How to Build a Backyard Kiln: A Guide for Beginners

Introduction: What is a Backyard Kiln and Why Would You Want to Build One?

In this article, we will explore what a backyard kiln is and why you might want to build one.

What is a Backyard Kiln?

A backyard kiln is an outdoor oven that can be used to fire pottery pieces. They are built using bricks or stones and are heated using wood or charcoal. The heat from the fire causes the air inside the kiln to rise, which in turn heats the pottery pieces in it. This process of heating pottery pieces is called firing and it usually takes about 12 hours for them to reach their desired temperature. Once they are fired, they can be removed from the kiln for glazing or other finishing touches before being sold at a store or on a website.

There are a variety of approaches to take when putting together a pottery kiln in your backyard. It is neither necessary nor required to be difficult or expensive. In essence, what you are doing is constructing a space that can achieve and maintain high temperatures.

Kilns for making bricks

Bricks can also be used to build a pottery kiln in your backyard, which is another use for them. There are a variety of approaches to taking on the task of building a brick kiln for pottery.

Brick kilns are sometimes referred to as a type of pit firing, although this is not always the case. The reason for this is that the pit firing principle can also be used in brick kilns, which is the reason why this is the case.

To make pottery, some potters will first dig a pit in the ground and then line it with bricks.

Brick will be used by other potters to build structures that are located above ground. The bricks are constructed in an upward rather than a downward direction; however, the firing method is very similar to pit firing.

Some brick kilns are nothing more than pits into which combustible material and pottery can be placed before being fired. The only difference is that rather than being dug into the ground, the pit is constructed out of bricks.

Different approaches

There are many different approaches to taking on the task of building a brick kiln. You have the option of giving your kiln a square or cylindrical shape. Kilns for brick that are squared off are easier to build. Therefore, if you are just getting started, it is recommended that you begin with nothing more than a blank slate.

For the construction of a brick kiln, some potters recommend using fire bricks. These are not affected by the high temperatures. Bricks used in regular construction can become brittle when exposed to heat.

Despite this, a good number of potters prefer to use regular building bricks. Recycled bricks are the material of choice for potters who are concerned about the environment. In a perfect world, you would stumble across an accumulation of used bricks that could be put to new use. Bricks that have been reused can be bought.

However, because they have more personality than new bricks, home builders favor using them in their construction projects. Ironically, as a consequence of this, their cost is higher than that of brand-new bricks.

Instructions on How to Construct a Basic Brick Kiln

After finding a secure spot for your kiln, you should prepare the ground by placing a couple of layers of bricks on top of it. This will serve as the foundation for the kiln.

Find out how big the kiln is before you start loading it. The size of the pieces that are to be fired will determine the outcome of this step. If you have a variety of different-sized pots, you may find that a kiln that is three feet square is a manageable size.

When you have finished laying the foundation, you can then move on to constructing the brick walls. If the walls of your kiln are approximately 3 feet high, you can expect it to have a square shape.

Kilns can have shelves added to them by placing a metal grid in the middle of the chamber about halfway up. To install the shelf, you need only to lay the grid across the brick walls. After that, you should place the next layer of bricks on top of the grid.

It is necessary for there to be some space between the bricks on the top layer so that ventilation can occur. It is necessary to vent the smoke and fumes. In addition, a gap will make it possible for a through the draft to occur, which will bring oxygen into the kiln and keep the fire going. By removing a few bricks from one of the top sides, you can make room for ventilation in the room.

Using a Simple Brick Kiln to Bake:

Once the base and the walls of the kiln are finished, you can begin loading it. Brick kiln firing is very similar to pit firing, and potters use a variety of combustible materials to burn in their kilns. On the other hand, it is typical practice to start with a layer of sawdust. These are frequently mixed with wood pellets or wood chips for added strength.

After adding a layer of pottery to the mixture, finish it off by covering it with additional sawdust or wood chips. After that, add one more layer of pottery, and proceed to do this step again. Utilizing a metal grid shelf, you can stack several layers of pottery inside of the brick kiln.

After you have loaded the pottery, you can add kindling to the top of the pile by placing paper or dried leaves on top of the pile.

You can add larger pieces of wood to the fire as it burns, just as you would with a regular fire. After the fire has been established, a corrugated iron sheet should be used to cover the top. It would be smart to supplement this with some additional bricks at some point.

This straightforward brick kiln has a burning time of approximately twelve hours. Sawdust and wood will be consumed by the flames in due time. After the kiln has cooled down to the appropriate temperature, you can start unpacking it.


Like a BBQ shack, a backyard kiln can go a long way toward enhancing your outdoor gatherings. It’s aesthetically pleasing, easy to build, and a great way to add to your outdoor cooking.

Miller D.

Miller Daniels - A Backyard Enthusiast, is an author at Prime BackYard. He's been writing for the website since 2022 and has covered a variety of backyard-related topics, from landscaping to hosting backyard parties. Miller loves spending time in his backyard, whether he's decorating it or throwing a party for friends and family. He considers himself a backyard enthusiast and is always looking for new ways to make his yard more enjoyable.

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