A lot of people want to beautify their outdoor space by adding a fire pit or chiminea to it. This firepit, asides from giving warmth to the people around, can also serve as a focal point for decorating the outdoor space where people relax and have a good time.
Many people who have Trex composite decking sometimes wonder if they can put a firepit on it, if it is safe and what necessary precaution they need to take.
Well, if you are one of the people in this category, we can tell you that you can put a firepit on your Trex composite decking in as much as you do it safely. Come along, and we will tell you how to safely use your fire pit on a Trex composite decking.
What is Composite Decking?
A little understanding of what Trex composite decking will help you understand why you must think safety first as you use your fire pit on it.
Trex composite decking is a building material made from a combination of at least two of these different materials, including hardwood floor, wood fibers, polypropylene, Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC), amongst other plastic materials.
This material is fire retardant at some temperatures, which means it will warp or catch fire at that temperature.
But from the constituents materials that make the Trex Composite decking, you can see that they will invariably burn at high heat no matter how fire retardant it is. They are heat retardant and not heat resistant, which further bolsters the need to be cautious as you put a fire pit on it.
Considerations Before Putting A Firepit In A Trex Decking
You will have to keep in mind many things as you try to put a firepit in your decking; these measures are to ensure the safety of your household and the decking itself.
We earlier mentioned that Trex decking is just fire retardant a d not fire-resistant; this means that at temperatures higher than 170°F, they will begin to soften, and at 250°F, they will begin to melt.
On the other hand, some firepit can generate heat to a temperature of more than 500°F, which implies that you need to be conscious of the source of fire you will be using and how you use it.
For safety sake, you should install a thermal barrier between your fire pit and the deck. This barrier will insulate your fire pit and reduce the amount of heat emitted to the deck.
It is also a good idea to get a firepit heat that has a heating element that is raised so that your firepit stays a little bit far from the decking.
Your firepit must never be placed anywhere near any structure around your house that can pose a potential fire hazard. There should be clearance both vertical and horizontal around your firepit.
If you get a fire pit with a small flame source, you will reduce the amount of heat generated and hence reduce the amount transmitted to your Trex decking. This might prove counterproductive because you need more heat from your firepit, but it is always better to be safe first.
While you can safely use a wood-burning firepit into your Trex decking, it is better to use a propane firepit because wood-burning fire pits can get a lot hotter and emit sparks and embers that might land on the decking and cause damages.
Wood Burning Firepit And Gas Burning Firepit – Which is Best For My Trex Decking?
Gas burning Firepit is cozy and welcoming, and they are pretty safe to put on your Trex decking. They have the following advantages over a wood-burning firepit:
1. Gas-burning fire pits are a lot safer than wood-burning ones because they do not emit embers or sparks. It takes only a tiny spark that flies and lands on a flammable object around the firepit for an uncontrollable fire to ensue.
2. Another significant advantage of gas-burning firepits is that they do not give off smoke. A smoky fire like you have with burning wood is not just annoying; it is not suitable for your health. Smoke can get into the eyes and cause a lot of coughing, dizziness, and so much discomfort.
3. The heat source of the gas-burning firepit scare steady and fixed, and it does not fluctuate as you will have with a wood-burning fire pit. With wood, the heat is unpredictable; one moment, it is not hot at all; the next, the heat can be too much.
A gas-burning fire pit gives you a steady heat source and the peace of mind to enjoy it, which is why they go very well on a Trex decking.
4. You get little hassles with a gas-burning fire pit; you have just little maintenance to do with them, unlike the wood-burning firepit that requires a lot of cleaning, shoveling ashes from the fire pit, getting well-seasoned woods, amongst others. With gas burning firepit on your Trex decking, you have less mess.
Although gas-burning firepits are great on your Trex decking, their drawbacks include the fact that they do not generate a lot of heat; they do not have the sound and smell that you will associate with open flame. The cost of buying propane, the gas used as fuel, is relatively high.
Wood burning firepit might look like it may not fit into your Trex Composite decking, but if you are careful enough, you can use them on your deck.
The fact that wood pops and cackle and has that real feel of enjoying an open fire has endeared it to people’s hearts despite its many drawbacks.
What to Put Under a Fire Pit On Decking
Since we have established that Trex decking can get damaged by even gas burning fire pit, the best solution is to seek a way to keep the heat generated in your fire pit from being transmitted to your beloved decking and hence there is a need to put a barrier between your firepit and the Trex decking.
There are so many materials around you that will effectively preserve your decking from the heat of your fire pit; some of them are simple solutions you can find around, others you will have to shop for.
1. Fire Pit Pads
A new paver can be used as a pad between your fire pit and your decking. All you need to do is arrange the pavers in a grid form at the spot where you will be putting your firepit.
You should be careful not to scratch the deck with these pavers. Then place your firepit on the pavers, ensure that the pavers are wide enough to take the size of the fire pit and a little space around.
2. Heat-Resistant Firepit Mat
This is another excellent option for protecting your Tree decking from a firepit. The advantage of these mats is that they are readily available, lightweight, and quite affordable.
There are different sizes and shapes of these fire-resistant mats, and they are usually made of rubber or PVC. They are pretty effective in keeping the heat from your fire pit from getting to your Trex decking.
3. All-Metal Firepit Barrier
Metal firepit barriers are one of the most effective ways of protecting your deck from the heat from your firepit. You must ensure that you buy a unit that is wide enough to take the size of your firepit.
There is also the ventilated metal tray that is elevated above the ground by five plastic feet. The tray is made heat-resistant, which makes it great to put your firepit on.
4. Paver Safety Base
This is one of the most reliable firepit barriers because they protect your Trex composite decking. There are different paver stones that you can choose from. These pavers will fit perfectly into your deck and will look exquisite.
Positioning Your Firepit In Your Trex Composite Decking
You have to remember a few things as you try to narrow down down the exact spot in your deck where you will put your firepit.
Your firepit should be put in a spot in the deck that does not have a lot of traffic. This is to reduce the possibility of touching the firepit mistakenly or mistakenly tipping it over.
Your firepit must never be placed near overhead structures and tree branches. This is to prevent the heat and fire from the firepit from getting on the structures or trees and causing a fire outbreak.
You should also consider the number of people sitting around the fire and ensure they have enough space to enjoy the warmth from the firepit and yet stay far enough to be safe.
Lastly, you should be posting the firepit to easily monitor it without any obstruction, especially if there are kids and pets around.
So, if your Trex Composite decking is a place where you relax after a hard day’s work, and you want a firepit burning beautifully on it to complete the picture of solitude and peace. We say it is okay.
You can place your firepit in your Trex Composite decking provided that you do it safely, and you must ensure that you protect the deck from direct heat radiation from the firepit.
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We trust this article helped you consider if you can put a fire pit on Trex composite decking. You may also want to check out: How Do You Keep Your Fire Pit from Rusting?
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