Outdoor fireplaces


As the weather warms and the snow disappears, you may enjoy spending time with friends or family around a backyard fire.

In the city of Kitchener you are allowed to have recreational fires on private property. A permit is not required. Recreational fires include fire pits, fireplaces and backyard chimineas. While you are enjoying this experience it's important to stay safe and respect your neighbours.

If you want to have a recreational fire you must follow these rules and regulations:

Recreational fires regulations
  • must not create a nuisance; (watch where your smoke travels)
  • be located at least five metres (16.4 feet) from any building, structure, property line, tree, hedge, fence, roadway, overhead wire or other combustible article
  • have no more than one metre (3.2 feet) of material being burned in any direction
  • be fully contained and controlled
  • have no combustible ground cover within one metre (3.2 feet) of the fire
  • only burn brush material, including tree limbs, branches and bush trimmings or manufactured logs specifically designed for fireplaces
  • have a portable fire extinguisher or operable garden hose available from the time of setting of the fire until the fire is totally extinguished
  • be under the constant watch and control of an owner or occupant of 18 years of age or older from the time of setting of the fire until the fire is totally extinguished
  • recreational fires in fire pits must be contained by a distinctive, raised, non-combustible barrier that completely surrounds the fire pit to separate it from the surrounding area
  • the fire is only conducted between the hours of 6 and 11 p.m. of any day

To make a complaint about a fire that is currently burning, please call the Waterloo Regional Police non-emergency line at 519-570-9777.

To make a complaint about a fire pit, or recent fire, please contact the City’s 24/7 Corporate Contact Centre at 519-741-2345 or by email at: info@kitchener.ca

The complete regulations for recreational fires can be found in Chapter 711 of The City of Kitchener Municipal Code

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