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BioLite FirePit review: BBQ, grill food or get warm with this portable fire box

By reviews / 17. June 2020

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Fire pits are nice, but they can be ashy, smoky messes. So isn’t it about time someone re-invented the fire pit? Enter BioLite, makers of a vast array of camping and outdoor gear that’s also super tech-enabled. They’ve recently released their new BioLite FirePit, and I had a chance to get hands-on with it for a few days of camping and yard use. Here’s what I learned about it.
BioLite FirePit review
What is the BioLite FirePit and what can it do? This compact, portable metal box has collapsible legs so you can pack it down. Weighing about 20 pounds, you wouldn’t want to bring it on a hike, but it’s perfect for your trunk or a day at the beach, campsite or picnic area.
BioLite FirePit has a removable grill top so you can cook on it, or just use it to have a small but roaring fire. You can burn either wood or charcoal in the BioLite FirePit, depending on your needs and what’s available.
Of course, the BioLite FirePit has technology built in. On the side is a large 10,400mAh PowerPack which also houses a fan. This fan can stoke up your flames, when needed. The fan can be controlled by the buttons on the module or by connecting the power pack to your phone via Bluetooth, so you can make small incremental adjustments to the fire from your smartphone, keeping it perfectly in control. And when your phone starts to die, you can connect it to the power pack and you can recharge it right on board.
Recharging the power pack
If you’re familiar with BioLite’s other gadgets like the CampStove, you might be hoping the energy generated by the fire can recharge your power pack. Not this time. To keep it full, you’ll need to bring it in the house, and plug it in to recharge. Or you can get the optional solar carrying case, but that will still take about 4 days to recharge it, so it’s not something I’d opt for.
BioLite’s 10,400 mAh pack can power your fire for up to 24 hours.

What’s In The Box:

FirePit
Rain Cover
Grill Grate
Fuel Rack
USB A to Micro USB Cord

BioLite FirePit features
X-Ray MeshWant to see the flickering flames and dancing embers while you’re gathered round?

We all know camp fires and fire pits can be smoky, but BioLite FirePit has technology which can help with this. You can adjust the fan airflow to fuel the fire and ramp it up if it starts to wane and smoulder. This optimizes the burn, for more heat and flame and less smoke. 51 air jets inject the fire with oxygen at key locations. This creates a more uniform temperature and a more even fire; meaning no hotspots.
Cooking on BioLite Firepit

Cooking over fire is finicky at the best of times, so despite all the great features of this device, you still need to manage your cook. We took the Fire Pit on a long weekend excursion with friends and cooked chicken, sausage patties, steaks, and hot dogs.

The chicken was a challenge and took a long time to cook, probably bercause I was stuill learning how to manage the heat and the fuel.

As an aside, you want to get the right amount of fuel into the Fire Pit if youre using the grilling rack. While the grill top does slide over to give you access to the fire chamber, you won’t easily be able to get at the area below fuel rack, and even moving that fuel rack is hard, because the handles are inside the fire box. You definitley need fireproof gloves.

When we tried the sausage patties, again it was hard to get the temperature right, even with the fan playing a part. They took about 40 minutes to cook properly. Hot dogs were easier, and by the time we got around to the steak, it was a bit easier to manage.

The bottom line here; cooking over the FirePit is just like grilling on a BBQ or Hibachi: you still need to work at it. Just because this gadget has a bit of technology built in, don’t expect instant miracles.

Overall review of BioLite Fire Pit

Pros:
Clean burning
Small size means you don’t need a huge BBQ grill
Fan helps keep the fire going

Cons:
Not very compact; legs fold, but that’s all
Fire doesn’t recharge battery pack like on CampStove
Needs carrying case to prevent soot getting everywhere (solar case costs $60US)

Overall, I’ve really been enjoying the FirePit experience. It’s cleaner, less smoky and more portable than anything else out there. It is definitely a challenge to cook over it though and requires some practise and finesse. It’s also not as portable as it seems; definitley not as portable as BioLite’s Camp Stove, for example. But if you’re looking for a versatile gadget that can keep you warm on a cool night, cook your food, and that has a bit of tech help, you’ll like this.

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