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Holding a low temp

I'm new to the Egg and did my first cook last night on my newly purchased large. It was a bacon wrapped jalapeño and cream cheese stuffed pork loin with a good result but had trouble controlling temp. I wanted to keep the temp between 250-300 but had trouble keeping it below 400. I had the bottom vent barely open(maybe a half inch) and the top vent holes barely open. Could I possibly have had too much charcoal? Could the 30 degree temperature outside have played a factor? I'm just trying to get some pointers from you seasoned veterans on here. Any help would be greatly appreciated!


  • Dbro15Dbro15 Posts: 5
    Also, I cooked i did have the place setter in there with a drip pan
  • How's the seal on your gasket? You want to make sure that when you attach the top half of the egg, the seal is perfect.  You put the top on and then screw in the clamp.
  • ShiffShiff Posts: 1,515
    A half inch opening on the bottom vent would normally give a higher temperature than 250 measured at the dome.  Daisy wheel opening sounds right but the bottom ent would normally be about 1/8 inch or so.

    The amount of charcoal shouldn't make a difference and you should always be in the habit of filling up the firebox especially if you intend to do an all night cook at low temperature. 

    Outside temperature has very little effect.

    Have you calibrated your thermometer?
    Large BGE
    Barry, Lancaster, PA
  • jhl192jhl192 Posts: 998
    Fire is a lot like gravity.  It follows laws that are hard to break.  Too much fuel or too much air can be the only causes and the air can usually control the too much fuel aspect.  The only other thought could be an air gap.  I had the same problem when I did my first cooks.  I think I may have let the fire get to hot before choking it down and then I did not choke it down enough.  Low and Slows usually do not need much air.  Outside temperature should NOT make it hard to keep the internal temp low but gusty minds may.  I have tried to learn to be patient bringing it up to temperature and I am still amazed by how little I leave the door or Daisey wheel open.   Better to choke it down before it reaches your desired temperature then to try to lower it back down once its gotten too hot.  Good luck.  
    XL BGE; Medium BGE; L BGE 
  • lousubcaplousubcap Posts: 9,726
    edited January 2014

    @jhl192-has the key.  BGE is air-flow driven (assuming you have enough lump loaded).  Managing the air-flow controls the fire volume and thus the temperature. And as mentioned, much easier to catch the temperature on the way up then to try and cool it down.  For low&slows I get around a softball sized amount of lump burning (bottom vent initially wide open and dome open as well) then load plstesetter drip pan etc , shut dome and slide the bottom vent to around 1/4-1/2 inch open.  Put DFMT on and when i get around 30-40*F from desired temp dial it in.  There are many different ways to get the BGE lit and up to temp.  Eggsperiment til you find a method that works for you.

    BTW-welcome aboard and enjoy the journey.

    Louisville;  L & S BGEs 
    Pit Barrel Cooker
  • 500500 Posts: 2,183
    Someone here said it before me.  Creeping up on the desired temp is much easier than trying to bring it down.  The infinite temp control is something I still struggle with today, as I try to get it up to temp in the shortest amount of time, during a quick weeknight cook.  It'll get easier as you learn it.  Welcome!
    Large BGE; Midlothian, Virginia
    I like Pig Butts and I can not lie.
    "Barbecue is a journey, one meal at a time."
  • Dbro15Dbro15 Posts: 5
    Thanks for all of the quick responses everyone! This certainly helps a great deal!
  • Welcome to the cult BTW.



    "Entrepreneurs are simply those who understand that there is little difference between obstacle and opportunity and are able to turn both to their advantage."

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