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Inexpensive DIY Fire Pit
Nothing says cozy and comfortable like flames crackling in a backyard fire pit. Fire is the ultimate focal point and a traditional gathering spot for friends and family. Imagine sipping wine, roasting hot dogs and making s'mores at your own fire pit during cool summer nights. Even better would be the knowledge that you spent very little on the project because you DIY'd it out of inexpensive materials.
Keeping Costs Low
Nearly every fire pit in this gallery costs between $50 and $150. The secret to these super-low costs is that basic building materials like brick, pavers, concrete and retaining wall block are used. Often, other repurposed materials like metal planters, flower pots or glass are employed.
Generally, retaining wall block is the material that most effectively forms the walls of the larger pits. Since these block's sides are angled, they can form a perfect circle when put together, and with no gaps.
Fire Pit Fuel Sources
Gel canisters designed for fireplaces or low-combustion pressed wood logs supply the fire's fuel in most of the smaller fire pits.
Real wood logs or charcoal can be used in the larger pits. Be sure to check with local air quality restrictions on burning wood outdoors.
About This DIY Fire Pit
After her husband got too "fire happy" and cracked their clay chimenea, Kim Anderson of the Thrifty Little Mom blog, decided she wasn't about to give up her backyard fire source.
So they purchased retaining wall blocks from their local home improvement store and stacked them four tiers high, using the lawn as the pit's floor. To increase the oxygen flow, they cut one of the blocks in half and placed each half on opposite sides of the ring as vents.Continue to 2 of 10 below.
02 of 10
DIY Easy Fire Pit
Fast, easy and most importantly, inexpensive: these are words that describe the approach taken by Kaysi at the home and craft blog Keeping It Simple. She and her husband wanted a backyard fire pit for the weekend, and they wanted it right away.
After a trip to Home Depot, they brought back retaining wall blocks, sand, and pavers–all for around $50. They laid the block ring first, maintaining a diameter of 33 inches, then installed pavers inside. A quick sweep of sand across the pavers was enough to lock them in place and prevent them from shifting.
For anyone who is nervous about working with masonry, this truly is the starter project for you. No grout, mortar, or concrete are involved. The hardest part for Kaysi was paring down some of the pavers with a hammer to create a circle. For this, use a hammer and masonry chisel, and be sure to wear heavy gloves and eye protection.Continue to 3 of 10 below.
03 of 10
DIY Modern Concrete Fire Pit
What can an oversized salad bowl, Weber-style grill, can of non-stick spray and bag of concrete do for you?
These elements can all be magically transformed into a sleek, smooth backyard fire pit, all done by yourself, and all for less than $100. This project is a great entree to concrete casting if you've ever wanted to try it.
This fire pit uses gel fireplace fuel cans underneath for those bright yet gentle flames, surrounded by black Mexican beach pebbles, easily found at your local home improvement store.Continue to 4 of 10 below.
04 of 10
DIY Adirondack Style Fire Pit
Combine a fire pit and Adirondack chairs, and this is what you get: a spot-on design match. Marie, from The Interior Frugalista, built this deck-friendly fire pit within a hexagon-shaped wooden frame so that it would blend in with her Adirondack chairs.
Flames are supplied by a few gel fireplace fuel canisters or pressed wood logs. Pressed wood is a great alternative to logs because they help use up wood waste byproducts.Continue to 5 of 10 below.
05 of 10
DIY Koi Pond Fire Pit Transformation
Decommissioned garden ponds work perfectly as fire pits since they are already lined in non-combustible rocks. As long as the size is right, old ponds work perfectly as DIY fire pits. Just make sure that the pond is lined with stones or concrete, and not with a PVC or EPDM pond liner.
Blogger Lucy of Lucy's Lampshades quite inventively turned her old koi pond into a fabulous fire pit for outdoor gatherings. Just as well, she notes, since raccoons and owls tended to gobble up the fish.Continue to 6 of 10 below.
06 of 10
Modern-Style DIY Metal and Glass Fire Pit
For less than $25, Karen over at The Art of Doing Stuff whipped up this gorgeous sleek, contemporary-style mini fire pit out of glass, a metal planter, and a metal grate.
The hardest part was gluing the sheets of glass together with silicone. After that, it was all easy-does-it. She simply placed the four-sided structure into the planter and the grate onto the bottom. Gel canisters fuel the flames. Karen notes that if you cannot find a metal planter like hers, you can use a similarly sized terracotta planter.Continue to 7 of 10 below.
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DIY Mini Fire Pit
It's a snap to size this fire pit as big or small as you like. The overall shape of the fire pit is formed by any type of large plastic container such as a flower pot, urn or whatever your creative mind can envision.
Spray the inside of the container with non-stick cooking spray, pour it completely full of concrete, then set one or more gel fuel canisters into the wet concrete (canisters also coated with non-stick cooking spray). Add rocks or beach glass into the still-wet, pliable concrete mix for a beautiful finishing touch.Continue to 8 of 10 below.
08 of 10
DIY Square Fire Pit
Stylishly simple and costing well under $100, this square DIY fire pit is constructed from cement wall blocks laid in a bed of sand. To prevent the sand from shifting, dig a 4-inch-deep hole in the grass with a spade, remove the turf, and fill the hole with paver sand.
DIY Square Fire Pit from Deals, Steals, and HeelsContinue to 9 of 10 below.
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Shortcut DIY Fire Pit
Not all fire pits need to be created entirely from scratch. Melissa at The Inspired Room combined a do-it-yourself ring of 44 Allen + Roth retaining wall blocks from Lowe's Home Improvement store with a factory-made, ready-to-go metal fire pit kit. The result is a fire pit with a cozy, natural-stone look.Continue to 10 of 10 below.
10 of 10
DIY BBQ Fire Pit
Many backyard fire pits, other than offering up the visual charm of flames, are essentially non-functional. Stacy at Red Door Home wanted a completely functional fire pit that can be used for cooking all throughout the summer.
Two full-size grills rest atop a ring of retaining wall blocks, allowing her to cook up anything from steaks and kebabs to s'mores. Extending the use of the fire pit ensures that it will get used more often and for a longer period of time.