Why Charcoal Wont Stay Lit

Charcoal Wont Stay Lit

Why Charcoal Wont Stay Lit? To cook your meal, you’ll need to have a pile of hot coals, whether you’re grilling or smoking. Cooking wood or smoking pieces can still be used for added taste, but charcoal will supply the heat required to cook your food.

Unfortunately, many home cooks have trouble keeping their charcoal fires going. After igniting it with a match or a fire starter, the charcoal may initially ignite and produce a flame, but it will quickly go out. If your charcoal doesn’t remain lit, it could be due to one of the following factors.

It Isn’t Dry

Your charcoal will not stay lit if it isn’t completely dry. To make your grilling or smoking experience easier, always use dry charcoal. Because charcoal is naturally porous, it may absorb and hold moisture from its surroundings. If you keep your charcoal in a damp location, such as your patio or cellar, it may gather so much moisture that it becomes impossible to light or keep burning. To avoid this, keep your charcoal in a dry, temperature-controlled location.

You’re Suffocating It

One issue your charcoal isn’t remaining lit is because it’s covered. After being lighted, the charcoal will go out if there isn’t enough air. Make sure your smoker is well-ventilated and that you add cooking wood or smoking chunks at the appropriate time. Before you put your heating wood or smoked chunks, make sure they’re clean. Wait until your charcoal has turned white-hot. After your charcoal has reached this temperature, you can add your cooking wood or smoking pieces without fear of smothering it.

 Why Charcoal Wont Stay Lit as it is Stackable

Charcoal that is placed vertically rather than flat on the bottom of the grill or smoker is more likely to stay lit. As you may be aware, heat rises. As a result, stacking your charcoal allows heat to rise from the bottom coals to the top coals. Some coals will stay light if you position your charcoal horizontally on the base of your grill or smoker, while others will burn out before reaching a proper temperature.

The basic mechanism to produce a nice pile of charcoal is to use a chimney burner. A popular grilling and smoking tool is a slightly curved bit of metal with just a hole inside. Load the chimney burner using charcoal, place it on the grill or smoker, and fire the base with a grill match. After around 10 to 20 minutes, the charcoal should just be heated enough to place in the base of your grill gently.

If you’re igniting charcoal inside a smoker or grill, such as the Big Green Egg, make sure there’s plenty of it stacked, so it’s simpler to light. You’ll get into trouble if it’s just strewn over the bottom.

Keeping The Hotness Excessively Low

Regardless of how you like your steak cooked, there’s one widespread characteristic we are in general after a profound singe with an incredible covering generally the outside. You’re never going to accomplish that when the hotness is too low or your skillet isn’t sufficiently hot. 

You will need to wrench the hotness far up. That goes for the broiler, the barbecue, and getting your skillet shouting hot on the burner. High hotness and a hot container are fundamental for making that incredible covering outwardly of your steak. Plan to warm your skillet for something like 10 minutes over high heat or under the oven before adding the steak. 

– Are You Trying To Close The Lid

Most professional grills, including the famed green egg, portable charcoal grills, and, of course, smokers, have a cover. A cover is standard on most grills, and it aids in even cooking. When using a grill with a cover, the difficulty is that if you close the lid too soon, before the charcoal has burned evenly, the charcoal will lose temperature and eventually extinguish.

You’ll need fuel, heat, and oxygen to start a fire. The charcoal supplies the power, the initial spark generates the flame, and oxygen is present throughout unless the lid is closed. Without oxygen, charcoal will not keep burning. We’ll use our electric lighter later as well. So, when should you close the cover on your grill? If you’re cooking big steaks (over 3/4-inch thick) or large pieces of meat, you should close the grill. Otherwise, the grill can be left open.

If you’re throwing in some wood chips or cooking something challenging like potatoes, you might want to close the lid. You’ll need some convection for this type of dish, just like an oven, so close the lid and cook these. However, there’s no necessity to close the lid when lighting the fire.

To cook chicken on an electric grill, you can marinate the chicken overnight. If not over night than you can marinate the chicken 2 to 3 hours before grilling and freeze it. Marinating the chicken adds up to the flavour of chicken and enhances the juiciness too. After marinating you can place the chicken on the preheated grill

You’re Using The Wrong Charcoal Type

All charcoal is not created equal. There are various varieties of charcoal, as discussed in a recent blog post, some of which are simpler to light — and maintain burning — than others. Check to see what type of charcoal you’re using if you’re having trouble keeping your charcoal burning. The most common types of charcoal are lump and briquette.

The most common type of charcoal is lump charcoal, which is made up of pure or nearly-pure carbon. Charcoal briquettes, on the other side, are made from wood and other organic wastes that have been bound together using a binding agent. While charcoal briquettes burn for longer than lump charcoal, they are also more difficult to fire. If you’re worried about your charcoal burning out, stick with lump charcoal. Why Charcoal Wont Stay Lit?

The Dampers Have Been Shut And Why Charcoal Wont Stay Lit

Check that all of the dampers on your grill or smoker are completely open before lighting your charcoal. The airflow is controlled by two dampers on most barbecues and smokers.

Regardless of how many dampers your grill or smoker has, it would be best if you opened them before lighting your charcoal. The charcoal will not be able to breathe if the dampers are closed. Your charcoal will burn out if there isn’t enough air, forcing you to relight it. Once the charcoal has burned white-hot and you’ve added your meal, you can partially close the dampers but keep them locked until this happens.

It’s Hot And Humid Outside that is Why Charcoal Wont Stay Lit

Even heavy humidity might cause lit charcoal to catch fire and burn out. On an extremely humid morning, the high humidity might permeate your coal to that same extent where it won’t spark. You can’t control how humid it is outside, unfortunately. On the other hand, you can barbeque or smoke on a humid day if you make preparations ahead of time. It should keep light even if it’s humid outdoors if you use dry lump charcoal and stack it vertically.


Make sure to use our quality cooking pieces with your charcoal for the finest flavor and steady burn. Cutting Edge Firewood Chunks are simple to light and burn at a consistent rate. Applewood chunks and hickory smoking chunks are among the best smoking chunks.


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