A ceramic outdoor fireplace is a great way to add warmth and entertaining flair to your backyard setup. Numerous styles and designs are available to complement any deck or patio design. Ceramic fireplaces are usually handmade by skilled craftspeople so the possibilities for customization are endless.
Size and Shape
Most ceramic outdoor fireplaces follow a basic design consisting of a 3- or 4-leg steel frame supporting a platform that contains a fire bowl. Standard dimensions are usually 36 to 48 inches wide and about 24 to 36 inches high. Often the legs and platform are shaped or scrolled to create a decorative design, similar to the legs found on a wrought-iron chair. The platform can be in a circular or square shape and the fire bowl can be similarly shaped.
Stainless Steel or Copper Bowl
Once you’ve determined which shape you prefer you can begin the fun part of choosing the bowl and ceramic mantel. For the bowl material you can choose between stainless steel and copper. Stainless steel will be less expensive and easier to maintain. It also has a more contemporary look. Copper, however, offers a higher-end look and may better complement some patio designs, although it carries a higher price tag and requires more effort in maintenance.
Wood, Gas or Alternative Fuels
Yet another variation in the design of a ceramic outdoor fireplace is the type of fuels that the various fireplaces burn. Most models are either wood burning or gas, although newer designs that utilize canister-based alternative fuels are now gaining popularity. While wood-burning fireplaces offer a cheap fuel source and wonderful ambiance, they require more effort to maintain as well as space to store the wood. Gas-fired outdoor fireplaces, on the other hand, burn very efficiently, and require little maintenance. Another option is the type of fireplace that burns gel fuels that come in canisters. a very clean and eco-friendly fuel solution. Be sure to figure the cost of the fuel containers into the cost of ownership.
Ceramic Tile Design
There are numerous styles and different types of ceramic tile you can use to customize the surface of your outdoor fireplace. Since the mantel is a relatively small area, you’ll want to consider a smaller ceramic tile. One of the most common choices of tile for the mantel would is mosaic tile since its small size allows for different design orientations. Other tile sizes that work well on ceramic fireplaces used are 2 by 2 inch and 4 by 4 inch. When choosing a tile size, remember that the larger the tile, the fewer grout lines you’ll see.
Ceramic outdoor fireplaces are a beautiful way to blend exterior and interior design features while extending the usability of your deck or patio. By customizing the type of metal and ceramic tile used, you can create a design that you can truly call your own.