How Deep Should an Inground Fire Pit Be? (Best Practice + Tips)

a graphic of a round backyard fire pit made of grey stones with a grill in the middle on a white background

Installing a fire pit can be a fun and easy way to add some extra warmth and a beautiful ambiance to your backyard. But before you start digging, there are a few things you need to take into account. One of the most important factors is the depth of the hole you dig.

Most landscapers and experts recommend a 12-18 inches depth for a standard inground fire pit. However, your personal needs may require that your hole is slightly larger or smaller. Dig the hole deep enough so that the fire pit is stable and will not topple over. 

In this article, I’ll discuss what factors you need to consider when determining how deep your fire pit should be, as well as some tips on how to install it correctly.

How to Determine the Depth of Your Inground Fire Pit

When deciding how deep your fire pit should be, there are several important factors that you need to consider, including the type of fire pit you plan to install. These include:

  • The height of the surrounding materials: If the ground around your fire pit is covered with dirt or gravel, you’ll need to take this into account when determining the depth. You’ll want to ensure the hole isn’t too low, as this could cause the fire pit to topple over.
  • The materials that will be used: The materials you choose for your fire pit will also play a role in determining how deep it should be. For example, if you will be using large rocks or bricks around the pit, you’ll need to allow extra room for them.
  • The size and shape of your fire pit: The size and shape of your fire pit will also have an impact on how deep it should be. For example, if you use a large metal bowl or any other round barrier, you’ll need to allow extra room for it when digging your hole.
  • The size of the firewood you will use: The size of the firewood you plan to use in your fire pit will also affect how deep it should be. If you will be using large logs, for example, you’ll want to make sure that there is enough space so that they can easily fit in place.
  • Time of year: The time of year can also affect how deep you will need to dig your fire pit. For example, if the ground is wet or frozen, you may need to make your hole deeper than average.
  • Safety considerations: Finally, it’s integral to consider safety when deciding how deep you should dig. For example, you should ensure that the depth of your fire pit is safe for both children and pets and that it will not pose a threat to surrounding plants or other structures.

You may also want to consider any materials, such as pavers, you want to put at the bottom of your fire pit. Some of them, like stones, can take up a bit of space. If you plan to use sand or gravel, this may not be an issue.

If you take these factors into account, you should be able to find the perfect depth for your inground fire pit.

You might also find this interesting: Can you put a fire pit in your front yard?

How To Install Your Inground Fire Pit Correctly 

Once you’ve determined how deep your fire pit should be, it’s time to get started with the installation process. But before you begin, here are the tools you’ll need:

  • A shovel
  • Measuring tape
  • Protective gloves

You’ll also want to consider any additional materials you may need, such as gravel or bricks.

Once you have all of the necessary tools and materials, follow these steps to install your inground fire pit correctly:

  1. Decide where you want to place your fire pit, taking into account safety considerations and any guidelines from your local authorities. It is vital to call 811 and ensure that there are no underground utilities in the area you plan to dig.
  2. Next, mark the area where you plan to dig your hole and begin digging with a shovel or some other appropriate tool.
  3. Once you’ve dug down to the desired depth, it’s time to start building your fire pit. You can use various materials for this, including gravel, bricks, concrete blocks, stones, or other materials of your choice.
  4. Once you’ve finished building your fire pit, you’ll need to pour gravel or other materials around the base of the pit so that it is level and stable.
  5. Finally, let your fire pit sit for a few days before using it and make any necessary adjustments.

The video below is an illustration of the installation process:

Whether you are installing an inground fire pit for the first time or want to improve on an existing installation, following these tips can help ensure that you get it right. With the right tools and materials, as well as careful planning and attention to safety, you can create a fire pit that is both functional and beautiful.

Safety Precautions When Installing an Inground Fire Pit

When installing an inground fire pit, it is crucial to take safety precautions so that you can enjoy your fire pit safely. Some of the most critical safety considerations are:

  • Choosing a safe location for your fire pit. It should be an area that is clear of plants, structures, and overhanging branches.
  • Making sure that children and pets cannot access the fire pit without adult supervision.
  • Installing a protective barrier around the fire pit so that sparks or embers cannot escape.
  • Calling 811 before beginning to dig so that you can be certain there are no underground utilities in the area where you plan to install your fire pit.
  • Checking with local authorities and following any guidelines regarding fire pits or wood burning.
  • Using only fire-resistant materials when building your fire pit and having a fire extinguisher or other safety equipment nearby.

You might also find this interesting: Can you use a fire pit during fire restrictions?

10 Benefits of an Inground Fire Pit

An inground fire pit offers many benefits, including:

  • It adds warmth and a beautiful ambiance to your outdoor space.
  • It is a great way to entertain family and friends or just relax on your own outdoors.
  • It can help reduce heating costs by providing an alternative source of heat.
  • It can act as a space divider, helping create separate areas in your yard or garden.
  • It is relatively easy to install. You can either do it yourself or hire a professional for the job.
  • It can be customized to suit your needs and tastes, from the materials you choose to the size and shape of the pit itself.
  • It can help increase home value, making your property more attractive to potential buyers if you decide to sell in the future.
  • Depending on the materials used, it can be a great source of heat for cooking or keeping your food warm at outdoor gatherings.
  • It can even help bring your family closer by allowing you to spend more time outdoors and enjoy the beautiful weather.
  • It is a great way to experience all of the benefits associated with spending time in nature, including stress relief and improved mental health.

Final Thoughts

Whether you are installing an inground fire pit for the first time or have been using one for years, there are many benefits to be enjoyed. From adding warmth and great ambiance to your outdoor space to providing a fun place for entertaining family and friends, an inground fire pit can be a great addition to any home. So why not start planning your fire pit today?

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