A gas fire table installed on a wooden deck in a residential backyard with white and dark wood lounge chairs, plants, and potted flowers.

Can I Put a Fire Pit on My Wood Deck?

Here are the top six things you need to consider before installing a fire pit on your deck!

Last Updated: February 5, 2024

There aren’t many things better than sitting around a blazing fire with family and friends in the comfort of your backyard. But what if your yard is too small for a fire pit, and the only space available is on your deck? 

You may be wondering if a fire pit is even possible, especially if you have a wood, composite, or vinyl deck. We're here to tell you that it is, depending on the model you choose, where you want to install it, and your city codes. 

Below, we've listed six things you'll need to consider before installing a fire pit on your deck. Read on to create a safe and cozy outdoor retreat you can enjoy year-round! 


Typically, you can safely install gas fire pits on combustible decks. However, it's important to hire a gas professional to do the job. You'll also need to check the manufacturer requirements and your city’s codes before installation. 

You cannot install a wood fire pit on a wooden, composite, or vinyl deck, unless it has been approved by the manufacturer and your city code. You'll also need to place it on top of a non-combustible base that extends out at least 24 inches. Most homeowners opt for concrete or natural stone slabs. The base is important because it prevents heat transfer and stray sparks from damaging your deck or causing a fire. 


Wooden Decking

Wood decking is highly combustible. In most cases, we recommend purchasing a gas fire pit for wood decks. 

Most wood burning fire pits are not safe for wood decks. Some, however, are pre-approved by the manufacturer. Make sure you do your research and take the proper safe precautions before you start your project. 

Composite Decking

Composite decks are also combustible. These low-maintenance decks are made from wood, wood particles, plastic, and recycled materials. Popular examples of composite decking include Trex® and TimberTech® brands.  

Vinyl Decking

Vinyl decking is made from plastic and chlorine, also known as PVC, which is a combustible material. Vinyl also expands easily and is likely to crack when exposed to excessive heat.  

Concrete Decking

Poured concrete slabs or stone pavers make great durable surfaces for decks. Concrete and stone are non-combustible materials and will not catch fire, making them the best deck surface for a fire pit.  


When shopping for a fire pit, always consult the installation manual to make sure it will be a good fit for your space.   

Manufacturers always detail the specific clearance and installation requirements you'll need to follow. Be sure to read through your manual before making a purchase. You can find most manuals on our website, listed on each product page.  

For example, let's look at a section of the installation manual for the French Barrel Oak Cosmo Gas Fire Pit Table made by American Fyre Designs.  

On the “Minimum Clearances” page of this manual, it says:  

“Clearance Below Unit” is 0 inches and “Floor must be a hard, level surface. Combustible materials permitted.”  

Both requirements verify that this gas fire pit table is safe to use on a combustible decks. 


Fire pits can be heavy, especially if they require a stone base.  

After choosing a fire pit and reviewing the manual, make sure your deck can handle the added weight.  

First, determine the weight of your fire pit and any additional accessories needed. Add this to the weight of your outdoor furniture and maximum amount of people who will be on the deck at once. Compare this total to the maximum weight your deck can handle.  

If you are unsure of your deck’s weight capacity, you will need to consult a structural engineer.  


In most cases, you need to keep your fire pit at least 20-25 feet away from your house or combustible structure. Allow for 3 feet of clearance on each side and 6 feet above your fire pit. If you have an awning over your deck, you'll need to consider flame height and BTU output, too. You may even need to go for a model with a lower BTU output to ensure you have the proper overhead clearance.  

Review the manufacturer's guidelines before placing a fire pit near flammable materials, as each one will be different.  


There are a few accessories available that help make your fire pit safer. These include screens and spark guards, covers, and non-combustible bases.  

Screens and spark guards

Screens keep sparks, embers, and ash from flying out of a wood burning fire pit. Most screens on the market are made of heavy-duty steel and mesh.  

Metal or stone covers

When not in use, covers prevent fire pits from sustaining unnecessary damage and offer protection from the elements. Some manufacturers will require the use of a cover to validate the warranty.  

Pads and bases

You can make a non-combustible fire pit pad from natural stone, pavers, or metal. This base protects your deck from heat transfer and flying sparks.  


Before purchasing a fire pit for your deck, there are a few things you should consider. First, check the rules and regulations set by your city. Next, determine the maximum weight that your deck can support. Lastly, decide whether or not you will need a base for your fire pit.   

After following these steps, choose a few fire pits you like. Read the installation manuals carefully to ensure they are suitable for your deck.  

Finally, after choosing your favorite model, pick out any accessories you'll need to ensure a safe burning experience with friends and family! 



Do you have any questions about installing a fire pit? Call one of our NFI Certified specialists at (800) 919-1904 today.


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