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Joseph Gantert
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Ideas for outdoor fireplaces: Brick & beyond

by Joseph Gantert 06/20/2022

For homeowners considering outdoor fireplaces, brick is often the first choice of building material. Brick fireplaces are timeless and practical, adding cozy style to any outdoor space.

However, there are other material options and designs to consider if you want to find the best fit for your home. Here is a basic guide to some of the most popular outdoor fireplace design options and how to choose which one is right for you:

What to consider when choosing a fireplace style

If you’re thinking of adding a fireplace to your outdoor living space, here are the factors you should consider first:

  • Fireplace function (warmth or cooking).
  • Type of fuel (wood, gas, propane or electric).
  • Fixed or portable.
  • Cost.
  • DIY or professional installation.
  • Permits and local codes.

Wood-burning outdoor fireplace

The traditional wood burning fireplace is an exceptional choice for warming up your yard or patio with a cheerful, crackling fire. Wood burning fireplaces made of brick or stone closely resemble the fireplaces you’ll find indoors, making them the perfect addition to an outdoor living room setup.

Traditional outdoor fireplaces are the best option for DIY enthusiasts. However, they require significant upkeep and maintenance. If you’re concerned about safety, it’s important to note that burning wood can produce sparks, which can be a potential fire hazard in your yard.

Portable outdoor fireplace

Portable outdoor fireplaces are standalone and lightweight, allowing you to position them anywhere in your outdoor space with ease. You can even stow them away in the garage or shed when not using them and bring them back out to enjoy a cozy fire on command.

The one downside of portable fireplaces is that they don’t spread heat as far throughout a space. However, it could be an affordable and efficient option for a small yard or patio where a traditional fireplace won’t fit.

Steel outdoor fireplace

A steel outdoor fireplace is a stylish option for homeowners who prefer a more modern fireplace style. Steel fireplaces are also easy to clean and maintain, regardless of whether you burn wood or gas. Depending on your design preferences, you can efficiently add a steel fireplace in a small space by building it into an existing structure for a sleek aesthetic.

Chiminea

Chiminea is the term for freestanding, rounded outdoor fireplaces traditionally made of terracotta. This style of fireplace has small openings to protect the fire from the outdoor elements while also reducing the chance of flying sparks.

These pot-belly shaped wood-burning fireplaces are extremely efficient heat producers and come in a variety of sizes to fit your outdoor space.

Regardless of your design preferences, adding an outdoor fireplace to your home can help you enjoy chilly evenings while serving as a stunning focal point. Use these fireplace ideas as a starting point to find the best option for your outdoor space.

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