MES Not Heating

Discussion in 'Electric Smokers' started by rabbithutch, May 19, 2015.

  1. rabbithutch

    rabbithutch Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Yesterday, I tried to set up my MES for a pork butt smoke. I pressed the On/Off button and the red indicator light came on. I then followed the instructions to set temp first (230°F) then the time (23hrs 45min). The green 'heating' light came on but after an hour the temp has not risen above ambient temperature. I have the door closed and hooked and the chip loader out of the cabinet.

    If the indicators are lit and indicating that all is well, what might cause the heating element to fail? I used the smoker last about a month ago and had no problems.

  2. bmaddox

    bmaddox Master of the Pit

    I would check the connection at the heating element to see if there is power to the element. If there is power than the element could be bad. If there is not power than the controller is bad. Or when you go to check the connectors you might notice that a connector has failed and that is your issue. 
  3. foamheart

    foamheart Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I assume its a new unit if you are reading the instructions. I HIGHLY recommend you call Masterbuilts Customer Service before jacking around and trying to fix it yourself.

    Tech support 800 489 1581 option 3

    Its under waranty and the CSR's at masterbuilt are some of the best in the business. Call 'em and let them help you first.
  4. rabbithutch

    rabbithutch Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    The unit is about 3-1/2 years old. I last used it about a month ago. I stated that I read the directions because, IIRC, setting the right control (Time/Temp) first matters. The unit is a model 20070211. I think that makes it Gen 2, but I'm not certain.

    I've set a triple snake in the OTG and will smoke tomorrow with hickory and mesquite. I expect a 20 hour smoke and want to be sure it ends during the day so I don't have to baby sit at night.

    I mentioned in another post that I was looking for my instructions and couldn't find them. I contacted MES for a replacement set. IIRC the manual has some troubleshooting help.

    Thanks for the replies. I don't know how I'll test the electronic module, but I think I can test the power to the heating element with a VOM.
  5. rabbithutch

    rabbithutch Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Just to let everyone know about a very good experience with Masterbuilt customer service.

    My model 20070211 wouldn't heat. I didn't have a clue what might be causing it. I posted here and got good advice. Today, I called Masterbuilt customer service. I was the 6th caller in the queue, but the wait was not very long. The CSR - a nice lady - asked what the symptoms were and confirmed that both the red and green lights were on but the unit was not heating. I gave her my model and serial number. She put me on hold for less than a minute and came back to tell me that they would ship a new heating element tomorrow. When questioned, she told me that if I could set the time and temp and see both the red and green lights but was getting no heat, the problem is a bad heating element.

    I don't have the part yet; but, so far, I could not ask for better customer service.
    daricksta likes this.
  6. Thanks for the info. I am glad your smoker will soon be smoking. Jted
  7. daricksta

    daricksta Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Thank you for this positive feedback for MB CS. This has been my experience, too.
  8. foamheart

    foamheart Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Glad it worked out for you.
  9. rabbithutch

    rabbithutch Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member


    The new heating element for my MES40 Gen2 arrived by UPS today.

    I'd say that is more proof of good customer service from Masterbuilt. :sausage:
    daricksta likes this.
  10. bearcarver

    bearcarver Smoking Guru OTBS Member


    Note: If I'm not mistaken that "211" is the model number that most of the bad wiring came from a few years ago---Mostly, if not all from Sam's Club.

    While you have it open, check the wiring for being undersize & the connections for corrosion.

  11. daricksta

    daricksta Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Just another reason why the Walton family doesn't get any of my money. Total disregard for the well-being of their customers and store employees. It's all about the obscenely high profit with them.

    Also note that this is a 40 inch model with a 800 watt heating element (according to the old Sam's Club listing). They sold an underpowered smoker to customers who didn't know any better just so it made it cheaper for Sam's Club to buy (along with the cheaper wiring), offer it at a somewhat low price and still make a killing on a poorly-constructed, inherently defective smoker. But then Masterbuilt gave them what they wanted so they share the blame, too.
    Last edited: May 26, 2015

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