Turning off fire tick with

/gamerule fireTick false

disables fire spread. This means fire won't spread to another block, and blocks covered with fire don't get destroyed.

However, if lava is near a burnable block, the burnable block can catch on fire even with fire spread off. It will not, however, get destroyed.

It seems this is a bug, from previous responses. My two questions are:

  1. Is it going to be fixed in version 1.8?

  2. How can I circumvent it?

  • lava should abide by fire-tick rules, so it sounds like a bug to me.
    – Rapitor
    Commented Feb 10, 2014 at 19:36
  • 2
    From my understanding, it simply stops fire from creating more fire. Anything that isn't fire can still create fire. This way flint & steel would still produce fire, same as lava blocks.
    – user66184
    Commented Feb 25, 2014 at 17:38
  • The simple solution is to correct the format of your command: its doFireTick, not fireTick. Anotehr solution is to cover the lava with a non-flammable block such as stone, dirt, or barriers. Commented Nov 28, 2016 at 8:45

4 Answers 4


This is not a bug. The doFireTick gamerule controls the spread of fire, not the creation of fire. Lightning, lava, and, more importantly, flint and steel, can still set things on fire, even with this gamerule set to false. The only real way to circumvent this is to avoid placing burnable blocks near lava.


This was reported before. It was closed as a duplicate of another bug report, where Dinnerbone explicitly states:

This is the intended behaviour of doFireTick.

So no, I don't think will be fixed in 1.8 or any other version.


TL;DR: Surround it with non-flammable blocks.

Lava has this to say about firespread:

In order for air above lava to turn to fire, a block adjacent to the air has to be flammable, or one of the wood-constructed non-flammable blocks. Since catching fire depends on air blocks, even torches or lava itself can prevent a flammable block from catching fire. Additionally, not all flammable or wood-constructed blocks can be ignited by lava.

I set up a Control and a Test for this:

Lava Control Lava Test

Obviously, The Control set fire pretty quickly, however, the Test is yet to show any signs of catching fires.

Lava Control - Burning Lava Test - Yet to burn

On top of this, the wiki states that lava also needs to be a Source Block to cause fires. if it is flowing, it won't.

Lava of any depth can start fires this way, whether or not it appears to have a current, but it must have settled into a stable lava block. The flowing_lava block will not cause fires.

However, after a little testing, I am yet to re-create this. I have done it with and without source blocks (Placed the lava, then picked it up again after it started flowing), as well as with various different setups (vertical, diagonal, and horizontal), but all set fire to the blocks.

Flowing lava - Horizontal and vertical Flowing lava - Diagonal Flowing lava - No Source block


  • you might want to look at gaming.stackexchange.com/a/118525/24472 for a bit more complete exploration of lava fire. Regarding the "flowing" lava - lava is flowing_lava in game terms only while it is spreading to other blocks or it is disappearing. Once the lava flow reaches stable configuration it is converted to a lava block. It still may be rendered like it is flowing, but internally it is considered 'static' so the came does not need to recalculate the flow.
    – Kcats
    Commented May 12, 2017 at 19:50
  • "Or it is disappearing". Yup, I tested that too, and it still set fire to blocks. Check the last image
    – Ben
    Commented May 13, 2017 at 2:04

It's a bug as far as I know. If you don't want stuff being set on fire by lava, don't place lava down.

  • 5
    Welcome to Arqade! Your answer may well be correct, but unsubstantiated answers (those without evidence of research) usually get voted down. See the help center for more information.
    – Jim Dagg
    Commented Apr 10, 2014 at 19:58

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