Gas vs Wood Burning Fire Pits: Choosing The Ideal Ignition

As delicate snowflakes start to pepper the ground and cold temperatures begin to set in, you might find yourself turning to warm thoughts of sipping hot cocoa near a crackling backyard fire. The question arises, should I choose a gas or wood burning fire pit to create my backyard ambiance and warm my toes with this holiday season?

Consider several key factors when deciding between a wood or gas fire pit. Many of these factors come down to what is best suited to your wants and needs. Let’s help you make the best decision by breaking down each of these factors! 


Struggling to get that darn flame going? Well, a gas fire pit can easily light with a simple click of a button or flick of a lighter. It also provides a constant, steady heat. On the other hand, a wood fire pit requires the knowledge (and skill) of building a fire. It also requires work to maintain a continuous heat source (i.e., adding a new log to the fire when needed). 

Wood burning fire pits also require the additional time of finding a supplier for wood, potentially hauling the wood, chopping it, stacking it, and then carrying it to your fire pit. They can also be a little messy, so keep in mind you will be sweeping up bits of runaway bark and escaped twigs.


Gas fire pits typically burn liquid propane or natural gas, whereas wood fire pits require dry wood (emphasis on dry). Because wood fire pits hold logs, they tend to be larger than gas fire pits, so your location and the space you have will need to be considered. Also, consider your location. Do you have easy access to firewood? Do you live in a home with a gas line already in place? Is your home easily accessible to the propane delivery truck needed to refill your fuel tank?

Fuel Storage

A gas fire pit needs a storage tank in order to burn. The tank size depends on your preference and can be anywhere from 15 to 100 gallons. It is important to remember a fuel tank can detract from your backyard’s atmosphere, so consider the size and location of the tank.

A wood pit will also require room for fuel storage. However, you may like the rustic look of a neatly stacked pile of firewood. Here at Fire Pit Art, we offer several gorgeous, practical, and effective solutions for your firewood storage. Our Steel Log Crescent creates a clean, easy way to store your firewood, keeping it dry and off the ground while adding to the ambiance of your backyard space.


Gas fire pits are more energy-efficient than wood-burning fire pits. Additionally, gas burns “cleaner,” meaning it produces fewer emissions than wood into the atmosphere. 

Environmental Concerns

Both wood and gas have their pros and cons when it comes to the environment. While wood is a renewable resource making it ideal for the environment, gas is the cleaner option. Because gas is a cleaner option, it is also better for people to breathe in, specifically people who may struggle with respiratory problems, such as asthma. 


Gas fire pits tend to be more challenging to install than wood-burning fire pits. Often gas lines, installed by a professional need to be run to the fire pit. Wood fire pits, on the other hand, can be as simple as a DIY project; however, for safety reasonons, it is recommended that a professional build your fire pit. Lucky for you, we are in the business of building breathtaking fire pit beauty and have a style to fit your needs!

A wood fire pit needs to meet certain requirements, such as needing a metal frame and requiring a certain distance from the house. While the gas fire pit has fewer rules to follow, it is vital that the gas lines are installed correctly and safely.


While a gas fire pit does not leave your clothes and hair smelling of smoke, it can take away from the charm of a natural fire. The smell of the wood burning, the sound of the fire crackling work together to create the picture-perfect ambiance for your family gathering, late night hangout, summer s’more party, or cold weather coaco sipping. 


Wood fire pits require more maintenance than gas fire pits. Holding soot, ash, and logs, wood fire pits need to be shoveled out and cleaned regularly. When cleaning out your wood fire pit, you will want to consider if your wood has been treated with creosote. Creosote is a wood preservative tar substance and can be dangerous to inhale. Being careful of where you source your wood can reduce this as typically, this substance is used to protect outdoor wood serving a purpose such as utility poles and railroad ties.

A gas fire pit requires minimal maintenance. Since its fuel source is gas, there is no debris to clean out. Simply wipe down the outside of the fire pit when needed and place a cover over it for rainy or snowy days. 


With all forms of fire, regardless of the source, it is important to be responsible. With a gas fire pit there is always the possibility of gas leaks. Due to potential gas leaks it is vital to have your gas system checked thoroughly. In addition, prioritize having routine maintenance performed on the gas lines to avoid potential safety threats. Safety precautions surrounding a wood-burning fire pit include ensuring the fire is completely out before leaving, not leaving a burning fire unsupervised, and stacking your firewood properly in the pit to ensure a safe burn. 

Increased Home Value

Both gas and wood-burning fire pits can increase the resale value of your home. By already having a fire pit installed, you are providing potential buyers with a key backyard feature, one that they don’t have to worry about installing later on. While wood fire pits offer a picture-perfect ambiance, gas fire pits are more eco-friendly and cleaner, which can give them a higher investment return.

Local Permits/Burn Bans

Certain areas institute burn bans during the hot, dry months of summer. These burn bans include fire pits that have open, wood-burning flames. Additionally, some neighborhoods may require a special permit to place a fire pit outside of the property. Always familiarize yourself with local laws before making a final decision.

Regardless of what fuel-burning choice is best for you, at Fire Pit Art, we are excited to share our passion and knowledge of fire pits with you. Whether you decide on a gas or wood-burning fire pit, here’s to bringing your family and friends together through your warming backyard addition.

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