What Thermometers do you use?

Discussion in 'Meat Thermometers' started by nysmokes, May 8, 2009.

  1. nysmokes

    nysmokes Fire Starter

    OK - I plan on smoking on my Weber 22.5 Grill soon. I have some questions on thermometers.

    1. Digital / Probe Thermometer - I have read where people use these and put them in a potato to measure the temp in the grill.

    Would you do this for Ribs, because you would not stick a probe in the rib meat?

    2. In a lot of the pictures posted, people have a thermometer inside the grill just sitting on the grate. Again - is this just to keep tabs on the internal temp of the grill, and what do you use for this.

    3. For my Weber - is it fine to just put a long thermometer through the top vents to get a reading, or should I also have one on my grill grate?

    4. If smoking a Pork Butt - do you put the probe in the meat? I am reading where once you hit 165 degrees, you wrap in foil and then let get to 200? Is that correct?

    Thanks for your tips
  2. richoso1

    richoso1 Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Using the potato to hold the therm at grate level is very reliable for grate temps. You need to know your smoking temp. You should also consider a meat probe when smoking anything like a butt, you'll have internal temp readings without having to open any door. As far as wrapping a butt until you reach a certain temp, it's all about how you like the end product. What you mentioned can be considered a general guideline. Good luck my friend, it's all good.
  3. pineywoods

    pineywoods Smoking Guru Staff Member Administrator Group Lead SMF Premier Member

    The probe sticks thru the potato a couple inches and is placed on the grate to give you smoker temp at grate level. If the probe were right on the metal grate it would give a false reading.

    Ribs are one of the few things most of us do by time or looks/feel and yes most of the reason is because its too hard to get a probe properly placed.

    The oven thermometer placed on the rack is to give temps at grate level this works good but you have to open the lid to check it.

    The best place to monitor smoker temp is at grate level right beside the meat your smoking. Temps can vary quite a bit from top to bottom or end to end so a probe right by the meat works best.

    Many of us use more than one thermometer or one with dual probes and monitor smoker temps with one and meat temps with the other. You are correct on the procedure for pulled pork heres a link to a thread on pulled pork

  4. danmcg

    danmcg Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    As far as thermometers go, I've been using the Maverick ET-73, its a dual probe unit with remote. It works good although the 100' transmit distance that's advertised must be an unobstructed distance, I had some trouble trying to get a reading at 50' with 3 walls between the two units. It really make a smoke enjoyable when you don't have to go out and check the smoker every 5 minutes.
    Here is a link to it;
  5. ddave

    ddave Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Looks like they got you lined out on some of the other questions so here are the thermometers I use:

    Maverick ET-73

    Dual probe, one for smoker temp, one for meat temp and wireless. Decent range. Cables on included probes are kind of short but you can get food probes with 6 foot cables and use them for food or smoker temp. Has a high and a low temp alarm for smoker temp which is nice.

    Taylor 1470 Digital

    I use these for smoker or food temp depending on what I am doing. Not wireless but have a high temp alarm and a timer.

    Taylor 9842 Instant Read Thermometer

    Small reasonably priced instant read thermometer. Pretty fast and can be calibrated. Was a little hard for me to read because of the small numbers but for most people with normal vision, should not be a problem.


    Lightning fast, instant read thermometer. Kind of pricy but they go on sale every once in awhile. Thay are lighting fast (thermocouple based rather than thermistor based) and has nice big numbers so it is easy for me to see.

    Hope this helps.

  6. bigsteve

    bigsteve Master of the Pit

    Your questions have been answered, except for "What thermometer do you use?"

    I've gotten to know my smoker, and the temperatures are quite stable now. Until recently, I was using a dome thermometer that I bought at Home depot, along with an instant read digital meat thermometer. I had/have great results.

    I recently bought an ET-7 Maverick. The ET-7 has two probes for meat. But one probe can be stuck through a piece of wood or potato, etc.... to check grid temp. I used it to calibrate against the dome thermometer. From then on, I use the probes only for meat.

    If you want to keep a thermometer on your grate every smoke, you may want to buy the ET-73, which comes with one meat probe, and one probe specifically for the grate.
  7. skwerl

    skwerl Newbie SMF Premier Member

    I prefer my Maverickk to any thing else I have.
  8. nysmokes

    nysmokes Fire Starter

    Thanks -

    The reviews for the Maverick's seem a bit shaky. Do you think the people posting just dont understand how to use them? From the Amazon reviews.

    I plan on picking something up soon - I will let you all know what I get, and how well it works on the first smoke.

  9. I have 6 oven themo I use for different things.
    Two thermapens I use all the time.
    One Taylor instant read I only use when I have to and mainly indoors.
    One Maverick ETT-73 that married to my smokers.

    BTW Thermapen is coming out with a new model soon. I'll post the link under General.

    I like all my thermo's. They all do thier job, esp the Thermapens.
  10. ronp

    ronp Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

  11. nysmokes

    nysmokes Fire Starter

    Thanks Ronp. Probably my last decision on what to get before getting down to some business!
  12. erain

    erain Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    the two best digitals i have owned are maverick et-73, and i had a taylor which took a dump after around 6 years!!! the maverick 7 from what i see is prolly as good as the et-73, not real sure what the differences are other than they say the 7 has 2 meat probes and the 73 has a meat probe and a smoker box probe. both have a remote reciever but the difference between the two i think is on the et-73 you are allowed to set a hi temp and a low temp for the smoker box which i dont belive you can do on the et-7. for an electric prolly not so important but for gas,charcoal, or wood this feature would be really handy to let you know when you need to tend smoker. and if you have the et-73 the smoker probe could be used as a meat probe, it doesnt have the pointed end but another probe could make the hole. either model is a good one in my book.
  13. teacup13

    teacup13 Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    i use a cheap maverick redi chek - 14.99 - if it lasts the summer than i am happy with it.. it only had one probe but i dont need the two probe type

  14. i just bought one from wally world for $14... I'm going to use it for the first time today!

Share This Page