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DeckProtect.com

Protect your deck or patio from the heat of a fire pit.

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Testing the new 27.5" Octagon sized for the Breeo X Series 24

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Now the DeckProtect 27.5 gets the opportunity to prove itself in the line of fire.

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Click on photo to enlarge.
We wanted to demonstrate that the DeckProtect 27.5 Octagon would do a good job of protecting composite and PVC decking. This photo shows 20 samples of composite and PVC decking laid out on top the wood decking boards of our test deck. The layout had to be big enough to completely cover the space under the DeckProtect. Four 5" x 6" samples from the brands are placed at the center of the test: Azek, Fiberon Paramount, DuraLife, and TimberTech. The other samples are farther away from the center and would not be subject to as much heat.
Next we placed the 27.5" octagon on the decking samples in a position that had the center of the DeckProtect directly over the center of the sample layout. This would assure that the Breeo would also be centered on the sample layout.
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Click on photo to enlarge.
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Click on photo to enlarge.
When proving the effectiveness of DeckProtect, it is essential to make sure that the fire burns hotter and longer than the fire that will show the results of using the same fire pit in the same position over the decking samples without DeckProtect. We started the fire at 3:50 on a hazy 77° summer afternoon. Within minutes, the fire was going strong. Then we kept adding wood to keep the fire at a brisk burn, so that the heat would come from not only the glowing hot coals at the bottom, but also from the flames of a raging fire. We kept adding wood until 8:15 PM, 4 hours and 25 minutes after the fire started. During that time the outside walls of the Breeo were tested at 400° to 550° Fahrenheit. The surface of the decking samples one inch away from the DeckProtect reached 150° F. There was no way to point the infrared thermometer at the surface of the samples under the DeckProtect.
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The Breeo fire pit with its solid double-wall construction of heavy gauge steel made it next to impossible to lift off the DeckProtect at arm's length. So we levered it on to two sturdy wood decking boards so that it could be slid to the side.
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Click on photo to enlarge.
Then we could remove the DeckProtect and get a good look at the condition of the decking samples. As you can see in this photo if you click on it to enlarge, there is absolutely no damage to or degradation of the decking samples that were under the center of the fire pit for five hours protected by DeckProtect.
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Next: a test fire with the Breeo sitting directly on the decking samples.

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On a subsequent warm summer afternoon, we waited until 6:20 PM to start the fire so that this test would be during the early evening hours when people might actually enjoy a fire pit rather than mid-afternoon. The plan was to stop adding wood after 90 minutes to make the burn shorter than the test with DeckProtect. The fire was going strong within 5 minutes. But at 6:35, just 15 minutes into the test we saw smoke coming from under the Breeo. Then we could see real damage to the samples under the fire pit. So we stopped adding wood and just let the fire burn down, which would take about 45 minutes.
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Now with the Breeo completely removed, we could get a good look at the damage to the decking samples and take a photo from directly above. We expected to see damage but were surprised by the extent of it after a short-lived fire. It looks like the fire burned hotter toward the left of the fire pit since the Veranda samples, left and right,are equally placed relative to the center. Composite decking generally consists of a composite mix of wood fibers and plastic at its core, capped by a very thin layer of PVC or polypropylene for color and texture. This photo shows that the PVC decking boards that are "plastic" through and through are more vulnerable to heat than the composite decking. Also it a appears that Azek and Fiberon have different formulations for their PVC. These differences should be absolutely irrelevant when you are deciding what kind of decking to choose for your new deck… simply because you will have no intention to toast them under a fire pit the way we did. PVC decking has a number of advantages. The decking companies make it very clear that you should NOT place a fire pit on their decking. Of them all, only Trex says go ahead an put a fire pit on their decking … as long as you use DeckProtect™.
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A note about the Breeo X Series 24

The Breeo is probably the best designed and the best built fire pit there is. It is designed specifically to burn wood more efficiently, which results in little or no smoke. This means it burns hotter. The Breeo company does NOT recommend using their fire pit on a deck or patio. The best surface under the Breeo is gravel. The purpose of this page is to demonstrate that if you really want to use your Breeo on a deck, you can. Read more about the Breeo.
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About the color of the DeckProtect

The DeckProtect featured on this page has our new dark bronze color. We have not had the Breeo long enough for the rust-colored patina to change the initial gray color of the fire pit. When the Breeo has its long-term patina, the dark bronze will be a good match. The Breeo X Series is also available with all stainless steel exterior. For that you might want to choose a DeckProtect with a polished aluminum finish.
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Test Results with a different fire pit.
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n this test we used a different fire pit set on wood. Read More
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