How to Put Out a Charcoal Grill

by Joost Nusselder | Last Updated:  June 24, 2021

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A lot of people own a charcoal grill, and that’s because outdoor grilling is such a fun way to cook for friends and family. But using this device requires utmost precaution.

Of course, you need to learn the proper cooking method before you start using a charcoal grill. While using a gas powered grill or a stove simply requires turning the knob on, the charcoal grill works differently.

Above all, the grill must be extinguished properly. Otherwise, hidden embers might reignite and would trigger a fire that could spread easily.

To avoid this disaster, here are the things you need to know how to put out a charcoal grill.


How to Dispose of Charcoal

  1. Suffocate the Fire
    Suffocating the fire could fully extinguish the flames, including any of the glowing embers. When putting out the fire of large pit barbecue grills, cover the vents and put the lid on so that the oxygen will be kept out.As for those ground fire pits used for barbecue, simply place a layer of sand into the pit.Wait for an hour and then check the coals for the presence of any burning embers.Remember that the amount of time needed for the fire to be totally put out will mainly depend on how many coals you’ve used as well as the size of your pit. The suffocation method is recommended for putting out a small pile of coals.
  2. Spray the Coals with Water
    When you spray the coals with water, a massive amount of steam will be produced and can help to prevent the oxygen from getting into the coals, which prevents them from burning further. Make sure you stand far away when spraying or pouring water so as to protect yourself from the rising of the hot steam.It’s also recommended to use a garden hose or watering can that produces fine spraying mist. With the use of a long and fireproof stick, stir the coals gently to make sure that all of them will be fully extinguished by the water that you’ve sprayed.
  3. Dunk the Coals
    A more thorough method of putting out a charcoal grill is dunking. With this process, each and every coal will be soaked with water to make sure that the fire is extinguished. After you initially put out the fire, use long-handled tongs (find some good ones reviewed here) to transfer the coals to a large container that’s filled with water. Then place the wet coal in a non-flammable area to keep them dry and then store in a fireproof container for future use.

How to Put Out a Charcoal Grill

The best ways to shut down your charcoal grill here step by step

  1. Clear the thing up
    Remove your foods on the grill out using the long tongs or a pair of heat proof oven mitts remove the grate carefully.take-the-food-out-the-grill
  2. All the way shut
    Close the lid then block oxygen reaching the coals by the closing vent on the bottom and damper on the top.close-the-demper-on-the-lidclose-the-vent-on-bottom-grill
  3. leave me alone
    After you do all above, keep the grill safe, cause this tips your grill will hold the temp for quite a while so let the coals cool down it take about 48 hours or depend on how much the coals have left. If you can’t keep the grill safe from kids pets or anything, let go for the next sectionkeep-the-grill-safe
  4. Soaked them all
    That right, using your long tong transfer the coals one by one to a large container filled with water then keep them dry on the place non-flammable when it dry keep them in a fireproof

Tips to keep in mind for shutting down your charcoal grill

  1. Avoid water after you have done your grill don’t throw a bucket of water to your grill directly a massive of steam will strike you and your porcelain finish will damage
  2. Make sure that your cloth clear and secure your apron (make sure you have a good one!) from fire flake
  3. It’s important that you have a fire extinguisher Class ABC at home it can extinguish multiple types of fire, including small grease fires in grills

What to Do in Case of Emergencies?

It’s crucial that you have a fire extinguisher at home, which would come in handy if a large flare-up occurs. Also, before grilling, make sure you have a spray bottle that you can use to extinguish the flames in case of a flare-up.

How Do You Control the Heat on a Charcoal Grill?

Most of the charcoal grills come with vents at the bottom. Open these vents up to allow plenty of air in, which also means hotter fire. If you need less air, then partially close these vents. If you’re lighting your charcoal during the setting up of the grill, these vents should be kept open.

What to Do with Hot Coals After Grilling?

If you’re using charcoal briquettes with additives or those that are not made of wood, you should dispose of them after the coals burn. You can simply wrap the ash in a foil and throw it to a garbage bin that’s non-combustible.

How Do You Keep a Charcoal Grill at 225?

In order to ensure that your grill stays at 225°F, you need to keep a close eye on the grill’s temperature. Be careful with those built-in thermometers since they tend to provide inaccurate information.

Do You Leave the Vent Open on a Charcoal Grill?

You should leave the vent open completely and manage the temperature by using the bottom vents.

Also read how to guide here: How to Clean Weber Grill

Joost Nusselder, the founder of Lakeside Smokers is a content marketer, dad and loves trying out new food with BBQ Smoking (& Japanese food!) at the heart of his passion, and together with his team he's been creating in-depth blog articles since 2016 to help loyal readers with recipes and cooking tips.