3 Choices to Make When Planning Your Outdoor Fireplace
An outdoor fireplace is the perfect addition to your backyard to amp up the mood and set the stage for the party. Before you dive in, there are a few things to consider. Make these three choices and the hard part will be done.
Permanent or Portable
Do you want the convenience of a portable fireplace that you can move around at will? Or do you want a permanent fireplace that adds value to your home and grounds your backyard design? Both bring ambience and add to the indoors-out feeling. But depending on what your overall design is, you may find one more suited than the other.
Portable fireplaces come in all kinds of sizes and styles now and they look good. You can get a high-end look and still have the benefits that come with protability, like rearranging all the patio furniture or clearing the deck for an impromptu karaoke night.
Permanent fireplaces become the centerpiece of your patio design. More permanent fireplaces let you cook over the fire, as well as entertain with elegance. While you’re at it, why not build in a pizza oven too? Take the look of your fireplace to new heights with a façade of brick or tile. A glass mosaic gives your design a contemporary feel, while a classic terra cotta look tile or brick tile brings a more rustic sensibility.
Freestanding or Built-In
Choosing a freestanding or built-in outdoor fireplace design does a lot for defining how you will use your outdoor living space. It can be used to direct the flow of traffic on the patio or dictate how you arrange your furniture.
Built-in outdoor fireplaces go in an existing wall and have a low profile. They stay out of the way but still add that ambiance you want when entertaining outdoors. You will use less materials for a built-in and they are fairly easy to install. Any tile or brick you use on the face of the hearth lays flush to the wall and there are no corners to turn or curves to navigate.
Freestanding outdoor fireplaces can be used to separate the yard from the patio turning the space into a room all its own. This becomes the center of your design so be aware of that as you plan the other elements of your patio. You’ll also have comlete design freedom with a freestanding style fireplace. You can create any shape or size you want and in any style.
Wood or Gas
The final choice you need to make about your outdoor fireplace is fuel. Wood-burning is classic but can be messy. Gas is simple but means extra work and cost for installation.
Wood-burning fireplaces come in all shapes and sizes from a simple iron ring around a fire pit to a custom brick hearth. There are plenty of options to choose from. You do need to figure out how you are going to deal with storing and preparing wood. A chimney can train smoke away from you and your guests so it’s an important consideration.
Gas is much cleaner and provides instant fire at the flip of a switch. It can go in a freestanding or built-in type fireplace, but it cannot be portable. You have to plan for the installation of gas lines and that could get costly and add time to your schedule, but it’s worth it if you want the convenience of gas.