unattended.
  • Never leave kids or pets alone near your fire pit.
  • Purchase a wire screen to keep embers in and kids or pets out.
  • Keep careful control of fuel to control flames.

Extinguishing

  • Douse flames with water; stir with a shovel to make sure it is extinguished.
  • Discard ashes in a metal container—they could remain hot for several days.

Make safety a priority whenever you are around fire. Download our Fire Pit Safety Checklist (pdf).

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