Fire pits are a fantastic way of bringing that warm, cosy campfire vibe onto your backyard, patio, or deck.
They can be used all year around and make for a great outdoor focal point for family and friends to come together and have fun, no matter the weather.
With all this in mind, what are the best fire pits you can buy today? There’s certainly a wide range available. From traditional wood fire pits, to propane gas fire pits, there’s also professionally fitted natural gas fire tables.
To help you in your search we have pulled together the best rated fire pits in each category. Add that to our dedicated buyers guide and by the end of this article you will know exactly which is the right choice for you.
Best Fire Pit – Our Top 5 at a glance
|TOP PICK:Best Choice Products BCPGas OutdoorFire Pit||Propane|
|Napoleon GrillsSt. Tropez PatioflameTable||Propane|
|TOP PICK:Sunnydaze30 Inch FirebowlPit||Wood|
|TOP PICK:Real Flame T9620NG-GLGBaltic SquareNatural GasTable||Natural Gas|
|TOP PICK:Outland FirebowlPortablePropaneFire Pit||Propane|
- Best Fire Pit – Our Top 5 at a glance
- Best Outdoor Fire Pit Buyer’s Guide
- Type of Fuel
- Style of Fire Pit
- Function of your outdoor fire pit
- Best Propane Fire Pit: Best Choice Products BCP Extruded Aluminum Gas Outdoor Fire Pit Table
- Napoleon Grills St. Tropez Rectangle Patioflame Table
- Best outdoor fire pit (Wood Burner): Sunnydaze 30 Inch Firebowl Fire Pit
- Landmann 26364 23-1/2-Inch Savannah Garden Light Fire Pit
- Best Natural Gas Fire Pit: Real Flame T9620NG-GLG Baltic Square Natural Gas Table
- Best Portable fire pit: Outland Firebowl Mega Propane Fire Pit
Best Outdoor Fire Pit Buyer’s Guide
The great thing about fire pits is that they bring a glorious 360 degree heat through open flames. Is there anything more inviting than that if you want to enjoy your outside space when the temperature starts to plummet?
However, it is important to know what kind of fire pit you should buy for your needs. Every garden and situation is different.
In this fire pit buyer’s guide we will look at some of the most important issues you should consider when in the market for buying an outdoor fire pit.
Type of Fuel
The first factor to decide upon is the type of fuel you wish to use. The following are the most popular types of fire pit you can buy:
The wood fire pit
The most traditional style of fire pit that replicates the campfire setting most closely is the wood burning pit. A real benefit of the wood pit is how cost efficient they are to use.
There is no need to keep refilling the propane gas tank to use the pit, and you can burn discarded wood, garden trimmings and trash paper/cardboard too.
Some will definitely want a wood fire pit over anything else because of the satisfying cracking and burning of wood that it provides.
On the downside they do cause a lot more smoke and depending on the wood you burn it can get in the way of the fireside fun.
Wood fire pits are also take more effort to get started – you have to build the fire each time you wish to use it.
Finally, fire safety is a bigger concern with wood fire pits. You also have to consider exactly where you place the pit as it cannot be under a porch or close to any surfaces that could potentially catch ablaze.
Propane Fire Pit
The propane fire pit is a extremely popular option because of the simplicity of use. The pit is connected up to a propane tank, (normally hidden beneath and behind the decorative exterior of the pit) and all it takes is a twist of a knob to get the fire started.
Smaller propane gas fire pits can also be portable, make them ideal additions for camping too.
On the downside, propane gas is more expensive than both natural gas and wood options, and you will need to keep on top of propane levels.
There’s nothing worse than inviting everyone over for some evening garden fun, just to run out of gas halfway through the festivities.
Natural Gas Fire Pit
Natural gas fire pits are often the very fancy ones you see that are permanently rigged up to the main natural gas pipeline coming into your home.
For this reason they are the most cumbersome to set up (you will need to employ a professional) and are often the most expensive to buy. The structure is permanent after all.
Once it the natural gas fire pit is in place however, they can be the most satisfying to look at and most efficient to run.
Natural gas is much cheaper and easy to use when compared to other fuel options.
The initial outlay on an pricier outdoor fire pit installation will also reap benefits in that the pit will be of high quality and built to last.
Style of Fire Pit
The style of fire pit you go for will depend on your budget and where you wish to use it.
You may want a portable metal fire pit that can be easily brought out when needed.
On the other hand it could be that you want a sturdy, natural gas fire pit that will be a major focal point in your garden. The style and materials will reflect that.
One of the most popular style choices is a design that resembles a bowl shape. These are normally lighter and more portable.
Another popular choice is a square or rectangular table shape. These are more heavy weight in design and are generally used by more permanent fixtures.
The materials used to build your fire pit, clearly have an impact on the sturdiness and overall portability.
The choice of materials rages from stone and tile to stainless steel and copper. Let’s take a look at some of the pros and cons of each.
Steel fire pits cover a wide range of styles and price point. This is simply because a simple steel bowl can be cheap to manufacture while a more ornate hand-made steel fire pit structure can cost a lot more.
The benefit of steel is that can be molded into all shapes and sizes. However, it does need to be treated in order to prevent rust.
This can come in the form of a powder coated finish, or special paints. If you do opt to buy a steel fire pit you will need to ensure that it will be up to task in hand.
Tile and Stone
Tile and stone fire pits are normally made to order and as result can be very unique and artistic.
This type of pit will be made from a solid steel frame with a mesh body. The tiles and stonework are then attached to the surface of the pit via traditional masonry skills.
The result is a robust stone fire pit that will stand the test of time. They are far from portable too, so once you have one fitted, you will not want to have it moved anytime soon. This is an important consideration when choosing a fire pit of this type.
Copper fire pits are popular because they will not rust.
Like steel, copper can be molded into any shape imaginable, and will also be up to the task of holding fire.
Copper designs are generally more expensive that other types of fire pit. However, the worn patina that they gain over time really is a pleasing aesthetic.
Cast iron is another inexpensive material that is popular because of its durability and ease with which it can be worked with.
Cast iron fire pits can also be made to be lightweight and portable. It is also possible to take on many shapes while tolerating high temperatures.
Most of all, whatever material you choose for your fire pit you should try to find something that complements the style of your outdoor decor.
Whether your choice of fire pit is metal or stone, wood or gas burning as long as it fits in with the overall aesthetic of your outside space, you will be winning.
Function of your outdoor fire pit
Grilling & Cooking
If you fancy doing a little bit of grilling using your pit, you will need to buy one with a suitable grill on top.
Many fire pits come with a cooking grate, however some designs will allow the grill to be bought and fitted extra.
Fire pit tables
If you opt for a fire pit table design you should be aware of the different functions that each will offer.
For instance a wide coffee table height table will allow for warm drinks and food to be laid around the edge of the flames. It may also help prevent children reaching into the fire.
A thin edged table will not have these benefits.
Alternatively there is the tall, bar table design of fire pit. These will look sophisticated in some outdoor environments, but will be less practical overall.
Portable fire pits for camping
There is also the function of portability to consider. If you want to take your pit camping with you, or simply want to pack it away in between entertaining in your yard, you will need the design, weight and fixture of your pit to be easily moved.
There are many models available that cater for this.
Safety and accessories
Finally there is the all important issue of safety.
While we have explored this area in greater detail here, we should go over some of the basics now too.
Fire pit safety 101 should teach you to never use one next to a wall of either your home, the shed or garage, or garden fence.
In fact, a fire pit should not be placed within 15 feet of a flammable surface. Nor should the pit be placed on a wooden deck.
Generally, fire proof surfaces such as hard stone, cement or tile are the best options when it comes to finding a location to place your fire pit.
For extra safety, most fire pits will come with accessories such as protective screens and grills. These help prevent sparks and embers from flying onto the surrounding areas and causing a hazard.
Hard tops and vinyl covers are also worth looking out for (again they are sometimes supplied when you buy). These help ensure your pit will stay in tip top condition when not in use.
Related Content: 5 Outdoor Fire Pit Safety Tips To Keep Your Family Safe
Best Propane Fire Pit: Best Choice Products BCP Extruded Aluminum Gas Outdoor Fire Pit Table
The Best Choice Products BCP Propane gas fire pit gets our number one pick in the propane category because it balances affordability, with a robust design and pleasing aesthetics.
The pit is made out of extruded aluminium. This makes it extra durable against the elements and can safely stay outdoors whatever the weather conditions.
Versatility is real plus on the BCP too. The design incorporates a lid on top. In position the pit doubles up as an attractive garden table.
When it’s time to spark up, remove the lid and watch the flames dance.
A side door gives easy access to the fuel area. A 20lbs propane tank be safely stored inside.
Heat capacity is very good too. The burner is adjustable with a top level of 42,000 BTUS.
The pit comes supplied with a cover to ensure protection when not in use.
However, beyond all of that we will let the pictures do the talking. The Best Choice Products gas fire pit makes for a worthwhile addition to both rustic and contemporary styled gardens alike.
Overall dimensions come in at 45 inches (length) x 45 inches (width) x 23.5 inches (height).
Pros of the Best Choice Products BCP Extruded Aluminum Gas Outdoor Fire Pit Table
- Durable extruded aluminum construction that is designed to resist weathering.
- Neat side door to conceal the propane tank, lid can turn the pit into an elegant table when not in use.
- Burn capacity up to 42,000 BTUS.
- Includes glass beads and rain cover
- A minority of customers have experienced problems with the ignition system failing.
Best Choice Products have a bit of a winner on the hands with their BCP propane fire pit. The durable aluminium build quality along with the sleek overall design make for a very attractive center point to any garden. Highly recommended.
Napoleon Grills St. Tropez Rectangle Patioflame Table
Napoleon’s St. Tropez rectangular patio flame table is great propane gas fire pit that mixes style and sturdy all weather build quality in one package.
What we especially like about the Napoleon Grills is the rustic bronze finish. It just looks so damn cool.
The fact your pit will likely become the focal point of your garden, means you need something that has the potential of being a conversational opener. Your guests will talk about it for sure.
The only problem you might have is that the rest of your garden doesn’t match up to the overall aesthetic.
The antiques style of the bronze finish plays off the more contemporary look of the linear gas burner.
The glass ember bed acts to the overall effect by reflecting the light of the flames. This increases that warm and cosy you feel as a result of the heat.
Being an easy to use propane fire pit the napoleon St. Tropez patio flame table needs no preparation to start.
The high rate 60,000 BTU’s of heat actually make this more powerful than our top pick Best Choice product, (however this is a more expensive pit overall).
providing beautiful dancing flames, & light for your outdoor space.
The table hides the propane tank behind an easy to access door of course. Everything is neatly stored away.
A thermocouple valve is fitted as standard. This important safety feature works by cutting off the gas when the flame is disrupted. It also cuts down on any potential gas leaks and wastage.
The sturdy design actually belies the lightweight nature of the pit. Should you need to adjust the location of the pit, you can do so without any hernia inducing strain.
Another great design addition are the small holes in the stainless steel burner. These allow for rainwater to drain away during the times the all weather cover is not in place.
Pros of the Napoleon Grills St. Tropez Rectangle Patioflame Table
- Lightweight design means the fire table can easily be moved.
- Very appealing aesthetic – antique bronze mixed with contemporary burner
- Thermocouple valve safety feature
- Holes to allow fast drainage of rainwater (plus included cover)
- There’s no built in caddy to hold the propane gas tank
- This table is substantially more expensive than our top pick propane fire pit.
The Napoleon Grills St. Tropez Rectangle Patioflame Table, Rustic Bronze is a premium propane fire pit that looks the business. If your budget can stretch to this you won’t be disappointed. It will become the garden focal point all good fire pits should be.
Best outdoor fire pit (Wood Burner): Sunnydaze 30 Inch Firebowl Fire Pit
Our top pick wood burning fire pit is the Sunnydaze 30 inch Fire Bowl.
The no frills approach gets the thumbs up from us. The clue is the name of course. Sunnydaze have gone for a bowl shape on this one, (the company have a wide range of fire pit design options available).
The durable steel construction features a high temperature black paint finish. This is heat resistant and adds to the contemporary style that Sunnydaze are clearly going for.
This is further complemented by the decorative tack-style design that has been used on the top rim. ‘Industrial’ is thrown around liberally these days when it comes to describing an aesthetic approach, however the term is fitting here.
Portability often comes hand in hand with wood burning fire pits; the Sunnydaze fire bowl is no different. Handles on both sides allow for easy manoeuvrability.
A raised pedestal base is fitted onto the bowl so that the pit is above the ground at all times. The centre of gravity is good too, meaning no accidents should see the unit falling over and causing havoc for your garden gathering.
The pit comes complete with a screen that is perfect for making s’mores & cooking over the fire. This can be removed with ease should you not need it in place.
Finally, Sunnydaze Decor throw in a 1-year manufacturer’s warranty for extra peace of mind.
- Fire Bowl Dimensions: 30-inch outer diameter (29-inch inner diameter) x 24 inches tall with spark screen (15 inches tall without spark screen).
- Base dimensions: 20-inch diameter x 6 inches tall.
- Weight: Approx 23 pounds.
- Sunnydaze 30 inch fire bowl
- heavy duty spark screen
- Sturdy wood grate for air circulation
- 1 firewood log poker
Pros of the Sunnydaze 30 Inch Firebowl Fire Pit
- Robust build quality – steel construction and black high-temperature paint.
- Industrial looking “brass tack” detailing on the top rim
- Fitted drainage holes to stop rain erosion
- Handles make the bowl easy to move, (the bowl is lightweight too)
- 1-year manufacturer’s warranty
- Doesn’t come supplied with a cooking grill.
In our opinion the Sunnydaze Decor 30 inch firebowl is the wood fire pit to buy. Affordable, sturdy design with a really nice look; it ticks the boxes you need, especially is portability is a factor in your decision too. Highly recommended.
Landmann 26364 23-1/2-Inch Savannah Garden Light Fire Pit
The Landman 23-1/2-Inch Garden Lights Fire Pit is another wood burning pit that ticks all the right boxes.
The styling is good with the Savannah and black finish. A simple but effective addition are the decorative cut outs that Landmann have added to the design.
The light playfully shines through the cut out shape adding to the atmosphere at night. D
They opted for a sturdy steel construction that is very easy to assemble upon delivery.
Portability is another plus factor, with ring handles (styled to be a decorative addition), enabling you to shift the fire pit to a new location should you need.
The pit comes complete with a stylish spark screen a poker and four ornate legs to support the bowl.
What more could you need?
Pros of the Landmann 26364 23-1/2-Inch Savannah Garden Light Fire Pit
- 23-1/2-Inch Fire Bowl (smaller than our top pick but this may be a bonus to those with more limited space or needs.)
- Sturdy steel construction that can be assembled with ease.
- Decorative cut outs on the main pit allow the light to shine through with pleasing effect
- Spark screen and poker included
- Some customers have had issues with the overall longevity of the fire pit. If the outer coating peels off it is prone to rust.
The Landmann was a close contender for our top pick best wood fire pit. In our opinion it loses out on the overall aesthetic, (we prefered the bronze antique finish on the Sunnydaze).
This choice is of course highly subjective, as both pits have the build quality and portability features you need. Which you go for in the end is down to you.
Best Natural Gas Fire Pit: Real Flame T9620NG-GLG Baltic Square Natural Gas Table
Now we come to the daddy pits of the bunch. If you’re installing a fire pit to run of natural gas, it will clearly be a permanent fixture. For that you need something built to last. You’ll want it to look fantastic too.
This will often mean a substantial outlay up front. If you buy correctly however, the results are worth it.
Which brings us to the Real Flame T9620NG-GLG Baltic Square Natural Gas Table.
Cast from a high performance, lightweight fiber-concrete this one solid pit. Don’t be put off by the fact fiber-concrete has been used.
The approach here is firmly style just as much as substance. The pit surface features a tinted coloured finish, an effect that not only looks great, but increases the overall durability of the table against the elements.
The refined, contemporary aesthetic is further enhanced with the included lava rock filler, there is also a solid matching lid to close the table off when the burner is not in use.
On the subject of the burner, this too will not disappoint.
All Real Flame pits in The Baltic Collection ship with a CSA Certification and features an electronic ignition for increased safety and reliability.
The heat capacity comes in at a rather toasty 50,000 BTUs, which is fuelled of course via a natural gas pipeline. (As explained in the buyer’s guide, natural gas fire pits need to be installed by a licensed professional).
Pros of the Real Flame T9620NG-GLG Baltic Square Natural Gas Table
- Burns Natural Gas, rated at up to 50,000 BTUs of heat
- Certified for use with professionally installed natural gas lines; Fire Table must be installed by licensed professional
- Cast from tinted fiber-concrete and heavy gauge steel
- Includes: Natural Gas Fire Table, lid, 50,000 BTU Burner, lava rock, 10′ gas hose, protective storage cover
- Due to the width of the table edges and the overall capacity, the amount of heat coming from the pit isn’t as high as other options in our review round up.
Anyone that buys a Real Flame Baltic Square Natural Gas fire table is making a statement. The sophisticated design aesthetic really is a thing of beauty.
If you have the budget, and the exterior space to compliment it, the natural gas fire table is the way to go. And in our opinion, the Real Flame T9620NG-GLG Baltic Square is the one to buy.
Best Portable fire pit: Outland Firebowl Mega Propane Fire Pit
The Outland Firebowl Mega propane fire pit is a great portable solution that you can take camping with you.
Why bother with the hassle of creating a campfire when you can have the Firebowl up and running in seconds.
Heat capacity comes in at 58,000 BTU via a standard 20 lb (5 gallon) propane gas tank, (not included with initial purchase).
The main bowl is constructed from high quality steel. To protect your new pit against the elements it has been covered in a protective powder coating and an enamel finish.
The burner is made from stainless steel, and so too are the fasteners. Outland also kindly throw in a durable weather resistant cover, 10 ft. hose with regulator and a propane tank stabilizer ring.
To make sure the whole thing looks great, you also get a decorative rock set to place inside the bowl.
A 1 year Manufacturer’s Limited Warranty is provided.
Pros of the Outland Firebowl Mega Propane Fire Pit
- Heat capacity of 58,000 BTU via propane gas (clean and smokeless flame).
- CSA approved fire bowl (safe to use during most campfire bans).
- Accessories include weather resistant cover, 10 ft. hose with regulator a propane tank stabilizer ring and decorative rock set.
- Durable steel construction with powder coating enamel finish
- Some customers have received damaged goods via Amazon.com due to the packaging being poor.
For portability it really is difficult to beat the Outland Firebowl. The whole design prioritises the ability to take the bowl out on the road with you. Whether you’re camping or pursuing any other outdoor pursuit and need a warm fire, having the Outland in your trunk will quickly solve the problem.