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We are a Full service company and we are a Do-It-yourself service center. If you are having your fire pit built or your doing it your self we are here to assist you. From free advice to every component you need to get the job done. We'll help with your design, manufacture and SERVICE any type fire pit. If you have any questions please don't hesitate to call. 817.946.6463 my cell #.
Straight Talk on How to Build a Gas Fire Pit!
My name is Jim Jarvis and I'm the designer of the fire pits that Dancing Fire manufactures, and installs. I've made it my job to answer the phone when you call or office. I talk to a lot of people with very diverse occupations. I've notice the phone calls concerning gas fire pits and how to build them to be repitious with the questions. With that said I put together this site.
This is not going to be a PRETTY web page, I'll try but... Not a lot of cool graphics and probably some bad grammer and misspellings but you will leave here smarter then before you came and if not call me.
I am going to go thru the start to finish (to what I call finished) of building a gas fire pit / fire feature and this is all "OF MY Opinion" content. By reading this your agreeing to not sue me for any contentand if your not cool with that, peace out please. So when I use the words "Gas fire pit" I am saying and i will use in demostraions any thing that you want to be a gas fire pit or fire feature. People associate with fire pit easier so that's what we say. We can take pots or rocks, or just about anything and make it into a gas fire pit / feature. Gas fire pits are not just built in rock or brick structures called fire pits. Letierally you can make anything a gas burning fire feature. I am in the process of turning a 12' tall metal chicken sculpure in a fire breathing, throwing chicken. Wvery 5 minutes it will brathe a 5' flame. You want to talk about an attention getter? It will become a landmark in our town. Cost only $4000 and that's 4 grand of some killer marketing. So it's only your imagination that limits you. If things go right and the production of the "Hot Chicken" coinsides with this page I'll post pics. Side note here. If you wonder why I use "gas fire pit" so often is because I want Google to realize this is about gas fire pits.
Getting this Gas fire pit started in order!
This is the most important issue and if it's not delievered correctly it's a bitch to fix. What do you or your client visulize this gas fire feature to look like upon completion "A". And "B" is what performance are you expecting from this gas fire feature? Quality of flame, heat, duration etc. This is the first thing to consider because this is the game changer. If this is your project or easier then that a project for a clien- t you have to establish a mutaul vision of A and B and "B" being the issue that will kick your ass and if you don't do it right the first time. It's a bitch to fix it. So get everyone to agree on performance.
How do you want to Light The Fire Feature
You have options here and the different options have different price
The least expensive and easist to install is what is called a "Match Lit Gas Fire Pit". You turn on a gas key valve installed on the side of the fire pit and you manually use a lighter and light the burner. Pro's - You have infinete control of the quality of the flame. You can adjust from little to 250,000 btu's. Con- if the wind blows the fire out the gas is still on.
Next option is using a thermo-coupler type gas valve. This operates the same way a gas hot water heater works. You push in gas valve and light the pilot, hold til cap tube gets hot and realese. Same thing here. Pro- If the wind blows fire out the gas is turn off. You must manually relight. Con- Is flame control. You have some adjustment but not like the match lit kit. As of this writing I believe the largest kit on th emarket has an out put of 140K btu's.
Then we move into automated ignition gas fire feature systems. We use
Hot wire igniting system. There is no standing pilot system. You turn
the system onby turning on a swirch, timer, remote control, whatever and
a filiment type wire glows red and then the gas valve releases gas for
the pilot light. The piolt stays lit, the cap sensor gets hot then the
gas valve releases gas to the burner. The unit stays on til the elecric
supply is interupped. Turn switch off! Pro's- great for commercial applications
because of the built in safety features. If the wind blows the fire out
the unit tries to re-ignite. If after a period of time it fails to ignite
the unit shuts down. This is what I am using on the Hot Chicken I'm building.
Con- These units are pricey and they require some preventive maintence issues. Because of the expence it's recommened the unit gets covered. Water in the gas pilot tube is an expensive fix and not covered under warranty. The other big issue is no flame control. It's and "ON" or "OFF" flame control.
So once you decided on how to light the gas fire feature you need to deal with the legal issues and I'm not going into this because it's varies to much from town to town. Where you locating the feature? Where's the gas coming from etc. Deal with the city on permits and such if necessary. And home owners associtions. Most all of our units are GSA cerified and will pass any inspection so far up to date so if you have any code issues we can help.
After you get the legal done, the design done and method of igniton dealt with then it's time to start putting it together. I'm not going into construction details of any specific fire feature. This is only about the gas guts to make the fire feature perform. We start this gas supply. Sorry but no advise here other then to consolut with a plumber or a Propane specialist. Natural gas is the safest and the biggest concern here is to make sure the supply line is large enough for th length of run vs. btu output from the fire featuyre. My thoughs are always go a little bigger. If it's not enough gas and your not happy with the quality of flame because of lack of gas your going to be pissed when you find out what it's going to take to fix it. Pipe is cheaper the first time. Just saying!
Ok now we have everything calcutlated and we are ready to lay the pipe and get the foudation to the fire pit in place. No matter what method of ignition you chaoose I want all the fire pits built to a basic install. I want a keyed gas shut off vlave inastall on every fire feature or fire pit and this valve should be install at the appliance not six or ten feet away but at the fire pit. If you can't do this then I have no further advise. Please teminate this page.
I am assuming that be now you have form boards in place for the footing or the slab. We want to come up with the gas line into the fire pit about three inchs in from the inside wall.Cap off the pipe and do the fountaion work. When all thats done and your ready to start build the walls of the fire pit we need to address how your going to install the gas key sut off valve. In my humble opinion putting the gas valve directly into the rock or brick work is a major mistake. The gas valve needs to be where it can be accessible in the future plus it's just a bad idea, Period.
This is the biggest make it or break it issue. The Key Gas Vlave.
Not all gas keyed shut off vlaves are the same. They look the same but they have different gas outputs. If you go to Home Depot and use one of the gas valves your screwed as they only put out 40K btu's vs. getting the proper gas valve that puts out 240K btu's Make sure whom ever is doing the install of the gas valve knows the output of the valve before it's installed.
So now we have run the gas line and we want to stub the gas line into the fire pit. Go Ahead and run the gas line into the fire pit / feature.
This is what we are going to do to compensate for for the vlave on the left on the top. This is obviously to small to fit thru a 12" wall. So what we do is remove the brass face plate and screw on a coupling and then add an nipple to extend the valve. What this does is it gives you a chase pipe built into the vlave so you can install this into the wall with mortar . Then we use a KEY that's about 12" long to feed thru this chase pipe to turn the gas valve on. There is no gas valve installed into the mortor or brick work of the fire pit.
Every Fire Pit Should this Set Up!
Not mattering which type of ignition system you use all of the options should start from this set up out. From this you add a flexible gas line to any option. This is basically what it looks like installed. The pipe you see is not a gas pipe. This is a chase line feeding thru the side wall of the fire pit for the key to feed into the valve to turn the gas on and off. In the future if you ever need to repair the valve this method makes any future repairs a lot eaiser. And no chance of a gas leak in the rock work.
. I know some about building sites but my forte is more Fire pit
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What We Offer
- We Retail Out of The Box Fire Pits, Chimineas, Patio Fireplace and Accessories
- Custom Made Fire Pit Safety Screens
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- How to design and build a Fire Pit. Both Wood Burner and Gas
- Making a Fire Pit Gas! Either New Construction or Converting an Existing
- What Media to Put on a Gas Fire Pit? Glass, Lava Rock or This New Cool Rock
- Finishing Your Fire Pit with the Proper Safely Screen and Hardware