Fire pit regulations are a part of the Community Standards Bylaw 5M2004. This is an overview of these regulations. These regulations apply to all firepits, including front, side and back yard firepits. Please refer to the actual bylaw for more detailed information. Original copies of the bylaw are available at the City Clerk's office.
Overview of fire pit regulations
All fires must be:
- In a fire pit or receptacle constructed of non-combustible material.
- In a fire pit built into the bare ground or set upon non-combustible material such as brick or stone (if not in a receptacle).
- Not within 2 metres of the property line, building or fence, or beneath any trees or branches (or other combustible materials).
- Kept to a reasonable size (under 1 metre both height and width) so the fire, embers, sparks or dense smoke do not endanger anyone or cause a nuisance on any neighbouring properties.
- Fully supervised at all times and may be started beginning at 10 a.m.
- Fully extinguished by 1 a.m.
You must have a means to extinguish the fire on hand at all times. The fire must be extinguished completely, so that the ashes are cold prior to leaving the fire.
You cannot burn:
- Treated or painted lumber
- Lumber products containing glue or resin
- Wet or unseasoned wood
- Leaves, brush or yard waste
- Rubber, tires or plastic
- Animal carcasses or parts
The fire chief has the power to declare a complete ban on all burning within the city. The Fire Department, Police or a Bylaw Officer may ask you to extinguish your fire when a fire ban is in effect or if you are not complying with the regulations listed above.
Tips for fire pit use
- Only clean, dry firewood is permitted to be burned in fire pits. Burning prohibited materials can cause dense smoke and offensive odours to neighbouring properties.
- Smoke from fire pits can cause adverse health effects in some people. Be aware of neighbours that may be negatively impacted to exposure of smoke from outdoor fire pits.
- Before using your fire pit, familiarize yourself with optimal wind conditions and take precautions to prevent smoke from disturbing your neighbours.
- High wind speeds may pose a fire hazard.
- Low wind speeds may contribute to poor air quality and reduce smoke dissipation.
- Placing a metal grill/screen on top of the fire pit reduces the flame's size and helps prevent sparks and embers from escaping and igniting nearby materials.
Making a complaint
Fines for violations of these regulations range between $500 and $5,000. Repeat offenses of these regulations may result in a fire ban for the premises. If you would like to report a violation please:
- Call 9-1-1 if the concern is an emergency.
- Call 3-1-1 or 403-268-CITY (2489) if calling from outside Calgary if the concern is not an emergency.
- Contact the Calgary Fire Department