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Propane Fire Ring Shopping Guide: Top 5 Picks for Every Need & Budget

Looking for an alternative to a traditional campfire with wood that you can enjoy in your backyard or on vacation at a campsite? One idea is to get a propane fire ring.

In this guide, we will go over propane fire ring basics. We will briefly discuss the benefits of propane fire rings, then go over important buying considerations. After that, we will follow up with product recommendations. Let's dive in!

What is a Propane Fire Ring?

“Fire ring” is actually an incredibly broad term. By itself, it can refer to any sort of ring-shaped barrier that keeps a fire safely contained.

Traditionally, a fire ring is simply that—a ring. There is no base to the ring. The fire goes on the ground.

But nowadays, the term “propane fire ring” is often used to refer specifically to propane fire pits.

Fire pits are different than traditional fire rings because they do feature a base. In fact, they typically have a bowl shape, and keep the fire off the ground and safely contained.

Propane Fire Ring Benefits

Here are some of the advantages of using a propane fire ring at home or at a campsite:

  • There is no smoke from a propane fire pit.
  • You do not need to cut wood or clean up ash.
  • Unlike a stone fire ring, a propane fire pit is portable. You can move it around your yard, or pack it for your camping trip.
  • As a clean-burning fuel, propane is more eco-friendly than many alternative fuel sources.
  • A CSA-certified propane fire pit is usually safe to use during fire bans that prohibit open flames. Find out more about fire ban safe fire pits.

What to Look for in a Portable Propane Fire Ring

Now that you know the advantages of a propane fire ring, let’s go over some key considerations for when you are shopping the products available.

We have written a detailed buying guide for propane fire pits that covers some of these criteria and others in more extensive detail.

1. Sturdy materials and construction

The higher quality the materials are, the better they will be able to withstand regular outdoor use, and the longer the lifespan of the product will be. We recommend steel, because it is highly durable, but also lightweight. With a powder coating, it does not rust easily.

Pay attention to the details. The powder coating should evenly cover all of the steel, and there should not be any sharp metal protruding.

2. Portability 

Ideally, you should shop for a propane fire pit that you are going to have an easy time moving around. Not only is this convenient in your own backyard, but it also means that you never need to go on a camping trip without access to smokeless fire. You can just pack your fire pit with the rest of your gear.

A lightweight build is part of what makes a fire pit portable. So are compact dimensions.

3. Ease-of-use

Setting up your fire pit, turning it on and off, and adjusting the flame height should all be simple and intuitive. Not only does this provide for a pleasant experience, but it also makes for safe use.

4. Safety

Speaking of safety, the single best indication that you are choosing a safe product is if it features certification from CSA Group.

CSA Group tests appliances to make sure that they meet Canadian Electrical Code (CEC) and National Electrical Code (NEC) standards.

A product can only earn the CSA seal by meeting or exceeding those standards.

You must have a CSA-rated or ULC-rated fire pit if you want to use it during a burn ban.

So, CSA certification not only means that a product is safe, but also ensures legal compliance.

5. Style

Finally, propane fire pits are available in an array of different shapes, finishes and styles. Shop for a product that will complement your backyard décor or be pleasing to look at when you are camping. 

Top Recommended Gas Fire Rings for 2021

We have now gone over top considerations for when you are choosing a propane gas fire ring for camping or home use. Let’s check out top products on the market.

Best Budget Propane Fire Pit: Outland Living Standard

Our selection

Standard Fire Pit

This lightweight propane fire pit can go with you whenever you need a little warmth. Our original fire pit is easy to set up and simple to use.
View Product

A solid all-around option if you are shopping for a propane fire pit is the Outland Living Standard model.

  • Dimensions: L 19" x W 19" x H 11"
  • Weight: 22 lbs
  • Colour: Black
  • Ignition Type: Manual Ignition
  • 58,000 BTU/HR

This product is made out of sturdy steel featuring a powder coating and enamel finish for protection. That means that it can withstand exposure to the elements, providing you with years of great performance.

It arrives fully assembled and ready for use, and is lightweight for excellent portability. You can adjust the flame output as needed simply by turning a rubber grip gas knob.

Your purchase includes a pre-attached hose and regular, a 4.4 pound natural lava rock set, and a propane tank stabilizer ring. Optional accessories are available for purchase.

Since this product is CSA-approved, you can likely use it during a fire ban. 

2. Best Auto-Igniting Propane Fire Pit: Outland Living Premium

Our selection

Premium Fire Pit

Quickly and efficiently get the fire going with this auto ignition propane fire pit. This stylish fire pit is the perfect centrepiece for any outdoor adventure.
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The Outland Living Standard model we discussed above features manual ignition. If you are looking for a similar product that features automatic ignition instead, the Outland Living Premium model may be for you.

  • Dimensions: L 19" x W 19" x H 11"
  • Weight: 24.5 lbs
  • Colour: Black
  • Ignition Type: Auto Ignition
  • 58,000 BTU/HR

As you can see, the Premium is quite similar all around to the Standard. But along with the same set of accessories you get with the Standard, the Premium comes with a Cover + Carry Kit.

3. Best Compact Propane Fire Pit: Outland Living Firecube

Our selection

Firecube Fire Pit

The Firecube is our first ever square fire pit. The compact size and included Cover + Carry Kit make this model portable and easy to store without sacrificing heat output or flame profile.
View Product

Want an extra compact, lightweight fire pit with a different look? The Outland Living Firecube has a square shape, and is even lighter than the Standard model.

  • Dimensions: L 14.13" x W 14.13" x H 9.1"
  • Weight: 19.4 lbs
  • Colour: Black
  • Ignition Type: Manual Ignition
  • 58,000 BTU/HR

This product features the same quality construction and materials as the others in the Outland Living line, and is likewise CSA-approved. It includes the same accessories as the Premium model.

What About Traditional Fire Rings?

While our focus in this post has been on choosing a propane fire ring for camping, you might be curious about alternatives such as traditional fire rings.

VBENLEM Fire Pit Ring

 propane fire ring

This fire ring features an outside diameter of 45 inches and an interior diameter of 39 inches. It is made of heavy-duty steel, and is also available in a few other sizes. At 36.5 pounds, it is significantly heavier than the fire pits we have shared with you.

The best thing about this fire pit ring is how solid the construction is. It also is easy to set up.

That said, it is as expensive or more expensive than many actual propane fire pits without offering nearly the same functionality.

And because you have to build a fire in the middle to use it, you cannot make use of it during a fire ban.

Pleasant Hearth OFW177FR 36" Wilderness Fire Ring

propane fire ring

A less expensive alternative to the product above is this one, which is made of a steel alloy. It is not nearly as heavy-duty as the VBENLEM fire ring, and is more decorative in nature with its cut-outs of trees and animals. But it is still functional enough to serve a purpose.

Once again, you need to burn wood in the middle of this fire ring, which means it is of no use during fire bans and needs you to take a lot of circumstances into account including relevant backyard or camping site regulations as well as what's underneath and next to the pit when in use.

In conclusion...

Fire rings can either take the form of simple metal rings that you place on the ground to contain a wood fire, or portable propane-powered fire pits that keep a fire off the ground.

If you want the safest, most reliable, most versatile type of product, you are going to want to go with a CSA-approved portable propane fire ring.

Click on any of the links in this post to get your Outland Living propane fire pit now.