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Firing up the Egg

A more technical question for folks.... When you're lighting your Egg and intending to not let it get super hot, do you leave the dome open and let the fire get going pretty good before closing and finding your desired dome temp, or do you close pretty quickly and let it get up to the heat you want while closed? Or do you do something else?
It's an obsession, but it's pleasin'


  • Cookbook_ChipCookbook_Chip Posts: 1,224
    I leave it wide open until about 50 degrees away from target and start shutting down top and bottom to slow the temp climb
    Lovin' my Large Egg since May 2012 (Richmond, VA) ... and makin' cookbooks at
    Stoker II wifi, Thermapen, and a Fork for plating photo purposes
  • outrageousoutrageous Posts: 759
    after i light mine, i leave the dome open until  i get a good fire going, then close the dome and adjust vents.  

    Large egg and mini max egg plus a Blackstone griddle

    South Ga. cooking fool !!!!!!!!

  • ChokeOnSmokeChokeOnSmoke Posts: 1,909
    After 8 minutes with the electric starter, I close the dome immediately.  Creates an updraft through the bottom vent and out the top dome starting the lump very quickly.  Faster start time if you close the lid rather than leave it open.
    Packerland, Wisconsin

  • FlashkaBobFlashkaBob Posts: 373
    Here is a question. How do you know what the dome temp is if the dome is left wide open? :-S

    1 large BGE, 2 small BGE, 3 Plate setters, 1 large cast iron grid, 1 pizza stone, 1 Stoker II Wifi, 1 BBQ Guru Digi-Q II, 1 Amaze N pellet smoker and 1 empty wallet.      Seaforth, On. Ca.

  • lousubcaplousubcap Posts: 16,494
    edited July 2013

    There are about as many ways to fire up the BGE as posters here-so to add to the options; for low&slow I light in one spot around center, bottom vent full open and dome up-when I see about a softball sized amount of lump burning I shut the dome then adjust the DFMT and lower vent for around where I want to land.  For hot&fast I light in two spots around 4 & 8 looking into the BGE, lower vent full open and dome up until I get a good amount of lump lit (good is relative depending on final target temp.  Then shut dome and as above with DFMT and lower vent. 

    Experiment and get comfortable with something then change it up down the road.  Enjoy the journey!

    Louisville;  L & S BGEs, PBC, Lang 36; Burnin' wood in the neighbourhood. # 38 for the win.  Life is too short for light/lite beer.  
  • Cookbook_ChipCookbook_Chip Posts: 1,224
    By wide open i did not mean the dome. Just vent and chimney
    Lovin' my Large Egg since May 2012 (Richmond, VA) ... and makin' cookbooks at
    Stoker II wifi, Thermapen, and a Fork for plating photo purposes
  • WalrusBBQWalrusBBQ Posts: 151
    I light it with fire starters, shut the dome, open up daisy wheel quarter way, open up bottom vent half way and let it build 

    Better to reach my temp from the bottom then wait for a hot egg to cool down IMHO
    Beers & BBQ

  • mark_08mark_08 Posts: 37
    I use a map torch in 3 different spots for about 15 to 20 seconds a spot close the dome and with damper off and vent wide open. In about 10 minutes I was up to 500. Put the damper on and closed to vent to about a little more then halfway and got the egg down to 400 (where I wanted it at) in about a minute.
    Medium Egg. Huntsville, TX
  • mdoziermdozier Posts: 86
    I always do it the same way: using the starters I break one on 1/2 and get 2 spots going. I wait till the flame's out (avoid false quick high temp readings) and once the flame is out and lump starts to smolder I close the dome with the bottom damper and top vent wide open.. Then start trimming air flow as I get within 30-20 degrees of desired temp. Fwiw M
  • DMurfDMurf Posts: 481
    Up until this past week I would get the fire going, either through fire starters or fat wood, and close the dome leave the top cap off and have the bottom vent open. Due to reading this forum I have been trying out leaving the dome open and the bottom vent open. The benefits I have found is that I get up to temp faster as more of the top layer of lump become involved in the burn and the bad smoke clears quicker.

    Normally the top stays open for about 15 minutes then when I close it down I place the DMFT on the top and set the bottom vent for my target temp. I have not overshot my temp yet using this method, and I am ready to go in about 30 minutes which I use prepping for the cook.

    Just my 2 cents...
    BBQ since 2010 - Oh my, what I was missing.
  • CAT SellerCAT Seller Posts: 208
    I light with a weber cube, and close dome, bottom and top vents wide open. In about 1 drink it is at the 350/400 mark. If my target them is lower, then I pour a smaller, but stiffer drink.
    If it ain't a CAT, it's a dog!!! 2 LBGE's & BGE Backyard Chef Edition Cart
  • SkiddymarkerSkiddymarker Posts: 8,307
    edited July 2013
    Like someone said, if you are in a hurry, don't use an egg. 
    I pretty much know the vent settings on my egg for a specific cook, so as soon as the starter comes out, the set-up goes in, the Maverick goes in if it is an indirect cook, close the dome and the vents are dialled to what I think they need to be. I go away for sometimes as much as an hour, If I was too hot the Maverick tells me, if I was too low I have to look at the Maverick. This approach maximizes pre cook organization, or beverage time, whichever comes first. 
    Delta B.C. - Move over coffee, this is job for alcohol!
  • It's been years since I've had a charcoal grill, and I was never very into it or very good with it. But what I always recall was needing to give the briquettes time to burn down into white coals prior to putting food on. So that's ultimately what I'm trying to get to here - with lump and the specific temp control available with the Egg, is a ramp up/full burn type start necessary, especially if you plan on a 5-18hr type smoke. Seems a high temp sear fire is pretty easy to figure out-get it hot ASAP.
    It's an obsession, but it's pleasin'
  • bboulierbboulier Posts: 556
    I usually start the Egg with 1 and 1/2 Rutland squares fully open for about 10 minutes.   Then I close the lid and adjust the lower vent to achieve a set temperature target. Experience tells me how wide the opening should be to achieve a given target.  This process usually takes about another 10 minutes or so to make sure there are no off odors, emissions are clear, and the temperature is correct.  It's always best to start low and then raise the temperature by opening the vent further if yo need to.
    Weber Kettle, Weber Genesis Silver B, Medium Egg, KJ Classic (Black)
  • nolaeggheadnolaegghead Posts: 26,382
    Because the egg is different than an ordinary charcoal grill - namely that it burns fuel like a candle - from the top down - it can be lit fast or slow.  If I have the time, I'll light it slow.  If I need a fire in a hurry, I have techniques to accelerate the process - all involve getting more lump fired faster and involve more fire and air.  Regardless how you start, creating and maintaining a good fire (hot and only the size you need to maintain the temp) is the most important thing you can learn besides knowing when the food is done.
    This is my signature line just so you're not confused.  Love me or hate me, I am forum Marmite.
    Large and Medium BGE, Kamado Joe Jr, Akorn Jr, smoker with a 5k btu AC, gas grill, fire pit, pack of angry cats, two turntables and a microphone, my friend.  Registered republican.
    New Orleans, LA - we know how to eat 

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