Smoke pouring out of the pellet hopper

SFCGary

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I was 10 hours into a pork butt, and noticed smoke pouring out of the pellet bin. I immediately unplugged, opened up the bin to vent. This was 10 minutes ago and smoke is still, although dissipated, coming from the hopper. I pulled my butt out, and it is now in the oven. The water is full, I got a motor malfunction on the PB app...what could possibly have gone wrong??? ** UPDATE...cleaned out all the hardened pellets, I poured water on them before I went to bed, it was still smoking. Pellets are out, panel works, fan works, auger seems clear, but will not turn. Someone told me there may be a plastic gear or sprocket involved with the auger...anybody have experience with that?
 
Last edited:
I was 10 hours into a pork butt, and noticed smoke pouring out of the pellet bin. I immediately unplugged, opened up the bin to vent. This was 10 minutes ago and smoke is still, although dissipated, coming from the hopper. I pulled my butt out, and it is now in the oven. The water is full, I got a motor malfunction on the PB app...what could possibly have gone wrong???
You had an
Auger Fire



Sounds like several possibilities… the smoker is not level or your fire pot is full of holes or excessive ash and the pellets are not dropping in like they should but are being held at the auger edge due to excessive ash buildup or an unlevel surface underneath the smoker. It causes the pellets in the auger tube to burn back because they can’t push forward anymore. Always the smoker should be at least level if not canted so the firepot is below the auger.



Even if clean beforehand, pellet choice, ambient temperatures and humidity and dial set temperature could fill it up with ash faster.



Additionally, a full hopper provides sufficient back pressure to keep most of the smoke flowing towards the barrel. Keeping your hopper full and its lid closed and that will prevent the smoke blowback.



Also…. If your hopper is smoking after shutdown, you’ll want to ramp down your dial temperature to 200° for a few minutes before turning it off. If this wasn’t in your manual then it should be.



At higher temperatures you need to ramp down your dial temperature before shutting down. It allows the fire to cool and burn off all the pellets in the firepot and not catch those in the auger.



What to do to fix this?



Whenever it happens, use the prime button to push the burning pellets out of the auger.



If you don’t have a prime button, open the lid so the barrel temperature will drop and that’ll activate the auger to push the burning pellets out of the auger.

Call Cs for a replacement firepot.
 

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You had an
Auger Fire



Sounds like several possibilities… the smoker is not level or your fire pot is full of holes or excessive ash and the pellets are not dropping in like they should but are being held at the auger edge due to excessive ash buildup or an unlevel surface underneath the smoker. It causes the pellets in the auger tube to burn back because they can’t push forward anymore. Always the smoker should be at least level if not canted so the firepot is below the auger.



Even if clean beforehand, pellet choice, ambient temperatures and humidity and dial set temperature could fill it up with ash faster.



Additionally, a full hopper provides sufficient back pressure to keep most of the smoke flowing towards the barrel. Keeping your hopper full and its lid closed and that will prevent the smoke blowback.



Also…. If your hopper is smoking after shutdown, you’ll want to ramp down your dial temperature to 200° for a few minutes before turning it off. If this wasn’t in your manual then it should be.



At higher temperatures you need to ramp down your dial temperature before shutting down. It allows the fire to cool and burn off all the pellets in the firepot and not catch those in the auger.



What to do to fix this?



Whenever it happens, use the prime button to push the burning pellets out of the auger.



If you don’t have a prime button, open the lid so the barrel temperature will drop and that’ll activate the auger to push the burning pellets out of the auger.

Call Cs for a replacement firepot.
I agree.My 1st thought was the smoker wasnt level so it was burning up the auger.
 

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