What to Put In Bottom Of Fire Pit?

Households are clamoring for fire pits these days. They’re great home additions, and they’re a simple way to liven up a boring yard for when you have friends and family over for a get-together.

Fire pits are a great way to enjoy the outdoors while remaining safe. However, before you build your fire pit, you must first create a proper pit bottom.

It’s also critical to understand various other important factors, such as safety rules and construction requirements.

fire pit at night

In our guide, you can learn all you need about building a fire pit, and what you should put in the bottom of your fire pit, and other useful information. (Learn How Many Wheelbarrows in a Yard)

Tips for Building a Firepit

You can find many types of wood fire pit or alternative fuel fire pit, yet the design can be almost the same. A stone fire pit can be a fantastic addition to set off any garden. Here are a few things to consider before you start utilizing your space.

Get Approval

A local government, homeowners’ association, or others could impose restrictions on the size, materials used, location, and fuel used in home fire pits. Contact local planning offices and homeowner’s association to make sure you don’t fall outside any regulations.

Consider Accessibility

Building a fire pit, yourself gives you plenty of options for customization. Your fire pit typically should measure 36 and 44 inches wide and 12-inches to 14 inches in the height of the wall base to the top.

Keep Away from Hazard Prone Zones

Install your fire pit on level ground in an open area of your yard, which is at least 15 feet from residences and also a minimum of 10 feet from property lines.

Use the Right Materials

Fire pit inner walls need to be fireproof building materials, and the outer walls need to be heat-resistant such as traditional brick, stone, or others.

No part should be made using flammable materials or non-porous materials that can hold water. Pea gravel, river rocks, or even compressed concrete blocks can explode.

Install Steel Rings

Lin the inner wall with a steel fire ring as it stops the wall material from drying out when exposed to heat. (Read What To Do With Tree Stump in Front Yard)

Consider Fuel Types

Ethanol, propane, or natural gas can be ideal fuel options since they don’t give off smoke, sparks or leave burning embers. Wood-burning fire pits don’t have gas lines, yet they kick smoke, sparks and leave embers you need to deal with.

What Should Be at the Bottom of a Fire Pit?

The surface material you’ll use to burn kindling will be the bottom of the fire pit. Some materials will never reach high temperatures and result in spark, splintering, or exploding if your fire is too hot. Here are the most common you can find.



A layer of sand for fire pit is among the most versatile materials. You may wonder why put sand in the bottom of a fire pit? Sand in fire pit is cheap, easy to install, and offers an excellent heat shield, where it soaks up heat and distributes it evenly.

When you use sand, it can protect a metal bowl from intense heat; however, the downside when using sand is ash will mix, and it will need cleaning or changing.


Dirt can be a suitable option for use at the bottom of the fire pit. It is cheap and easy to use, yet the significant downside being ash will mix and make a mess if it gets wet.

Lava Rocks

Lava rocks are designed to be placed in the bottom when you build a fire pit. They look good and are fantastic at dealing with heat. Unlike other stones, they won’t crack or explode as they are made from magma. The use of lava rocks could lead to more maintenance for clearing up unless you use gas.

Fire Pit Glass

Fire glass is an artificial material, can be found in many colors and patterns. Fire glass won’t radiate heat like lava rocks, and you will discover the price is higher than sand and dirt. It does, however, offer a great light display once flames reflect in the fire pit glass.


It is best to avoid using rock in your outdoor backyard fire pit. Rock can explode once they heat up, and you can discover most rocks have the potential to impact fire safety through an explosion. You can use gravel, so long as it isn’t from any stones that could explode.

Do You Need to Put Anything Under a Fire Pit?

A portable fire pit in your backyard is easy to change the atmosphere, yet a quick way to kill your grass. Here you can learn what to put in bottom of metal fire pit to save your grass.

Brick Pavers

One of the best ways to save grass from heat from fires is lifting your fire pit onto a platform of brick pavers.

The extra distance creates a heat shield and also offers a flat surface. Make sure the pavers are larger than the bottom of your fire so it is sturdy and won’t fall off. Place pavers in a grid formation, and they will keep the fire away from your grass while being easy and affordable to build.

Fire Pit Pads

For safety and protection when your fire pit is burning on grass or a wood deck, use a protective fire mat designed for fire pits for ground use or as a deck protector.

A fire pit mat is made from heat-resistant materials and is easy to use when you have a portable DIY fire pit. Just lay it down before placing your fire pit on top. The cost is affordable, and these are light to move once your fire has finished.

Fire Pit Heat Shields

A fire pit heat shield is an alternative to the above mat and is also straightforward to use. There is no need to assemble, dig a hole or keep anything wet. A good quality heat shield reflects over 90% of all radiant heat from your portable fire pit.

The heat shield withstands around 1,100 degrees Fahrenheit and does a great job of protecting your grass. (Find the Best Yard Trimmer)

Such products are manufactured from a quarter-inch ceramic inner pad, which they place between two heavy-duty foils. Most often, they come with a stainless-steel mesh to protect the edges.

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