What are the Pros and Cons of a Natural Gas Fire Pit?

Autumn Rivers

Many homeowners have trouble choosing between a fire pit that uses natural gas and one that uses wood, but considering the pros and cons of each can help. One of the biggest advantages of a natural gas fire pit is the ease of starting a fire, as wood does not need to be gathered to do this. There is also no smoke, embers, or ash, which means that it is considered rather clean. On the other hand, it is not the best kind of fire pit for roasting food, and is not usually considered as warm as the kind that uses wood. Additionally, it is often difficult to install the gas line needed for this kind of fire pit, which can result in high costs.

A natural gas fire pit does not require wood.
A natural gas fire pit does not require wood.

People who live in cold areas are often interested in starting a fire quickly in order to begin warming up right away, and a natural gas fire pit offers this ability. In fact, most fire pits of this kind can be started by pressing a button, turning a key, or flipping a switch. This is typically faster and easier than gathering wood and constantly placing it in the pit to build the fire.

A natural gas fire pit.
A natural gas fire pit.

Another perk of a fire pit that runs on natural gas is the lack of mess to clean up after each fire, as there is no ash left in the pit afterward. Additionally, there are no embers during the fire, which means that people gathered around it will not be hit by flying sparks. This also reduces the risk of a fire starting outside the pit. Of course, despite these advantages, some homeowners may be disappointed by the lack of smoke, or even the lack of embers, as the fire may not seem very natural without these familiar details.

Another disadvantage of the typical natural gas fire pit is the fact that it is not ideal to cook food using this kind of flame. While most people do not regularly cook dinner on their fire pit, they may want to roast marshmallows, which is usually best left to wood fire pits. Many simply feel that the fire that can be created in this type of fire pit is not as warm or cozy as the kind in a wood pit with its crackling sounds, multiple colors, and ever changing flames.

In addition, anyone considering a natural gas fire pit should check to see if their yard already has a gas line, as this is required for this type of pit. If the yard does not have one, it should be noted that having one installed can be expensive, usually requiring the help of a professional. This is especially true for those wanting to install a fire pit on top of a patio, as it can be difficult to put a gas line in when there is already cement present.

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Discussion Comments


I have to agree with the article when it talks about how one of the top benefits of a natural gas fire pit is that you can start the fire immediately. Sometimes when I come home from work, I like to go out back start the fire and simply relax and wind down from my work day.

Many days when I do this the temperatures are freezing so I'm not outside for a long time. If I had to go through the hassle of building a fire with wood and getting it burning I wouldn't have time. Also when I am ready to go back inside I can simply turn the gas pit off and leave it. I couldn't do this a wood fire.


What I like about a good wood burning fire pit is that I can use it to burn the debris I pick up when I am cleaning up my yard. After a storm, I have stick and more sticks strewn all over my yard. Then I also have leaves and pine needles. When this happens, I simply light a fire in the fire pit and throw in whatever pieces of the fallen debris will fit.

I grew up with wood burning fireplaces in almost every room of the house, so for me the sound, smell, and sight of wood burning is something I really enjoy. Besides, I don't think it would be a very good idea to start throwing sticks on an outdoor natural gas fire pit.


At some point we're going to clean up the area to the side of our house and create an outdoor gathering area. There is already a built in grill and an outdoor fireplace. However, we have a gas line there that could easily be hooked up to a fire pit if we decided to go with gas.

I hadn't thought about this before reading the article, but since the gas does not create as much smoke the natural gas fire pit might not be as good at keeping the mosquitoes and other insects away. This is definitely something to consider where I live.

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