Molotov Cocktails create an area of fire on the ground around where they impact. Players hit by or passing through this area will be set aflame, doing constant damage over time. Molotov Cocktails can be used offensively, but don't bounce like other throwable weapons. Another potential use of a molotov cocktail is area denial. If you set the staircase on fire, players will not be able to pursue you up to higher floors, and you can use this extra time to set up a kill zone or escape off a balcony. Molotov cocktails can also be used defensively to obscure an enemy's line of sight, similar to a Smoke Grenade.
Throwing a Molotov Cocktail is a two step process-
Press and HOLD the left mouse button to prime your molotov. This will start the detonation timer.
When ready, release the left mouse button to launch your molotov along the parabolic arc outlined for you.
Highly flammable. Do not drink.
~ In-game description
Update #38 (Season 6 - Update 6.2) - vN/A
Increased the speed at which fire spreads by 50%.
Fire can now spread slightly further, with an increased damage radius.
Changed the way fire spreads around objects. Fire will now more consistently reach the back side of objects (especially thin objects like trees).
Re-introduced direct damage while standing in fire, in additional to existing damage over time.
Players in fire will now take an additional 10 damage per second.
Fire now reaches higher and should be obstructed less by small objects.
Update #24 - vN/A
Players now receive damage from Molotovs that hit their vehicle.
Molotovs that hit around the vehicle or when driven through an already-exploded molotov will not damage those inside.
Molotovs can now deal indirect damage and burn damage (as damage over time), depending on whether or not you're standing directly in the flames. If you're in the flames you'll take both types of damage.
Indirect damage (taken when standing in the flames) has been increased from 10 to 12.5 damage per second.
After catching fire, players will take burn damage as damage over time (10 damage per second) for a total of four seconds.
You’ll now be unable to ADS while taking burn damage.
Flames now spread further along wooden surfaces in houses.Flames from Molotovs spread further if another Molotov is thrown on top of the flames.
A new animation has been added for character models who are suffering burn damage. They’ll attempt to pat out the flames using their hands.