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Outdoor Fireplace vs Fire Pit: Enhancing Your Outdoor Living Space

When considering an addition to your outdoor living space, the decision between an outdoor fireplace and a fire pit is a common dilemma. 

Both options offer unique benefits and can transform your outdoor space into a cozy, inviting area for relaxation and entertainment. 

This blog post explores the pros and cons of outdoor fireplaces and fire pits, helping you decide which fire feature suits your outdoor living area best.

Outdoor Fireplace vs Fire Pit

Outdoor Fireplaces: A Focal Point of Elegance

Fireplaces serve as a stunning focal point in any outdoor living space, providing warmth, light, and a sense of luxury. They are often built into or against a wall, offering a more structured and permanent feature to your outdoor area. 

Fireplaces are ideal for those who prefer a more intimate setting, as they typically direct heat to a specific area, creating a cozy environment for those gathered around.

Advantages Disadvantages
Architectural Statement: An outdoor fireplace adds a significant architectural element to your outdoor space, enhancing its aesthetics. Cost: Due to their construction and materials, outdoor fireplaces tend to be more expensive than fire pits.
Wind Protection: Fireplaces provide a barrier against the wind, ensuring the fire remains lit and comfortable for guests. Space Requirements: Outdoor fireplaces require more space and a suitable backdrop or wall for installation.
Smoke Direction: Designed to direct smoke upwards through a chimney, fireplaces minimize smoke exposure to guests. Limited Seating: The structured design may limit seating options around the fire.

Fire Pits: A Versatile Gathering Spot

Fire pits, on the other hand, offer versatility and a communal atmosphere, making them a popular choice for many homeowners. 

Outdoor fire pits tend to be more adaptable to various spaces and styles, from wood-burning fire pits to gas-powered options. 

They provide 360-degree warmth, allowing guests to gather around the fire from any side, fostering a more social environment.

Advantages Disadvantages
Versatility: Fire pits can fit a variety of outdoor spaces, from large yards to small patios. Smoke: Wood-burning fire pits may produce smoke that can be bothersome, depending on the wind direction.
Social Interaction: The circular design encourages guests to gather around, promoting conversation and interaction. Safety: Open flames in fire pits require careful management and safety precautions to prevent accidents.
Variety of Designs: Fire pits are available in numerous styles, materials, and fuel types, including wood-burning and gas, catering to different preferences. Weather Exposure: Fire pits are generally more exposed to the elements than fireplaces, which may affect their longevity and require more maintenance.

Start transforming your backyard into a tranquil gathering space today. Contact Legacy Outdoor Services to schedule a consultation and explore our range of outdoor fireplaces and fire pits, tailored to your vision and needs. (979) 575-6019

Consider These Attributes before You Purchase a Fire Pit or Fireplace From Anyone

Deciding to add a fire feature to your outdoor space is an exciting prospect, but it’s essential to carefully consider several attributes before making your purchase. 

Whether you lean towards an outdoor fireplace or a fire pit, think about the design of your outdoor area, how you plan to use the space, and the level of maintenance you’re willing to undertake. 

Your choice should complement your lifestyle and enhance your outdoor experience.

outdoor fireplace on a patio with string lights

What is an Outdoor Fireplace?

An outdoor fireplace is a structured fire feature, often built into or against a wall, that serves as a focal point in an outdoor living space. It typically offers a more formal and intimate setting, providing warmth and ambiance to your backyard or patio. 

Fireplaces are constructed from materials like brick, stone, or concrete, and can be fueled by wood, gas, or propane. 

Their architectural presence adds elegance to your outdoor space and increases your home’s market value.

Fire Pit vs Fireplace: How Much Flexibility Do You Need?

When deciding between a fire pit and an outdoor fireplace, consider the flexibility each option offers. Fire pits provide a versatile and communal gathering spot, suitable for various outdoor settings and sizes. Their portability allows for easy relocation within your outdoor space, offering flexibility in layout and design. 

Fire pits are ideal for those who enjoy entertaining large groups, as they provide 360-degree access to the warmth and ambiance of the fire.

Conversely, Fireplaces offer a more fixed and structured element to your space. They are best suited for those seeking a permanent and elegant fire feature that anchors their outdoor design.

While outdoor fireplaces may not offer the same level of flexibility as fire pits, they excel in creating a cozy and intimate atmosphere, perfect for smaller gatherings or quiet evenings at home.

Outdoor Fire Features: Gas or Wood?

Another critical consideration when choosing between an outdoor fireplace and a fire pit is the fuel type. Both gas and wood-burning options have their unique benefits and drawbacks.

Gas Fire Features:


Gas fire pits and fireplaces are easy to ignite and extinguish, offering instant warmth and ambiance without the need for firewood.


Gas burns cleaner than wood, producing no ash or embers, which makes maintenance simpler.


With gas fire features, you can easily control the flame size and heat output, ensuring a comfortable outdoor environment.

Wood-Burning Fire Features:

Authentic Experience

Many people prefer the crackling sound, smell, and ambiance of a real wood fire, which can enhance the outdoor experience.

Natural Warmth

Wood fires tend to produce more heat, making them ideal for cooler nights.


Wood is often more affordable than gas, especially if you have access to free or low-cost firewood.

Ultimately, your choice between gas and wood will depend on your preferences for convenience, maintenance, and the sensory experience you wish to create in your space.

Adirondack chairs around a fire pit, seating in an outdoor gathering place

Safety Considerations

Safety is paramount when integrating a fire feature into your outside space. For fire pits, ensure they are placed on a non-combustible surface and away from structures or flammable materials.

Outdoor fireplaces should have a proper chimney or venting system to direct smoke away.

Outback prioritizes safety in every installation, ensuring compliance with local codes and regulations for a worry-free experience.

Fire Pit = Addition and Movement

Fire pits offer the advantage of portability and flexibility. They can be easily moved to different locations within your outdoor area, accommodating various entertainment needs and allowing for a dynamic open space. 

This versatility makes fire pits an attractive option for those who enjoy rearranging their outdoor settings.

Fireplace = High ROI

Investing in an outdoor fireplace can significantly increase the return on investment (ROI) for your property. As a permanent and elegant addition to your outdoor area, a fireplace enhances the aesthetic appeal and makes your home more attractive to buyers.

Fire Pit = Difficult ROI

While fire pits add warmth and ambiance to your outdoor area, they may not significantly impact your home’s ROI like outdoor fireplaces do. Their portable nature and lower cost mean they are viewed more as accessories rather than substantial property improvements.

Fireplace = High Brow

Outdoor fireplaces are often seen as luxurious or “high brow” elements of outdoor design. They can be custom-built to match your home’s architecture, creating a cohesive and upscale outdoor living environment that exudes sophistication and style.

Fire Pit = Low Brow

Fire pits, while incredibly versatile and functional, are often considered more casual or “low brow” compared to outdoor fireplaces. They foster a relaxed atmosphere, ideal for informal gatherings and cozy nights under the stars.

Fireplace = Middle Privacy

An outdoor fireplace provides a moderate level of privacy in your open air space. Its structure can act as a visual barrier, creating a more secluded and intimate setting for you and your guests to enjoy.

Fire Pit = Low Privacy

Fire pits generally offer less privacy than outdoor fireplaces due to their open design and lower profile. They are designed for communal use, focusing on the shared experience around the fire rather than seclusion.

Fire Pit: Sociability and Versatility

Conversely, fire pits tend to be the go-to choice for homeowners seeking flexibility and sociability. Fire pits offer a 360-degree gathering spot, encouraging interaction and camaraderie among guests. 

Their open design facilitates a communal atmosphere and allows for a more extensive view of the flames, enhancing the overall outdoor experience.

Custom fire pits, including custom-built fire pit options, provide the opportunity to tailor your backyard fire feature to your precise preferences. 

Whether you opt for a wood-burning fire pit for the authentic crackle and aroma of burning logs or a gas-powered model for convenience and ease of use, fire pits adapt effortlessly to a wide range of outdoor settings and design themes.

Outdoor living space with furniture and firepit.

Make The Right Decision For Your Home

In conclusion, whether you choose an outdoor fireplace for its ambiance and aesthetic appeal, or a fire pit for its versatility and social allure, Legacy Outdoor Services stands ready to assist you.

Equip your outdoor space in Brazos County, TX with an element that enhances the atmosphere and extends the comfort and enjoyment of your home into the open air. Embrace the flames; choose warmth, style, and functionality with the trusted experts in outdoor living. Contact us today! (979) 575-6019