Masterbuilt electric blowing breaker

Discussion in 'Electric Smokers' started by rawhidetim, Aug 31, 2015.

  1. I purchased the MES for Sams club about 2 years ago.  I didn't get to smoke any last year because I was busy building a new house.  I went and plugged it in to smoke 2 butts and it blew my 15 amp garage breaker.  Is this the heating element or some other problem.  called MB and they said it about 20 buck for a new element.  Give me some advise my smoking hot friends!!!

  2. crankybuzzard

    crankybuzzard Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Are you using an extension cord?  If so, make sure it's going to work with a 15 amp load.  Use the shortest cord possible and make sure the wire size is sufficient for the load.  (Ohm's Law)

    Another possibility is that the outlet is a GFI, sometimes they don't play well.
  3. bmaddox

    bmaddox Master of the Pit

    Does it trip as soon as it is turned on?

    Or does it run for a while and overheat the breaker?

    Like @CrankyBuzzard  said, is it on a GFCI outlet or GFCI breaker? 
  4. sb59

    sb59 Smoking Fanatic

    Are you sure the outlet was a dedicated circuit? I believe Masterbuilt digital smokers are 800 watts & draw close to 7 amps without the added resistance of an extension cord. Wouldn't take much else on the circuit to cause it to pop. If you have the analog it has a 1500 watt element so you would need a 20 amp breaker. The smoker Sams sells now has a 1200 watt element drawing 10 amps.
    Last edited: Aug 31, 2015
  5. mfreel

    mfreel Smoking Fanatic

    I've had the same issue.  Get it off a GF circuit.  Try another outlet. 
  6. The mystery is solved.  I just built this house and I have a GFI in the plug in series.  Someone sent me a reply and said that the MES don't like GFI's and he was right.  I took my heavy extension cord into the house and plugged it into a NON GFI and it worked like a charm.... So who ever made the post THANK YOU FROM THE BOTTOM OF MY SMOKER!!!!!  you saved my Pork BUTTS!!!!!  MY great neighbor smoked my butts for me, and they are AMAZING. Thanks Tom.  thanks everyone for the inputs.!!!!!!!

  7. crankybuzzard

    crankybuzzard Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Glad to hear it all worked out!
  8. Hi, you stated that your smoker has been sitting for a year. Sometimes they will soak up a little humidity (just enough to pop the GFI) and after running your smoker for a hour or so on a non GFI they will once again act right. Don't ask how often that has happened to me in just a couple of weeks.  Jted
  9. walta

    walta Smoke Blower

    Please be aware the GFCI tripped for a reason.

    Try setting the smoker to 250° for 2 hours and then try the GFCI again. It may well work after it gets dried out.

    If you decide to use the MES without a GFCI, Please check that the ground pins of the smokers cord and the extension are present and in good condition, and test the outlets ground with a tester like the one in this link. Do not use the smoker if you do not get light pattern labeled as “correct” on the tester.

    Death or injury is a real possibility.

  10. bmaddox

    bmaddox Master of the Pit

    Yea I would be worried if it was tripping the GFCI and then went to using it on a non-protected outlet. You could have a small short somewhere causing the GFCI to trip. If that is the case it could get worse and cause a fire. Like others have said, let it run for a while then try the GFCI again. 
  11. Good common sense should always prevail. Any damage to the cord should be repaired prior to use.

    Saying this is like having a warning label on a gun barrel or on a pack of cigarettes.

     A GFCI is very sensitive It will trip with the smallest amount of UN balanced circuit. It trips at 0.04 to 0.06 milliamps.

    All it does is compare the amount of energy going in against what comes out.

    Just to get a feel for what low levels it trips at you may feel 1ma at 4-6 the GfCI trips and at 10 ma you can still let go but at 15 ma you hang on and it goes on from there. Most of us will survive a encounter of 30ma. From there up amperage causes damage .Remember that electricity is harder on children than adults.

    I won't bore you all any more.

    I will say that in my 3rd year of apprenticeship school we had a slow night and the instructor showed us graphic safety films. I will never forget the reaction of some of the students Basically it was Why did you not show this 2 years ago? The next night there were 3 or 4 empty seats. Jted
    Last edited: Sep 1, 2015
  12. mfreel

    mfreel Smoking Fanatic

    It was ME!!!!!! Send me your pork butt to Mike @ .......

    JK.  Good to know there's a lot of help available.
    Last edited: Sep 2, 2015

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