Cement Paver Fire Pit

Our cement paver fire pitI completed our backyard fire pit today, and I have to say that 1-day projects like that are much more fun than the week or even month-long projects that I have been doing (patio, fence, deck, etc).

I removed the sod, and dug down into the earth about 6 inches to get a level base. I dug a sump in the middle, about 1.5 ft in diameter and an extra 1.5 ft down into the ground, given how much it rains here. I then poured a ring of quickcrete around the perimeter of the excavation to provide a solid base for the cement pavers.

Stacking the pavers vertically, one rung at a time, I used landscape adhesive applied from a chalking gun to cut down on the manual labor of mixing mortar mix. On each rung I put about a half inch gap between two of the pavers. This allows for air flow into the fire pit and helps keep a smoldering fire hot.

Firepit with PatioThe  cement paver caps from Lowes came square, without the pre-cut angels of the pavers, so I had to cut each one. This proved to be the biggest time sink of the project, but luckily I had picked up a diamond tipped blade for my chop saw, so that saved me a couple hours. I used my air compressor to blow off the chop-saw afterwards, but I’m sure the cement dust will not help extend the life of my tools.

To finish off the project I spray painted the inside of the fire pit black and filled the sump and bottom rung with washed gravel. I’ll be hitting the fire pit with my pressure washer tomorrow, once it sets up, to knock the chunks of cement dust off of the pavers. Looking forward to giving this a test run this weekend.

Next project… finishing our pergola! Getting the materials to the house was half the battle really, considering that even my Taco’s “long bed” can’t properly haul a 16ft board without it sea-sawing down the road. Now that I have all of the bolts and lumber here, I am hoping to make it another single day project.

9 Comments

  1. vic says:

    did you use fire bricks to line the inside of your pit?? and how much was the final cost i am thinking of doing a pit myself and need all the help i can get thanks btw i am in so cal near los angeles thanks

  2. Tim says:

    You had a full winter to enjoy your firepit. (1) Did you experience any smell from the block adhesive once it got hot? (2) Notice any cracking in the blocks? I’ve read lining the inside with fire brick is a good idea.

  3. admin says:

    No noticeable smell from the adhesive or any cracks in the pavers. My first coat of standard “black spray paint” on the inside burnt off after the first fire. I picked up some “high temp” black paint and that seems to have done the trick.

  4. admin says:

    I didn’t use fire bricks on the inside, just the standard cement pavers. have had about 12 large fires and have only noticed some slight redness/discoloration in the bricks. I used some high temp spray paint (usually used for BBQs) and that has worked out nicely. Think the final cost was around $250 and that is including a small load of gravel and a few bags of cement for the base.

  5. trakcon says:

    I actually have some of the same bricks/pavers left over from a retaining wall project. How has your fire pit held up over time? Thanks, in advance!

  6. admin says:

    The fire pit has held up well. The spray painted black inside burned off after a few raging fires. I made the mistake of trying to split some wood on one of the cement caps and cracked one – but otherwise it has been a great addition to our backyard.

  7. […] cement paver fire pit is a good choice if you’re looking for a one-day project that looks great. Beauross.com provides instructions on how to build this project. You’ll just need a shovel, quickcrete to line […]

  8. eric says:

    So do you reccomend painting the inside with high heat paint or is that a waste of time

  9. Beau says:

    Heat paint was a waste of time. It burned off after a few large fires. The heat paint doesn’t bond well with the cement pavers.

    The heat has caused some discoloration on the inside of the firepit, so might recommend taking a torch to a test block so see what that ultimately looks like.

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