5 Easiest Ways To Light Lump Charcoal?

Making barbecue at parties is a common trend nowadays. And firing the charcoal is a common problem for us. Whether we are at a family party or in a little get-together amongst friends, we always get into trouble to light the charcoal.

Also, we get confused searching Youtube and Google about it, because there’s plenty of content regarding the topic. So, we need proper guidance to get rid of this problem.

Therefore, here, we will show you the 5 easiest ways to light the lump charcoal. Following the article, igniting the charcoal will be just a matter of time for you. So, what are you waiting for? Let’s see how to light lump charcoal.

5 Ways To Light Lump Charcoal

There are a few ways to ignite lump charcoal. Using chimneys, lighter fluids, or a looft lighter you can ignite the charcoal by yourself. But still, without knowing the proper way, you may fall into trouble.

People who have chimneys of their own also face problems setting fire to lump charcoal. And those who don’t have chimneys, try to figure out a way of how to light lump charcoal without a chimney.

So, today, we are coming with all the easiest methods of lighting the lump charcoal. Once you finish the article, you don’t have to search for how to light lump charcoal again. Below, we are demonstrating the ways of lighting the lump charcoal with their pros and cons. Let’s start with the chimney.

How To Light Lump Charcoal With Chimney:

Lightning charcoal is a preferred method for many. It is effective and quick. Also, it is clean and cheap. It takes no time to fire the charcoal.

A chimney is just a metal tube that holds your charcoal inside. And you can fire it from the bottom. Through the method of the chimney, the charcoal becomes hot in a short time. Let’s see the steps to light charcoal with a chimney.

Step 01: Place two sheets of newspaper under the chimney.

Step 02: Pour the charcoal into the chimney. If you want the maximum heat for your grill, fill the chimney with charcoal to the top. For less heat and slow cooking, fill the chimney halfway.

Step 03: Now, set the chimney in the bottom of the grill and light the newspapers that are underneath the chimney.

Step 04: When you see the top layers of coal start to get ash over, you can assume the charcoal is ready. Now you can place your food into the chimney carefully and spread the charcoal evenly. In a quick time, your barbecue will be ready.

The chimney method is a less expensive and quick process. Furthermore, there’s no chemical issue like other procedures.


  • Inexpensive.
  • No electricity and chemicals.
  • Effective every time.


  • Inappropriate for kamado-style grills.

Firelighter Method:

To Light Lump Charcoal

The Firelighter method is perfect for a kamado-style grill. If you want to know how to light lump charcoal kamado, this method is for you.

A Firelighter uses compressed cardboard, paraffin wax, or war-coated wood shavings to fire the charcoal. Paraffin wax is a nontoxic material. So it doesn’t leave residue or any odor. Let’s see how the procedures go with firefighters.

Step 01: Place the Fire Lighter or the Fire Starter directly into the lump charcoal. If you’re using a chimney, you can set the Fire Lighter into the chimney.

Step 02: Then just light it and set whatever you want to burn over it. And surprisingly, that’s the last step to do. After 8 minutes of burn time, your meal will be ready.


  • It burns 8 mins or more even if you have wet or stubborn charcoal.
  • Inexpensive.
  • Weatherproof.


  • If the charcoal is chemical, it can affect your food. So, make sure the stuff you’re burning is natural.

The Looftlighter Method:

The Looftlighter Method to light lump charcoal

The looftlighter ignites the charcoal in seconds. It is a combination heater that leads the heated air to the charcoal. Once you buy a looftlighter, igniting charcoal will be a one-minute job for you. If you’re not familiar with the looftlighter, let’s see the steps to follow.

Step 01: Plug the looftlighter in.

Step 02: Set the pointer of the lighter to the root of the pile of charcoal and press the button.

Step 03: When you see the sparks, pull it back a few inches and keep the pointer in the exact direction.

Step 04: After 60 seconds or more, the charcoal will be heated enough to fry your food. Turn the looftlighter off and enjoy your meal.

The looftlighter is available at 80 dollars. If the money is not an issue then the looftlighter method is the way to go. Because it is a very fast method and uses no chemicals. And the bottle opener feature is a nice touch of it.


  • The fastest way to ignite your charcoal.
  • Features a built-in bottle opener.
  • Uses no chemicals.


  • Expensive.
  • Requires electricity.

Paper, Kindling, Charcoal Method:

You have to build a fire with this method to light your charcoal. It’s a bit of an intensive technique and not always reliable. But it’s the simplest way to ignite the charcoal.

Step 01: Put the charcoal in a place and make a bundle.

Step 02: Take 2 or 4 sheets of paper and set them in the center of the pile of charcoal.

Step 03: Make a crisscross pattern through some sticks over the paper. And keep it down at a level surface.

Step 04: Put some charcoal at the top and light the paper.

Step 05: Once you see the charcoal start to get a spark, add more charcoal to make the fire.


  • Require no tools.
  • Inexpensive task.
  • Easy and simple way.


  • Hard to do in damp weather.
  • You need skills and patience.

The Electric Charcoal Starter:

The strategy with the Electric Charcoal Starter is also a good method as it has no issues with chemicals. The electric starter is an electric stove burner with a handle. It comes in U shape.

Igniting charcoal with the Electric Charcoal Starter is not quick as the looftlighter though, it will get your job done. Let’s see how to use an electric charcoal starter.

Step 01: Set the Electric Starter in the middle of the grill. Leave the handle open.

Step 02: Put some charcoal on the top. 

Step 03: Plug in the starter.

Step 04: After a few minutes, the coal will start to glow. Once you see it happens, unplug the burner. And, the charcoal will be ready to fry your barbecue.


  • No chemicals.
  • Always works.
  • The fastest way to burn your charcoal.


  • Requires electricity.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: How long does lump charcoal take to light?

A: Well! It’s all about the process you use though. Naturally, the lump charcoal takes 15-20 minutes to light up.

Q: How can I light my charcoal lump without lighter fluid?

A: Almost every type of charcoal starts sparkling after 15-20 minutes. There are several eco-friendly safe chimney starters or electric starters that can light woods, charcoal, briquettes, etc without having the help of lighter fluids and the other chemicals.

Q: Is lump charcoal hard to light?

A: There’s a few shapes of charcoal though and most of it comes in different materials, lightning the charcoal is not hard. If you know the proper way to light the charcoal, there won’t be an issue of difficulty.

Q: How do you smoke lump charcoal?

A: For slow cooking, you may sometimes need to smoke your charcoal for a long time. At this, you just have to pile the wad of the charcoal and light the upper part of it. Slowly, it will burn downward and provide you slow steady heat that you need.

To conclude

So, that’s how to light lump charcoal. We have explained every possible way that you can try. Just remember as it is a matter of food, stay away from chemical fire starters and lighter fluids.

The methods we have consulted above are all chemical-free. These won’t affect the taste of your foods. And the tools we’ve mentioned work very well and also these are clean and efficient. Just follow the basics here and have a good time grilling. 

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