Controlling heat on Weber kettle?

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Senior Cook
Jun 13, 2007
new jersey
Hey guys, i just got a little 14" smokey joe weber kettle. I know its harder to control heat and whatnot with a small grill like this, but im trying to figure out what these vents do, and in what combination i should use them.

It of course has an adjustable vent on the bottom and on the lid. Can you guys give a little run down on the combinations of these vents being open/shut, and what effect the combinations will have on the heat?

I know its kinda a dumb question but i have to ask in order to get better at this. The other night was my first time trying to slow cook and i was having a touch time keeping the heat a constant temp.

I cooked a fatty/chevapchichi combo last night. Instead of just sausage i used a beef/pork mix seasoned with pepper, salt, and garlic... stuffed with sharp chedder cheese, wrapped in bacon, and with about 15 minutes left basted in BBQ sause. It tasted pretty good but next time i need some wood to get a little smoke in there. It wasnt dry, but it wasnt as moist as i thought it would be. Maybe overcooked a bit. It was in there for about 2 hours. So, id love some suggestions on holding my heat steady and anyway to make my meat a little more tender and moist would be great!

Pics for fun!! Anyone into cigars?


Slow coocking gives just enough time for 2 nice smokes!


My personal thought is that while the kettle is a good all-around cooker it is not the rest thing to "slow and low" cook in...that's what the WSM is for! :D

I have a 22.5" OTG and here is what I do some low temp cooks I do a modified minion method...I start with the vents open both top and bottom and then close the bottom down to 2/3 shut when the temp gets to 300*...I also shut the top vent little less than 50% and see where the temp settles in...if its hot I will shut the top vent down a little more and go from there...

Remember, the top vent affects how much air is being drawn in from the bottom...if you need to run it a little hotter than just open the top a bit more...unless you need a big time spike and then you need to open the bottom vents more.

I have to imagine that the Smokey Joe is going to be even harder to do this with just do to the smaller size...also, these grills will consume the fuel a little more quickly so you will have to replenish the coals depending on what you are cooking more than a few times.

Hope this helps a bit... ;)
Cool, thanks for the info. Thats where i messed up. I thought closing up the top would trap the heat inside and make it hotter. I see i was wrong.
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