Can I put BBQ ash in the HOTBIN?
Wednesday, 1 February 2012 | HOTBIN Composting
Can I add BBQ ash to my compost?
DO NOT add hot ash to the HOTBIN, or any other compost bin - it will damage the plastic and void the guarantee. It can ignite a fire if your heap is very dry.
Can I add cold BBQ ash to my compost?
Can I add BBQ briquettes (broken bits, leftover dust, etc) to my compost?
We visited some manufactures sites to read up how BBQ coals are made.
Here goes: they take the dust (inert charcoal particles) and press them into briquettes. To stop them falling apart they use a binding agent (starch - that's a potato!)). To get them out of the mould they add a release agent (borax, ie sodium borate - used in a hundreds things around house). To get them to light faster they add an accelerant (sodium nitrate - umm that will be the world's biggest fertiliser!).
Although we cannot be 100% certain of all the chemicals, consider this risk - you tend to stand near/over BBQs and breath in the fumes. Which is more dangerous breathing in a lot of fumes and using BBQs in a domestic environment or composting small amounts where bacteria turn most nutrient into safe forms of plant nutrients.