Outdoor fireplaces create a beautiful setting for enjoying dining on the patio on cool fall or winter nights. Traditionally, they were made of brick or stone and a foundation had to be built before the bricks or stones were laid. Those who want to improve their backyards with an outdoor fireplace but don’t want to hire a stone mason or bricklayer now have prefabricated options available.
DIY outdoor fireplace kits are widely available from most home improvement stores. They can be purchased on-line or in the store. They range in price from a few hundred to several thousand dollars. Many of the higher-end models come equipped with amenities like a pizza oven or high grade stone.
A fireplace built from a kit is similar in appearance to an indoor fireplace. It has a hearth, or base, the fireplace itself and a chimney. The chimney on an indoor fireplace extends all the way through the roof of the house, however the chimney on an outdoor fireplace may only rise a few feet above the fireplace. This makes it easier to move the fireplace around if necessary, and it keeps the chimney from touching any low-hanging branches, which would be a fire hazard.
There are many materials available for building an outdoor fireplace. All DIY kits are built with a stone or brick facade instead of using real bricks or stones. The stone or brick veneer is applied to the face of the fireplace as opposed to building the entire structure from carved stone or brick, which would require the expensive services of a stone mason. This not only makes the piece easier and less expensive to install, but it also make it easy to relocate it if the homeowners desire.
Homeowners can choose a facade that matches the existing finish of their house, or they can choose a contrasting material to add an interesting design feature. There are many possibilities to meet the design aesthetics of the homeowner.
There are three possibilities for powering an outdoor fireplace. Homeowners can choose wood-burning, gas-powered or propane-fired. Those with an abundant supply of dry firewood and a place to put the fireplace where it is not near any trees, can choose a wood-burning model. If the home already has gas installed and it’s easy to run a gas line to the outdoor patio, the homeowner may choose a gas-powered model. Gas-fired fireplaces require a hook-up to a gas line and the propane tank must be kept full.
With the approach of autumn, now is a good time to think about installing an outdoor fireplace. Homeowners can extend the usefulness of their outdoor kitchens by installing a fireplace. An outdoor fireplace turns an ordinary patio into an outdoor living space that can be used almost all year round.