How to Control Coal Heat on a Weber Grill

by Drenee Brown

Control the heat of the coals to prevent burning.

Craig Veltri/Photodisc/Getty Images

Items you will need

  • Spay bottle water
  • Thermometer

Controlling the coal heat on your Weber grill ensures even cooking without burning your food. New Weber grills will take a few times before your grill becomes seasoned. Seasoning involves using the grill until the smoke and grease coat the grill. Overtime the process gives a better taste result when you barbecue. If your Weber grill runs too hot, use these tips to control the heat of the coal.

Step 1

Pay attention but do not be overly concerned with controlling coal heat the first few uses. Weber grills run hot when they are new. This has nothing to do with adjusting the heat of the coals. The reflection of the shiny interior reflects heat back and the temperature will run around 50 degrees hotter (see reference 2). Temperatures will drop to normal after a coating of grease and smoke forms on the interior.

Step 2

Place the Weber grill in a sheltered location. Sometimes windy conditions can effect the coal temperature. High winds can blow into the bottom of the Weber Grill and make the coals hotter by fanning the flames. You can avoid this by closing the bottom vents of the grill or by moving the grill to a location where the wind is blocked.

Step 3

Watch the ash as it falls away from the coals. Heat spikes on a Weber grill is normal (see reference 2). As the ash falls away, new coal material is exposed and the coal temperature will rise. Usually after 15 to 30 minutes, the temperature will regulate itself.

Step 4

Control coal heat by using the direct and indirect method. With this method you have coals on one side that gives you direct heat to your food. The other side has no coals that gives indirect heat to your food. This method allows you to control how fast your food is cooking (see reference 3). If the coals get too hot, use a spray bottle of water to calm the flames. Indirect heat allows your food to cook slowly without burning.

Step 5

Adjust the vents on the bottom side of the Weber grill to control coal heat. According to, Amazing Ribs “Leave the top vents open half way. Control the temp with the bottom vents not the top." Close the lid and do not open it unless the temperature soars. Check the temperature by placing the thermometer in the vent hole to read the temperature.

Tips

  • Maintain grill temperature between 225F to 250F. Clean new grills with soap and water, sometimes packaging material left on the grill can cause it to run hot. Use vegetable oil to coat the grates and the inside of the grill to help the seasoning process.

Photo Credits

  • Craig Veltri/Photodisc/Getty Images

About the Author

Drenee Brown began writing online articles in 2006, contributing to various websites. She is a former Six Sigma specialist and received her certification through Ford Motor Company Lean Academy. She is also an entrepreneur and president of an electrical contracting company in Atlanta. She holds an Associate of Arts in communications from Sawyer Business School.