Help! Weird behavior

strollin

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I've had my Pro 575 for about a month now and have been happy with it. Today I went to smoke a brisket and set the temp at 225 and hit ignite. The ignition process seemed pretty normal except that there was a lot of smoke. Once the ignition process ended and preheating started, the temperature climbed very rapidly. It shot right past 225 and soon reached 340. The fan was blowing pretty hard at this time. I ended up doing a shutdown and then repeated the ignition/preheat process. This time the temperature got up to 210 and then started backing down and was hovering around 200. I cranked the temp dial up to 260 and the temp started going back up. When it hit 223, I dialed it back down to 225 and it finally hit the 225 mark.

I put my brisket in with a probe and the grill seems to be maintaining the correct temp now.

Any ideas why the temp overshot the setting by more than 100 degrees? Any idea why the grill couldn't reach 225 until I cranked up the dial?
 

dunawayfamily

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Excess pellets in the firepot are usually why the initial temp overshots ...


The following two support documents from Traeger cover temperature fluctuations, running hot, etc.

Running too hot (D2)

Ensure proper startup.
All D2 grills follow a closed lid startup.​
Did you check the firepot before starting the grill?
An excess number of pellets in the firepot during startup will cause a flare-up at the beginning of the cook.​

Temp Swings (AC&DC)
 

bfletcher

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If I were in your shoes I'd let it overshoot on startup and wait it out without human intervention.
 
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strollin

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Since I always do a shutdown after a cook, shouldn't that ensure that there aren't excess pellets in the firepot? How would excess pellets get there?
 

dunawayfamily

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Since I always do a shutdown after a cook, shouldn't that ensure that there aren't excess pellets in the firepot? How would excess pellets get there?

It "should", but that does not always equate into there not being excess pellets in the firepot (maybe the auger motor pushed too many in on the next startup, or there were enough remaining pellets after the previous shutdown (along with excess ash) to cause the flare up) ... I agree with bfletcher that when our PRO 780 overshoots at startup, it seems to resolve in a short amount of time (25-30 degrees above target), so I just let it run its course ...

What was the previous cooking session running at when the grill was shutdown? What is the current cooking session set to initially? If the last time you cooked you were at 400 degrees, and this time you're starting off at 225, then that may play into it as well (some people suggest stepping down the temp before initiating shutdown) ...
 
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strollin

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If it would have overshot by only 25-30 degrees I wouldn't have been so concerned by when it overshot by 115 degrees then I stood up and took notice!

The last temp I used prior to previous shutdown was 500. If that really is the reason why the grill overshot then There is a major bug in their shutdown process.
 

dunawayfamily

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If it would have overshot by only 25-30 degrees I wouldn't have been so concerned by when it overshot by 115 degrees then I stood up and took notice!

The last temp I used prior to previous shutdown was 500. If that really is the reason why the grill overshot then There is a major bug in their shutdown process.

High temp sessions directly into shutdown seems to be a common issue/concern raised on various Traeger-related FB groups ... which is where the recommendation to do a step down in temp before initiating shutdown has come from ...

The highest temp I have set the grill at to date is 430 degrees ...

The amount of spent pellets & ash in/near the firepot after a 500 degree cook probably necessitates a quick cleanup before the next grilling session (especially if it is going to start at 225) ... but YMMV ...
 

bfletcher

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The way I look at it is when I prepare to cook over medium heat on a gas grill I'll still do a preheat on high, so if my pellet smoker overshoots the setpoint but then stabilizes I don't fret over it. But I also recognize that just because I feel this way doesn't mean you should.

To the input above, you could possibly reduce this likelihood by vacuuming the pot prior to startup. But with all due respect, performing a shutdown, then restarting and chasing your temps by manual adjustments will most likely result in odd behavior since the controller is automated and will react to multiple changes.
 
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strollin

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If I felt that, in order for the grill to work as it should, I needed to tear it apart and vacuum the pot prior to each cook, it would cause me to decide pellet grilling is not ready for prime time, stop using the grill and go back to using either gas or charcoal which served me pretty well for most of my 60+ years.

I retired last year as an automation consultant and, if an automation I designed required my client to jump thru hoops to make it work correctly, I'm quite sure the client would not be happy with my work and I would be very ashamed.

My brisket turned out well despite the rocky start.
 

isaiahfranco

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You shouldn't need to vacuum the fire pot between cooks--only after roughly 20 hours of cooking. I agree, just let the temp stabilize and don't try to intervene.
 

bfletcher

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Well, while an automation control may not require maintenance many products into which they are incorporated do require attention to varying degrees. I don't know how your Pro manual reads but, as noted by Isaiah, my Ironwood maintenance section recommends that the inside and ash pot be cleaned at 20-hour intervals. I'm by no means a clean freak but I do remove ash, grease and debris from all of my cookers at very frequent intervals in order to achieve optimum performance (and in the case of grease to avoid a fire).

Congratulations on your retirement and successful brisket cook!
 

dunawayfamily

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500 degree cooks are going to burn through considerably more pellets than those grilling sessions where the temp is sub-300 degrees, so the 20 hours of cooking time to clean in/around the firepot is going to be variable to some extent based on the amount of pellets running into the firepot, which is correlated back to the temp and length of time for higher degree cooking session ...
 
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strollin

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I've had the grill about a month now and have done 6 cooks. After the 4th cook, I pulled it apart and vacuumed the ashes, including the pot.

I don't do 500 degree cooks, I've only used 500 degrees to do a reverse sear. I've only used a single 20lb bag of pellets so far.
 

isaiahfranco

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This video that Ace Hardware posted goes over the cleaning of an IW885 and his looks way dirtier than I ever let mine get. Tons of ash at the bottom of the barrel.
 
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strollin

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I watched the video and felt he talked about doing a thorough cleaning but really didn't actually do a thorough cleaning. I figure he just went thru the motions for the purpose of the video.
 

TraegerTL850

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Hello just got my new TL850 ran it through the Seasoning Your Grill no noticeable issues at all - next day happened to find the exterior powder coating was blistering up and also have had a couple of other issues actually for the $1799 plus cover nearly $1900 expenditure was expecting this thing to look and perform like the Cadillac Traeger Rep called it - I am not a happy camper right now
 

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Dzacco

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Mine overshoots every time, no big deal. During ignition it dumps pellets in the firepot and it takes a while to ignite, then they all ignite. Just open the lid and let it cool to desired temp. It will level out.
 
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strollin

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Mine has done it only the one time. I opened the lid to try and bring the temp down but it only dropped to about 275 and the fan kept blowing like crazy. It was like the fan was stuck on high.
 

Dzacco

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Mine has done it only the one time. I opened the lid to try and bring the temp down but it only dropped to about 275 and the fan kept blowing like crazy. It was like the fan was stuck on high.
That doesn't sound right. The auger should stop feeding pellets if the thermostat reads higher than the set temperature but it does take a few minutes to bun off the excess pellets. I'm not sure how the blower is programmed but it only furnishes combustion air.
 

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