8 Tips for a DIY Stone Fire Pit

DIY Stone Fire PitAh, the stone fire pit: gath­er­er of friends and cook­er of tasty treats. Fire pits are much more effi­cient and eas­i­er to main­tain that tra­di­tion­al 3 stone stoves, not to men­tion, much more aes­thet­i­cal­ly pleas­ing.

But this DIY guide is not just for mak­ing a sim­ple fire. You could save your­self the has­sle and sit next to a fake one at your near­est Star­bucks — if that’s all you’re try­ing to do. This guide is for you to gath­er your friends and plan for an out­ing!

Get a Game Plan
First thing’s first–make sure you know what you are about to do, what you need and where you are going to do it. Take your time a do some research on what you want your fire pit to look like. In this guide, we will focus on con­struct­ing a round stone pit but you can def­i­nite­ly vari­ate to your lik­ing using these con­cepts as a base. Check build­ing codes in your neigh­bor­hood to get up to speed on prop­er specs and reg­u­la­tions and make a list of the tools and sup­plies need­ed to con­struct your dream fire pit.

The Mate­ri­als
For a basic con­crete stone pit, you’ll need to vis­it your local hard­ware store and pur­chase the fol­low­ing sup­plies:

  • con­crete pavers- plan to pur­chase enough to build a cir­cu­lar wall at least 12 in high and 36–44 in diam­e­ter
  • bag of sand 
  • shov­el
  • tape mea­sure
  • lev­el
  • steel rake

Need help? Talk to some­one at your local hard­ware store to trou­bleshoot which mate­ri­als will be best for your par­tic­u­lar envi­ron­ment.

Pick the Per­fect Spot…
Put some thought into pick­ing out a spot for your fire pit and take some time to observe your yard, the ter­rain and where you will be hang­ing out most fre­quent­ly on a chilly win­ter night. For safe­ty, search out an open area well away from your house, low hang­ing tree branch­es, util­i­ty lines and oth­er plants and struc­tures. Now it’s time to prep the cho­sen area. 

Dig It
Use your rake or oth­er yard tools to lev­el and clear out weeds, rocks and smooth bumpy, uneven ground for a flat, sol­id sur­face. Take safe­ty to the next lev­el and dig a shal­low hole remov­ing the top­soil. You want to dig a mod­er­ate, 12 in deep hole right in the mid­dle of the cir­cle, which will be sur­round­ed by pavers. Remem­ber to watch out for those pesky util­i­ty lines!

Size up Your Pit Cir­cle
Lay the con­crete pavers in a cir­cle about 36 to 44 inch­es in diam­e­ter and mea­sure with tape and a lev­el. Try using a round BBQ grille grate as a mea­sur­ing guide when lay­er­ing the pavers. Next, con­tin­ue to stack the pavers in a cir­cle. You can either stack leav­ing a crack of space between each or lay pavers side by side. You can make your pit larg­er or small­er in size depend­ing on what you want. If you are using a grate as a guide, sim­ply lay­er pavers around it to look like a sun disk with rays.

Just Add Sand
Now comes the sandy part. Lay­er sand on the bot­tom and tamp till lev­el. You don’t have to just use sand either- Grav­el works just as well. Cov­er the cen­ter of the pit with a thick lay­er of sand/gravel.

Stack Those Stones
Once the sand is down pat, con­tin­ue on your lay­er­ing quest. Stack as many  pavers around the cir­cle to your lik­ing, at least 12 inch­es above the ground. You can build the wall as high as you fan­cy, but make sure there are at least two lay­ers sur­round­ing the shal­low dig. Pour a sec­ond lay­er of sand into the cir­cle, com­plete­ly cov­er­ing the first lay­er. Make sure that over­all, the sand is at least four inch­es deep.

Enjoy Safe­ly
Now that your fire pit is com­plete, it’s time to grab some hot cider and light it up! Just be safe when deal­ing with fire and mon­i­tor flames respon­si­bly.