How to Build a Fire Pit With Pavers - Pit and Fire (2023)

How to Build a Fire Pit With Pavers - Pit and Fire (1)

Do you want to learn how to build a fire pit with pavers? With paver fire pits, you can create a backyard focal point that is long lasting and customizable. In this article, we’ll showcase the easiest way to build a fire pit with pavers in your backyard.

Type of blocks used in Fire Pits

While fire pits made out of different landscape blocks may look like they are very durable, weather resistant and last a long time; in reality the type of blocks used for these can be used in many other ways. They could be used to create retaining walls or raised bed gardens, among others.

Rectangle and trapezoid fire pit blocks offer a unique installation option. With the shape of these bricks, you can install your kit in an appealing circular or wavy pattern that enhances its aesthetic appeal.

If you don’t want to figure out how many blocks you need for the design you want, a fire pit kit is great. It includes everything that was in my kit: The block itself along with an insert ring and pressure-sensitive adhesive so it can be built easily without any additional tools or materials needed other than construction glue.

Prepping your Site

How to Build a Fire Pit With Pavers - Pit and Fire (2)

Once you have your fire pit kit picked out, it’s time to prep the site. You need a level area for installation so if your yard is very unleveled or has many dips and bumps in its surface, purchase leveling sand before moving on with the project.

I had already leveled the sand in preparation for my river rock since this would provide a base. I was confident I could level out the ground without using paver base sands which are more expensive but also unnecessary depending on your needs and expectations of end result.

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The defined area for the fire pit is a half circle. I wanted it in the middle of that, so I took some measurements to find out where this would be best situated.

Rather than starting with my measurements for the outer circle, I decided to start by removing river rock around my fire pit. It was easier and more efficient when it came time to lay down paver blocks because they would fit perfectly in that space instead of resting on top of rocks which could make them shift slightly over time.

Once I removed all the rocks from the outside perimeter, I removed the insert and then removed all the rocks from the inside circle.

Now that the rock has been removed from my ring, I reinserted it in the center of where I want to build a sand circle. Next step is creating an impression with this insert by pressing firmly on its surface and making a mark within it. This way, you can trace your circular path later when assembling these blocks into place

You should have something like: Now that all rocks are out of our area we will be inserting them back into one central location so let’s get started!

Installing the paver blocks

How to Build a Fire Pit With Pavers - Pit and Fire (3)

The paver fire pit kit came packaged in the photo above from Lowes. The box is rather heavy, so you’ll need a truck bed or small trailer to get it home safely. It was moved on its way with one of their forklifts!

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To pick out the perfect paver blocks, look over them carefully. I found several that had small chips on their outer edges; this happens when they are being transported from place or another and is common for pavers like these to have imperfections in general.

So it was easy to find stones with defects lower down where no one will see them easily (and ultimately use those rocks instead of the higher-quality ones).

I knew the imperfections would be covered by the river rock on the bottom level. You may need to place the rocks on a side that you may not see or is not as visible.

I marked the outline as a guide for placing rocks. I used my hands to place them in alternating right and left positions around the circle, using it as a reference point. When all of them were set up tightly together with no gaps between blocks, they formed an enclosing wall that was difficult to escape from or enter by any potential predators at night .

As I began to fit the bottom layer of blocks, I realized that my dirt was on the soft side. If this is your situation, take a mallet and tap down any block which you feel may be higher than adjacent ones.

I used a 4 ft level to double check that I had made the bottom layer as flat and level as possible. Only two blocks needed adjusting, so this step was pretty fast.

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Wanting to strengthen my tower, I staggered the second level of blocks. This technique also makes it stronger than lining all levels up with a single joint line – something I learned from doing this at school!

When I finished the second layer, I placed the fire insert over my pit to see how level everything was. Since there were minor variations in some of blocks on one end, it wasn’t touching with that part of my lower layers underneath which causes an uneven surface when put together.

To fix this issue and create a more balanced foundation for my fireplace set up, I added dirt onto the lower block base to even out its height against other blocks around edge.

Gluing the Blocks Together

Now, I was ready to use the construction glue that would connect the first and second layer of blocks. The process requires a caulking gun- if you don’t have experience with these before, take care not let any air bubbles make their way into your work.

When using a caulking gun, you might notice that there is an air bubble continuing to push out the material even after it you stop squeezing.

To avoid glue oozing out, release the caulk gun trigger every time you are done with a bead of adhesive. Once it passes through the tube air bubble will stop coming out and no more product comes up to your caulking job.

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With a mallet in hand, I tapped each block on the second level to evenly distribute glue. Then with one block at a time removed from the third level and glued onto blocks of first layer , only when they were dry enough did this process continue until all blocks had been placed back into their designated positions.

Using the same process as before, I installed all of level three’s blocks at once and then removed them one by one to glue each layer.

Now you’re ready to place your metal fire insert over the top of your last layer of blocks. With the insert in place, I tapped all the blocks on the outside of this level to make sure they were installed tight against it.

After that was done, then I checked if any additional support might be needed by checking every block within sight for stability and giving them an extra tap here or there where necessary before moving onto gluing things up completely with a water-resistant construction adhesive like Liquid Nails.

Then I used some small brads (nail type fasteners) around its outer edges as well just so everything stayed together nice and snug until set. Finally once again gave each block one final light inspection from bottom through third levels including my

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I didn’t move anything for 24 hours to let the glue set. We received some rain, but I checked if it was set by trying to pick up one of the blocks and they were immovable. Glue is key in keeping everything together rather than just laying them down loose.


By lining the bottom of your fire pit with fire bricks or installing lava rock, you can make sure that it lasts longer.

In all it took about an hour once I started placing the first block. My site prep took about another half hour which will be the biggest variance with installing your own fire pit kit. In the picture you can tell we added Titan adjustable swivel grill as we were about to roast some oysters over a nice, crackling fire!

How to Build a Fire Pit With Pavers - Pit and Fire (4)


How do you build a fire pit on an existing paver patio? ›

If you are incorporating a fire pit on a pre-existing installation, you can safely build one on top of it, as long as the pavers you're using are porous and fire-resistant. If they are not, it is recommended that you remove some pavers and expose the ground beneath, so you can then build your fire pit around it.

What do you put in the bottom of a fire pit on pavers? ›

Build the Fire Pit Gravel Base

The bottom of your fire pit needs an inflammable surface to for safety. Add gravel on top of the compacted dirt will create a base for your fire pit. Pour a generous amount of crushed gravel paver base into the hole so your finished base will be approximately 5 inches thick.

Does a paver fire pit need an insert? ›

Generally, if you build a fire pit that you intend to be a permanent fixture in your backyard, a fire pit ring insert is highly recommended. If your fire pit is intended to be semi-permanent or temporary, an insert may not be necessary.

Can I use regular pavers for a fire pit? ›

Landscaping brick that's been kiln-fired is safe to use. Brick paver stones should also be safe to use. Check on a manufacturer's website to be sure if the paver material you want to use is fire-rated.

How do you make a simple fire pit? ›

  1. Plan Location and Layout. A fire pit should be built at least 15 feet from any structure and close to a water source. ...
  2. Determine the Size. The size of your fire pit will be determined by your metal fire ring. ...
  3. Dig a Hole. ...
  4. Line Hole With Sand. ...
  5. Add Base Row. ...
  6. Place Metal Ring. ...
  7. Insert Bricks Into Fire Pit Floor. ...
  8. Add Pea Gravel.

How many pavers needed for a fire pit? ›

A circular fire pit measuring 37inches in diameter takes 12 pavers of 12 inches for each ring. For three layers of paver rings a total of 36 pavers with a perfect fit can be supplied with instructions and support for building the fire pit.

Should you put sand in bottom of firepit? ›

Placing an even amount of sand towards the bottom of your fire pit will create an entire layer of additional heat protection. Sand can act as a buffer between the wood or fuel you use in your fire and the bottom of your firepit, preventing it from burning or charring over time.

How tall should a paver fire pit be? ›

A good rule of thumb is to make an above-ground fire pit 12-14 inches tall. This is a few inches shorter than standard patio furniture seat height. If you want to be able to sit on the edge of the pit itself go a bit higher, 18-20 inches will be comfortable.

Does a fire pit need drainage? ›

If your fire pit has a solid metal base, you will need drainage holes. If there are not already holes for drainage, drill a few holes into the bottom of the base. This is the first step to creating drainage. Now, you'll need somewhere for the water to go once it drains.

What is the best thing to put under a fire pit? ›

You can choose to use dirt as the base of your firepit. You can also add a layer of sand and then a fireproof material. Gravel, Lava rocks, fire pit glass or silica, paving stones, or bricks are all safe options.

What is the best base for an outdoor firepit? ›

Gravel or crushed stone is one of the easiest and most affordable ways to create a backyard fire pit area! Putting gravel on the ground around your fire pit creates a nice, level base for seating.

Why use a metal ring in a fire pit? ›

A fire pit ring liner (also called an insert or surround) is a metal barrier that can be added to the inside of a fire pit to protect stone, bricks, or pavers from high heat and flames.

How deep should an in ground fire pit be? ›

The hole should be 12 inches in diameter and 18 inches deep. Fill this hole with large gravel. If the soil doesn't drain well or there is heavy precipitation, dig a trench from the center out. If you're adding a drainpipe, dig about 10 feet from the fire pit.

Are pavers heat proof? ›

Concrete pavers won't get nearly as hot as brick pavers and dark stones. When the outside temperature is 90 degrees, they will be as hot as 120 degrees. Don't think a concrete slab will give you the same results, it won't. There is space between pavers so that heat can be shed.

How hot can pavers get? ›

On a hot day over 100 degrees Fahrenheit, a light-colored clay paver may reach a surface temperature of over 150 degrees, and a dark-colored paver will get even hotter. The temperature difference between a brick surface and a grass surface under the same conditions can be 50 degrees or more.

What can I use to DIY fire pit? ›

Here are 10 DIY fire pits to inspire you and to get those creative juices flowing.
  1. Washing machine drum. washingmachinedrum.
  2. Cast iron pot. cauldron.
  3. Old tyre rims. tyrerims.
  4. Keg or barrel.
Feb 10, 2017

How do I calculate how many blocks I need for a fire pit? ›

Generally, you should be using around 18 blocks per course, but you can add more to widen the fire pit if you choose. Also, when purchasing wall block, remember that some have an interlocking lip on the bottom for use in retaining walls, not stacked block projects.

How many feet away should a fire pit be? ›

Place your fire pit at a safe distance (10-25 feet) from any flammable structures or surfaces. This includes your house, trees, shed, vehicle, neighbors' property, and wood deck, among other things. Keep your fire pit away from overhanging branches. A 21-foot clearance is standard for most municipalities.

How many bricks do I need for a 3 foot fire pit? ›

You'll need 80 face bricks for a 3-ft. -diameter pit. Face brick with holes (“cored”) is easy to split with a brick hammer. It's easier to form the curve of the pit walls with half bricks.

Does the bottom of a fire pit get hot? ›

​Decks are made of wood and/or plastic which WILL burn! The base of the fire pit gets very hot and that is likely to damage any combustible surface it is placed on and may set fire to it! ​​Read our fire pit safety guide here.

Why do fire pits have holes in the bottom? ›

These holes, known as air vents, serve an important purpose in regulating the flow of air to the fire. By allowing air to enter the fire pit at the bottom, the vent holes help ensure the wood fire has enough oxygen to keep burning efficiently.

What stone is best for a fire pit? ›

Granite, marble, and slate are good stones for building your firepit since they are dense and least likely to absorb water. Consult a professional if you plan to install a fire pit on an existing patio or deck.

Can cinder blocks be used for a fire pit? ›

A simple outdoor fire pit can be constructed out of cinder block. Create a backyard fire pit with little effort—or money—by using cinder blocks. A cinder block fire pit is quick, cheap, and doesn't require any special DIY skills to make.

Should a fire pit be above or below ground? ›

Sunken fire pits have fewer risks because out-of-control fires are less likely to spread. There are fewer dangers related to nearby combustibles when the fire is below ground. A unique risk of in-ground fire pits, however, is that they can be more dangerous for children and pets.

Is it OK to pour water on a fire pit? ›

Water is a quick and easy way to put out a fire in your fire pit, but having a bucket of water on stand-by isn't quite the best option for this. A garden hose with a multi-pattern nozzle will be needed if you want to use water to douse out the flames.

Where should you not put a fire pit? ›

Before striking the match, never place a pit closer than 10 feet from anything flammable, including your house and overhead tree branches. Unless the owner's manual says it's okay, don't put the pit on a grassy surface, wood deck, or enclosed porch.

When should you not use a fire pit? ›

Never operate your fire pit beneath a building overhang or in a partially enclosed space. Use special caution related to overhanging trees, which can easily ignite from flying wood-fire sparks. In fire-prone areas, surround your fire pit with non-combustible materials, like crushed stone, brick, or sand.

What should you sit around a fire pit? ›

What should you sit around a fire pit?
  • Benches.
  • Adirondack Chairs.
  • Wicker Furniture.
  • Hammocks.
  • Lounge Chairs.
  • Outdoor Sofas or Sectionals.
  • Side Tables.
Jan 22, 2023

Can you just dig a hole for a fire pit? ›

A fire pit placed in the ground is an easy and cheap option. All of the work is done by you, and you get to decide how big it can be, in accordance with local laws, of course. All you have to do is dig the hole and design how the logs are placed in the pit.

What rocks can you put in the bottom of a fire pit? ›

Placing magma lava rocks is a great alternative if you want something that will last a long time and won't need to be replaced. Based on what it's called, “lava” rocks are made of solidified magma, which offers a high level of heat resistance without cracking or exploding.

Can you make a fire pit with just bricks? ›

Homeowners can choose among many fire pit designs, which incorporate various materials including metal, rock, masonry block and brick. You can use standard brick and a preformed fire pit bowl to construct a sturdy fire pit that is designed to be moved if necessary.

Can all bricks be used for a fire pit? ›

It's a good idea to use firebrick or refractory brick to build the inner walls of your fire pit – this is because regular bricks crack at high temperatures. Fire bricks are denser than regular bricks and are kilned to withstand the heat of a fire pit.

How many pavers does it take to make a fire pit? ›

A circular fire pit measuring 37inches in diameter takes 12 pavers of 12 inches for each ring. For three layers of paver rings a total of 36 pavers with a perfect fit can be supplied with instructions and support for building the fire pit.

How many bricks do I need to build a fire pit? ›

You'll typically need around 50–100 in total. You can use rectangular bricks for a square ring, but if you prefer a circular fire pit, trapezoidal bricks look more stylish and have fewer gaps.

How do you line a fire pit with fire bricks? ›

You will want to break and split four fire bricks, which you will be using to finish the construction of your pit. These bricks will be used in front of each other to create oxygen holes for the fire. Upon breaking the fire bricks, lay them on top of the base. Manually recheck and readjust the gaps between the bricks.

What is the cheapest way to make a fire pit? ›

Cinder Block Fire Pit

Because they're so inexpensive and sturdy (costing about $1 at The Home Depot), cinder blocks lend themselves well to a variety of projects around the house. Here, a course of blocks arranged in a circle creates a DIY fire pit for around $20.

What bricks should not be used in a fire pit? ›

Fire pits can reach high temperatures, so regular bricks won't work. Regular bricks will crack at high temperatures and can cause a real accident if used in fire pits. Instead, you are going to use firebricks, also called refractory bricks.

What do you line a fire pit with? ›

Best materials to put in the bottom of a fire pit
  1. Here's what to use in your fire pit. Both permanent and portable fire pits can burn brighter with the right lining materials. ...
  2. Sand. A thin layer of sand can help to contain any fire. ...
  3. Gravel. ...
  4. Crushed rock. ...
  5. Glass. ...
  6. Bricks. ...
  7. Concrete. ...
  8. Rocks.
Feb 22, 2021

How deep should a fire pit be? ›

The hole should be 12 inches in diameter and 18 inches deep. Fill this hole with large gravel. If the soil doesn't drain well or there is heavy precipitation, dig a trench from the center out. If you're adding a drainpipe, dig about 10 feet from the fire pit.

How big should a paver fire pit be? ›

A fire pit itself is rarely larger than four or five feet across. The patio space around it should be an additional four to six feet on all sides. Seat walls are a great way to both visually define the space and allow for lots of seating.

How do I calculate how many stones I need for a fire pit? ›

First, measure and calculate the area that your fire pit is gonna take, the length of the paver fire pit multiplied by the width gives its total area in square footage. Then, divide this total square footage with the surface area of the type of paver you chose.

Do you need air holes in a fire pit? ›

Most fire pits need air vents to ensure the fire has enough ventilation to continue burning. Smokeless fire pits can be built without an air vent, but it is important to ensure that the fire pit has proper ventilation to prevent the build-up of carbon monoxide and other certain materials.


1. How to Build a Fire Pit with Concrete Pavers
2. How To Build a Custom-Sized Fire Pit
(Lowe's Home Improvement)
3. Nicolock: How to Build a Serafina Fire Pit
(Nicolock Paving Stones)
4. How to Build a Fire Pit with Pavers (Step by Step)
5. How to Build a Fire Pit with Pavestone Pavers
(Today's Homeowner with Danny Lipford)
6. DIY Fire Pit: How to Build a Fire Pit | The Home Depot
(The Home Depot)
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