Is It Illegal to Have a Fire on Your Property in Florida

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Written By Blue & Gold NLR Team





Florida’s warm weather and stunning natural landscapes make it perfect for outdoor activities, including private property fires. However, understanding the state’s rules is crucial for safety and legal compliance.

Statewide Rules

The Florida Department of Environmental Protection (FDEP) and the Florida Forest Service (FFS) oversee open burning to safeguard the environment and public health. Burning is generally prohibited during air stagnation advisories or unfavorable weather.

Local Laws and Permissions

Local governments may have additional rules limiting open burning. Property owners should check with local authorities before lighting any fires. Some areas may require a burn permit, especially for larger fires or clearing debris.

Recreational Fires

Small fires like campfires or bonfires are allowed under certain conditions. They must not exceed three feet in diameter and two feet in height. A responsible person should supervise the fire and keep fire-extinguishing equipment nearby.

Forbidden Materials

Burning household garbage, treated lumber, plastics, rubber, tires, pesticides, chemicals, or paint is illegal in Florida. These materials can release harmful pollutants into the air.

Agricultural and Land Clearing Burns

Burning for agricultural or land clearing purposes is limited to the site where the debris was generated. It must take place between 9:00 AM EST and one hour before sunset, with constant supervision and fire extinguishing equipment at hand.

Special Cases and Exemptions

Certain structures, like nonresidential farm buildings with limited occupancy, may have exemptions from some fire code requirements. Owners should verify exemptions with the State Fire Marshal’s office and comply with other regulations.


While having fires on Florida properties isn’t inherently illegal, it’s subject to various regulations. Property owners must adhere to state and local laws, obtain permits if necessary, and ensure fire safety to avoid penalties and protect the environment.

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