What’s the best way to start a coal fire?
To start a coal fire, get a good hot fire going with hardwood kindling. Then add a shovelful or two of coal. When this coal has begun to burn, add more coal. It will usually take about 10 minutes for the wood fire to get hot enough to ignite the coal, so be sure to use enough kindling to last that long. Leave any dampers open for a good 10 minutes or so to get rid of the gases. Anthracite coal will not light unless it has a bottom draft.