Can You Use Charcoal In A Fire Pit?

Having a fire pit in your backyard is a great way to spend time with loved ones and make new ones.

Anything from a hole dug in the ground to something more substantial made of metal, brick, or another hard material can be used as a fire pit.

Charcoal’s effectiveness in a pit is a common topic of discussion among users who like to experiment with what they can burn in theirs.

Yes, you can use charcoal in a fire pit.

Charcoal is wood that’s been burned in an oxygen-deprived area, but it is still able to burn more, create heat, and is a great option if you plan to cook in your fire pit.

There are other ways of fueling your fire pit, depending on the pit you have.

Let’s look at the different ways to fuel one.

Fueling A Fire Pit With Charcoal

In order to produce charcoal, wood must be burned in an area with very little oxygen.

This substance is popular amongst firepit enthusiasts for a number of reasons:

  • Simple to get your hands on at any retail establishment.
  • It’s simple to light
  • Maintains a steady temperature
  • Since no smoke is emitted, the smoky flavor won’t overpower the food when grilling it.

Choosing the Right Type of Charcoal

A variety of charcoals are on the market.

  • Pressed charcoal. If you’re looking for regular charcoal, you can find it at any supermarket. Wood and other materials like seeds are combined with chemical binders and igniters to make them more easily ignite and burn for longer periods of time.
  • Pressed charcoal with smoking woods. Charcoal is made with hickory and other smoked woods in order to impart a smoky flavor when you grill. A “match light” version is available for both types of pressed charcoal.
  • Lump charcoal is made from blackened and scorched hardwood firewood. Intense heat and the absence of chemicals enhance the taste of food.

Is it Better to Use Charcoal Than Firewood In Firewood?

Carbonized wood has been condensed and burned in an oxygen-free environment, which results in the term “charcoal.”

In addition to firewood, charcoal can be used in a variety of ways.

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When starting a campfire, it’s common practice to use firewood to build a firebase.

In addition to placing the charcoal on top of the firewood, a charcoal firepit can also be used.

Benefits of Having A Charcoal Fire Pit

How can a fire pit benefit your yard? Having one isn’t just good for appearances.


Imagine a chilly night in the backyard with your family, and you’d like to stay out there.

The time you spend with your family will be more enjoyable if you all gather around the fire pit to keep warm.


The firepit can be used to cook a variety of foods, including marshmallows, hotdogs, and steaks.

A grill plate, pots, pans, sticks, and other cooking utensils are all you need to get started.

A place to Gather Around

What about a small get-together? With hot drinks in hand, your guests will congregate around the fire pit for conversation and mingling.

Guests will never forget the wonderful time they had huddled around the firepit with friends and family.

Increases Home Value

Curb appeal is an important factor for home buyers, according to a report by the National Association of Realtors.

The likelihood that an outdoor project will increase the value of a home ranked the fire feature 11th out of 13 projects that appealed to homebuyers.

Among those who had completed the addition of a fire feature, 83 percent stated that they preferred to stay at home, and 66 percent stated that they enjoyed staying at home even more.

A Place to Gather Around

When hosting a party, having a central location for guests to gather allows for simple tasks like announcements, guest coordination, and more.

An outdoor fire pit can be the focal point of your party, drawing guests together to converse and enjoy food and drink.

Everyone will remember the cozy time spent around the fire pit.

Shopping For a Charcoal Fire Pit

These charcoal fire pits come in a variety of sizes and with various additional options.

Fire pits can cost anywhere from $100 to more than a thousand dollars, depending on the material and features.


The heat produced by a charcoal fire pit is generally milder than that of a gas fire pit.

Think about getting a portable heater that you can move around based on where you need the most warmth.

To Cook or Not to Cook

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Will you cook over the firepit or just keep warm? If this is the case, look for models that include a grilling feature.

Safety Feature

Any charcoal fire pit worth its salt should come equipped with a spark screen.

In the event of any embers from the fire, this will keep them contained.

How to Light A Charcoal Fire Pit

Rather than rubbing two pieces of wood or stones together to start a fire, it’s much easier to light the charcoal in your fire pit these days.

Using a match, some kindling, and a fan to keep the fire going is nearly as inconvenient as having to wait for it to burn out.

Here are a few more common ways to light your fire pit.

Lighter Fluid

Lighter fluids are readily available in supermarkets and can be used to start a charcoal fire.

Just squirt a small amount of liquid and light a long match to get the desired effect.

You should wait until there are embers that glow, not just an open flame.

Kerosene and gasoline should never be used as lighter fuels.

Never use lighter fluid to start a fire in a charcoal fire pit that has already been started.

Match Lighter

Charcoal that has already been impregnated with lighter fluid is available.

This charcoal can only be ignited with a match, but it may need a little help to get the embers to glow.

Some kindling, such as a newspaper, or even a small amount of lighter fluid may be required.

Electric Charcoal Starter

To get the fire going, you’ll need an electrical outlet nearby that you can plug into.

This is done by placing the starter over the charcoal and then covering it completely with more charcoal.

If you’re using charcoal, allow 8–12 minutes for it to heat.

It is possible to remove the starter once the embers have begun to glow.

Charcoal Chimney Starter

Although it has the appearance of a pitcher, this item is actually made of aluminized steel.

In order to use the chimney starter, you simply place newspaper and charcoal in it.

Wait for the charcoal to warm up after lighting the newspaper several times.

Dump the burning charcoal into the charcoal grate once the embers have begun to glow.

Find Another Purpose for Y`our Charcoal Ash

Don’t just toss the charred remains into the trash.

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Instead, charcoal and wood ash can be used in a variety of ways:

  • When used after rain, it serves as a deterrent for snails and slugs.
  • Put some charcoal in a holey container to help dry out damp places like closets and the sink area.
  • A damp washcloth dipped in some ashes is an effective way to disinfect silverware.
  • To de-ice a sidewalk, wood ash can be used in place of salt, which can be hazardous.

Charcoal Fire Pit Precautions

Safety precautions must be followed no matter what type of fire pit one owns.

  • Always keep an eye on your fire pit.
  • At least ten feet away from any building or low-hanging tree, build your fire pit.
  • Before you light up, check the weather forecast and make sure it isn’t windy.
  • It doesn’t matter if it’s windy or not if you have a fire pit. During the summer, flying embers are less likely to start a fire.
  • Make sure the fire is completely extinguished. Ashes can re-ignite from time to time.
  • With good neighbors, respecting one another goes a long way. If someone in your home has COPD or asthma, take extra precautions to make sure the smoke does not heavily blow into their home.
  • Find out if there are any regulations in your city regarding natural gas use, and make sure you’re complying with them.
  • Children should not be left alone around a fire pit.
  • Set up your sofas and couches so that people can easily move around the room without getting in the path of the flames or tripping over each other.

How to Keep a Charcoal Fire Going?

Airflow is improved when the coal is moved around with a poker device when the edges have turned grey.

The coal heats back up as a result. Every few minutes, move the coal around to keep it going.

The coals continue to heat up as a result of this intermittent airflow.

Even if you have a fire going, allowing the charcoal to settle and cool will put out the flames.


Fire pits are popular all year round, not just in the winter.

A fire pit provides a place for the family to gather and relax, whether it’s charcoal or gas.

To get the most enjoyment out of your fire pit, make sure you’re following all safety precautions.

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