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Weird Temperature Management Behavior

Ron_LRon_L Posts: 163
edited 12:25AM in EggHead Forum
During my last three cooks I have been experiencing a weird temperature thing. It seems like it is taking a very ,ong time to get the Egg up to temp and stable. The first few cooks were fine. Differences are the outdoor temperature (26 today) and the lump. I was using BGE lump now I am using Royal Oak (American made). At first I thought it was an airflow thing, and it may still be, but before this last cook I cleaned out all of the old lump and ash and when I filled the firebox I only used pieces that were larger than two inches or so to avoid the little bits cloggin the grate and firebox holes.

Here's what I am doing... I cleaned everything out and then filled the firebox half way up the ring with the largest pieces I could find in the bag of RO. The bag was brand new and had been stored in my garage. The lump was cold since the garage is near freezing, but I doubt that would change anything once things started burning. I used a BGE starter cube and had the dual function top off of the Egg and the bottom vent wide open. Once the starter cube had gone out I watched as the temps started to go up. Once the thermometer showed 250 (I was shooting for 325) I put the top on with the movable part of the top in the closed position but the daisy wheel fully open and adjusted the bottom vent to about 1 1/2 inches. On my early cooks this was around 325 - 350. Then i left it alone to prep the meat. I came back about 30 minutes later and the dome temp was still at 250. I open the top up about 1/2 inch and opened the bottom another 1/2 inch and watched and the temp climbed to about 275 and stuck. I opened thing up again and the temp climbed slightly, but not much. I used the wiggle rod in as many of the grate opening I could find and even moved the lump around from the top and the temp didn't move. I finally opened up the top 3/4 and the bottom all of the way and it took almost 45 minutes before the temp came up above 300 but stuck there. I tried to bring the top and bottom setting back to my "normal" setting but as soon as I closed the top even a little the temp started dropping again. I had time, so i just let it run almost wide open and finally, two hours after lighting the temps started moving again. Only at that point could I close thing up to the exact settings that I tried to start with and its been running at 325 for four hours without any adjustment needed.

So... Could I be seeing problems with airflow? If so, why did things go back to normal after a couple of hours when I didn' do any more wiggling or stirring? Could it be due to cold or damp lump and it took a while to warm up or dry out? Or could it just be lousy lump?

Thanks for any advice or thoughts.


  • Ron,

    It is said that RO (America) is the same as BGE.

    I think air flow. The lump won't make much difference if any given non burning temp.

    Are you using a large and how many starter cubes did you use.

  • Since you have essentislly ruled out air flow problems, sounds like wet lump to me.
  • Ron_LRon_L Posts: 163
    Grandpas Grub wrote:

    It is said that RO (America) is the same as BGE.

    I think air flow. The lump won't make much difference if any given non burning temp.

    Are you using a large and how many starter cubes did you use.


    I've heard that, too, Kent.

    Yeah, it is a large )sorry. I should have mentioned that) and I used one cube. When i used the BGE brand lump I used the same startup procedure, but it was quite a bit warmer air temp. I know that once the Egg is up to temp the air temp won't bother it, but would colder air being drawn into the egg while it is coming up to temp slow down the process?

    I'm going to buy a MAPP torch but I wanted to use up the BGE cubes first.
  • I am not so sure about 'wet lump'.

    I am wondering what size egg, how many cubes he used to light and in what spots if multiple cubes.

    I have noticed a like poblem with my large. I am wondering if it is more of an airflow problem. Several times I have gotten to about 200° and the temp hangs then again about 300° or so and another hang.

    At 300° stall it has been really harg to get the egg to climb higher. I had the dome off and the bottom vent wide open. Stayed in that 300° range.

    I used a wiggle sitck and agressively moved the lump in the lower part of the fire box.

    On the 2nd or 3rd time this happened I noticed a little 'poof' come out of the bottom vent. Mini flashback which is an air flow problem.

    After that I made sure I have a very good start and every once in a while I will ahve to wiggle the lump but not as often.

    If I were to use staarter cubes I would use 3 or 4. 3 on the outer side of the egg equally spaced and one in the middle. If using propane or MAPP I light in 3 spots outer edge and make sure I have a good light.

    If chimney lighter, I make sure that is glowing well and spread evenly over the top of the lump with a very light stir.

    My favorite is the weed burner. Everything gets light very quickly.

  • Ron,

    See my post below Rich's. One cube is fine but it is going to take some time to get the egg going the way you want it. I would use at least 3. Or use napkin and veg. oil. (2 or 3 of those).

    It sounded like you had done a good job on putting in your lump. I do believe it takes a little different starting methods when the ambient temp is this cold. I am cooking in from single digit temps to 28°. In 2 weeks or so we will be into the below zero cooking time.

    Once warmer weather gets here I will be able to satisify my theories about this. This is my first winter with the egg.

  • NessmukNessmuk Posts: 251
    Try the new eggcellator. Without it you are depending on convection (natural air flow) to ignite the limp. I used a "hand held", commercial blower much life a hair blower. It blows hot & cold.

    I discovered the "plug-in" eggcllator on the wire. After one use, I wonder why we didn't have it years ago.

    It operates on 8 AA batteries but should soon have a 12v adapter. BGE doesn't know when the adapter will be available.

    All the accessories should have come from BGE, but they appear resitant to develope these. All the accessories I use come from inventive people outside of bge.
  • Cpt'n CookCpt'n Cook Posts: 1,917
    I cook in the cold all winter long and have found that the ambiant temp has no effect on the egg, the cook yes but egg no. I cooked a couple of pizzas last night befor the stupid game and was up to 600 degrees in less than 15 mins, and that was not fussing with lump placement at all.

    I think the trick is if you want a HOT fire is to light in 3 or 4 different places, that really start the air flow fast. I use a propane torch, not MAPP, and it works great.

    The pizzas came out better than the game did.
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