Last Updated on October 17, 2021
There’s nothing quite like the ambiance a campfire can provide. Aside from the warmth, it creates a relaxing area where you can just talk, watch the flames, maybe roast marshmallows, and just enjoy each other’s company. Add that to your deck and you’ll have the perfect gathering spot, right? Well, not quite.
- Local Building Codes and Fire Ordinances
- Types of Fire Pit
- Deck Strength
- Distance from Deck
Unlike backyard burning, choosing the best deck fire pits isn’t as simple as it may seem. So before giving you our top picks, here are a few things you should first consider about pool deck fire pits.
Our Top Picks
Factors to Consider Before Setting Up a Deck Fire Pit
Local Building Codes and Fire Ordinances
Adding a fire pit to your outdoor living space, particularly in your deck, isn’t just a matter of preference. You are bound by the ordinances and building codes of your municipality regarding the use of open flames.
In many cities and counties, for example, open flames are not allowed on wooden decks and should not be within 20 feet of your home. This is why it’ll be easier if you choose to get a concrete pool deck instead.
It also helps to do your research about local restrictions ahead of time, so you know whether or not you can continue with the project.
Types of Fire Pit
The next thing you should think about is the type of fire pit and fuel best suited for your deck. Here are the different types of fire pits available:
A gas-fueled pit offers the lowest fire risk, generating a lower amount of heat than wood-burning pits. This makes it the best type of fire pit you can install on your pool deck. Once properly installed, it won’t produce sparks, which can ignite surfaces nearby.
When choosing a gas-fueled pit, look for those designed for deck use. Usually, you’d find this information in the instruction manual. If you are uncertain, contact the manufacturer.
Wood-Burning Fire Pit
Many prefer wood-burning fire pits since they can provide you with an authentic campfire experience, complete with the crackle and smoke of wood. However, the problem with using a traditional wood-burning fire pit on your deck is that it can lead to an accident. These types of pits produce flying embers and sparks, which can land on nearby surfaces and start a large blaze. This could happen anytime even after you have doused the fire pit.
Another issue with wood-burning fire pits is that they sit low to the ground and most of their heat intensity radiates downward. This causes heating in the lower portions of the fire pit, including the bowl, walls, legs, pedestal, and other support structures. Thus, causing damages to your deck over time.
Gel-Burning Fire Pit
Gel-fuel fire pits are portable, versatile, and produce quality flames. Plus, they look extremely beautiful too. They are also nice and a cleaner alternative to wood fuel since they don’t produce ash, smoke, odor, and soot. Furthermore, the heat radiates upward, making them safe even for wooden decks.
However, gel-burning fire pits don’t produce as much heat as wood or fuel. Toasting marshmallows isn’t also recommended.
Another thing you have to consider when choosing a fire pit is your deck’s strength. A heavy-weight fire pit may last for many years but it won’t do you any good if your deck isn’t up to the task. So watch out for pits that use cement or paver blocks in creating an enclosure.
Distance from Deck
When choosing a fire pit, make sure there’s enough space between your deck and the main heat source. The fire shouldn’t be sitting directly on your deck’s surface, especially for wood-burning pits that generate a lot of heat and cause a lot of damages.
Best Deck Fire Pits
Once you’ve got the all-clear from your city, here are some of the best fire pits you may want to consider for your deck.
1. Bond Manufacturing Newcastle Propane Firebowl
- Throw the ultimate s’mores party, host an outdoor date-night, tell spooky stories around the flame, or just enjoy a good book beside the inviting Newcastle Firebowl!
- 40,000 BTU heat output provides warmth and light
- Natural lava rock included to cover the stainless steel burner.
- Protective cover included to preserve the fire pit's integrity.
Beautiful with a realistic look, the Newcastle Firebowl is clean-burning and debris-free. It generates a 40,000 BTU heat output and is fueled by a 20lb propane tank, which is hidden in an internal compartment underneath the fire bowl.
Furthermore, it has a pulse ignition and a convenient control knob, making it easy to light and adjust or extinguish the flame. This gas-fueled pit brings you warmth, gentle lighting, and a stunning fire column that will certainly blend perfectly with your deck.
2. Bali Outdoors Fire Pit
- 💥【EASY ASSEMBLY AND START】: The assembly of this gas fire pit table is mainly screwing all parts together, and the push button spark Piezo ignition system provides simple and convenient control...
- 💥【PERFECT TABLE FIRE SIZE】: 28 L x 28 W inch square gas fire pit tabletop, 26 inch in height, net weight 43 lbs., it will not let you feel too bulky and large
- 💥【MULTIFUNCTION WITH UNIQUE DESGIN】: This nice antique brown with black faux finish gas fire pit table can be used as an outdoor dining-table, bar table, coffee table etc. easily by covering...
- 💥【SAFTY AND GREAT HEAT OUTPUT】: Our gas fire pit table is CSA certified. 50,000 BTU heat output gives you enough heat to warm you up on cool morning and nights
Here’s another gas fire pit that goes well in your deck.
Like our first choice, the Bali Outdoors works with a 20lb propane tank, which is again hidden from sight. It can also ignite with just a push of a button for hassle-free use. Plus, it includes a 15lb fire glass, which is great for heat preservation and thermal insulation.
3. Regal Flame Avon Fire Pit Tabletop
- DESIGNED FOR: This vent free portable tabletop fire pit bio ethanol fireplace can be used indoor or outdoor. It can also be used instead of Gas Logs, Wood Log, Electric Log, Electric Fireplace Insert...
- HEAT: Easily produces 3,900 BTUs to warm a room of 400 sq. ft. with a dancing flame of 7-12 inch in height. No more need to store and log wood, own a firewood rack, waste time on lighting and cleaning...
- REAL FLAME: Unlike electric fireplaces inserts, Tealight Fireplace Log, candle holders, Hurricane Candleholders, Gel Fireplace Fuel Cans, gas, firewood logs, smoke, and no ash clean up. This indoor or...
- SPECIFICATIONS: This Regal Flame bio ethanol tabletop fire pit fireplace is completely vent free. Regal Flame Ethanol Fireplace Fuel and does not need electric, gas, chimney, venting, or fireplace gel...
If you don’t particularly need the heat or the marshmallow-toasting feature of a fire pit, then here’s a good choice for you.
The Regal Flame Avon Fire Pit is a modern, compact, and beautiful addition to your deck. It can provide you a smoke-free, ash-free, and real open flame. It burns completely ventless and runs only on bioethanol. With this, you can enjoy a nice relaxing fire that can last for hours.
4. Outland Firebowl 863
- Perfect no mess campfire: with our fire pit say goodbye to dirty ash, expensive firewood, and bothersome smoke and enjoy a clean realistic propane fire pits for outside. The perfect outdoor fireplace...
- Compact and easy to transport: Travel size fire pit is lightweight and portable; Easily set up in minutes with no tools required. Lower profile increases the functional heat radius while new Helios...
- Beat the campfire ban: CSA approved fire pit is safe to use during most campfire bans; Always check with the current fire restrictions in your area. Spark free propane campfire helps protect...
- Complete fire pit kit: Includes cover & carry kit, pre-attached 10-ft hose to keep your standard 20-lb propane tank cylinder (not included) safely out of sight, fully adjustable regulator with chrome...
Are you looking for that warm fire minus the smoke and ash of a regular wood-burning fire pit?
Then we recommend the Outland Firebowl 863. Unlike the other gas-fueled pits we’ve mentioned, the Outland 863 isn’t very decorative or stylish. It is bare, simple, and light. You can set it up on your deck for family get-togethers and take it with you the next morning for camping. It is functional, safe, and delivers a clean, warm, and smokeless flame for a beautiful evening atmosphere.