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Summer means roaring fire pits and barbecues. If you want to watch the flames dance against the warm evening’s sky and you’re without a spacious backyard, you’re probably wondering, can you put a fire pit on a balcony?
Can You Put a Fire Pit on a Balcony? Safety & Tips!
Setting up a fire pit on a balcony without taking the right precautions could certainly backfire. Find out how to have a balcony fire pit without worry, and which steps you should take beforehand.
Can you Have a Fire Pit on a Balcony?
If you take the proper steps you absolutely can have a fire pit on a balcony, but the question of whether or not you’re allowed to do so is another story. Depending on state and local laws, or those pertaining to a balcony on a property such as an apartment or condo, your dreams of a relaxing fire on the balcony may never come to be.
We’ll explain how you can set up a fire pit on a balcony as safely as possible, provided you’re allowed to do so.
First, consider looking into the relevant authorities such as an HOA, state and local property law, as well as any municipal bylaws that may apply to fire pits and/or open flames. Building regulations, or those you might have received from a landlord might also be a good place to look. Where safety and liability meet, it’s best to ask first if you’re unsure!
Safety Tips for Balcony Fire Pits
Fire pits provide a lot of atmosphere and comfort, but it does come with some heat and flame you’ve got to look out for! Besides giving you a great view, balconies possess a lot of safety concerns for fire pits, so let’s get into it.
Follow these tips for fire pit safety on your balcony:
- Look out for any low-hanging wires, lighting features or foliage.
- False plants and drapery can pose a fire hazard if not properly accounted for.
- Ensure the floor surface is capable of taking some heat if you go wood burning!
- DO NOT use a propane or wood burning fire pit on a balcony with any type of enclosure.
- Make sure the fire pit in question has lots of distance between itself and any railings, and walls.
- Outdoor siding is susceptible to the heat from a fire pit, it can warp and even melt before burning, so be sure to keep it away from any exterior walls!
Smoke: Something you Should be Aware of
Smoke from fire pits isn’t just bothersome for those of us on smaller decks, patios and balconies. It’s also a nuisance for fire pit owners on large pieces of property and outdoor spaces, too!
If you’re not careful, smoke from a fire pit can put your dreams of a nice relaxing balcony fire up in smoke. In all seriousness, smoking out the neighbors on nearby balconies is something you’ll probably want to avoid. Even small wood burning fire pits can put off quite a surprising amount of smoke depending on the wood you’re using and how well seasoned it is.
For this reason we highly recommend going with a small propane fire pit, as it already uses the same fuel source as your BBQ, and doesn’t put off a bunch of smoke that could cause some issues with overhanging patio, eaves and of course neighbors trying to enjoy their evening above your unit.
Can you put a Fire Pit on a Balcony? What Kind you Should use.
There are several different types of fire pits, each with their pro’s and con’s specifically when it comes to where you can use them. We’ll go over a few that you could possibly consider using on a balcony. Needless to say, large open-top wood burning fire pits are simply inadvisable for using on a balcony of almost any size.
Also, regardless of which type of fire pit you go with you should make sure you have access to a fire extinguisher or at least a reliable water source.
Types of Fire Pits for Balconies:
- Small Propane Fire Pits
- Fire Pit Tables
- Pedestal Fire Pits
- Smokeless Fire Pits
- Fire Pit Tables
Your options are somewhat limited to a few smaller and controlled fire pits that you don’t have to worry too much about. As stated above, we can’t stress enough how more well suited propane fire pits are for balconies. But, if your balcony is located somewhere without any other balconies or units above, you might be able to use a wood burning fire pit.
When you absolutely should not use a wood burning fire pit:
- If you’re unsure of whether or not you’re allowed to
- If you don’t have access to a fire extinguisher
- If your balcony has an eave, balcony or roof over it
- If your balcony is too small to keep adequate distance between the fire pit, railings and side of the house/building
Conclusions: Can you Put a Fire Pit on a Balcony?
If you follow all of the necessary safety precautions to prevent it from getting out of control, you absolutely can put a fire pit on a balcony. The most important thing to remember, or takeaway from this is that you should make certain whether or not you’re even allowed to, depending on local regulations as well as those put in place by any kind of HOA or lease agreement.
If you’re planning on putting a fire pit on your balcony, do so safely. Besides the risk of property damage, you’re only going to ruin a good time by making the wrong choice on a fire pit that isn’t suitable for your outdoor space. Make sure you go for low or no smoke, and of course, find a fire pit that gives you the right kind of atmosphere for the most relaxing evenings on the balcony this summer!
Thanks for stopping by, if you’ve ever use a fire pit on a balcony, or have any other relevant information to share with us please let us know below, we’d love to hear from you!