How to Build an Outdoor Propane Fire Pit

Updated February 21, 2017

Outdoor fire pits powered by propane offer the look and feel of a campfire without the hassle of hauling or chopping wood. The fire pit utilises a fire pit propane burner and can be built in any decorative design that utilises non-flammable materials. The propane tank is usually placed in a hidden location away from the fire pit for aesthetic and safety reasons.

Excavate the ground below the planned fire pit. Remove sod and other organic material to a depth of about 4 inches and fill the area with gravel or pea-sized rock.

Place the propane fire pit burner on the centre of the gravel area and extend the hose to a nearby location where the propane tank can be placed out of sight.

Arrange a circle of landscape retaining wall blocks around the burner. For an elevated pit, stack two or more retaining wall blocks and add more gravel to the base before placing the fire pit burner at a level of about 6 inches below the top of the fire pit perimeter.

Cover the burner area with large pieces of non-flammable materials. This can include crushed lava rocks or glass pieces that reflect light and add interest to the flames.


Build a ground-level fire pit by excavating deeper into the ground. Start with a base of gravel for the fire pit burner to rest on. Add lava rock and glass pieces atop the burner.


Check all local building and zoning permits before beginning any construction project. Place the fire pit away from flammable surfaces such as the wall of the home.

Things You'll Need

  • Fire pit propane burner
  • Propane tank
  • Propane hose
  • Gravel
  • Crushed lava or glass pieces
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About the Author

Keith Allen, a 1979 graduate of Valley City State College, has worked at a variety of jobs including computer operator, medical clinic manager, radio talk show host and potato sorter. For over five years he has worked as a newspaper reporter and historic researcher. His works have appeared in regional newspapers in North Dakota and in "North Dakota Horizons" and "Cowboys and Indians" magazines.