If you experience a malfunction with your Traeger grill, it’s essential to diagnose the problem.
One of the most common symptoms is lack of smoke. In some cases, you may only have a few seconds notice that your pellet stove isn’t working.
That’s why it’s essential to keep your pellets burning throughout the heating cycle. So, what should you do if your traeger ran out of pellets while cooking?
If your Traeger ran out of pellets while cooking, you’re likely going to want to grill your meat anyways, but it’s crucial that you understand the risk involved with doing so. When pellets run out, Traegers automatically switch to burning wood or other combustibles.
This can be dangerous for a number of reasons. First, Traegers run on augers powered by propane.
When pellets run out, the augers stop turning and the wood burns inside the grill. This can cause the augers to become jammed, leading to potentially dangerous situations if the grill catches fire.
Second, burning wood can be messy. Wood tends to burn unevenly, which leads to a lot of ash that can spill out of the grill and onto the counter or floor.
Finally, burning wood can keep your Traeger from reaching its optimal temperature. This causes your food to cook unevenly and can lead to meat that is dry or overcooked.
For these reasons, it’s important to use a backup method of cooking if your Traeger runs out of pellets in the middle of cooking.
Can You Use A Traeger Without Pellets?
Whether you possess a top-of-the-line Traeger or one of the many cheaper models on the market, you’ll find that replacing the pellet hopper is an easy process.
Traeger Grills, for example, need electricity to operate the auger, digital controller and lighting elements on the grill.
In contrast to an oven, which utilizes electricity to preheat the oven’s interior and then a burner for direct heat for cooking the food inside, a pellet smoker functions completely differently.
Unfortunately, you cannot use a Traeger grill without wood pellets.
How Does a Pellet Grill Function?
A pellet grill comes fully equipped with an electric starter as well as a fan for circulating the air inside and igniting the wood pellets.
You must comprehend what occurs inside of the smoker’s body when grilling and cooking with the device if you want to fully understand why it cannot function without wood pellets.
If you want to be able to restart your charcoal grill without using lighter fluid, you need to understand what causes the lighter fluid to ignite in the first place.
What Happens When You Run out of Pellets While Cooking on Traeger Grill?
It is more frequent than you might imagine for people to discover that their Traeger grill has run out of pellets while they are in the middle of a BBQ.
Burning wood pellets for grills is very similar to light wood fires or charcoal grills, where burning wood pellets for grills produces smoke, which then burns the food inside.
Pellet grills have digital control panels as well as digital controllers that regulate the amount of wood pellets that the grill burns.
The digital controller inside the device regulates how warm the grill is as well as how much heat is emitted from the heating element.
This is what may happen when you run out of pellets while cooking on a gas grill: You attempt to flip the meat on the grate, but the grease from the meat prevents the tongs from latching onto the food.
The temperature of the grill drops drastically because all of the heat is being generated by the fire underneath.
The fire begins to die out because the charcoal is not being fed properly through the feeder tube, which causes the coals to burn out faster than usual.
What To Do When Traeger Ran Out of Pellets While Cooking?
- To begin, verify the temperature gauge on the side of the grill to ensure that the internal temperature is at least 250 degrees Fahrenheit. If your grill remains at the maximum temperature of 450 degrees Fahrenheit, you must increase the temperature by pressing the button for the temperature gauge until you reach the desired level of heat. However, you may notice that you are unable to reach the temperature that you desire because the heating unit has burned out. This is mostly due to overuse of the device, which is why you should always check the user manual first before purchasing the Traeger product. However, the temperature will return back to normal after you use the grill for several hours in a row because the heat of the fire underneath the grates will begin to cool down and stabilize.
- Your grill’s temperature may gradually drop after several minutes of use, but it may not reach the level that you initially desired unless you add more wood. In this case, you should begin by shifting the settings on the device so that more wood pellets are burned per hour so that the temperatures of the grill remain consistent. Wait for your grill to reach the desired temperature and then cook your food by flipping it over every few minutes until it is finished cooking.
- Remove the grill grates, heat battle, and pan from your Traeger Grill and clean them with soap and a sponge to remove any grease or debris that is stuck to the grates. After removing the fire pot, inspect the inside of the device to ensure that no burnt pieces of charcoal remain inside the chamber.
- If there are a few burnt pieces of charcoal remaining in the fire pot, remove them by scraping them off with a scrub brush. After this, fill the fire pot with wood pellets and place them in the Traeger Grill before reattaching the grill grates, fire pot and heating battle. Reattach all of the parts and light the grill’s brûlée pellets to keep the flames going while you cook your food inside. If it’s empty, just fill up with more wood pellets. Preheat the grill to approximately 350 degrees Fahrenheit and place your meat directly on the grill grate to cook it thoroughly throughout.
- Fill the auger bin with the recommended amount of wood pellets based on the instructions found in the user manual of your Traeger Grill. Then turn the dial on the Traeger to preheat the unit for 10 minutes at a temperature of approximately 250 degrees Fahrenheit. Return the grill grates, heat battle, and pan to the device and place the meat on the grill grate so that it may be cooked properly. Your grill is ready to use when you notice smoke coming from the vents on the appliance or when the pellets begin to smolder at the bottom of the machine.
How Long Do Wood Pellets Last In A Traeger?
Your Traeger will burn around a pound of wood pellets every hour so depending on the frequency of use and the outside temperature, your fuel supply may last anywhere from a few hours to a few days.
As a result, a full 18lb bag of wood pellets should last between four and seven hours of cooking time at a high temperature.
At temperatures of 350°F or above, you may also burn a limited amount of liquid propane while grilling food with your Traeger.
As a result, the same full bag of wood pellets will last between eight and twelve hours of cooking time when mixed with a small amount of liquid propane.
This implies that if you plan on having longer barbecues or you’re looking to burn large amounts of fuel at once, you may want to purchase additional bags of pellets for the stove before cooking your first meal.
If you have one of the larger grills that is designed to hold up to eight pounds of fuel at once, you can refill the fire pot with more pellets once the first bag runs out to ensure that the barbecue continues for as long as possible.
Also Read: How Long Does a Full Traeger Hopper Last?
You now know what to do if your Traeger has stopped working or if you’ve just purchased a new grill and want to set it up properly for the best results.
When this occurs, there are a few steps that you can take to make the process easier and prevent damage to the appliance and its parts in the future.
Always have enough pellets on hand to feed your grill for an extended period of time to prevent running out of fuel in the middle of your meal.
Also, remember to follow all three of the steps listed in this article to ensure that the appliance operates as smoothly as possible during operation.
Don’t forget to buy only quality Traeger pellet fuels if you want the best tasting food every time that you cook outdoors.