WOODBURY, N.J., Dec. 4, 2019 /PRNewswire-PRWeb/ --The crackle and flicker coming from a fire pit is one of the iconic sounds and sights of fall nights. Fall is the best time to enjoy a warm fire outdoors the air is crisp and the heat from the fire is cozy and comforting. People have been having outdoor fires for millennia, but not all of them are done efficiently or safely. Here are a few secrets to getting the most out of an outdoor fire pit.

Getting started

The driest wood and tinder are necessary for a quick-lighting fire. Tinder can be small twigs, strips of birch bark, pine straw, or, strangely enough, broken pieces of potato chips or cheese-based snacks like Doritos or Cheetos. Newspaper does not make good tinder because it flames out too quickly and it sends lit embers into the air.

Place tinder in the clean fire pit. Put the smallest bits in first and pile upwards according to size, with the largest pieces on top. Kindling is the wood that is bigger than tinder but not as large or as long. Dry twigs and branches less than one inch in diameter make good kindling. If the kindling snaps easily underfoot, then it is ready for burning.

The best dry logs are hard, show their rings and cracks on the edges, and have no signs of mold or fungus growing on them. Layer dry wood on top of kindling in a crosshatch pattern. While triangle structures for fires are popular, a crosshatch pattern will burn the wood more thoroughly. Also, for fire pits, the lower height of the crosshatch pile will be safer than the taller pyramid shape. Be sure not to build too high a stack.


Simple is best. Matches are the way to go. Long-armed matchsticks are convenient and keep hands away from flames. Holding the match in the tinder or dropping it in should be enough to ignite it. Smoke will rise if the tinder lights. Gently fan the embers. If the wood is piled on too tightly, the tinder may not get enough oxygen to burn. Re-light the tinder in three places and fan gently until the kindling begins to burn.


As with indoor fireplaces, there are screens that help retain embers and sparks that may pop from the fire. Also keep the wood supply a safe distance away from the flames and seating at 3 feet away or more. Fire pits themselves should be at least 10 to 20 feet away from any structure, including the home.

Having an active hose or buckets of water nearby is essential for outdoor fires because some embers may escape. With the many dried fallen leaves around this season, caution is paramount. Some homeowners douse the fallen leaves before having a fire pit night for an added measure of safety. Be sure the fire is completely out before turning in for the night. The hose or bucket of water can be used for this purpose.


Anything goes. S'mores are classic. Hot dogs, kebabs or other food items that can be cooked quickly over a flame make for great fire pit meals. Avoid paper plates and cups. Stoneware or heavy duty plastic dinnerware and cloth napkins are less likely to be caught in the flames than paper accessories. Set up a table with condiments and drinks in an open area at least 10 feet away from the flames to allow guests to prepare their food.


Enjoying a fall evening outside with s'mores, warm drinks and stories shared among friends and family can be as easy as starting up a fire in the fire pit. Nothing draws out neighbors like seeing those inviting, flickering flames or smelling the unique and wonderful aroma of a campfire. Outdoor fire pits are a classic way to gather friends and family and share a cozy evening together.

About EP Henry EP Henry is the oldest American family-owned and -operated manufacturer of unit concrete products in North America. Based in Woodbury, New Jersey, EP Henry manufactures a wide range of Hardscaping paving stone and retaining wall products. EP Henry also offers beautiful patio pavers, outdoor kitchen kits, garden wall solutions and more to homeowners throughout the Mid-Atlantic states. For more information on EP Henry Hardscaping products, visit EPHenry.com or call 800-44-HENRY (800-444-3679).


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Using an outdoor fire pit the right way leads to cozy nights with family and friends, by EP Henry - Benzinga

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