We all know that summer evenings are the epitome of being alive! So now that summer is just around the corner here in Australia, we can’t resist the idea of friends, a couple of beers, and delicious steaks grilled over an open fire!
Building a DIY cinder block fire pit is a quick and easy project that you won’t regret taking on this summer.
Cinder blocks are inexpensive, easy-to-use building materials great for fire pits. Your initial decision is choosing between a temporary or permanent cinder blocks fire pit. After that, you can gather your supplies and start construction.
Here’s how to start!
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First, remove 4 to 6 inches of soil. Then, adjust each with the holes facing skyward, ensuring that the corners of the blocks touch and seal with mortar.
We’ve also been exploring the Internet for some easy, low-costing, fire pit ideas and tutorials made from cinder blocks, so you don’t have to research by yourself. Let’s work together, shall we?
These simple DIY projects will make a great addition to your backyard!
Can You Use Cinder Blocks to Make a Fire Pit?
Cinder block is an inexpensive building material great for fire pits. You can quickly build permanent or temporary cinder block fire pits and in any style you prefer.
A cinder block fire pit will effortlessly transform your summer garden into a majestic hangout – or hideaway! A fireplace also creates a warm, welcoming, and relaxing atmosphere that will relieve your stress after a long day.
However, when choosing your perfect outdoor fireplace, the options are endless, and choosing your ideal style becomes an arduous task! Perhaps, this is why many homesteaders are turning to the most straightforward, budget-friendly, DIY cinder block pit ideas.
When searching for fire bricks, make sure the brand you're seeking says for fire pits! That's why these fire bricks from Rutland are my top choice for all outdoor ovens, fire pits, stoves, and more.
I've noticed that the cost of DIY fireplace supplies has increased over the last year due to inflation. However, I think that these Rutland bricks are still of excellent value - you can build (or repair) your existing fire pit without breaking the bank. Superb and versatile bricks!
These bricks can be used to build a new fireplace, fire pit, or anywhere where you need a brick that can withstand high temperatures. These bricks are rated up to 2700 degrees Fahrenheit and there are 6 bricks in a box.
So, you’ve decided on a spot. Start with ensuring that you purchase fireproof cinder blocks.
If you are using old cinder blocks at your disposal, make sure they are porous and lightweight. Porous cinder blocks allow steam to vent; if the cinder blocks aren’t porous, they could potentially explode.
Next is to choose whether you’d prefer a temporary or permanent fire pit design. (More on this idea in a moment!)
Pros and Cons of Cinder Block Fire Pits
Like any other material, cinder blocks have pros and cons to consider when deciding whether you’re interested in a cinder block fire pit or not.
How to Make a Fire Pit From Cinder Blocks – Step by Step
Building your cinder block fire pit might lead to a quick trip to the store and some afternoon physical work. But, don’t fret! By the end of the week, you’ll be able to invite your friends over for a get-together around the new fireplace!
Purchase the following materials to make a cinder block fire pit:
- Cinder blocks
- Sand or gravel
Step 1: Decide Where You Want To Build Your Cinder Block Fire Pit
The very first step is to learn if fire pits are legal in your community and if you need permits or inspections. If you’re not sure, take a trip down to your municipal office of local fire departments to find out these answers. Or, call them!
Then, before we can get started, decide where you’d like your fire pit and define its place. For example, some prefer a fire pit near the house, garden corners, or a focal point in the center of their patio area.
Consider the shape and size of the fire pit you’re envisioning and ensure the selected spot is at least 20 feet away from shrubs, trees, sheds, garages, or your home.
Also, look above the potential fireplace location and ensure that there aren’t any overhanging trees that can catch fire (sparks easily ignite dry foliage).
Step 2: Decide Whether You Want a Permanent or Temporary Cinder Block Fire Pit
A temporary design is the simplest of the two. It will take approximately one hour to pack your cinder blocks in a ring (adjust each so that the corners of the blocks touch).
It’s best to remove around 4 to 6 inches of soil before arranging your cinder blocks. Ensure that the holes in the cinder blocks face skywards.
If you’d like, you can turn one cinder block every three feet to create a draw hole, allowing airflow.
If you prefer a permanent design, you’ll have to be slightly more patient and take on a couple of additional steps to ensure that the fire pit lasts long.
- Dig out 4 to 6 inches of soil.
- Fill the center of your new fire pit with sand or gravel (to prevent accidental fires).
- Lay your first row of cinder blocks below the ground.
- Add extra layers of cinder blocks until you reach your desired height.
- Position your cinder blocks in a way that they straddle the seams between the cinder blocks in the row below.
- Use mortar to seal the blocks together.
- Allow the mortar to cure for about a week before using your fire pit.
If you’re still not sure about the best size for your cinder block fire pit, here’s my best tip!
A three-foot-diameter circle comfortably accommodates three to four people. Add an extra foot for each additional person!
Step 3: Add Finishing Touches to Your Cinder Block Fire Pit
When finishing up your cinder block fire pit, consider that the fire pit's heat may negatively impact some surfaces!
That's one reason I'm a big fan of these fire pit heat shields. They're perfect for protecting surfaces and property against heat damage - especially if you love to keep your fire pit burning as much as I do - nearly nonstop!
They protect up to 1,300 degrees Fahrenheit. The mat also absorbs up to 90% of the fire's heat and will remain close to body temperature. Perfect!
Consider finishing your cinder block fire pit off with a coping of flat finish of concrete blocks or use bricks, tiles, and pretty stones to achieve an attractive finish.
Add a grill and bring those outdoor benches closer- you’re ready to enjoy your backyard fire pit!
Cheap and Easy Fire Pit Instruction
Cinder Block Fire Pit Ideas
There are endless designs and styles for DIY cinder block fire pits that are relatively easy to build. However, it’s essential to choose the right design for you – one that fits your style and space availability.
Here are some ideas on cinder block fire pits to consider choosing from:
Simplistic Circle Cinder Block Fire Pit
You can create a temporary cinder block fire pit by purchasing a package containing instructions on building a cinder block fire pit. Circular cinder block fire pits are prevalent thanks to their simplicity and practicality.
Cinder Block Fire Pit With a Chimney
A cinder block fire pit with a chimney will resemble an indoor fireplace, allowing the smoke to flow through the chimney’s vent.
Incorporating the chimney may take some extra work, but the elegance of the fireplace and convenience of less smoke blowing around will most definitely be worth it!
If you want to mix and match as you build your cinder block fire pit, here's another decorative batch of fire bricks perfect for your backyard fire pit!
These fire bricks from executive deals can handle temperatures up to 2,300 degrees F and are of lumina & Silica.
Each package contains four full bricks perfect for building an outdoor pizza oven, stove insulation, fire pits, glass making, fireplaces, smelting, and more!
Backyard Cinder Block Fire Pit With Cinder Block Benches
If looking to get even more creative, build a backyard fire pit from cinder blocks – and add complimenting cinder block benches! The cozy fire pit and comfy benches are sure to lighten your mood after a long week at the office.
A Rounded Cinder Block Fire Pit On A Gravel Pad
Round fire pits are elegant and trendy choices due to their natural comforting sense to gather people around. However, instead of building your fire pit on the soil, consider making it on a gravel pad, and provide some comfortable space for sitting down.
Placing a couple of cozy chairs and maybe even draping fairy lights will be a lovely addition to a magical summer’s evening.
Rustic Cinder Block Fire Pit
Rustic boho-vibe outdoor areas are rising in popularity. Add wooden chairs with bohemian-inspired pillows to your outdoor cinder block fire pit for a simplistic yet rusty look. Your friends will love popping in for a beer to lounge around your fireplace.
Minimalistic Cinder Block Fire Pit
One of the easiest and simplest cinder block fire pits to make is The Simplicity Sisters minimalistic fire pit video found on YouTube. Be sure to check it out!
If you don't want to deal with shipping or lifting heavy cinder blocks, you have other options for a backyard fire pit.
One of my favorite alternatives to cinder blocks is using a steel BBQ fire pit bowl. That way, I can enjoy a backyard fire while grilling a few dogs, burgers, steaks, or even some fresh garden veggies for the family. Can't beat the convenience!
“Keep It Simple” $60 Cinder Block Fire Pit
Here’s another budget-friendly cinder block fire pit to consider adding to your backyard. Keep It Simple Crafts showcases a wonderfully rounded fire pit tutorial that you’ll love!
In-Ground or Low-Profile Cinder Block Fire Pits
Building an in-ground cinder block fire pit may need more effort regarding digging into the soil to reach an appropriate depth. However, in-ground fire pits are great because the wind won’t easily sway the flames.
If you want to go the other way, consider a low-profile fire pit. Add one small (circular) layer of cinder blocks for a quick and effortless fire.
Multi-colored Cinder Block Fire Pit
To further spruce up your cinder block fire pit, consider building your fireplace with multi-colored cinder blocks. Add a flat-topped edge to provide a slight barrier between your kids and the open flames.
I'm not sure if your backyard decor is complete without protection! This heavy-duty cement gargoyle promises to keep your backyard safe from trespassers and evildoers.
You'll also love how this gargoyle complements your backyard patio, deck, front porch - or anywhere you decide to host guests!
A Portable Outdoor Cooking Station With Cinder Blocks
Using a portable outdoor cinder block fire station will keep your party moving, and it’ll be an excellent alternative to a conventional grill to prepare your meat entrees.
Stone-Topped Cinder Block Fire Pit
A stone-topped DIY fire pit can be ready to use within eight hours and cost as little as $150! If you’re up for the challenge, I suggest looking at the tutorial from Carole Knits to show how to make a squared fire pit with a beautiful stoned top.
Simplistic Square-shaped Cinder Block Fire Pit
A small and straightforward square-shaped cinder block fire pit is easy to make and belongs in your backyard! But, first, you’ll need a few cinder blocks to layer in two to three rows.
This fire pit may look small and simplistic, but it won’t fall shy of providing a warm, cozy area to gather around.
DIY Rotisserie BBQ Cinder Block Fire Pit
Building a cinder block fire pit to host BBQ parties will automatically provide more functions to your fire pit.
For a fantastic DIY rotisserie BBQ pit, have a look at Did You Know? On YouTube.
Cinder Block Meat Smoking Fire Pit
If you’re considering a sizeable cinder block fire pit, consider designing the pit around the idea of smoking a large, delicious piece of meat for your friends and family.
Texas Barbeque has a fantastic tutorial on making a cinder block meat-smoking pit with a sheet metal top.
Cinder Block Fire Pit FAQs
We’ve been building cinder block fire pits for years!
We’re happy to answer some of the most common cinder block fire pit questions you are likely to have.
Find our answers below.
Why We Love Cinder Block Fire Pits!
Fire pits aren’t essential for back yards, but they are lovely to have during summer evenings and help light up your night so you can feel the evening.
Cinder block fire pits are also affordable – even when the price of everything else is skyrocketing. They’re also low-maintenance, and easy enough for any new DIY enthusiast to take on!
We hope you find inspiration and funky new ideas for your next DIY fire pit project.
And – if you have any cinder block fire pit building questions, fire away below.
Thanks for reading!