Malvern Office

195 Lancaster Ave
Malvern, PA 19355

Quakertown Office

1432 S West End Blvd
Quakertown, PA 18951

Maryland Office

Monkton, MD 21111

All About Propane Fire Pits

If you are an avid outdoor enthusiast that loves hiking, camping, or simply spending time outside this summer with loved ones, then you might consider investing in a propane fire pit. 

How does a propane fire pit work?


Propane fire pits come in many different designs, but most of them work the same way. The propane fire pit area is referred to as “the housing.” The housing stores a gas line from a propane tank. There is a sizable heat-resistant bowl at the top of the housing. There can be single or multiple burners located below the bowl. The burners connect to a tank underneath that provides the burners with combustible gas

You can fill the bowl with imitation heat-resistant coals or logs to hide the burners from sight and diversify the shape of the bowl. Many propane pits come with an automatic ignition switch that you can use to turn on the fire. If there is no switch, you can light the flames using matches or a barbeque lighter.  

You can utilize a few different propane tank sizes depending on the size and intended output of your fireplace. The most common size used is a 20 lb propane tank. However, a 33 lb or 100 lb tank can be used as well. 

How long does a 20 lb propane tank last on a fire pit?

That depends on several factors:

  • How often do you use the tank, and for how many hours straight?
  • The BTU burn rate of your firepit.
  • The BTU output of the propane tank – Tanks with higher BTUs use more propane.
  • Setting your propane pit on a higher setting means the firepit will use more propane.

Propane fire pits usually have between 40,000 and 150,000 worth of thermal energy. A 20 lb propane tank holds about 430,000 BTUs. Having said this, a 40,000 BTU fire pit should last about 10 hours at a moderate usage/flame level. If the homeowner prefers a higher setting, the tank won’t last as long.

Are there safety concerns with propane gas fire pits?

Propane gas fire pits are perfectly safe to use. However, like most other products, not all propane fire pits are created equal. Before selecting the right propane fire pit to buy, make sure you choose a reputable company that considers safety a top priority. You will also want to ensure the fire pit has been tested for safety and is “CSA approved.”

How to get more heat from my propane fire pit?


You can get more heat by increasing the flame height on your propane fire pit. For example, you can use the following method to increase the flame height.

  • Remove the fire pit lava rock to access the gas pipes.
  • Clean the gas pipes using an air compressor to remove ash, dust, or other debris from the lines.
  • Adjust the flame adjustment valve.
  • Increase the pressure of your gas tank.

British Thermal Units

The amount of heat you can get from your propane fire pit also depends on the British Thermal Unit (BTU).  The BTU is the amount of thermal energy required to increase the temperature of one pound of water by a single Fahrenheit degree at sea level.

BTUs are directly related to the height of the fire pit’s flames.  The more BTUs the fire pit has, the higher the flames will be.  The higher the flames are, the “warmer” you and the surrounding environment will be.  

Propane fire pits can be a convenient, environmentally friendly way to make all your guests feel cozy during the summer barbeques! 

Great Valley provides long-lasting tanks and service! 


The propane tanks at Great Valley Propane are made of high-quality steel with a unique coat to prevent damage. Furthermore, our team of experts always puts the customer first and will go above

and beyond to install and maintain your propane tank, so you don’t have to.

Our Malvern location sells 20 lb tanks for your convenience.  Our team of experts can also fill or exchange your 20 lb tank for you.  Furthermore, we can hook up a bit larger tanks (not 20lb), if the firepit warrants it

Want the best quality propane tank for your home? 

Call us today at 610-251-2203 to get your propane tank delivered to your home.