The Char-Broil charcoal starter is made from steel with a brushed finish. It measure 8” in diameter and is 8” high. The body has a grill near the bottom to hold the charcoal, and has several large perforations for air flow. The handle is hard black plastic and there’s also a heat shield for improved safety.

This Char-Broil chimney starter needs some assembly when it arrives, but it’s just a few screws, so nothing major. I had trouble finding the hardware at first, but finally found them tucked away inside the packaging in a small bag. If you have the same trouble, the screws are in there, just not very well indicated. I also had trouble lining up the screw holes, accuracy of manufacture wasn’t the best. Just don’t tighten them until you have them in place.

The half time of the charcoal lighter refers to the time it takes to light similar products, and not that you can light it and cook your burgers during half time of your favorite sporting event. (which would be great!)

And it is quick. About fifteen minutes or less and you’ll have a large enough batch of hot charcoal for a small grill. Make sure you use suitable heat resistant gloves, pot cloths just aren’t enough when handling this chimney charcoal starter when it’s fully lit.

This charcoal chimney lighter doesn’t make starting a fire any easier either. If you normally use fire lighters then you’ll still need to. Or you can use newspaper or other suitable material. You can make this fire on any non-flammable surface, although the perfect place is probably on top of your grill.

Overall, if you’re looking for speed of ignition and a decent amount of hot coals, this Char-Broil BBQ starter does the job, although the manufacturer should pay more attention to quality control and the labelling of small parts.

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