Updated on March 29, 2021
For family or friends, fire pits bring people together, and installing one is an almost guaranteed way to draw people to your home. Whether it’s a cozy autumn evening or a balmy summer night, adding a fire pit to your outdoor space not only adds warmth, but an element of true sophistication that will take your backyard to the next level, with a high-end touch.
Fire pits are an essential for those who love to entertain, but their value and impact can be felt on a daily basis. They are able to be utilized year round, and give you a reason to spend time in your outdoor oasis that you’ve put so much time and effort into, even if that simply means unplugging after a long work day and unwinding by yourself or with family members.
There are endless options when it comes to fire pit design, but Swenson Granite Works has compiled the perfect DIY kit, to truly customize your backyard exactly as you want it. Quick and easy to assemble, the project should take less than a day to complete, which means you could be cozied up next to roaring flames, s’more in one hand, beverage in the other, staring up at the stars, before nightfall.
Swenson’s fire pit is made from renowned WOODBURY GRAY™ granite, with a 30” diameter cast iron ring and tilt back cooking grate included. Other ring styles are available.
Fire pits are stocked in WOODBURY GRAY™ and CALEDONIA™ plus five other granite colors are available by special order: , CAROLINA CORAL™, AUTUMN PINK™, DEER ISLE, BETHEL WHITE® and CAMBRIAN BLACK®.
There are 16 blocks per tier, and each block weighs roughly 50 lbs. The fire pit is available in 1-tier, 2-tier or 3-tier options.
WHY CHOOSE GRANITE OVER BRICK OR CONCRETE?
You may have seen or heard about alternative fire pit options. Brick and concrete are two other common materials considered for fire pits, but when investing in something that will get as much use as an outdoor fire pit, it’s important to choose the most reliable (and aesthetically pleasing) option. Unlike brick and concrete, granite is incredibly naturally durable and will stand up to the elements year after year. Able to withstand the freeze-thaw cycle, granite is a virtually maintenance free option, and won’t rust or stain your outdoor patio — it’s as tough as it is beautiful.
Swenson Granite Works’ DIY kit utilizes far fewer stones than its brick or concrete counterparts. Fewer stones means less time assembling, and less work for you. No mortar is used in the assembling of these kits — blocks are stacked and will stay together. Natural stone offers a variety of colors to choose from, and the colors you’ve so carefully selected will not fade.
Need some inspiration before you get started?
Jen Migonis, a home design blogger, real estate investor and mother of four, wanted a small, cozy space to relax with her family and roast marshmallows.
With such a busy schedule, Jen needed a quick, but quality installation. “I’d highly recommend checking out this fire pit from Swenson Granite Works if you live in New England — it was so simple to set up,” said Migonis.
See how the DIY Woodbury Gray granite fire pit from Swenson Granite Works was the perfect finishing touch to the Migonis’ Nantucket style backyard retreat at their newly renovated Cape-style home in Manchester-by-the-Sea, Massachusetts.
If you’re a fan of that classic New England style we all know and love, check out how Robbin Mangano, the lifestyle blogger behind The New England Life, and husband Jeff added classic charm to their home as a way to spend more time outdoors with family.
“Since moving into our new home, Jeff and I have been trying to find new ways to get outside,” explains Robbin. “For years, we’ve been looking into building a fire pit that we’d use ALL the time for backyard fires, roasting s’mores, grilling hotdogs, etc.”
Other options were clunky and time consuming, so Robbin opted for a simple DIY installation with a Swenson Granite Works kit, which takes less than a day to complete. Like many, Robbin was hesitant to tackle the installation process herself, but her fears were quickly put to rest, and she and Jeff were able to successfully install a Woodbury Gray granite fire pit that requires minimal maintenance and will keep the family outdoors and enjoying their backyard for years to come.
Setting up your fire pit is just the first step for making your outdoor retreat the envy of the neighborhood. Check out these fire pit add-ons for making your backyard everyone’s favorite hang out.
A GUIDE TO FIRE PIT INSTALLATION
Not quite sure where to start? Building a fire pit is easier than you think. (Not to mention you get to tell your guests you did it yourself — no contractor required.) South Hadley, Massachusetts store manager Daniel Richard and assistant manager Thomas Gajewski will walk you through an easy to follow demonstration on how to install a Woodbury Gray granite fire pit kit.
These step-by step instructions will make assembling your fire pit easy and accurate.
- You will first need to excavate an area approximately 4’-6” in diameter and at least 6” in depth. Fill the area with processed gravel or mason sand, compacting until level. Then, dig a hole in the center of this circle approximately 12” in diameter and 24” deep and fill it with crushed stone. This will allow proper drainage during periods of rain. If you are building your fire pit on top of a solid surface, such as a patio with stone pavers, take out enough pavers in the middle of the circle to dig the required hole, then pitch the remainder of the pavers that are within the circle toward the hole for proper drainage.
- As Swenson’s granite fire pit blocks are a natural stone, there will be a variation in thickness, which is well within the standard industry guidelines for cut granite products. Take some time to sort through the blocks and make groups of sixteen blocks that match thickness as closely as possible, reserving the most consistent block layers for use as your middle and/or top layers. The reason for this is that the bottom layer is your most flexible layer, in that you can adjust the gravel to create a level surface with which to add additional layers.
- Using the metal ring as a guide, line up sixteen granite fire pit blocks around the ring, which will create a circle of granite with a 30” inside diameter. Adjust the fire pit blocks as needed to be sure they are tight together, and that they are level. Then, remove the metal fire ring.
- Install the second layer of fire pit blocks on top of the first layer, overlapping blocks as you go to form a solid bond. Install the metal fire ring into this second layer, to ensure that you have a good tight fit, or add a third layer of fire pit blocks before fitting the metal fire ring.
- The interior of the fire pit will need to be filled with processed gravel or mason sand. Compact the layers of gravel every four inches or so, until you reach the bottom of the flange of the metal fire ring, readjusting stones as needed to create a good fit.
- Complete your fire pit: Metal dome fire pit screens are available to purchase from Swenson Granite Works. The dome screen will offer an added layer of protection from the fire and prevent sparks from burning those sitting around it. However, if you want to partially expose the fire, the dome does open up.
- Light a fire and enjoy your quality fire pit from Swenson Granite Works!
You can use the printer friendly version of the Fire Pit Installation Guide to simplify the process.
Take a look through The Heart of the Home Inspiration Guide for more ideas on how to incorporate a natural stone fire pit into your home design. Download it here.