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Help! First time, can't get temp below 325-350

LarrymacLarrymac Posts: 91
edited January 2013 in EggHead Forum
Tried to follow advice on earlier thread I had posted and was given fairly detailed info on temp control.
First time fire up today trying to get feel for temp reg.
Started slow and worked up to 650 then down adjusting both top and bottom vents.
The started working my way down. Eventually closed top and got bottom vent very skinny and it won't go down below 350.
It was so skinny that the next touch would close it. Got to 325 and stayed.
Now I have closed all vents and unfortunately have to leave.
Doesn't seem to be going down-- if anything slightly higher.

Comments

  • JRWhiteeJRWhitee Posts: 1,523
    Put the plate setter in if you have one and see what happens.
                                                                        
    _________________________________________________

    Large BGE 2006, Small BGE 2014, Adjustable Rig R&B, PSWoo3, Thermapen.
    Weber Gasser for the Wife. 
    Founding Member of the Green Man Group cooking team.
    Johns Creek, Georgia
  • PoolmanPoolman Posts: 16

    Larrymac,

    I had a similar issue and noticed that my lid hardware had become loose, thus leaving a 1/8" gap at the back of the BGE (and of course plenty of airflow).  I tightened the lid hardware and I could maintain a steady 225 degrees again.

     

    I hope this helps,

     

     

    ~~~~~~~

    Poolman

  • If you had it up to 650 it's going to take awhile to cool down.  Closing the vents completely will be the quickest way, then start to reopen the vents when your temp is a little above where you want it.  Have fun and you'll get the hang of it soon. 
  • Top screw was a little loose so I tightened it but didn't seem to have a significant effect. I had to leave but I'm going to have my wife monitor it and send the results every 15 minutes or so. Perhaps I am not patient enough and maybe it just takes longer for it to have an effect but I thought when I shut both Vents totally down that the temperature will drop right away and it didn't
  • It's a lot easier to catch it at low temps on the way up rather than go hot and try to cool it down.
  • SaltySamSaltySam Posts: 309

    I've found that temps generally climb a lot faster than they cool down.  Once your egg is heated up (especially at temps above 600) it will take a looooong time to drop back down to the sub-350 range.  To get to that temperature, most of the charcoal will already be lava hot.  Additionally, the ceramic walls of the egg will be considerably warmer, and will retain that heat for a while. 

    Two things to add from my limited experience:

    1) To cook at low temps, once you've lit your lump, and you shut the dome, watch the dome thermometer until it approaches the desired temperature.  Then put your daisy wheel on and adjust your vents until your temperature somewhat stabilizes.  The longer your egg goes at higher temps, the harder it is to cool it down.  Being proactive early helped me get to desired cooking temp quicker.

    2.  Reverse searing is a great option if you ever need to cook at two different temps.  For example, if you're grilling a tri-tip, start off at a low dome thermometer setting until the internal meat temp is about 10 degrees below your desired finishing temp.  At that point, take the meat off, open up the vents and remove the daisy wheel until the grill gets up to about 600 degrees. (this takes about 4-5 minutes)  Then you just sear each side for a minute or so.  The finishing temp will climb over the next few minutes as you let the meat rest.  

    By starting low, and finishing hot, the meat only stays off the grill for about 4-5 minutes.  The TREX method requires you to wait for the grill to cool down to a lower temp, which can take up to 20 or more minutes. 

     

     

     

    LBGE since June 2012

    Omaha, NE

  • Okay lesson learned and thanks for all the valuable info
  • It's a lot easier to catch it at low temps on the way up rather than go hot and try to cool it down.
    when shooting for around 250-300, low and slow stuff, have to catch it on the way up.  It is possible to bring down but with much effort, vents closed, careful burping, not much fun and a lot of waste of time.  

    once my egg gets up to around 350-400 with everything open i toss the plate setter in, then start closing the vents, 1 inch bottom, DW with only the holes open.  When it starts gettting back up around 275-300 better all but close it up.  I know where my vents will be now so it takes no time at all unless there are outside temp extremes.  

    Have fun and keep eggin to get the hang of it!!!


    _______________________________________________

    LBGE & SBGE (big momma and pat)
  • FanOfFanboysFanOfFanboys Posts: 1,567
    Like mentioned it go too hot. I leave mine open until about 200 then I shut almost down and I consistently catch it about 250-275 and that's where I do my smoking. I've made the same mistake you did before. No big deal. If that's worst mistake you make on Egg you're ahead of the game.
    Boom
  • Well again it was all an experiment .Just getting used to how the temp changes when you work the vents. No food was damaged in this endeavor.
    Learned it is much easier to go from low to high than in reverse . Makes even more sense about the reverse sear method. Thanks for the input.
    Will be asking for more help soon.
  • Good deal bud. One more thing. When making adjustments to the vents it takes time. Slight adjustment and wait 15-30 min for result, don't move it and five min later move again. You'll chase temps all cook.


    _______________________________________________

    LBGE & SBGE (big momma and pat)
  • Doc_EggertonDoc_Eggerton Posts: 3,708
    I never let mine get hotter than 100 over my target temp before I start working to get it stable.
    Pasquali Luciano
    Buon appetito to all the BGE family
    XLBGE, LBGE, MBGE and lots of toys

  • I never let mine get hotter than 100 over my target temp before I start working to get it stable.

    Great rule doc! Never thought about it like that


    _______________________________________________

    LBGE & SBGE (big momma and pat)
  • You did nothing wrong. You just began your learning curve. The rest of us have done the same thing. The comments above are good. This time next year you will be giving advice to newbies.
  • Well actually had my first meal tonight hamburgers On the BGE. It was great thanks for the advice again
  • I've also found when I'm looking for low temps it helps to use only half of a fire starter in one spot. Normally I'm looking for a quick start so I break one three parts, and put it in three different locations. This is of course if you r using the fire starter blocks.
  • td66snrftd66snrf Posts: 660
    One trick I've found is when the temp goes way higher than you want (we've all done it) is throw more charcoal on it. The new charcoal kinda smothers the too hot flame but it won't put it out since it's so hot. It brings the temp down relatively quickly. I agree with the guys above: catch your temp on the way up and don't try to bring it down, try to keep the temp close to your target temp, and rent the the Lord of Rings Trilogy if this ever happens again. Think positive it give you more time to drink.
    XLBGE, LBGE, MBGE, MINI, 2 Kubs, Fire Magic Gasser
  • nolaeggheadnolaegghead Posts: 10,740
    It's ok to overshoot your target temp.  The dome themo reflects the air/radiant temp, but the mass of ceramic takes much longer to heat up, like if you were heating a pizza stone up in your oven.  Problem is, if you're doing a low-n-slow, you don't want too much lump lit.  You can bring a spike down in the dome, but you can also smother a big fire and get nasty smoke, or make it self-extinguish when you dial it back.  So keep the fire small, if possible, lit on top towards the front if you want good smoke.  A small hot fire is much better than a giant choking fire.
    ______________________________________________
    This is my signature line just so you're not confused.
    Large and Medium BGE, two turntables and a microphone, my friend.
    No City.

  • Cooked my first slow cooked beer chicken. Only my 2nd time cooking food on the egg.Took about 3.5 hours was able to maintain temp at 250-275 which was the plan. Once it bumped up to 290. I will say at no time did it stay at one temp. I had to monitor that entire cook. Obviously I am not ready for an overnight cook.( maverick did worked well though for both grate temp as well meat temp.) so how can you guys get a steady 250 that you feel confident you can leave for hours at a time?
  • If you are using the Maverick on the grid , it will changed temps some as the indirect cook progresses. Usually the dome thermometer (which is usually used for reference) stays pretty steady. If your dome is what is varying in temp, I don't have a clue what would cause that !
    Ova B.
    Fulton MO
  • nolaeggheadnolaegghead Posts: 10,740
    Larrymac said:
    Cooked my first slow cooked beer chicken. Only my 2nd time cooking food on the egg.Took about 3.5 hours was able to maintain temp at 250-275 which was the plan. Once it bumped up to 290. I will say at no time did it stay at one temp. I had to monitor that entire cook. Obviously I am not ready for an overnight cook.( maverick did worked well though for both grate temp as well meat temp.) so how can you guys get a steady 250 that you feel confident you can leave for hours at a time?
    Clean out the egg well, add your lump, make sure it's densely packed so the small fire you start will transfer well from lump to lump.  Light a small fire on the top center, towards the front a bit.  You don't want to ignite the entire pile, you only need enough lit to provide the meager heat to keep the efficient egg at 250.  A small hotter fire generates as much heat as a large smoldering fire with less risk of going out. 
    ______________________________________________
    This is my signature line just so you're not confused.
    Large and Medium BGE, two turntables and a microphone, my friend.
    No City.

  • nashbamanashbama Posts: 102
    I've learned to open the dome briefly to let some of the heat escape, then keep it shut with the cap on and bottom vent closed. This way some of the retained heat will be gone and allow the porcelain to cool slightly.

    I'm still a newb as well and in the learning curve, I had to take my butts off about 2 hours into the cook because the temp shot up to 350 on me. Took a little while to get it back down, no more problems after that.

    Just means I need more experience and have to cook more.
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