Outdoor Fireplace vs. Fire Pit….pro’s and cons

We now know that fire features are all the craze in Charlotte, NC. We have seen year over year growth in the category for 10 straight years!

Stone outdoor fireplace integrated into screen porch with EZE Breeze windows

The common question people ask is should I invest in a fireplace or a fire pit?


Here are the key differentiators:


  1. Price – a common fireplace is around $8,000 while a common fire pit is around $1,500
  2. Function – a fireplace is wonderful if you are sitting in front of it to project heat while a fire pit everyone can sit around it
  3. Aesthetics –  a fireplace can be a focal point of the backyard due to size and stature while a fire pit a complimentary accessory
  4. Return on Investment – the fireplace is probably a bigger “wow” factor

To see multiple fire feature photos and designs, go to archadeckofcharlotte.com

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.