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Many studies have been conducted regarding the chemical composition of wood ash, with widely varying results. Some quote calcium carbonate as the major constituent, others find no carbonate at all, but calcium oxide instead. Some show as much as twelve percent iron oxide while others show none.
There are several factors which have a major impact on the composition:
Typically between 0.43 and 1.82 percent of the mass of burned wood (dry basis) results in ash.
Also the conditions of the combustion affect the composition and amount
of the residue ash, thus higher temperature will reduce ash yield.
Much wood ash contains calcium carbonate as its major component, representing 25 or even 45 percent Less than 10 percent is potash, and less than 1 percent phosphate; there are trace elements of iron, manganese, zinc, copper and some heavy metals. However these numbers vary as combustion temperature is an important variable in determining wood ash composition. All of these are, primarily, in the form of oxides.
Guess I will go against the consensus - at least for me...
My reason is during a really long cook, more ash being present reduces air flow. That vacuum doesn't help at hour 12 of a long cook.
I think if you typically cook shorter and hotter - it would not be as important.
Not as much of an expert as either Nola or Naked -- but I firmly believe in Low Ash - to the extent it will drive where I spend my $.
Large & Small BGE
Cedar table w/granite top
Ceramic Grillworks two-tier swing rack
Perpetual cooler of ice-cold beer
Two XL BGEs - So Happy!!!!
I used to use the shop vac from my manbearcave - it has the regular stock dry filter. That ash would clog it up in 30 seconds. I got a dedicated vac (around $50 at Amazon) and use the bags. They DO NOT CLOG. When they're completely full, they weigh 20 pounds (of densely packed ash). No muss, no fuss. Yeah, I've scooped it out too. Get a bag, big spoon or something. Inevitably you have ash on the deck. Not a big deal and I'm not ADHD or anything, but I'd spend $50 on the vacuum over a looflighter any day. I use a cheap torch with propane, works like a champ.
I just bought your vac on Amazon - Damn one click! If I can't get it to work right, I am calling you! Tired of the dirty deck and my vac's always clog. Don't disrespect the LL it is a pretty good tool...
Regarding ash I would say B-C. If there is a lot of ash it would make me wonder what's in it.