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Ironwood 885 very little smoke


New member
May 28, 2019
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Concord, CA
Traeger Ironwood 885
Hi all, new to Traegers but not to BBQing. I got an Ironwood 885 this weekend, first was a dud, wouldn't even turn on. 2nd one fired up and was able to season it, but when I went to smoke yesterday, I was getting very little smoke in the chamber. I had the temps low, even had it in Super Smoke mode for a few hours, and I see little whisps of smoke, but nothing even closely resembling a smoky cooking chamber.
I was using the Signature Blend
My fan would run for a few seconds, then stop for a few seconds, then stop, and repeated throughout the entire cooking process.
Any ideas? When initially firing, there is a lot of smoke, but once it gets to temp there is very little.
Ideas? Thanks!
A bit of white smoke during ignition is normal. Once it is up to temp and If it is burning clean and efficient you shouldn't see smoke exhausting as a clean proper smoke is thin blue (basically invisible) smoke. If you can see white smoke it is burning dirty and you don't want food to be exposed to white dirty smoke as your food will be bitter tasting. Relax and enjoy if your food is tasting the way u like it and enjoy not seeing the white crap. The fan will cycle during the cook.
I've had the same issue with my Ironwood. Sometimes on 'Super Smoke" there is tons of smoke, other times there is little to none. I have not been able to nail down what is causing it to only work sometimes.
I emailed Traeger about the lack of smoke while using ‘Super Smoke’. This was their response, which makes little to no sense to me:

[Thank you for reaching out the Traeger Support team.

We're sorry to hear that the Smoke setting on your grill is not working properly. We apologize for the inconvenience that this issue may have caused you.

We determined that Super Smoke is working correctly, because you are setting the temperature between 165-225 it might be(74°-107°C). Super-smoke is only available at those temperatures or below, and The “Super Smoke” icon is showing up on the app and is also showing on the grill.

You should not expect to see more smoke coming out the back. What super-smoke mode is doing is increasing the amount of blue smoke created at lower temperatures.]
z.hart, I had the same issues as you described so I called up Traeger customer service and they immediately sent out a new fan to me. No further questions were asked...fwiw, my fan would do the same type of cycling during startup.
ajmac - thanks for the info. Do you get noticeably more smoke when you turn on Super Smoke (after the fan replacement)? Traeger is claiming that "Super Smoke" produces a smoke that is nearly impossible to see (which seems like a BS answer) and that my grill is working properly. Basically it's a smoker without the smoke.
I'm following this as I too only see any real amount of smoke occasionally during super smoke mode at 210 or 225 degrees.
I upgraded from a Z-Grill pellet smoker to the Ironwood 885 specifically for the Super Smoke feature. I was tired of using pellet tubes to enhance my smoke ring on the Z-Grill. After weeks of use on the Ironwood I am experiencing the same thing, little to no smoke created from the Super Smoke feature. Tomorrow I am cooking my first Wagyu brisket and I almost specifically bought the Traeger for this event, and now I'm concerned I'm not going to get that thick smoke ring I'm hoping for.
Im in the same boat. I'm not sure what to even expect from "Super Smoke" really. I mean it's on.... How can I tell it's really working? What is Super Smoke? I just add a tube when I'm sure I want some smoke but it defeats one of the main reasons I got the Ironwood.

Perhaps for Traeger, it's all smoke and mirrors and a bunch of marketing garbage.
I may be blowing smoke myself :oops: but I always thought that the smoke function only worked well on lower temperatures up to 225. After that, the smoke production falls off considerably. If you want to set the grill to cremate, the pellets have to be burned efficiently which means no smouldering.

Regarding your comment on Super Smoke, it sounds like a salesman's dream, an invisible product that can't be easily verified.
I’m pretty sure you can’t even turn on super smoke over 250, but even at 225 it doesn’t feel like a lot of smoke. I’ll always use the tube thing.
ajmac - thanks for the info. Do you get noticeably more smoke when you turn on Super Smoke (after the fan replacement)? Traeger is claiming that "Super Smoke" produces a smoke that is nearly impossible to see (which seems like a BS answer) and that my grill is working properly. Basically it's a smoker without the smoke.
New fan didn’t do anything to produce more smoke...I guess my Weber Smokey Mountain will be sticking around.
When doing a long smoke at low temperatures I always wound up with what looked like a glaze. The meat had a nice smoke ring and a sweet smokey flavour. If you set the temp higher, there is not much smouldering taking place so a secondary smoke source is needed (the smoke tube). This isn't Traeger's fault. The thick white smoke makes food taste like an ashtray IMO.
It would seem that the call centres send out far too many un needed parts in an attempt to get a "gold star" on the 3 question quiz. I called, got an answer that didn't address my problem and was told I was getting 2 bags of pellets for my inconvenience. I told the operator that it wasn't necessary but in a week the UPS man cometh with a great big box of cherry pellets. Must have cost them more than the pellets are worth. My grill still didn't work properly.
Kind of late commenting on this thread but I've experienced the same thing as others with "Super Smoke" mode. Maybe the Timberline does it better? I sure don't know. I also bought the Ironwood for that feature and I really don't use it any more.

What I have discovered is that if I use the Lumber Jack Oak, Pecan or Mesquite pellets (they don't strip the bark), I get incredible smoke at low temperatures (180-225) WITHOUT using Super Smoke. These pellets provide smoke both on the upward temp swing and the downward temp swing. I use them exclusively now for all my cooking. Sometimes I'll mix in some of their Hickory pellets if I'm doing a pork butt, ribs or chicken to get a little sweeter profile.

My advice is go with a pellet that produces the most smoke. I've tried several and Lumber Jack produces the most for me hands down.

Stay smokey my friends!
Have been seeing the same thing with my new Ironwood 885. Coming from one of the Home Depot Traegers wth the smoke stack there does seem to be a notable change in the amount of smoke I see (less with the Ironwood). I wonder whether the downdraft exhaust has any sort of impact in better dispersing the smoke compared to the standard Chimney. Also curious to follow up on the comments regarding clean blue smoke... does this suggest that the lower range models (Pro Model for instance) doesn't burn as clean?