Recreating a campfire in your own home can be achieved with wood-burning fire pits, ensuring warmth and a cozy ambiance for gathering with loved ones. Gary McCoy, Lowe’s Store Manager in Charlotte, North Carolina, emphasizes the crucial elements of quality, safety, function, and smell when selecting a wood-burning fire pit. With 18 different models tested against these criteria, our top choice is the Frontgate Classic Copper Fire Pit. Its stylish design and outstanding functionality, paired with its ability to withstand harsh weather conditions, make it a standout option.
Best Overall Wood-Burning Fire Pit Frontgate Classic Copper Fire Pit
Suitable for those who want a functional and decorative firepit, but not for those seeking portability. Our tester was impressed with the stylish and practical features of this fire pit. The raised copper basin and elegant iron gate make it a great addition to home decor, while also providing warmth. The fire pit has been tested in extreme heat and weather conditions, ensuring long-term durability. Our tester was confident that the materials used could last for several years without wearing down or blowing away in strong winds.
The firepit is large, creating ample space to hold logs up to two feet long. Our tester loved the wide basin, allowing room for five logs, and the potential for adding many more. They also appreciated the ability to accommodate at least five Adirondack chairs around it, with plenty of space for additional guests. It’s crucial to note that the fire pit shouldn’t be placed on wooden decks or other flammable surfaces.
Cost at time of publication is $649.
Material: Copper basin and powder-coated iron base
Diameter: 40 inches
- Weight: 66 pounds
Hampton Bay Piedmont 30 in. Steel Fire Pit
Performance in heating: 4.5/5
Value for money: 4.5/5
What we like:
– Simple but attractive design
– Bowl depth
– Effective spark screen
What we don’t like:
– Needs to be covered
– No written instructions
The Hampton Bay Piedmont Steel Fire Pit is our top choice among the models we tested. It boasts of an appealing design and is easy to use and manage. While lacking any special controls for flames and smoke, this fire pit also serves as a grill and comes with a poker and mesh screen. The conveniently sized bowl can accommodate a good amount of firewood and allows for easy movement.
Assembly didn’t take much time, although we found the directions a bit challenging, given the use of diagrams instead of written instructions. However, once fully assembled, we didn’t have any difficulty using and starting the unit. Additional firewood was easily added using the poker, which conveniently had a hook for easy mesh cover removal and adjustment while maintaining the fire.
The fire pit’s plain yet stylish appearance adds value to its design, which is both simple and effective, and comes at a great value for money. However, covering it up is necessary to keep it rust-free. The fire pit is a must-have outdoor accessory and offers a grill, spark screen, and poker.
Price at time of publish: $149
Dimensions: 23 x 29 x 29.3 inches | Material: Steel | Fuel Type: Wood | Features: Grill, spark screen, poker
Tiki Brand 25-Inch Smokeless Fire Pit
Advantages: Its design is elegant and it burns efficiently.
Disadvantages: It is pricey for its size and quite heavy.
We deliberated between the Tiki Patio and the Solo Bonfire 2.0, but our ultimate choice was the Tiki. This decision was based on factors such as its more aesthetically pleasing appearance. The Tiki’s firebox is 16 inches wide which means more wood can be lit than in the Solo, and it can also accommodate more people. Furthermore, the Tiki’s airflow design enables hot air to recirculate, resulting in better combustion, fewer coals left unburned, and ‘smokeless’ results. Additionally, the ash pan can be easily removed for cleaning, and the product comes with a weather-resistant cover. In addition to burning exclusive wood packs, the Tiki is also able to burn standard, dry firewood up to 16 inches in length.
The Tiki current retail price is $395, and it measures 25 x 25 x 19 inches and weighs 43 pounds. It is composed of stainless steel and powder-coated steel, and the product can operate using wood or pellets as fuel. A two-year warranty is also provided.
Cuisinart 24” Cleanburn Smokeless Fire Pit
The smell of a bonfire is undeniably cozy, but the feeling quickly fades when the smoke stubbornly clings to your hair and clothes like an unsavory souvenir. However, with the Cuisinart Cleanburn, you can still indulge in s’mores without the hassle of soot. This wood-fueled pit has a clean burn design that increases airflow from below the flames, burning off the ash and debris that causes smoke and collecting it in an easy-to-remove ashtray. The Cuisinart Cleanburn Smokeless Fire Pit is built to last, with a double-walled design, an elegant inky-black enamel exterior, and a rust-resistant stainless steel interior.
Solo Stove Bonfire 2.0
If you’re looking for a fire pit that is easy to move around, especially from storage to your patio, the Solo Stove Bonfire 2.0 is a great option. It’s compact and lightweight, which makes it half the weight of other options we’ve tested. When not in use, it’s easy to conceal behind furniture or in a garage. Although it’s not entirely “smokeless,” it still does an excellent job of reducing smoke by approximately 70-80%. As a result of the smoke-reducing effect, the heat tends to project into the air, reducing the radiant heat you might expect from a typical fire pit. Despite that, the metal sides of the Bonfire can get hot to the touch. Solo Stove also offers a smaller Ranger 2.0 (15 inches in diameter) and a larger Yukon 2.0 (27 inches in diameter) size, as well as a grill grate accessory that we haven’t tested yet.
What to Consider Before Buying a Fire Pit
Various Types of Fire Pits
Different types of fire pits offer varying features and price ranges. A few types include:
1. Fire Tables – These fire pits serve a dual purpose as they provide warmth and offer tabletop space. They come in different shapes and sizes and can cost thousands of dollars. Often fueled by propane, natural gas, or electricity, some use fire glass instead of lava rocks.
2. Fire Bowls – Similar to fire tables, fire bowls also come in various sizes and shapes. They’re portable and may be made of concrete and stone or metal. Along with propane and natural gas, they may burn wood too.
3. Tabletop Fire Tables or Bowls – These smaller models add style to your patios, but they might not be enough to keep you warm. They’re usually portable.
4. Fire Columns – As the name suggests, fire columns are taller, taking up less space than traditional fire pits, making them ideal for small patios or decks.
5. Chimineas – They’re outdoor chimneys available in metal and have come a long way since terracotta. Smoke gets directed away from your guests. Nonetheless, they differ from other fire pits.
Fire pits are usually budget-friendly. Prices may range from $40 to thousands of dollars. Some are portable, while others are permanent fixtures in your backyard setup.
As expected, fire pits get hot, like any other fire. It’s crucial to maintain a safe distance from the flames, particularly for children. Always observe your fire pit while in use. Check your local safety regulations before setting up a fire pit, as some communities might have restrictions on fuel type and how far pits should be from structures.
What is the best type of fire pit to buy?
The type of fire pit you should purchase depends on two main considerations. First is how much money you plan to spend. For instance, inexpensive pits are almost always basic cast-iron models that lack fancy smokeless airflow systems. The second factor to think about is how you’d like to use your pit. Simple pits provide the heat, sights and sounds of a crackling fire. They’re also fine for making s’mores and the odd hot dog. For more advanced cooking capabilities you’ll have to spend more for a pit also designed to operate as a true outdoor grill.
Which fire pits give off the most heat?
While all fire pits generate heat, some tend to create more than others. Ordinary pits, which are also the cheapest, can put out a good amount of heat. Unfortunately they typically create a lot of smoke as well. Smokeless fire pits do reach higher temperatures since they’re designed to foster a high degree of airflow as they burn. However, in my experience, Solo Stove fire pits channel much of their heat upward. Breeo pits, on the other hand, tend to push more heat outward so you often feel their warmth more.
Which smokeless fire pit is the best?
From a pure smokeless performance standpoint, Solo Stove fire pits are the best. They’re the easiest to start and keep lit. They also produce the least amount of smoke and generate the most intense, eye-catching flames. That said, since Solo Stove pits push much of their heat upward, they’re not ideal for keeping seated groups comfortable on cold winter nights. And they’re not designed for cooking elaborate outdoor meals either.
Can you put a fire pit on grass?
Yes, you can put a fire pit on grass — but you need to take a few precautions. For one, you’ll want to make sure the grassy area you choose is level, so the pit doesn’t tip over. You’ll also want to avoid damaging your grass: The high temperatures coming from a fire pit cause heat stress to your grass, which can discolor or kill it. The best way to protect your grass from damage is to put a barrier between the fire pit and the grass. You can simply put some patio slabs underneath the fire pit, or buy a heat shield or a fire-resistant mat. Whatever solution you go with, you should make sure to move the fire pit around frequently, so as not to damage grass in one location.
What types of ignitions are there for fire pits?
Fire pit ignition systems range from simple ones using a match to complex ones using electronics and an app. At one end of the spectrum are match-lit fire pits, with which you start the gas and light a match to get it started, and that’s it. The next step up is a spark ignition system, which features a battery-operated sparker, so you just push a button to get the flame going. Moving up another notch is a flame-sensing fire pit, which has a spark ignition but also a flame sensor that can stop gas flow once flames die down for extra safety. At the far end of the spectrum are electronic ignition kits, which also are flame-sensing, and have an automated ignition process that can be controlled with a timer, a switch, a remote, or a phone app. These are the most expensive, and often require you to have electricity at your fire pit.
Can I cook on my gas fire pit?
Cooking on a gas fire pit that isn’t specifically built for cooking is not recommended, the only exception being toasting marshmallows, since they only touch the flame and not the pit itself. However, some fire pits do sell accessories that you can add for safe cooking, and others are designed with cooking in mind.