Temperature Questions: New to pellet grills (but not to smoking/grilling)


New member
Jun 26, 2021
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Austin, TX
Howdy folks,

I've been grilling and smoking meats on all kinds of grills for years. I've used upright gas smokers, electric smokers, offset smokers and had settled on a webber kettle the last few years as being kind of a nice intermediate grill that wasn't super difficult but still provided that smoky tender meat me and my family love. So I've always been curious about pellet smokers, but hesitated into buying in. $500 for something I may not like always seemed like a high risk venture.

Anyways, Target is clearing out their Pit Boss PB440D's. PIcked one up for $175. I figured at that price, i'd be willing to gamble. Put the thing together and seasoned it last last night just to make sure there weren't any issues. Everything seemed ok. So decided on a pork butt as my first cook on this thing. Typically keep temps between 250 and 300. Pulled out my separate temp probe to get a feel for temperature. So on the far side of the grill, if I have it set to 300, I'm reading 190 and 250. The onboard temperature probe for the grill is reading 300 and the thermostat on the lid is reading 250'ish. I moved my probe from the far end and placed it in the center of the grill and it seems to run between 215 and 275 dead center. But that constant 60 degree swing has me a bit concerned.

I have the grill sort of out of the wind. There's a light breeze today, cloudy, but things should settle down and warm up nicely by mid day. Am I doing something wrong here or is this how this works? On my Webber temps stay pretty constant, that's charcoal and dampers. I assumed this would stay a bit more steady?
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