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Lump Charcoal problems

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Comments

  • SWKSWK Posts: 15
    I did the exact same thing. Cleaned out the egg, let it sit for about 4 weeks, then bought lump charcoal from the store I bought the egg from. The big green egg lump I thought might help.

    I had all the issues you had.

    I used it a couple days ago and got it up to about 800 degrees!!

    Used it the next night and same thing!

    I think we figured it out, thanks for the input! :)
  • SWK--gald to hear you finally got everything resolved and are high temps like everybody else. You will be real glad you did not give up and go back to gas grill--and so will your wife.

    Now, just don't get it so hot you melt the gasket!!
  • SWKSWK Posts: 15
    :) Yeah good point!

    I actually used to use Charcoal, I don't like gas, that's why I was so attracted to the EGG.

    Thanks for all you, and everyone else's help.

    I appreciate it.
  • SWK stated: "I used it a couple days ago and got it up to about 800 degrees!!"

    NOW you're cookin w/ Crisco (well, charcoal, actually)!!! :woohoo:

    Anyway, glad you got your issues resolved!!!! :ohmy:

    So, there's been so many different opinions & advice on this topic - what actually ended up being the problem & what did you do to resolve it?

    Anyway, CONGRATS!!! Now you're going to start enjoying it a LOT more!!!! :woohoo:
    Don't get set into one form, adapt it and build your own, and let it grow, be like water. Empty your mind, be formless, shapeless — like water. Now you put water in a cup, it becomes the cup... Now water can flow or it can crash. Be water, my friend. - Bruce Lee
  • SWKSWK Posts: 15
    I cleaned it out, and found some of the vent holes clogged in the plated that the lump is on. I also think I might have had to much lump in there and smoothered it.
  • Freaking amazing!!!
  • highonred  Jan 012 to SWF I got a greenegg about a year ago, had the same problems but as bad. You definitely have to make sure to use big pieces. If you do not it will not get enough air. Plain and simple. Ifought mine about a half of year and finally figured it out and works great.

  • To SWK ...did you resolve your issue?  I bought a BGE a month ago and am having the EXACT same problem.  I've had a BGE since 2002 and have NEVER had an issue like this.  I bought another BGE because I generally do long cooks of 8+ hrs and I can set the temp and walk away.  With the new Egg, I have to babysit it all day.  I could have bought a Kamado or Drum at a quarter of the price, if I was willing to do that.   

    Description of exact issue:

    Cleaned BGE of all ash; used BGE lump charcoal [dry]; filled lower ring almost to top about 2" short; lit w/ electric starter; bottom vent open full and top vent off.  Once coals white, put dry oak in, about 3-4 chopped up hunks on coals, put plate setter on, water bath on plate setter, grate, meat and closed lid.  I like to cook at 250 at the cooking surface which is about 275 at the top of the dome.  To achieve that temp, I MUST leave bottom vent door completely open and the top vent hole exposed about 50%.  To maintain temp at 250 to 260, I need to adjust the top vent every 30 minutes or so.  

    From my POV, this is an air obstruction issue.  I look forward to hearing from my fellow Eggheads.  Thanks for your help!!!

  • Darby_CrenshawDarby_Crenshaw Posts: 2,657
    edited November 2015
    Putting a cold plate setter and water bath into an egg at the desired temp will cause the temp to drop as all the energy goes into heating up the cold stuff

    additionally, a water pan is a heat sink. You'll never get the water to boil, but the energy is sure as hell going to try, and the temp will be held down until the pan is dry. At which point your temp will rise quickly

    lose the water. No need for it. 

    And put the platesetter in from the get go. Let it come up to temp with the rest of the system. Will take longer, but will be a steadier way to start
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  • MikeeMikee Posts: 783
    edited November 2015

    I will overshoot my desired temperature to get the ceramics hot knowing once I put the platesetter and the meat in the temperature will drop and will take time for it to recover. Once the dome temperature is approaching the desired temperature, I start closing the vents. The vent controls on the Egg are pretty consistent from cook to cook. For my small Egg to maintain about 275* the bottom vent is open about 3/16" of an inch and the top is closed just using the daisy wheel. During the summer I may have to close it up a little more and during the winter open it up a tad more.

    I don't think there is a need for a water pan. A water pan will only try to regulate the temperature to 212* which is too low.

  • Thanks for the reply.  I understand and agree with what you're saying.  With a typical 10 hr cook, you need to either crutch or baste your protein...usually a brisket.  I use 2 bottles of beer in an aluminum pan at room temp.  I understand there's an initial temp adjustment period during the first hour due to 15 lbs of meat, liquid and plate setter.  I however, am only cooking at 250  and those items are at outdoor temp [Arizona] 70+.  After the first hour, this issue goes away.  I don't have a problem babysitting the Egg for the first hour...my problem is the next 9 hours...the 2002 Egg doesn't have this problem.  Once I would reach my desired cooking temp, the 2002 Egg holds the temp steady, the 2015 Egg does not.  
  • I don't agree about basting, but if you are saying one egg is different than the other, i got nuthin


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  • MikeeMikee Posts: 783

    In my opinion, the Egg takes time to see a temperature change when adjusting the vents; even more so when you're trying to back it down. If it's not up to your desired temperature but close; open the bottom vent another 1/8" and check it 30 minutes later. Eventually you'll find an opening that will produce the temperature you're looking for. That setting will then be what you'll need to start at the next time you cook.

  • Bottom vent to wide open entire time...that's what's so strange about this. My 2001 BEG works as you describe, bottom vent is open only about an inch to hold temp at 250-260.
  • logchieflogchief Posts: 1,190
    Having the vent open 1" would have mine going way above 250.  Have you fired it up to do a sear and get it ripping with the lid open or daisy wheel off?
    LBGE - I like the hot stuff.  The big dry San Joaquin Valley, Clovis, CA 
  • MikeeMikee Posts: 783

    What size Egg do you have?

    When doing a low and slow on my small, I build the charcoal like you would build a camp fire. I place bigger pieces on the bottom to create pockets for the air to flow through. Small pieces on the bottom will not allow air flow and clog the fire grate. The fire should burn at the top and works it's way down.

  • Steve753Steve753 Posts: 140
    Ok, I have another suggestion. Get a Kick Ash Basket. For one, it makes it really easy to get rid of ash. You pour the charcoal into the basket, and light it. Before you go another cook, pull the basket out by it's handles, shake it over a bucket clean ash out of the firebox, put the basket in, add lump as needed. The basket doesn't tough the outer wall of your firebox, so you get better air circulation in it. I have used Royal Oak lump, and I use a Weber lighter cube placed in the center of the charcoal. No problems.
    Large Big Green Egg
    Weber Gold
    Old Smokey

    San Diego, Ca
  • Kick Ash Basket...great idea, ordered. 
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