How Many BTU's Do I Need?

What are BTUs? BTUs, or British Thermal Units, represent the energy needed to heat or cool one pound of water by 1°F. Now that we established what BTUs are, how many BTUs do you need for a gas fire pit? The answer depends on a few factors: climate, room layout, and your personal preferences.


If you live in a warmer climate such as Texas or Florida, then your BTU requirements will probably be different than those in Minnesota or British Columbia. Typically, if you are surrounded by milder outdoor heat every day, backyard fire pit options with more BTUs are suggested. If your climate features scorching heat waves, less BTUs would most likely be appreciated by you and your guests.

Room Layout

Why would the layout or design of the patio space matter for a fire pit’s BTUs? If you have a larger outdoor living spot, it takes more BTU’s to heat than a smaller deck area. Same goes for a large fire pit table design. If you have a big gas fire pit, it requires more BTUs than smaller gas fire options. The closer you sit to the gas firepit table, the less BTUs it will take to keep you warm and content too. A small and cozy yard or certain patio design layout may mean you need to sit closer to it.

Safety and BTUs should go hand-in-hand when shopping for your outdoor gas fire pit. Ensure that your propane or natural gas fire pit table is UL Listed. UL Listed certification requires heavy safety and quality testing to ensure that you not only have a warm, large, realistic flame, but that the entire outdoor fire product is safe for your home and for your family's use.

Personal Preference

On the other hand, you may have spacious yard space but prefer to sit close to the fire anyway. If you have the option to choose how far away you place your patio furniture from your fire pit, then the number of BTUs will depend on your preference. Some guests choose to sit up close to feel the radiant heat and examine the dancing flames. Others enjoy lounging farther away to admire the whole effect of a gas fire pit table on a patio or deck.

Another option for customizing an outdoor fire pit and its heating abilities is to add a ceramic fiber log set. Our ceramic fiber log sets hold and radiate more heat to boost the cozy vibes than if you were to choose glass gems or lava rock alone. Learn more about fire media and must-know answers to common top questions about fire media for your gas fire pit.

Don’t forget to consider costs. Our unique fire pit tables have the option of burning via natural gas or liquid propane. Both gas supply options are sold by the BTU. The more BTU’s a burner uses every hour, the more it costs to burn the gas fire appliance.

With all of these points to consider, our friendly experts are here to help you make the right decision when purchasing a gas fire pit. All of our gas fire pits offer cozy warmth and beautiful flames to keep you outdoors longer. Visit our dealer locater to find a knowledgeable professional near you!


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