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Getting BGE Hot

trippthompsontrippthompson Posts: 3
edited January 2012 in EggHead Forum
Just wondering how everyone gets their eggs up to high heat.  I have trouble getting mine over 400 degrees. I am a new egg owner and  any help would be appreciated.


  • stikestike Posts: 15,597

    open bottom vent, no daisy.  full of lump (fresh lump even better, but not necessary)

    light, shut the dome, walk away, wait
    ed egli avea del cul fatto trombetta -Dante
  • With me, the problem is usually that the grate and the holes are covered with ash so air can't freely flow through.  Clean it out, then add fresh lump, and do what Stike said.  I bet it gets to 1100.

    Dripping Springs, Texas.
    Just west of Austintatious

  • stikestike Posts: 15,597
    yep. that too.... good catch
    i stir ash every time i light the egg and yet i sometimes still get caught with a slow ride to temp.  when that happens, i sometimes find a mound of ash below the grate so high that it blocks from below, or restricts the flow of air

    so as VI says, check your ash (above and below the grate).

    ed egli avea del cul fatto trombetta -Dante
  • billyraybillyray Posts: 1,173
    If you are using the waffers to start the fire, I break mine into 4 pieces and place in different spots under some lump. It takes about 10 minutes for the waffers to burn down, during this time I leave the dome open, then shut it with the bottom vent wide open and no daisy, like Stike and wait about another 25-30 minutes and it's at 400-500. Wait longer and it's hotter. I only use the waffers when I want to have more beer time before I put the meat on, otherwise I use my mapp torch and save 10 minutes, (or lose 2 beers).
    Felton, Ca. 2-LBGE, 1-Small and waiting on a mini
  • ChokeOnSmokeChokeOnSmoke Posts: 1,914
    edited January 2012
    Could be the many things stated above, but a vast majority of the time, it's a clogged charcoal grate.  It's the one thing worth checking (and clearing out) every time you cook.
    Packerland, Wisconsin

  • boatbumboatbum Posts: 1,273

    A week ago or so, I forgot to replace the daisy wheel with the weather cap.    Rare occurence of some rain - next time I went to use, found that stirring the left over charcoal was not enough.   A little bit of moisture can cause ash to plug in those holes.   Took the charcol out, cleaned well, replaced the charcoal and everything was good.


    Cookin in Texas
  • lousubcaplousubcap Posts: 16,771
    @billyray-two beers and 10 minutes-that's some serious consumption per time-you must really enjoy a low&slow and I'm with you on beer time but not at that pace:) 
    Louisville;  L & S BGEs, PBC, Lang 36; Burnin' wood in the neighbourhood. # 38 for the win.  Life is too short for light/lite beer.  
  • billyraybillyray Posts: 1,173
    The 1st two always go fast for some reason, then it mellows out. I haven't tried a low & slow yet, the learning curve for temp. I've got down, but I still need to work on the beer curve. Don't want to miss hearing an alarm from the Maverick :)
    Felton, Ca. 2-LBGE, 1-Small and waiting on a mini
  • Beer time is good.  I will continue to use the wafers. The guy at the store told me to let the coals get burning good before shutting the lid.  From what I read here that is not necessary.

  • stikestike Posts: 15,597
    leaving the lid open creates a fire at the top.  you might want that for searing or paella or wokking, but i generally shut the dome so that the fire is established by the draft.  fire gets more air from a violent draft thru the lower vent than from lazily wafting in thru the top.  probably doesn't matter too much.

    ed egli avea del cul fatto trombetta -Dante
  • Also make sure that the large lumps are on the bottom and the smaller lumps on the top.  When it is the other way around, the small chunks tend to fall into the holes and block the air.  I use my hands to place the large lumps over the holes.  That way I ensure I have proper air flow.  Getting high heat this way should be no problem.
  • I'm new with BGE but I have done some smoking on other units. I previously lived near the East Coast where there is most always high humidity and found that if I didn't keep my lump in an container to keep moisture out I'd have a hard time starting and getting my unit up to temp. Now that I live out west (Idaho) I haven't noticed that problem. Charcoal lump or otherwise has an affinity for moisture.
  • bigguy136bigguy136 Posts: 1,161
    I go outside the 'box' and I start lump as others, get going for 5-10 minutes, give it a stir, wait a few more minutes and then I start the leaf blower, set it in a 5 gal bucket at idle and pointed at the lower vent. Close the lid and bump the throttle a little. That will clear the vent holes and blow a bit of soot out the top. Keep the leaf blower running until desired temp.

    Big Lake, Minnesota

    2X Large BGE, 1 Mini Max, Stokers, Adjustable Rig

  • Nakedwhiz conclusion on wet charcoal finds no evidence of starting fires.

    You should exercise care in the storage and use of your charcoal, but there is
    no evidence to suggest that wet charcoal, in the amounts stored and used by
    homeowners, can spontaneously ignite and thus, no reason to believe all these
    reports and warnings which litter the internet. We feel badly for anyone who
    loses their home to fire, but there is no reason to spread misinformation that
    flies in the face of all scientific knowledge. We also feel that some fire
    investigators would do well to heed the words of John DeHaan, again from Kirk's
    Fire Investigation, Fifth Edition, John D. DeHaan, on page 152:

    "There is a temptation to label many
    accidental fires as 'spontaneous' because there is no identifiable ignition
    source or obvious human intervention, but this is not correct. If the materials
    and processes cannot be specifically characterized as susceptible to
    self-heating under the prevailing conditions, then the cause must be considered
    to be unknown. Spontaneous ignition (with very rare exceptions) does not occur
    instantaneously and the time frame for development is linked to the chemistry
    and mass of the reactant. Flaming ignition is always preceded by smoke and odors
    that should be detectable by anyone in the vicinity for some time prior to
    flaming ignition."

    Just use some common sense and
    enjoy your cooking!

  • Thanks for all the help.  Last night I stirred the old coals around some, added some new and lit it.  I then closed the lid and it got to 700 or 800, whatever the thermometer that comes with the eggs max reading is.  Steak was great.
  • ShiffShiff Posts: 1,707
    When I had this problem is was always caused by small pieces of charcoal blocking the holes in the fire grate. The easiest solution to this is to use a wiggle rod by inserting it into the bottom vent and poking it up through the fire grate holes. ou can do this when you load the egg with charcoal and again if the temperature doesn't rise fast enough.

    You can make a wiggle rod easily or buy one. The one I have was bought here:
    Large BGE
    Barry, Lancaster, PA
  • I got one of the high-flow replacement grates, and the only times I have trouble getting my Egg hot are when I am foolishly trying to be stingy with the fuel. 

    The down side is I lose a lot more chips through the grate, and I surely waste more fuel than those who use the stock grate, or who sort chips out of the ash. 
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