How To Put Out A Charcoal Grill? [WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW]

While charcoal grills are best known for offering delectable flavors, failing to put out your charcoal grill correctly can be a disaster. Therefore, if you are a grilling enthusiast, it is vital to ensure that you know how to put out a charcoal grill.

The HPBA recommends allowing the charcoal to burn until they turn into ash. Another method is blocking oxygen from getting to the charcoal by closing the lid and all the vents. Further, removing the grill rack is a good idea for convenience. Closing the vents and the lids cuts off oxygen to the coal allowing it to cool down, which might take about 48 hours.

Nonetheless, there are numerous opinions on how to put out a charcoal grill. Read on for more details.

charcoal grill

How To Put Out A Charcoal Grill

If you have been using a charcoal grill, you know that there are two main methods that you can use to put off the grill; do it quickly or be patient and wait for about 48 hours for the grill to completely go off.

When you are ready to put out your grill, follow these steps;

Close The Lead And Shut The Top And Bottom Vents

Charcoal requires oxygen to burn. Therefore, it will not burn without oxygen, which explains why putting on the lid and shutting down both the top and bottom vents to block oxygen from getting to the charcoal works. Once you block oxygen from getting into the charcoal, you notice the impact once the trapped oxygen is exhausted.

Wait For 4-8 Hours

After about 8 hours, the charcoal and the embers will die. Since that is a long time, you must ensure that your grill is safely placed to avoid any undesirable eventualities.

Dispose Of The Ash And Spent Charcoal

The next step is to dispose of the ash and the used charcoal. Never use plastic containers to collect the ash because you will never be sure that all the embers have successfully died.

Salvage Reusable Charcoal

After putting out the charcoal grill, there are chances that some charcoal might be unused. You do not have to get rid of such reusable charcoal because they can prove helpful in the future. Moreover, salvaging them is an ideal way of saving energy. Use a metal tong to guarantee your safety when salvaging unused charcoal.

How To Put Out A Charcoal Grill After Cooking

Always remember that you should never handle or dispose of hot coals until they are cold. Thus, you need to master the art of putting out a charcoal grill once you are done with the cooking.

To put out a charcoal grill after cooking, you need to follow these three simple steps to put out your charcoal grill.

  • Shut it down
  • Dispose of the unused Charcoal and Ashes
  • Clean the grill

Shutting Down

After you are done with cooking, the first step to putting out your charcoal grill is to close the lid and the vents to block oxygen. With the lack of oxygen in the grill, it should take less than 48 hours for the embers to die.

If you want the grill to cool down fast, remove the briquettes from the grill. You can use a tong or heat-resistant gloves and drop the briquettes in a metal bucket with some water. Once you remove the charcoal one by one, you can scoop the ash with a metal scoop and put it in another container.

Dispose Of The Charcoal And The Ashes

If you embrace the quick method, you will need to skip this step.

Once 48 hours have elapsed, you can comfortably remove the ashes and the charcoal from the grill for disposal. If there are any briquettes that you can salvage for future uses, then you should not hesitate to take action.

Clean The Grill

The last step is to clean the grill before storing it for future tasks. Cleaning the grill is simple as it entails sweeping the remnants of the ashes and briquettes out of the grill. You will need a grill brush and water to scrub off the grease from the grill before letting it dry for future assignments.

How To Put Out A Charcoal Grill Without A Lid?

Is it possible to put out a charcoal grill without a lid? The answer is a simple yes. Several methods can assist in putting out a grill without a lid.

1. Let The Coals Burn Out

Letting the coals burn out is perhaps the best way to put out your charcoal grill. The HPBA recommends using this method, implying that it is the safest. If you decide to adopt this method, then here are the steps to follow;

  1. Open the grill, and both the top and bottom vents
  2. Allows the briquettes to burn down to ashes
  3. Be vigilant to ensure that children and pets do not touch the grill.

Most people love this method because it is the safest, as there is no need to get personal with the grill. Moreover, there is no risk of damaging your grill with this method.

2. Remove The Coal

The second method to put out your grill without a lid is to remove all the coals. Although this method allows you to reuse charcoal in the future, it entails the handling of hot charcoals. Therefore, you need to be cautious not to hurt yourself.

To remove the hot coals from the grill, you will need a shovel, heat-proof BBQ gloves, and a heavy-duty steel bucket to hold the hot charcoal. Once you have removed all the briquettes from the grill, put them in the steel container and completely cover them to suffocate them from oxygen. The embers may take up to two days to die completely.

3. Remove The Hot Coals From The Grill And Extinguish Them Elsewhere

Removing the hot charcoal from the grill to extinguish elsewhere is a risky task requiring you to have all the necessary safety gear. You will need a metal shovel, heatproof gloves, and a bucket of water.

After removing the hot charcoal from the grill, you will need to pour water on the hot charcoal in a metal container to put out the fire. Always remember that there will be hot steam which can burn you. Therefore, you have to put your body in such a way that you do not end up burning yourself.

bbq day grill

How To Put Out A Charcoal Grill Fire

After cooking, you must put out the grill fire to conserve energy or keep the fire off. The good news is that there are numerous methods that you can embrace to achieve this objective.

First, you can put the lid on and close both the top and bottom vents. This prevents oxygen from getting into the grill, and since charcoal cannot burn without oxygen, the ember will start dying slowly. The disadvantage is that it can take up to 48 hours before all the embers in the grill die.

If you do not want to wait that long, you can scoop all the hot charcoal from the grill and put them in a steel container with water. It will take a few minutes before the embers die. After removing the hot charcoal and ashes from the grill, let it cool down before cleaning it.


After completing your cooking, putting out the fire in your grill is very important. First, it helps to prevent any safety issues like burns. Secondly, you can save some charcoal for future use.

However, it is essential to avoid pouring water on your grill as this can cause extreme damage to your grill, including cracking your cooker. Also, the hot steam from the grill after pouring cold water can be hazardous.