How to Build a DIY Fire Pit in One Day

Adding a DIY fire pit to your backyard is an excellent way to keep the fun going long after dark.

Instead of an unsightly dirt fire pit, spend a day making a new statement piece for your yard. If you’re wondering how to build a fire pit — we’ll show you how!

When selecting and building your DIY fire pit, make sure you avoid using wet stones. If you are using river rocks, be sure to give them several days of direct sunlight to properly dry.


  • In-Ground DIY Fire Pit


Photo by: Tom Hodgkinson

The in-ground fire pit is becoming increasingly popular among DIY fire pit builders. Before digging into the ground, make sure you call 811, the federally mandated “Call Before You Dig Number.” Someone will come to mark the approximate location of any underground lines, pipes, and cables so you can dig safely. Once you dig your fire pit to the desired size, line the dirt walls with stones or brick. Follow these additional steps to get started:

  1. First, you'll want to create a bottom layer of gravel, then cover it with the “bottom” of your fire pit — larger stones or bricks or an even covering such as quick drying cement.

  2. Be sure to have drainage or it will turn into a mosquito pond.

  3. Create your top rim by making small cutouts in the dirt for your bricks or stones.

  4. Finally, dry stack your desired additional layers, or create a small wall using fire resistant adhesives or quick drying cement.


 

  • Overlaid Stone DIY Fire Pit


Photo by: Our Fairfield Home

For an artistic-looking fire pit, instead of evenly shaped bricks, grab several unique rough rocks, and construct an overlaid stone fire pit. If your pieces are hearty enough (pictured is Pennsylvania Blue Stone) you won’t need any cement for this pit either — but use common sense when building up your walls. Here are some additional tips to secure your structure:

  1. If the stones do not feel secure, add in some non-flammable masonry adhesive, landscape adhesive or Liquid Nails.

  2. For the center, line the bottom of your fire pit with one or two inches of sand.

  3. The outside of your fire pit should be lined as well, and no grass or other yard matter should be within two feet of your pit.


 
  • Tin DIY Fire Pit


Using whatever barrel-shaped scraps you can find, you can create this all-in-one tin fire pit. Tin fire pits are extra safe as they ensure your fire is adequately contained, and are much preferred in areas with wide open plains and active winds such as El Paso.

You can spruce up your repurposed tin barrel nicely with some high-heat paint (like Rust-Oleum) and stencils.



 

  • Gravel DIY Fire Pit


Photo by: Homeroad

There is no digging required for this DIY fire pit design! Select some handsome gravel for your foundation, spread it out to create your overall fire pit space, then stack your fire pit stones. The fire pit pictured was built with crushed concrete rock with some additional aesthetic details.