How to Start a Charcoal Grill without Lighter Fluid?[FIND OUT HERE]

Lighter fluids are among the common and simplest ways of starting a charcoal grill. However, it is not the best option because of its smell that can quickly get into your barbeque and ruin the flavour of your food. Therefore, you need to know how to start a charcoal grill without Lighter Fluid.

There are several ways that you can start a charcoal grill without lighter fluid which are; the use of a chimney starter, using a newspaper, using whiskey, use of an electric charcoal starter, and using paraffin wax. These are among the many other options that can help you start your charcoal grill without using lighter fluids, thus safe from getting any smell in your BBQ.

There is still more you need to know concerning the five ways you can use to light your charcoal grill without lighter fluid. You need to know how to execute each one of the ways and weigh them to see which one is best for you. Stay with us for more about how to start a charcoal grill without lighter fluid.

Charcoal Grill without Lighter Fluid

The main reason you need to avoid lighter fluid is to avoid the chemicals that might be in some of these lighter fluids. In the same way, you need to choose your charcoal wisely. For instance, you need to find the answer to which type of charcoal is better between the lump charcoal or briquettes. The following five ways can help you quickly start a charcoal grill without lighter fluid;

The use of a Chimney Starter

A chimney starter is also known as a charcoal chimney; it is an excellent device for lighting a charcoal grill because you do not need to add other chemicals or materials to light. It is made with a design that allows it to hold charcoal lumps; it only needs heat convention with some pieces of paper to light your charcoal grill, with no additional substances, thus maintaining the flavour of your food the way you want it.

Here is how to use a chimney starter to light a charcoal grill:

  • Make several paper rings and put them on the lower part of your chimney.
  • Fill your chimney with charcoal lumps up to the level that can sustain your cooking process.
  • Light the paper rings you placed at the bottom of the chimney and let the fire build up to the charcoals at the top.
  • When the top coals turn their color to grey, then it means they are hot; carefully transfer them from the chimney to the grill and adequately arrange them.

Using a newspaper

Where you can’t get a chimney starter, you can choose to use newspapers; this was the ancient method of lighting a charcoal grill before the invention of lighter fluids. However, you can still use newspapers because they are convenient and affordable.

The following steps can take you through the whole process:

  • Clear the ash at the bottom of your grill
  • Take a maximum of five pages of old newspapers and crumble them to build a newspaper pile at the centre of the grate. Ensure you leave some spaces between them for sufficient airflow
  • Put a few dry twigs on the newspaper pile.
  • Take several charcoal pieces, put them on top of your crumbled newspaper pile, and dry twigs almost in the middle.
  • Use a fire starter or a matchstick to light the papers.
  • While the fire builds up, keep on adding more charcoal.

Using whiskey

Using whiskey is another simplest way of starting a charcoal grill; one thing that makes it even better is that it does not affect the flavour of your food by adding other scents. Whiskey is made with high sugar and alcohol levels that evaporate fast, thus making it easy to light charcoal. Sugar decomposes fast in the presence of fire, releasing safe and flammable chemicals that make it easy to ignite the charcoal.

Follow these steps to use whiskey in lighting your charcoal grill safely:

  • Fill up your grill with pieces of charcoal
  • Crumble several paper towels to form lumps
  • Soak the crumbled paper towels in whiskey
  • Put the soaked paper towels between the charcoal pieces in your grill
  • Drop a lit matchstick on the paper towels to light up the charcoal pieces in the grill.

The use of an electric charcoal starter

An electric charcoal starter is designed with a looped metal coil that looks like the heating component of the stovetop. It is made to be used specifically on grills and barbeque appliances that use charcoal; however, it does not work fast like the electric heat gun; it is an effective way of lighting your charcoal grill.

These steps will help you to use this electric charcoal starter safely:

  • Fill your grill with enough charcoal to sustain your cooking duration
  • Use the charcoal to create a pile
  • Plug your starter into a power outlet
  • Wait for at least twenty minutes to allow the charcoal to catch a fire glow
  • Turn off the coil and remove it from the charcoal

Using paraffin wax

Paraffin wax works better when combined with a chimney starter, but it can also be used exclusively, giving you the best-expected results. The wax comes in various forms, which include cubes, coated wood chips, or compressed cardboard. You should know that paraffin does not produce any smell and is safe for the surrounding.

Follow the following three steps to light your charcoal grill with paraffin wax:

  • Put paraffin wax below your chimney starter
  • Where you do not have a chimney starter, you can put it on a charcoal pile
  • Use a matchstick to light the paraffin wax.

Lighting Coals without Lighter Fluid

Now that you can light your charcoal grill without using lighter fluids, you should know some of the benefits of using the other alternatives for lighting your charcoal grill.

Also Read:

Benefits of lighting coals without lighter fluid

  • Retains the smell and flavour of your food – as mentioned earlier, the lighter fluid substitutes do not release chemicals and their smell to the smoking food, thus retaining its flavour.
  • Fast and cheap – most methods applied in starting the charcoal grill use the most available materials, and you do not have to spend a lot on getting them
  • Safe – these methods are safe for both humans and the surrounding.

Replacement for lighter fluid

You are probably tired of the lighter fluid affecting the smell and flavor of your food, and you are looking for the most convenient replacement to solve this problem. There are various ways to replace the lighter fluid with other better, safer, and chemical-free substances. Every different substitute works differently and can suit different; here are some of the replacements you can choose from:

  • Chimney starter
  • Newspapers
  • Whiskey
  • Electric charcoal starter
  • Paraffin wax
  • Vegetable oil
  • Egg carton

These substitutes are readily available even in the comfort of your home; for instance, newspapers, whiskey, and egg carton, among others, are some things a home never lacks. So whenever you feel the need to replace the lighter fluid, you can quickly get them.

How to Start a BBQ without Lighter Fluid

Barbeques are among the top family favourites; you will see people trying to grill in their backyards when it gets warm. You would not want to spoil these moments with the smell of lighter fluids; therefore, you should know how to start a BBQ without lighter fluid.

Here is how you should start your barbeque without a lighter fluid

  • Start by cleaning out your grill and removing the previous cooking ashes; also, if it has dust, you can get rid of them
  • Set up your grill together with the chimney starter
  • Put the starters below your chimney
  • Use a matchstick or a lighter to lit the chimney starter
  • Using a manual fan, fan the flames produced until the charcoal gets hot enough
  • When the charcoal gets hot enough, pour them out of the chimney
  • Clean your grill grate and start cooking

Bottom line

Starting a charcoal grill without a lighter fluid is beneficial and can help you avoid many health issues and save time and money. Substituting this method with a chimney starter can be the best decision you can ever make. A chimney starter is cheap, easy to use, safe, and convenient, thus enabling you and your loved ones to enjoy your barbeque meals without any worries. You can also refer to for more tips.


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