How To Make an Easy Fire Pit in a Weekend
June 1, 2021
Whether it's in the middle of the yard or sunken into the center of a patio, this fire pit couldn't be easier to make. Angled pavers make it simple to create a perfect circle, and gravel at the bottom helps level the bottom of the fire pit and keeps the fire contained to the pit. You can adjust the size of the fire pit by arranging the pavers to have more of the longer edges facing in.
Modular retaining wall units
Coarse concrete sand
Plastic/aluminum edge restraint
Things to Know
|Working Time||5 Hours|
|Start to Finish||2 Days|
|Difficulty||Kind of easy|
How To Do It
Photos by Better Homes & Gardens
Step 1: Outline Pit
Site the pit on a flat area about 12 feet in diameter. Place the stake at the center of your desired circle (ours is 56 inches in diameter), tie the spray-paint can to a string attached to the stake, and mark a circle. Dig out the dirt within the circle to about 18 inches deep.
Step 2: Create Level Base
Fill the pit with 6 inches of gravel. Rake smooth and tamp after each load to make a solid base. Then spread a layer of course sand over the gravel, tamp, and check that it's level.
Step 3: Mark Inner Circle
Use the stake, string, and paint to mark an inner circle guide for placing the first layer of retaining wall units. Our inner circle is 38 inches in diameter. If you're using a fire ring, place it to be in line with the painted circle.
Step 4: Place First Row
Place the first row of retaining wall units in a circle. Use the mallet to set them in the sand and gravel. Check that it's level from side to side and front to back after you place each unit.
Step 5: Finish Rows
Add the second row of retaining wall units. Many products feature a groove on the bottom and a ridge on top, allowing the rows to interlock. Add the top row of blocks and glue in place with the concrete adhesive. Make sure the blocks are clean and dry before you apply the adhesive.
You can also use flat, finishing pavers on top of the regular pavers for a sleek, professional look. Adhere them to the top row as you did on the rows below.
Step 6 (optional): Install Ground Pavers
To surround the pit with pavers, first create a 6-inch gravel base topped with 1 inch of course concrete sand. Lay the pavers in the pattern of your choice. After the pavers are in place, install a plastic or aluminum-edge restraint. Sweep concrete sand into the joints until the joints are full. Compact the surface with a hand-compactor or rent a plate contractor.
Source: How to Make an Easy Fire Pit in a Weekend Better Homes & Gardens (June 8, 2015)