Winter is almost at an end and it’s time to start thinking about outdoor entertaining. An outdoor fireplace makes a great gathering spot for friends and family when the sun goes down. Deciding to install an outdoor fireplace is the first step toward building an outdoor extension of your home, and what comes next could have a big impact on the overall feel of your space. You have to decide where you’re going to install your fireplace. Here are some tips that could help make the decision a little easier.
1.What is your outdoor fireplace’s primary function?
Are you looking for a warm glow to set the mood on your back patio? Or do you want a place to roast hotdogs and practice your outdoor cooking? If the former is you biggest want, choose an intimate corner of the yard, or somewhere on your property a little more remote. If it’s the latter that you’re looking for, close proximity to the kitchen, or somewhere with space nearby for a table and chairs might make more sense.
2. Plan for the space
A fireplace can be freestanding, or set against a wall or fence, among other options. Make sure you have enough room for furniture (or built in seating) and room to walk around the furniture. Usually, a 12’x12’ space is needed for a smaller fireplace, while an 18’x18’ patio is necessary for a large outdoor fireplace.
3. Check the wind.
Take in to account the prevailing wind direction on your property. The fireplace should be in a spot that will minimize the negative impact caused by gusts and act as a windbreak.
4. Know the code.
Contact your local city planning office to check zoning regulations for outdoor fireplaces. How close it can sit to existing structure, chimney length and property lines can also come in to play and vary from city to city. Choose a level spot to ensure water will flow away from your fireplace location and not puddle. Perhaps most importantly, call before you dig! No underground utilities should be present under your fireplace and you could face hefty fines if you damage any city lines.
Once you’ve decided the perfect location for your outdoor fireplace, it’s time to decide on your ideal design. Stop by one of our showrooms to see the latest designs or schedule a free in-home consultation.