What should I look for in an outdoor fireplace? How do I plan for my outdoor fireplace?

EZE Breeze Screen Porch with Outdoor Fireplace integrated and sky lights

EZE Breeze Screen Porch with Outdoor Fireplace integrated and sky lights

Archadeck designed this outdoor fireplace and outdoor kitchen and patio

stone outdoor fireplace with flagstone patio and outdoor kitchen in Charlotte

Are all outdoor fireplaces created equally? Like anything else, NO! Archadeck of Charlotte has been designing and building outdoor fireplaces for years now in and around the Charlotte, North Carolina area. There are several things to look for when planning your outdoor fireplace design.

First, do you want a gas starter with wood burning fireplace? Do you want a gas ventless fireplace? You should answer this question first so you can begin the planning process. If you are planning on integrating your outdoor fireplace into a screen porch, pergola, or sun room, sometimes gas is a better solution as you do not need to run a chimney up past the peak of the roof.

Secondly, do you want a brick, stack stone, field stone, or stucco exterior? Are you working with a professional contractor that has a lot of experience with designing the flu so that it draws the smoke up and not back at you?

Finally, are you aware of how far from the house the fireplace has to be located to meet building safety codes? Have you considered the size of the fire box? The type of mantle or hearth you may want? How about installing a TV over the mantle?

To get many design ideas and professional advice…go to http://www.charlotte.archadeck.com 

How close can an outdoor fireplace be to my home?

A common question we get at Archadeck of Charlotte is “how close can an outdoor fireplace be to my home?” there are a couple of wAys to look at it.

The local building codes in the greater Charlotte market requires that you keep your outdoor fireplace a minimum of 10′ from your home. In addition, you can build within 10′ as long as your chimney extends at least 2′ above the highest pitch within the 10′. This often makes the fireplace 16′ and higher and it becomes cost prohibitive!

The other way to look at is use good common sense. Even if you construct the fireplace (and especially fire pit) 10′ away, you don’t want to build a large fire that can get out of control. For some great outdoor fireplace and fire pit photos, go to http://www.Charlotte.Archadeck.com.

What are my options for stone patio’s?

There are many options for patio’s and we get asked all of the time what they are. Archadeck of Charlotte designs and builds outdoor living spaces and patios are fasted growing category for outdoor living.

The most economical of course is just a plain concrete slab. The drawbacks are they will crack over time and tend to look cold and industrial. An inexpensive way to solve for the aesthetics and keep the price low is to stain the concrete and warm it up with color.

The next step up is a stamped concrete patio, this is more expensive, looks great, but will not prevent cracking of the concrete. From there you can get into a variety of pavers from a straight brick look to multi-dimensional pavers. These are quite popular today. Then you get up to your Travertine stone patio’s and various tiles, they can be used as pavers or a tile

Travertine stone patio and landscape design in Charlotte

Archadeck of Charlotte stone patio and landscape design

look. Finally, you get into flagstone patio’s, a great natural look for your backyard outdoor living space! For a complete photo gallery of patios, go to www.charlotte.archadeck.com

Paver patio with sitting wall and fire pit

Archadeck of Charlotte paver patio and fire pit

Ultimate Outdoor Living Area design concepts and ideas

Archadeck of Charlotte has been designing and building outdoor living spaces for over 24 years now. The outdoor living space has been redefined in recent years and the concepts and ideas are endless. Consumers are looking to extend their homes to the outdoors more and more and it is no longer just a nice deck or patio.

Travertine patio in Charlotte with outdoor fireplace by Archadeck

Archadeck of Charlotte outdoor fireplace, travertine patio, and stone sitting walls

Today’s trends are centered around 4 areas: shade, fire, cooking, and water.  Home entertaining is more and more popular as people don’t want to drink and drive, they avoid the expense of restaurants, vacations, or just love the idea of escaping in their own backyard.

   Shade structures are an important part of outdoor living. Screen porches are largely popular in Charlotte as they provide refuge from the sun and insects. Other solutions include covered patio’s, pergola’s, and retractable awnings.

    Whether it’s a stone outdoor fireplace or stone fire pit, the fire features are still growing in popularity. It is not just the idea of providing heat, it is a visual focal point and great gathering area for friends and family.

   Outdoor kitchens are growing every year in popularity. People are no longer satisfied with just a grill. Most common additions include a refrigerator, a sink, a smoker, and side burner.

     Water features can be a hot tub, spa, pond, or water fall to create soothing noise. Water features are mostly about ambiance and beauty.

Travertine tile screen porch with stone outdoor fireplace

Screen Porch with integrated outdoor fireplace and outdoor TV and tile on screen porch

The latest trend is outdoor showers and bathrooms. Archadeck is seeing an large increase in demand especially in backyards equipped with pools, hot tubs, or a lakefront property. To view the latest in outdoor livng design concepts and ideas, go to www.charlotte.archadeck.com

Outdoor Kitchen cooking demo at Archadeck 2/18/12 and Open House

archadeck charlotte pergola screened room

Archadeck charlotte pergola and screened room

Archadeck of Charlotte and Value Remodelers are hosting an Open House this coming Saturday 2/18/12 from 9am – 5pm at 2311 Village Lake Drive in Charlotte right off of Independence Boulevard.

There is going to be a live cooking demonstration on an outdoor kitchen at their exterior outdoor living showroom. Food and beverage is FREE. See the latest in outdoor kitchens, a stone pizza oven, composite decks, wood decks, various rail designs, paver and stone patio’s, screen porches, outdoor stone fireplaces and fire pits, and more.

In addition, connected to the exterior outdoor living show room in Value Remodelers kitchen and bath showroom where you can get great remodeling ideas for your home in the Charlotte market!

Charlotte bathroom remodeling by Value Remodelers and Handyman Services with frameless glass

Charlotte bathroom remodeling Archadeck of Charlotte

Don’t miss one day savings, drawings, great food, and more on Saturday. For more information, call 704-944-1350 or go to www.charlotte.archadeck.com or www.valueremodelers.com

How to build a stone outdoor patio?

Most people that are handy believe that they can build almost anything. Why? The conventional thinking is to save money or simply they just enjoy the challenge! So, what is the proper way to construct a stone patio? To start, you must find an area on your property that is going to make sense to place the patio. Some considerations include drainage, grade, and proximity to trees and your home. Secondly, you will need a lot of shovel power or access to a bobcat. Regardless of the type of stone or paver your choose, you will need to level the land where you want to place the patio with a slight pitch to move water the direction you want it to go. You will then need to purchase and install crushed ABC stone, aggregate, screening and then tamp it all do0wn. Ideally you want to build a 4″ – 6″ base prior to putting your stone or pavers down. Once you lay out your patio stones, then an ideal solution is to spread polymeric sand and allow it to harden. These should be useful steps for those that want to tackle this themselves. For professional installation and some great photo ideas, go to http://www.charlotte.archadeck.comor

Paver patio with stone firepit in Charlotte

Archadeck of Charlotte designed an built this stone paver patio with a stone outdoor fire pit


How much should an outdoor fireplace cost?

We have a broad perspective of the competitive market for outdoor fireplaces in Charlotte, NC and the surrounding market. Outdoor fireplaces are available as a “do-it-yourselfer”, a pre-fabricated unit, and a custom built variety.

We have written in previous blogs by Archadeck of Charlotte that it is not advisable to build an outdoor fireplace if you do not do this for a living. You can reference our “why should a do-it-yourselfer not build an outdoor fireplace” blog. In terms of pre-fabricated units, they range from $6,000 – $9,000 depending on size and material and that includes the cost of labor. A custom stone outdoor fireplace can range from $6,000 on up depending on size and stone. The average stone outdoor fireplace seems to run around $7,000 for a free-standing to over $10,000 for one that is integrated into a screen porch. These prices do include labor and material. For more information, go to http://www.charlotte.archadeck.com

Stone outdoor fireplace with stone travertine patio

Stone patio with outdoor fireplace