Outdoor fireplaces are a great addition to any home. On top of turning your outdoor living space into a perfect venue for Fourth of July parties or family get-togethers, adding one also raises your home’s resale value.
While your outdoor fireplace is situated far from your home, there is still a risk of injury and damage. If you don’t have the proper safety measures in place, fire from your outdoor fireplace can spread quickly on a windy day. Sparks can also ignite piles of leaves, garbage, nearby shrubs, and flammable chemicals.
If you plan to add one to your home this year, knowing how to use an outdoor fireplace safely can help you avoid a costly accident during your next family barbecue. Here are a few to keep in mind:
Choose a safe fireplace
Choosing a good outdoor fireplace is the first thing to keep in mind if safety is your top priority. For this reason, it’s not always advisable to settle for the cheapest model you can find on the market. Chances are, you would end up buying a defective fireplace that could put you, your family, and your house in danger. When shopping around for an outdoor fireplace, look for one that has a high-quality ember screen and a thick and durable firebox. Do some additional research to know what other features to look for in an outdoor fireplace.
Pick a safe spot
As a rule, you should set up your outdoor fireplace at least 20 feet away from the nearest structure. Place it in a wide-open area far from overhanging branches and vegetation. If you are planning to add the fireplace as part of your patio design, you might want to place it against a brick wall. You must also ensure there is enough ventilation in the area surrounding the fireplace, especially if it runs on propane or gas. To be sure, refer to local regulations or your HOA Board for guidance.
Keep it clean after using
After using your fireplace, cleaning it out will keep it in good condition until your next bonfire or barbecue. If it’s a wood-burning model, remove the ash along with other debris before scrubbing the fireplace from the inside and out. For a gas-powered fireplace, turn off the gas before doing routine maintenance. Check the exhaust fan for wear and tear and remove any soot from the burners.
While using your outdoor fireplace, make sure you have the right equipment to suppress any fire that has gone out of control. Apart from a water hose, you will also need the right type of fire extinguisher. If you are also using your outdoor fireplace for grilling barbecue to sell, you will need to install fire suppression systems and ensure your employees are trained to use fire extinguishers properly. There are fire protection services in Houston you can check out if you are looking to use your outdoor fireplace for commercial activities.
An outdoor fireplace can make your home stand out. Use these tips and make the most of this outdoor feature safely.