Do you love the idea of sitting in your backyard with dancing flames in front of you and a steaming drink in your hand? (A personal favorite is an Earl Grey Hot Toddy. Try it!)
If so, Pavertime creates custom wood burning firepits that come in a variety of shapes, sizes, and colors to perfectly harmonize with your backyard decor and the style of your home. They can be round, square, rectangular, or even triangular in shape.
Before you commission a firepit, it’s a good idea to consult with city authorities and building codes to ensure that it is legal to place it in your outdoor space. You can read the city of Houston regulations here.
Some places have rules about how much wood can be burned, and you’ll want to check these with your landlord or homeowners association before commissioning your firepit.
Pavertime can help you navigate Houston’s rules and regulations regarding wood burning firepits as well.
Let’s learn about the different types of wood you can burn, what wood burning firepit maintenance involves, and how wood burning firepits compare in price to gas or propane firepits.
Types of Wood to Burn
There are a few different types of wood you can burn in custom wood burning firepits. You’ll want to choose firewood that burns hot and cleanly. Hardwoods like hickory, ash, birch, beech, and oak are the heaviest and densest, and they also provide the most heat and BTUs.
In fact, a cord of hardwood weighs twice as much as softwood – or wood produced from trees that stay green year-round – and produces twice the amount of heat. In addition, hardwoods burn slowly and produce less ash than softwoods. However, they do take a longer time to season and are more difficult to light.
In addition to hardwoods, softwoods like pine, fir, cedar and spruce can be used. Compared to hardwoods, they have a shorter burn time, which can make them more expensive in the long run since you need more of it for a long-lasting fire.
They also produce more particles in the air, which can be an environmental concern as well as a medical concern for someone with weak or sensitive lungs.
Whichever wood you choose to burn, always use dry split wood. Logs that are whole may be too thick for a firepit, and may make it harder to start a fire. Avoid using green wood, as it can produce a lot of smoke.
Maintenance Custom of Wood Burning Firepits
Fire features are a wonderful addition to an outdoor living space. You could go to a big box department store and buy one off the shelf, but these types of firepits have distinct disadvantages.
For example, a store-bought firepit:
- May not be as high quality as a custom firepit.
- If not installed or assembled correctly, it is more likely to break or malfunction.
- Is more likely to be damaged or destroyed during severe weather events.
- Could be stolen from your yard.
- Will not remain with your home if you sell it, which could decrease your home value.
A custom wood burning firepit has all of the advantages that a store-bought firepit does not. However, to ensure their continued performance, they must be properly maintained. The maintenance process will differ depending on the style and material of the feature.
The following steps should be followed for optimal performance. After determining the level of maintenance needed, it is recommended to contact a professional like Pavertime to get the job done.
Before you get started, consult with Pavertime to make sure the area where you want to place your firepit is safe for you and your guests. Avoid placing it near any low-hanging tree limbs or structures. This will reduce the risk of falling debris.
In addition, choose a sheltered location to minimize the risk of wind drift. Lastly, as discussed above, select the right material for the firepit.
To maintain your firepit, make sure to clean it regularly. You should also refrain from using accelerants such as gasoline or lighter fluid. These may cause a dangerous fire, and they may also damage your pit’s surface.
Use dry, locally sourced split firewood when possible. Green or damp wood will produce messy smoke, as well as drips of sap. Avoid burning anything that may send out dangerous sparks, such as wood scraps, twigs, branches, or trash of any type.
Cost Compared to Propane or Gas
Outdoor fireplaces can be very expensive, right? Wrong! Operating costs for wood burning pits are much lower than for gas and propane models. Wood burning fires can burn for between 4 and 8 hours, depending on the types of wood used and the current air-flow. And, if a log burns out, it can be relit at a later time.
If you’re thinking of hiring Pavertime to build a custom wood burning firepit, you’ll want to keep the cost in mind. Generally, custom wood firepits cost less than custom gas firepits. But the price of custom wood firepits depends on a variety of factors, including the building materials used and the design features.
A custom wood burning firepit may cost anywhere between $500 and $2,000, while a gas-fueled firepit can cost anywhere from $1,500 to $2,000. You may need to run a gas line for gas-powered firepits, which will add additional costs (which is also something that Pavertime can do for you if you decide to go the natural gas route!). Installing a natural gas firepit incurs a much larger cost, since gas lines need to be installed in your yard if they are not already present.
Texas is in the top 10 states with the highest natural gas prices, which can make a natural gas firepit for Houston area homeowners more expensive. In addition, with a wood burning firepit, you’ll never need to worry about your fuel being cut off or turned off during severe winter weather or after a hurricane.
As long as you have enough wood stored, you can keep warm outside or even cook food over your firepit if your home has no heat or electricity due to storms, a feature that is priceless.
The Right Climate
A custom wood burning firepit is the perfect way to enjoy the outdoors and create the perfect ambiance for any occasion during any Houston season.
Pavertime will help you choose a shape and material that will complement the design of your home and backyard. No matter what type of property you own, there is a firepit that will fit in.
To conclude, here are three ways you could use your custom wood burning firepit in your Houston home this fall/winter:
- Throw a brisket on the BBQ and enjoy s’mores with friends around the fire while it smokes.
- Light your own personal bonfire this Thanksgiving with your family and friends.
- Watch the Astros game while enjoying a Shiner Bock or Dr. Pepper around the fire.
Contact Pavertime to discuss what you want in a custom wood burning firepit today!