LESLIE: Michael in Kentucky is on the line and he’s got a question about a gazebo. What can we do for you today?
MICHAEL: Oh, well, I wanted to try and find a way to use my gazebo during the winter. It gets kind of cold here in Kentucky and the gazebo is made out of wood. And I’m looking to put a fire-pit kind of thing but I don’t want to use the wood, because it’s made out of wood; I don’t want it to go up in flames.
TOM: Mm-hmm. OK. That’s wise. But your gazebo probably has a roof on it, right?
MICHAEL: Yeah, it has a roof.
TOM: Yeah, so you can’t really put a fire under it. You just – because unless it’s a tepee with a big hole in the top, there’s no place for the smoke to go. You’re going to collect a lot of heat up there and it’s really generally a bad idea.
So really, the question is how can you heat your gazebo in the winter months. And there’s a good reason we don’t heat gazebos in winter months, because they’re not really designed to be enclosed.
MICHAEL: So, I guess it’s kind of an out-of-the-question kind of thing then.
TOM: It would seem. Typically, if you want to put some sort of a heating system onto your deck, then you could use a fire pit. And you could design it or even have a – like we have a fire – a portable sort of fire – pit that we wheel out onto the patio and put a couple of logs in there. But when you’re in a gazebo like that, you can’t create a fire because you’re going to burn the roof down.
So it’s a hard space to use. If you had an open patio area or maybe an open area of your yard, Michael, that would be a smarter place to create a gathering place where you could actually really build a true fire pit.
There’s a great article online on our website on how to build a fire pit. There’s also a radio show that we did with Roger Cook from This Old House where he gave us his tips on how to build a fire pit.
MICHAEL: OK. So, basically, it’d probably be a better thing to put maybe outside of my gazebo.
TOM: Yeah, exactly. Gazebos are just not intended to be enclosed.
MICHAEL: Well, that sounds like it answers my question pretty well.
TOM: Alright, Michael. Good luck with that project. Thanks so much for calling us at 888-MONEY-PIT.