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Cleaning ashes

Don't laugh to hard at this question, however can you use a shop vac to clean the ashes from the BGE?
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Comments

  • Ive seen some who have referred to using a shopvac.
    I have a small brush and pan (like a dustpan) that we got for our fireplace that works pretty good.
    Making the neighbors jealous in Pleasant Hill, Ia one cook at a time...
  • GBC yes I do it all the time I would say after like every 3rd or 4th cook I break down my Egg and shop vac it out  I never have a problem reaching temps or holding temps on a low and slow to me it is a regular part of my maintenance of my Eggs 
    2 Large Eggs and a Mini 2 Pit Bulls and a Pork shoulder or butt nearby and 100% SICILIAN
    Long Island N.Y.
  • I've read, but not tried, where some use drywall bags so as not to ruin their filters.  I've seen em at Lowes.

    Damascus, VA.  Friendliest town on the Appalachian Trail.

    LBGE Aug 2012, SBGE Feb 2014

  • BOWHUNRBOWHUNR Posts: 1,379
    I use my shop vac all the time.  Just make darn sure there's not hot coals or embers.

    Mike

    I'm ashamed what I did for a Klondike Bar!!

    Omaha, NE
  • KennyLeeKennyLee Posts: 529
    edited December 2013
    IMO shopvac it the easiest, cleanest and best way to go.  I just insert the attachment in through the vent before every cook and will take the insides out and vacuum out the whole thing every 3-4 cooks and almost always prior to a low and slow. 

    LBGE

    Cedar table w/granite top

    Ceramic Grillworks two-tier swing rack

    Perpetual cooler of ice-cold beer

  • Bought a cheap shop vac from costco dedicated to Egg.  It lasted 3 cooks.
    "America has only three cities: New York, San Francisco, and New Orleans. Everywhere else is Cleveland." -Tennessee Williams
  • GBC yes I do it all the time I would say after like every 3rd or 4th cook I break down my Egg and shop vac it out  I never have a problem reaching temps or holding temps on a low and slow to me it is a regular part of my maintenance of my Eggs 
    +1
    "You're being very Un-Dude"

    Peachtree Corners, GA
  • NPHuskerFLNPHuskerFL Posts: 4,750
    edited December 2013
    I use my monster shop vac and actually clean it out after every cook. And about every other cook I pull all the ceramics outand vac out the whole thing. And I just beatthe vac air filter in a lined trash can so next go around I have good suction. Plus I'm able to reuse the lump that's left from previous cooks. And by doing this u have been able to control my temp to a gnats ass. Lol
    LBGE, SS Table and Stoker
    Die Hard HUSKER and BRONCO FAN
    Middleburg, FL
  • calikingcaliking Posts: 5,291
    BOWHUNR said:
    I use my shop vac all the time.  Just make darn sure there's not hot coals or embers.

    Mike
    Yep - make sure the the ashes have cooled first. Shop vac works great for the large, not so much for the small or mini, since the intake is smaller. Works fine if you're completely cleaning out a small or mini from above though. 

    #1 LBGE December 2012 • #2 SBGE February  2013 • #3 Mini May 2013
    A happy BGE family in Houston, TX.
  • NEWB_IN_NOLA  I bought a Craftsman 16 gallon shop vac on clearance it was last years model and I payed like $45.00  I have had it for like 10 years now even if I would have payed full price it was well worth it besides cleaning my Eggs I vacuum the truck  I use it when I change the water in the hot tub it is almost always being used 
    2 Large Eggs and a Mini 2 Pit Bulls and a Pork shoulder or butt nearby and 100% SICILIAN
    Long Island N.Y.
  • GezrGezr Posts: 151

    I use the Shop Vac for cleaning my large and small the same as noted above and think that it is the most thorough and least messy way of dealing with ashes that I have found. Strongly recommend the drywall filter to keep the ashes in the vac and not blowing out the discharge side.

    If you don't think too good, don't think too much.

    Afton, VA
  • AlohaCJSAlohaCJS Posts: 44
    edited December 2013
    Friend of mine got this ash vac cleaner… Home Depot was sold out but he found it cheaper on ebay… looks like Mini's ugly little brother. It is the POWERSMITH Ash Vacuum. $80 plus shipping.


    image
    Chris
    Falls Church, VA
    Large & Mini
  • Carolina QCarolina Q Posts: 6,866
    I use my monster shop vac and actually clean it out after every cook. And about every other cook I pull all the ceramics outand vac out the whole thing. And I just beatthe vac air filter in a lined trash can so next go around I have good suction. Plus I'm able to reuse the lump that's left from previous cooks. And by doing this u have been able to control my temp to a gnats ass. Lol
    Seriously?! EVERY COOK? I have had my large for 4 years. I removed all the parts and vacuumed, umm, once I think. I forget why I removed the parts, but it wasn't to clean. Just did that since I already had it gutted. Once in 4 years. Otherwise, I use the ash tool every 2-3 cooks. I always reuse all my lump (stir, dump new on top of old if needed, and light). I can also do that gnat thing. :) You're workin' too hard at this.

    That said, If you want to do it the easy way, without removing parts, here's an idea...

    Not for me though.
    Michael 
    Central Connecticut 

    "Avoid at all costs that vile spew you see rotting in oil in screwtop jars. Too lazy to peel fresh? You don't deserve to eat garlic." Bourdain
  • I pull the ash out of the fire box, then rotate the ash tool like it is a rake and do the area between the base and the fire box. When the lump is low, my old venturi brush cleans the fire box holes if they need it. 
    With the table nest there is enough room under the egg to slide a 10" pi pan to catch the ashes. Never used a vac (If I did, I'd use a dry wall bag so save the motor). 
    Delta B.C. - Vee-Gan: old Indian word for poor hunter. 
  • I never use a dry wall bag maybe once a month I dump all the ash or what ever else is in the shop vac and wash it out and it's all good and using a dry wall bag would be good if it were inside but outside what does it matter if a little ash blows by it's outdoors ?
    2 Large Eggs and a Mini 2 Pit Bulls and a Pork shoulder or butt nearby and 100% SICILIAN
    Long Island N.Y.
  • Go buy a Dyson.  Never lose suction.
    CC, TX
    1 Small, 1 Large, BGE Lump... and a lot of love.
  • I use my shopvac all the time. Im sure I need to change the filter but havent in years. Gets all the ash out though
  • TjcoleyTjcoley Posts: 2,882
    I pull the ash out of the fire box, then rotate the ash tool like it is a rake and do the area between the base and the fire box. When the lump is low, my old venturi brush cleans the fire box holes if they need it. 
    With the table nest there is enough room under tjhe egg to slide a 10" pi pan to catch the ashes. Never used a vac (If I did, I'd use a dry wall bag so save the motor). 

    Same technique here, however instead of a pie pan, I use a galvanized pail which also acts as a hot Platesetter holder. In over 2 years I only took out the guts once to clean it out, only because a lot of folks on here were saying you needed to. And since I don't have a fancy Venturi brush, I use a stick to clean the holes.
    __________________________________________
    It's not a science, it's an art. And it's flawed.
    - Camp Hill, PA
  • BBQMavenBBQMaven Posts: 1,041
    Michael,
    I'm with you... 5 years ago I replaced the broken fire box and ring.... haven't pulled them out since then. 2-3 cooks per week. When you are a lazy a BBQ guy as me, that's just too much work. My Large and Mini were never trained on "clean" and they do just fine!
    My firebox is in multiple pieces and the ring is broken in 2 places - soon will be changing them out. Wonder what I'll find behind them?????
    Kent
    Madison MS
  • Philly35Philly35 Posts: 411
    I use my shop vac to clean my large out all the time.
    NW IOWA
  • MayberryMayberry Posts: 426
    The shop vac works great. Get the flat car vac extension tool and it fits in the bottom damper perfectly. I've had my Egg for a little over a year and a half and I use a shop vac every 1-2 uses. It does a great job getting it cleaned out and even sucks residual ash down from the firebox, keeping the vent holes from getting clogged up. I've also done two clean burns. I just like to get the gunk out of it and keep it looking good. You can also use a shop vac on blow either in the top, or in the bottom vent, to get a roaring fire going in less time. If I want to sear steaks, I'll use the shop vac to blow into the fire, creating a hell of a fireworks show and getting the Egg stabilized at over 700 in just a few minutes
    Athens, GA
  • @Tjcoley - you don't have the fancy venturi brush 'cause you use the old gasser as a "Lodge table"... mine still cooks so got to keep the spiders out. 
    Delta B.C. - Vee-Gan: old Indian word for poor hunter. 
  • GrannyX4GrannyX4 Posts: 1,274
    I use a shop vac and attach the lint lizard to get around the outside of the fire ring. Works for me. ;;)
    image.jpg
    240 x 175 - 18K
    Every day is a bonus day and every meal is a banquet in Winter Springs, Fl !
  • brimeebrimee Posts: 57
    I use my monster shop vac and actually clean it out after every cook. And about every other cook I pull all the ceramics outand vac out the whole thing. And I just beatthe vac air filter in a lined trash can so next go around I have good suction. Plus I'm able to reuse the lump that's left from previous cooks. And by doing this u have been able to control my temp to a gnats ass. Lol
    Seriously?! EVERY COOK? I have had my large for 4 years. I removed all the parts and vacuumed, umm, once I think. I forget why I removed the parts, but it wasn't to clean. Just did that since I already had it gutted. Once in 4 years. Otherwise, I use the ash tool every 2-3 cooks. I always reuse all my lump (stir, dump new on top of old if needed, and light). I can also do that gnat thing. :) You're workin' too hard at this.

    That said, If you want to do it the easy way, without removing parts, here's an idea...

    Not for me though.
    I'm with you… I would rather cook than clean. I do remember when mine was out last, three years ago when I moved. Hmm, wonder whats back there?

    I am also on car forums where guys would rather polish and wax em instead of driving em, go figure.

    I confess, I,m a lazy cook and a lazy car guy but I sure have fun. 
    image
    Brian
    Fairview, Texas
    image
  • ShiffShiff Posts: 1,088
    I used to do some of the things people are mentioning here and ended up spending a lot of time getting ready for each cook.  Slowly I've been doing less and less and haven't noticed any changes in the way my Large BGE cooks. I now spend only a few minutes getting ready.

    I clean out the ash after every 3 or 4 cooks and just use the ash pan and ash tool to clean out the firebox. I don't try to get everything out, just a few scoops which I dump into a container and my wife uses it in the garden.  I no longer remove the insides of the egg to clean it nor do I do any clean burns regularly - I'd do one when it really looks dirty but that isn't often.

    I take no special care loading the lump - just dump it in with no sorting.

    I think if people tried doing less preparation they'd see that very little is needed.
    Barry Lancaster, PA
  • I clean my XL with a vacuum before a low and slow cook which is about every 5th/6th time.  It does seem to help keeping the low fire consistent.  Another nice thing about using the vac is that it clears the ashes out of the slider channels for the lower vent door and screen keeping them easier to operate.
    Cedar Rapids, Iowa
  • CPARKTXCPARKTX Posts: 731
    I've been using a small shop vac, but it clogs the filter every time. Inevitable or do I just have a cheap unit?
    LBGE & SBGE.  Central Texas.  
  • CANMAN1976CANMAN1976 Posts: 1,411
    I don't haul shop vacs around I just take out the firebox and fire ring and sweep the ash out with my hand into whatever is around and dump it.Takes about 3 minutes to do even in -20 degree weather.

    My main concern is breathing in all the ash.I do have masks but forgot to put it on last night and now Im blowing ash outta my nose all day:(
    Hows ya gettin' on, me ol cock



    Kippens.Newfoundland and Labrador. (Canada).
  • I forgot to mention that the vac I use is a DeWalt that uses 110 VAC or the 18 volt batteries  that also fit all of my portable power tools. It is very handy to take to the deck or other spots where a long extension cord would be required.  We use those at work for clean up after small jobs and they have been very reliable in an industrial environment.  The drywall filter bags help considerably with filter life.
    Cedar Rapids, Iowa
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