First Timer - Flare Up Issues When Chips Added

Discussion in 'Electric Smokers' started by drew manzella, Aug 29, 2016.

  1. Hello!

    Just got a MES 30 Digital this past weekend.  I spent yesterday seasoning it (2 hours at 275 degrees and then 4 hours of chips at 275) and it went great.  Smoke was smooth and consistent and I was getting almost 2 hours out of a batch.

    This morning I fired it up to do a Boston Butt and the chips keep flaring up every time I add them in.  At initial startup it was pretty bad.  I made the mistake of pulling the chip loader out to check on them and it flared and I just had to let it burn out.

    Fast forward 2 hours later and I just added another load of chips and it is clearly trying to ignite every 30-45 seconds with a puff of smoke coming out the top and chip loader (and the distinct "poof" sound of a flame trying to ignite).

    Is this normal and I am freaking out over nothing or am I doing something wrong?

    Smoker is running at 225 degrees currently.
  2. Did you empty the chip trap of the spent chips? The only time ive had a flareup is when the chips spilled over onto the heating element. I rairly use the chip tray and loader though so i dont have alot of expertice to share.
  3. It was clear this morning at the initial startup.  They were burning in the tray - not on the elements.
  4. parrot-head

    parrot-head Meat Mopper

    2 hours seems like a lot to get out of a batch of chips.  Possibly adding too many chips?  I had the big puff happen before but since added fewer chips.  Normally a load of chips will last 45 minutes or so.
  5. smokin-pete

    smokin-pete Newbie

    Try Sawdust, it will smolder and not catch fire like that. But I only use chunks of wood myself.

  6. daricksta

    daricksta Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    My initial thought is that there was too much airflow through the wood chip holder. Is your air vent on the left side of your MES or on top? I've got the MES 30 Generation 1 and have never had any problems with wood chip flare ups--when I still using wood chips. I only use wood pellets, which is a topic for a later time. You posted this 6 weeks ago, Drew. Did you resolve the problem or are the chips still igniting into flames? Do the chips come into direct contact with the heating element? Parrot-Head had a good point about you possibly overfilling the chip holder. If all else fails, Masterbuilt offers great customer service over the phone.
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2016

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