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Hey all - First time NEW EGG & charcoal user here. Been doing alot of reading so I don't ask alot of the same quetions but I have problems.
1st burn - I followed all instructions to the T and had trouble keeping the tems down low (didn't want anything over 350 till my gaskets cured) which I thought was normal. Did a cedar plank salmon that came out fab. Ever since then I have been having trouble reaching any decent temperatures.
Using BGE Lump & firestarters- doing everything I have read here, rings are lined-up, bottom door & top are open, ash cleaned out, fresh lump to the ring top.. can't get it right. I have had to rely on using a fireplace bellows from under to try & get the fire cranking which honestly, is a pain in the ass. Anyway - after a very frustrating weekend trying to cook pizzas that resulted in a less than wonderful outcome, I keep thinking it's an air flow problem. Got a flashlight & looked in the bootom door - loads of tiny lumb bits jammed in the air flow holes of the grate. A coat hanger cleared them and then I could finally see nice glowing red fire inside. BUT -I still could not get over 450 - this process is taking way too long to get up to heat & cook.
Long story short - if I follow what everyone says & add NEW lump to what did not burn last time & stir it up using my fancy EGG rake to get the ashes falling out all should have been well. Now I am reading that I need to empty & clean out all the box to get all the little pieces everytime I use it? Really? Also ,I have been keeping my bag of BGE Lump on a covered porch- is it also possible that the bag is getting damp and that is an addittional reason why I can't get higer than 300-350?? Do you guys keep it in some type of container?
And finally- how long should it take once I have shut the bottom door & put my top to kill the fire to cool down??? Is my lump still going or just it just take a while to come down?
Thanks in advance & hope you an help.... I have begun to 2nd guess my purchase and have been looking like a grilling chump to the wife : - )