An outdoor fireplace can bring warmth and ambiance to your patio or yard, giving you additional spaces to relax and entertain. And there is no better time to use your outdoor fireplace than the spring and summer; as temperatures cool down in the evenings, an outdoor fireplace can add warmth to your entertaining spaces. However, there are a number of safety considerations that should be taken into consideration when using your outdoor fireplace.
Fire safety tips
Outdoor fireplaces create great spaces for entertaining family and friends. However, fire safety tips should be followed to ensure that all guests have a safe and enjoyable time. The following are five fire safety tips that will allow your friends and family to safely enjoy your outdoor fireplace this year.
1. Never leave a fireplace unattended. Just like your fireplace indoors, an outdoor fireplace should never be left unattended. Even if a fireplace is screened, embers can still escape; if left unattended, this can lead to accidental fires or injuries.
2. Keep emergency supplies nearby. In case of an emergency, make sure there is a way to douse a fire immediately accessible nearby. A working hose, fire extinguisher, or buckets of sand or water can all be used to extinguish a fire in case of an emergency.
3. Use a fire pad. If you have a portable fire pit, it is important to never set place it directly on a flammable surface such as a wood deck. If you do not have a stone, brick, or concrete slab to place it on, use a fire pad to protect the underlying patio from damage from heat or embers.
4. Only burn seasoned wood. Being outdoors doesn’t give you an excuse to burn whatever you want in your outdoor fireplace. Instead, it is important to only burn seasoned firewood as it burns at higher temperatures with minimal smoke. Attempting to burn trash, Styrofoam, or treated wood can release harmful chemicals into the air – and damage your fireplace.
5. Keep the chimney clear. To prevent chimney blockages or debris in the chimney, make sure that there are no hanging limbs, leaves, or building structures such as gazebos or pergolas that interfere with the chimney venting. Fireplaces should be built at least 100 feet away from buildings and other structures to minimize the risk of accidental fire.
Maintaining your outdoor fireplace
Being outdoors doesn’t excuse your outdoor fireplace from regular maintenance. Outdoor fireplaces should be swept and inspected at least once per year to remove creosote, ash, and soot and to check for signs of damage. Because outdoor fireplaces are constantly exposed to the elements, the masonry and other fireplace components may deteriorate faster.
Safely operating your outdoor fireplace and keeping it well maintained can allow your family and friends to enjoy enjoyable evenings in front of the fire all year long. For more information on how to safely operate your outdoor fireplace or about adding an outdoor fireplace to your home contact The Cozy Flame today.