For years I've piled charcoal briquettes into my weber grill and then doused it with lighter fluid, lit it, sear my eyebrows off, and then wait for the coals to get hot.  That's the method that was passed down from generation to generation to me.   My eyes were opened recently to the wonderful advantages of using a charcoal chimney.  It's now the only way to go when grilling with charcoal.

Last week I tried to rush and grill while keeping an eye on both of my kids.   The wind had switched off the lake, and it turned pretty cold outside and the kids wanted to go in.  I doused the coals with lighter fluid, quick lit it, saw it take off, and then ran inside to monitor the kids.  When I returned 15 minutes later, the coals were out.  Now I had to re light it, rush it, and our food ended up having a hint of lighter fluid taste.  Yuck.

My neighbor has used one of these chimneys for years, so I borrowed his.  The next day I went out and bought my own it worked so good.  No lighter fluid needed and it's ready faster than if I had used lighter fluid.   All you do is wad up some newspaper in the bottom, stack the coals on top and light the paper.  Within 15 minutes you've got a nice hot grill.

I bought mine from Menards yesterday for 10 bucks.  It'll pay for itself with the amount I'm saving on lighter fluid within a year.