Tips for lighting a quarter-full chimney starter?

  • Hi guys and gals,

    Whenever I do a smoke on my kettle, I use the snake method, which means I only need a handful of briquettes to start the chain.

    I usually use the leftover briquettes from the last smoke/ barbecue, and add a handful more, but I’m always paranoid that the chimney starter won’t light them properly because it is only about a quarter full.

    Anyone else here do the same? Any tips?

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    Come on… Get to 225 already, I have things to do and people to see! 😂

  • Team Orange Power User Veteran

    I use the same amount of newspaper no matter how full I fill it. I also use the leftover coals, just tossing them on top.

  • I use my unburned charcoal all the time because as a disabled veteran I live on a fixed income. I use dryer lint, or cotton balls coated with petroleum jelly, they both work great but the cotton balls burn hotter and longer. I also keep both in my bug out bag, in my truck, in my camping gear, etc. in case of emergencies. Another little trick is instead of paying an arm and a leg for waterproof matches make your own, all you need is a box of stick matches and a bottle of clear finger nail polish it takes a little bit of time but will save you a lot of money. Simply dip the strike end of the match into the clear finger nail polish and lay the match on a table or something else flat with the strike end of the match hanging over the tables edge so the polish can dry. You now have a water proof match that will burn longer and hotter even if it is windy.

  • Big Green Egg Team Blue Regular Contributors Cast Iron Power User

    I just use the waxed cardboard type firestarters even with 1/4 full chimney. I’ve never had a problem.

  • Big Green Egg Team Blue Regular Contributors Cast Iron Power User

    They look like this but there are lots of different brands but they are all the same thing.

  • Ah yes, to actually light, I use newspaper donuts drenched and a little bit of vegetable oil.

    I was more worried that without a half-full or completely full chimney, the coals wouldn’t ash over completely

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