Can You Use Charcoal In A Fire Pit?

The problem with using charcoal in a fire pit is that it can cause the embers to pop and fly, producing noxious fumes. In order to safely use charcoals, your fire pit should be covered or surrounded by an outdoor hearth enclosure.

The “can you use charcoal in a metal fire pit” is a question that I can answer. You cannot use charcoal in a metal fire pit, because it will cause the metal to rust.

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A backyard fire pit is a warm and inviting place to gather with family or friends. A fire pit may be as simple as a hole excavated in the ground or as complex as a piece of metal, masonry, or other hard material. Users, on the other hand, want to experiment with what may be burnt in their pits, and many are curious about the usefulness of charcoal in one.

Yes, charcoal may be used in a fire pit. Charcoal is wood that has been burnt in an oxygen-depleted environment, yet it can still burn more efficiently and generate heat, making it an excellent alternative for cooking in your fire pit.

Depending on the kind of fire pit you have, there are various options for feeding it. Let’s take a look at the many methods to fuel one.


Contents Table of Contents

  • Using Charcoal To Light A Fire Pit
  • The Advantages of a Charcoal Fire Pit
  • Purchasing a Charcoal Fire Pit
  • Lighting a Charcoal Fire Pit
  • Final Thoughts


Using Charcoal To Light A Fire Pit

Charcoal is made by burning wood with very little oxygen present. The material is popular with firepit aficionados for the following reasons:

  • It’s easy to find and buy at any shop.
  • Easily illuminated
  • Maintains a high temperature
  • Because no smoky odor is released, the smoky taste will not overshadow the dish if used for grilling.


Choosing the Right Charcoal Type

There are many varieties of charcoal available.

  • Charcoal that has been compressed. This charcoal is ordinary charcoal that can be found in any grocery store. They combine tiny bits of wood with other elements such as seeds, and chemical binders and igniters aid in the ignition and maintenance of the fire.
  • Smoking woods and pressed charcoal When you grill, smoking woods like hickory are absorbed into the charcoal to give it a smoky taste. There is a “match light” variation of both types of pressed charcoal.
  • Lump charcoal is created by blackening and scorching pure hardwood fuel. Heat is more powerful, and food has a superior taste since it is chemical-free.

The Advantages of a Charcoal Fire Pit

What are the benefits of having a fire pit? Having one has more benefits than just aesthetics.


Consider a chilly winter night when you wish to spend time with your family in the backyard. The bonding time with your family will be enhanced by swarming around the campfire and remaining warm together.



Over the campfire, you may roast marshmallows, grill hotdogs, and steaks, to name a few things. To cook, you just need a grill plate, pots, pans, and sticks, among other things.

A Great Place to Gather

Are you planning a modest gathering? The fire pit will be the center focus of the evening, adding atmosphere as your guests congregate around it to speak and enjoy hot beverages. The enjoyable, intimate evening spent around the campfire will be remembered by guests.

Increases the value of your home

According to the National Association of Realtors, curb appeal is a significant factor for house purchasers. Having a fire feature scored eighth out of 13 outside projects that appealed to purchasers, while the chance that outside improvements contributed value to a house placed the fire feature 11th out of 13 projects.

According to the research, 83 percent of individuals who had finished installing a fire feature chose to remain at home, and 66 percent indicated they loved being at home more.

The attraction of projects to purchasers is evaluated by REALTORS® (highest to lowest) REALTOR® ranking of projects that are likely to improve resale value to a property (highest to lowest)
1. Lawn Care Service (Standard) 1. Upkeep of the landscape
2. Maintenance of the landscape 2. Improvements to the overall landscape
3. Improvements to the overall landscape 3. Lawn Maintenance Service (Standard)
4. Tree Maintenance 4. A brand new patio
5. A brand-new wooden deck 5. A brand-new wooden deck
6. Brand-new patio 6. Tree Maintenance
Landscape Lighting, No. 7 Landscape Lighting, No. 7
Fire Feature No. 8 Landscape Statement No. 8
Installation of an Irrigation System Installation of an Irrigation System
Landscape Statement No. 10 Outdoor Kitchen No. 10
Outdoor Kitchen No. 11 Fire Feature No. 11
12. New Swimming Pool Water Features (12)
Water Features Number Thirteen 13. New Swimming Pool

Purchasing a Charcoal Fire Pit

Charcoal Fire Pits are available in a variety of sizes and features. Your budget is the most important issue, since fire pits may cost anywhere from $100 to over a thousand dollars, depending on the material and amenities.


The weight of a charcoal fire pit is generally less than that of a gas fire pit. Consider getting one that’s movable so you can move it around depending on where you need additional warmth.

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Is it better to cook or not to cook?

Is the campfire only for warmth, or will you use it to cook? If that’s the case, look for grilling options.

Feature of Safety

A spark screen should be included with the charcoal fire pit. Any sparks from the fire will be securely confined in this manner.

Lighting a Charcoal Fire Pit

It’s a lot simpler to light charcoal in your fire pit today than it used to be to build a fire by rubbing two pieces of wood or stones together. It’s nearly as inconvenient as lighting a match and some wood and then fanning it to keep the fire going. 

Here are some more common ways to ignite a fire pit.

Fluid that is lighter

Easily found in grocery stores, Fluid that is lighters are an easy, if albeit messy, way to start your charcoal fire. Just squirt an appropriate amount of liquid and light with a long match. Wait till there are glowing embers and not just a fire. Only use the recommended lighter fuel and not kerosene or gasoline. Make sure to NEVER squirt Fluid that is lighter on an already lit charcoal fire pit.

Lighter that matches

Some types of charcoal already have Fluid that is lighter incorporated. Only use matches to light this charcoal, however, it may need some help in getting the embers to glow. A small amount of Fluid that is lighter may be necessary or some kindling like a newspaper.

Starter for Charcoal by Electricity

This necessitates the presence of an electrical outlet nearby, which must be plugged in in order to ignite the fire. A metal loop is put on top of the charcoal in the starter, which is then fully covered with additional charcoal. The charcoal may take between 8 and 12 minutes to heat up. The starter may be removed after the embers are blazing.

Starter for a Charcoal Chimney

This pitcher seems like it’s made of glass, but it’s really constructed of aluminized steel. It works by inserting newspaper and charcoal into the chimney starter, which can be purchased online. Wait for the charcoal to begin to heat up after lighting the newspaper in various spots. Simply drop the burning charcoal into the charcoal grate after the embers flare.

Use Your Charcoal Ash for Something Else

Don’t simply toss the charcoal or wood ashes in the trash. Instead, try some of the following applications for charcoal and wood ash:

  • When sprayed after rain, it acts as a repellent to snails and slugs.
  • Small particles of charcoal placed in a container with holes may assist to absorb moisture from closets, beneath the sink, and other places.
  • Dip a moist towel into some ashes to clean cutlery.
  • Wood ash may be used to de-ice a pavement instead of salt.

Precautions for Using a Charcoal Fire Pit

There are basic safety considerations to take regardless of the kind of fire pit you have.

  • Always keep an eye on your fire pit.
  • Make sure your fire pit is at least 10 feet away from any structures or low-hanging branches.
  • Before you light up, check the weather forecast, particularly to make sure it isn’t windy.
  • It’s always a good idea to screen your fire pit, whether it’s windy or not. Flying embers are less likely to spark a fire, particularly in the summer.
  • Make sure the fire is completely extinguished. Ashes might resurface from time to time.
  • Maintaining a positive connection with your neighbors begins with respect. Check to see whether the smoke is blowing excessively into their residence, particularly if they have COPD or asthma.
  • Check with local municipal officials to be sure you’re following the requirements, particularly if you’re utilizing natural gas.
  • Make certain that no youngsters are left alone near the fire pit.
  • If your lounge chairs are movable, arrange them so that people can move around easily without tripping or getting too close to the fire.

Final Thoughts

Fire pits are popular not just in the winter but also in the summer. A fire pit, whether it’s charcoal or gas, provides a relaxing and gathering spot for the family. Following safety precautions while using the fire pit will add to the enjoyment of owning one. Check out our post to learn more about what you may place in the bottom of your fire pit.


You can use charcoal in a fire pit, but it is not recommended. It will take longer to get the fire started and will be harder to maintain. Reference: how to start a fire pit with charcoal.

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