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Auckland Council

Pizza ovens and small heating or cooking fires in urban areas

In urban areas (residential and business), you can light a small heating or cooking fire, such as:

  • gas or solid fuel barbecue
  • pizza oven
  • brazier
  • outdoor fireplace
  • hāngi, umu or other traditional cooking.

Tips for safe heating or cooking fires

  • Minimise the amount of smoke by:
    • keeping it hot
    • using clean burning fuel such as untreated, dry wood.
  • Keep your fire away from property boundaries and any combustible material such as trees, buildings or wooden fences, dead grass, leaves or sticks.
  • It is illegal to burn rubbish or plastic.
  • Make sure a responsible adult is supervising the fire at all times.
  • Only burn in light wind or calm weather conditions.
  • Have water near to put the fire out if it escapes.
  • Inform your neighbours, if possible.
  • Make sure all embers are extinguished and safely disposed of.
  • If you are in a rural area check if you can light a fire.

Tips for building safe outdoor ovens, pizza ovens and fireplaces

Consider your neighbours when you are planning where to put your chimney.

Build away from any combustible material such as trees, buildings, decks or wooden fences:

  • 4m of clear space above the oven
  • 600mm clear space behind the oven, or build a brick or cement wall at least 300mm from the back of the oven
  • 4m of clear space in front and to the sides of the oven.

Build your flue:

  • at least 1.2m long
  • with a shield on top to stop sparks from escaping.

Check your height to boundary restrictions by calling us and asking for the planning helpdesk:

09 301 0101.

Make sure all ash and embers are completely extinguished before you leave the fire unattended.

You can check the temperature of the ash by holding the back of your hand carefully above the ash. Then use a shovel to turn the ash over and repeating the check with the back of your hand.