How to Start a Fire in a Fire Pit

How do you light an outdoor wood-burning fire pit?

It may seem like a daunting task to get started but once you’ve mastered the basics, you can enjoy the warmth of the fire for years to come. All you need are some basic tools and materials that will allow you to create a warm and inviting atmosphere without having to spend hours gathering them together.

To make a good blaze in a fire pit, only four main items are necessary-

  • Long Matchers or a lighter
  • Combustible tinder
  • Finely chopped wood i.e kindling
  • Firewood Type which is dry

From your gas station, hardware store you wood for fire starting. This makes beginning the fire much easier. But it is not necessary you can gather wood from your back yard, or even drop pine cones (as long as they are dry) from a park or forest.

There are many different styles or methods to stack kindling wood in a firepit but the most common one is the teepee method.

Also, you should know how to put out a fire pit fire.

Here’s everything you need to start a fire in a fire pit:

1. You Need Kindling of Some Type

Free You don’t necessarily need an entire forest full of trees to make this happen. In fact, even if you live in a city with little natural greenery, there is still plenty of wood available for your needs. If you have access to a local park or woodland area, it would be wise to check out the woods before heading into town to buy all of your supplies. Even some tree branches or tree bark that is dry will work. It’s also possible to find free wood at construction sites, abandoned buildings, and other locations. Pieces of kindling do make it easy to start a backyard fire pit. Inbetween the kindling wood you can make a small pile of tinder. (dry tinder)

how to light a fire pit without kindling
How to light a fire pit without kindling – use tree bark.

2. What Tools Do you Need To Start A Fire in A Fire Pit

The best tool for the job is definitely essential for starting and maintaining a fire pit fire safely.

1. Fire-Pit Poker Claw or Stick

2. Fire-Starting Bellows

3. Gloves that are Fire Safe and Heat Resistant

4. Log Grabber

5. Bucket For Fire Pit Ash

6. Shovel

7. Rack for Logs On the Firepit

8. Grates for Cooking On the Fire Pit

9. Butane Torch Lighter

Butane Lighter Stick
Butane Lighter Stick For A Firepit

3. Pieces of Firewood or Charcoal

The first step is to place the small logs or kindling into a teepee shape. The pieces of firewood wood should be placed so that their ends face outwards. You want to leave enough space between each log so that when you light the fire, there is plenty of airflow. You can start with smaller logs, before moving to larger seasoned wood. Done right your burning wood should not produce too much smoke.

4. Start the Fire Using a Long Match or Long BBQ Lighter

Once the logs have been arranged in this manner, use a long match or lighter to ignite the base tinder which is inside the teepee. The tinder in turn will light the wood stacked in the teepee shape.

Once the top log has burned down to about half its size, add another log on top of it. Continue adding logs until all the logs are burning.

Once the fire is going well, add more fuel by placing small pieces of wood at the base of the flames.

If you are going to use charcoal then you can now start adding it as the fire ember will be hot enough to start it.

You can also use larger pieces of wood to feed the fire. Just remember to keep the fire under control. Don’t let it burn too hot or too low.

If you are going to use seasoned firewood you can start to stack that on. You will get a nice scent as it starts to burn.

Control the airflow, by sizing the gaps between the wood. Smaller gaps mean the wood will burn slower. Larger gaps will let in more air and the fire or wood will burn faster.

Dry Kindling Wood for A Fire pit
Dry Kindling Wood for A Fire pit

How long does wood burn in a fire pit?

How long will wood burn in a firepit is typically 60 minutes but is related to the type of wood and how closely you stack it together.

– hardwood will burn longest making long lasting fires.

– softwoods will not last as long.

Another parameter is how thick on inches in diameter are the wood logs, the thicker they are the slower the fire will burn.

How to light a fire pit without kindling

You can start a fire without kindling by using newspaper tied up into knots or crosses.

The normal method to start a fire is to make a small pyramid from your kindling.

Here are the best ways to light a fire pit fire without kindling

These are all tinder materials.

  • Use store-bought fire starters (commercial).
  • Use knots made of Newspaper
  • Wood Bark
  • Pine Cone
  • dry leaves
  • dry grass
  • Wood shavings
  • Cotton balls
  • Lighter Fluid – take great care very flammable.

Cooking in a fire pit using a tripod – how to choose the right one

Cooking on a fire pit – tips, tricks, and methods.

You can use this starter method on a wood fire pit, outdoor fire pit, campfire, bonfire, and open burning with a chimney.