Concrete slabs provide an ideal base for installing a fire pit; they are stable, fireproof and typically already level. If you have a concrete patio, or have laid a concrete slab specifically for the fire pit, you will be creating an outdoor feature that can provide both warmth, light and if occasion calls for it, food. Fire pits can easily be turned into a makeshift barbecue grill by simply putting a grill plate over the opening.
Draw the dimensions of the fire pit onto the concrete slab, using chalk. Most fire pits are round, but you can make a square, rectangular, octagon or any other shape you want. If you're using a fire pit insert, use the size of the insert as a guide to the pit dimensions.
Dry-lay the bricks around the chalked-in lines. Build up the walls of the bricks to around 2 feet high, staggering the joints to add strength.
Mix the surface bonding cement according to the manufacturer's directions. Apply the cement to the entire brick structure. Use the trowel to smooth on the cement, creating a layer all over around ½ inch thick. Extend the cement out at the base around 5 inches, then graduate it to the level of the concrete slab. Allow the pit to cure for at least three days.
Empty out and clean the fire pit.
Fill the bottom of the fire pit with a 2- to 3-inch layer of builder's sand.
Add lava rock, either whole or crushed, to the interior of the fire pit, on top of the sand but under the gas burner, until the rock reaches 2 inches from the top of the pit. Reposition the burner on top of the lava rock.
Fill the last 2 inches of available space inside the fire pit with fire pit glass so that it covers the gas burner. Use the fire pit as normal.
Mix the bag of dry cement with water in a large metal bucket. Use a shovel to mix thoroughly. Find the ratio of cement to water on the package.
Strike the chisel with a hammer to break weak pieces of concrete around the pit. Fashion the pit into a square with an even bottom and slightly undercut sides.
Clear the pit by sweeping concrete chunks and vacuuming concrete dust.
Brush on the concrete bonding liquid using a standard paintbrush. Brush thoroughly onto the sides of the pit and the bottom.
Scoop the concrete mix into the pit with a trowel until it is completely filled. Be sure to firmly press concrete into the corners.
Level the concrete. With your trowel, spread the concrete evenly so that the surface of the wet concrete is even with that of the driveway or sidewalk.
Add texture to the repaired pit by sweeping over the wet concrete surface with a moistened broom.
Let the concrete dry for 24 hours before using the driveway or sidewalk.
The outdoor season is finally here, time to get ready for those backyard gatherings and cookouts. An added element for these good times is a fire ring to gather around for roasting hot dogs or marshmallows, or just relaxing and listening to the sounds of nature at night or your favorite tunes. A semi wheel makes a long-lasting fire ring. Semi wheels can be purchased reasonably from a junkyard or any garage that services the big rigs.
Put some hot water and grease-cutting dish soap into the bucket.
Thoroughly wash the fire pit, using the soapy solution and the scrub brush.
Sand down any rust spots with the sandpaper.
Put down newspaper or a drop cloth to protect your work area. Work outdoors to ensure proper ventilation.
Spray a light coat of paint on the fire pit. A heavy coat of paint may run and drip.
Allow the paint coat to dry for two hours.
Spray another coat and allow to dry.
Determine the location. The spot should be convenient for its purpose, whether you'll be cooking over it or lounging beside it. The area should be flat and not close to trees or structures that could accidentally catch fire.
Decide if your fire pit will be circular, square or free form.
Dig a 6-inch deep trench the size and shape of the fire pit. Lay 2 inches of gravel at the bottom of the trench, then fill with concrete. Tap the concrete surface with a trowel to remove air pockets and smooth the top.
Use cinder block, brick or stone to build a wall on top of the concrete without using mortar. This way, you can remove any blocks that crack over time. Don't build the fire pit more than 2 ½ to 3 feet tall to maintain stability.
Spread gravel evenly in the bottom of the fire pit to a depth of about 2 inches.
Top the walls of the fire pit with flagstones or other fireproof decorative materials. Place a fireplace grate in the bottom to hold large logs.