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A beautiful backyard firepit area surrounded by seating and a stone bench

How to Reduce Smoke in Your Backyard Fire Pit

Posted on: September 17, 2019

You’ve just installed a gorgeous new fire pit with Four Seasons Landscaping, but before you begin grouping up for those family evenings and fire pit parties, there are a few details you should familiarize yourself with!

Nothing ruins a mood like a face full of miserable, cloying smoke. Thankfully, this blog can help you learn how to reduce the amount of smoke your pit gives off, so you and your dinner party guests can get more out of your evenings with less mess.

For all of your Damascus, MD landscaping needs, call Four Seasons Landscaping at 240-252-4807! 

How to Stop a Chiminea From Smoking

If you would like to spend your evenings sitting by your chiminea for warmth, but not deal with smoke, there are a few options to stop your chiminea from smoking. One of the most common ways to stop the smoking is to make sure you are burning dry wood. Think about putting water in a hot pan—the steam rises and smokes out the kitchen. The same thing happens when you have wet wood or a little water in your chiminea. You can also be pickier about the kind of wood you burn. There are many kinds of wood that naturally let off only a little smoke.

Dry Wood Is Good Wood

The primary factor that determines the amount of smoke your flame gives off is what you’re burning. Avoid using “young” logs in your fire. Young specifically refers not only to youngling trees (saplings are a no-no!), but to logs that have not had time to properly cure. A properly seasoned log should be left in a dry, warm area for at least six months. More, if your climate is wet or humid.

Luckily, you don’t have to be a lumberjack to get a hold of good, seasoned wood. Wood for your pit can be purchased in many local areas, and if you’re in the market for solid bulk supply, look to purchasing what is called a “cord” of wood. They can be purchased in halves, or a full cord, and guarantee you have a great supply of perfect wood this season!

Other Factors to Reduce a Smokey Fire pit

  • Avoid foliage. Leaves, twigs, and tufts of living greenery will smolder your fire, making it smelly and smoky in record time.
  • Don’t use tinder past getting the flame started. A plug of newspaper is a good way to start your flame, but adding more once the fire is established will only serve to create puffs of noxious smoke.
  • Keep it clean. Residue can create an unclean flame that generates a lot of smoke and makes starting fires in the future harder. A good, stiff wire brush does wonders here, but use caution and avoid damaging the pit lining.
  • Soft for kindling, hard for burning. Using scraps of “softwood,” such as pine, will help you get your flame going, but softwoods burn cooler than hardwoods, thus creating more smoke.

Frequently Asked Questions About Reducing Smoke in Your Fire pit

When it comes to building state-of-the-art fire pits for our customers, we’ve received countless questions concerning best practices for minimizing fire pit smoke. That’s why we’ve compiled some of the most common questions we get, along with our time-tested advice.

What Should I Build My Fire pit Out Of?

We get this question a lot, and fortunately, you have a variety of options when it comes to the material used to construct your fire pit. Whether you choose concrete, brick, or stone, the most important thing to remember is that the material you choose needs to be non-combustible (meaning it won’t burn).

Can I Burn Wood in a Gas Fire pit?

Short answer: no. The high temperatures generated by a wood-burning fire can damage your gas fire pit. If you are interested in burning wood, you would need to install a wood-burning fire pit rather than opting for gas.

Can I Use Natural River Rocks in My Fire pit?

This is definitely something you should avoid, as natural stones or rocks that you’ve collected have moisture content which could cause them to explode when heated. It’s extremely important to use stones that have been designated as heat resistant and created especially for fire pit use.

Who Can Install My Fire pit?

If you are looking for a unique and custom-designed fire pit for your home, the team of expert designers and landscaping professionals at Four Seasons Landscaping will work with you every step of the way to craft a stunning and functional fire pit for your home. Whatever your backyard fire pit dreams may be, our friendly team has the industry know-how to get it done!

Like what you see? Contact us to make it your own!

Low-Smoke Wood for Your Damascus, MD Fire Pit

The most important part of keeping your fire pit from being smoky is using dry wood. It won’t matter if you use low-smoke wood if it’s not dry. That being said, there are a few species of trees that produce less smoke than others. Some of those tree species include:

  • Oak
  • Apple
  • Cherry
  • Maple
  • Ash
  • Beech
  • Pecan
  • Walnut
  • And most other hardwood trees

The fruit and nut trees are going to be more expensive to buy, but they do give off some delicious smells and are great if you’re entertaining guests!

Enjoy Your New Fire Pit With Four Seasons Landscaping

Keep these tips in mind, and you’ll be well on your way to a gorgeous, clean flame this fall season! For more tips, ideas, and design information, keep an eye on our blog in the future.

For more information on how Four Seasons Landscaping can assist you in getting your dream landscape, call us at 240-252-4807 or contact us online today to schedule your consultation! 

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