Maverick ET-733 Problem

Discussion in 'Electric Smokers' started by brickguy221, Aug 31, 2015.

  1. brickguy221

    brickguy221 Smoking Fanatic

    I am new with this Maverick ET-733 Wireless Probe. However, I have used it 3 times now with success .... until yesterday that is.

    I don't remember what steps or procedure I set it for what I wanted the first 3 times I used it. I don't remember if I set it all up before inserting the probes in to meat or after I entered the probes into the meat.

    Yesterday, I smoked four 1 1/2# Hormel Pork Loins. I put the 4 pork loins on the 3rd shelf 6 roasting ears on the top shelf. I then ran the cables thru the top vent and inserted the 2 probes into a loin on the far right and one into a loin on the far left. I then shut the door and plugged the cables into the transmitter.

    I then turned the transmitter on and the receiver on. I set the receiver for BBQ (pork) on both probes and it automatically put 160* on the receiver. .... That is where the problem began as the receiver would never show the temp of the probes thru the entire smoking process, it would only show 3 blank lines for each probe, so I kept having to go out and check the temp on the transmitter. I tried resetting this thing more times than I can count with same results each time. I tried resetting the receiver right next to the Smoker and in the house and it didn't matter, it wouldn't show the probe temps. I also tried unplugging the cables and plugging them back in.

    After I was done smoking and cleaning every thing up and putting it away, I sat down in my chair with the cables hooked to the transmitter and transmitter on the coffee table and I sitting about 6-8 feet away and programmed the receiver again and it worked perfect showing the temp in the house at 76*.

    So, does everything have to be set up before inserting the probes into the meat in order for it to work right? 
    Last edited: Aug 31, 2015
  2. bearcarver

    bearcarver Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    I synch my ET-732 probes & units before I take them outside to the smoker.

    However for the ET-733, I'd ask DaRicksta---He has the 733 down to a science!!

  3. brickguy221

    brickguy221 Smoking Fanatic

    I don't remember, but I "think" I may have synced mine also prior to taking it outside. I will watch for Rick to reply to this this topic and if he misses it, I will message him. On my old Weber that I used to have before giving it to my Son in CA, it didn't matter. I could sync it either way. 
  4. jckdanls 07

    jckdanls 07 Master of the Pit Group Lead OTBS Member

    It doesn't matter if probes are inserted before or after they are turned on... what the 3 lines (- - -) mean is that they were not synced up.. this is why you were getting the reading on the transmitter and not the receiver... what I have found is... I have to push and hold the on/off button on the receiver for a second or two before I do the one on the transmitter... this way the receiver turns on at about the same time the transmitter turns on (receiver takes a second or two longer than the transmitter to boot up)... whenever my transmitter starts before the receiver they never sync up,, turn off and start over... try it that way and see if that helps...
    Last edited: Aug 31, 2015
  5. brickguy221

    brickguy221 Smoking Fanatic

    I tried that also. I know that on my old Weber, the instructions said to have both side by side, turn on receiver and immediately turn on the transmitter the moment the receiver light came on. I always did that and never had a problem with the Weber in 8+ years. I tried that on my Maverick and it still didn't work and I continued to get those 3 lines.

    Maybe I need to do like Bear does and set it all up before going outside, which I think I may have done the previous 3 times it did work perfectly on previous smokes.
    Last edited: Aug 31, 2015
  6. gpb11

    gpb11 Meat Mopper

    You need to turn the receiver on first, then the transmitter.  The transmitter sends a registration code at startup and the receiver won't sync up if it doesn't see that code.  This is presumably so you can use them in proximity of other people using the same setup nearby such as at a BBQ competition or if you owned multiple sets. By turning the transmitter on first the receiver never saw the code, and it stops looking for one after 120 seconds.

    This is covered in the instructions included with the unit, or here's a copy I found online via Google:

    If you were doing this then it may be time to call Maverick.
    Last edited: Sep 1, 2015
  7. brickguy221

    brickguy221 Smoking Fanatic

    OK, thanks guys for the information. I now realize that I "may?" have  been doing it backwards.

    I guess the first 3 times it worked OK as well as working every time when practicing in the house and it worked right must have been luck. I do know when I practiced using/setting it in the house when I first got it. that I did turn on the transmitter first and then the receiver immediately as soon as transmitter came on. Must have been luck that it worked there. Regardless, I will be sure to try turning on the receiver first next time and then the transmitter and hope it works OK.
  8. gpb11

    gpb11 Meat Mopper

    No worries, I had a similar problem when I first got my ET733.  That's how I had a pretty good idea what might be wrong.  [​IMG]
  9. rabbithutch

    rabbithutch Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I think everyone who purchased an ET-733 has had problems - if not struggled - setting it up. I know I have.

    I have called the support line several times. On the first call, I remember that I was told to plug both probe wires into to transmitter before starting the set up process - even before turning power on on either unit. I don't know why, but it worked.

    As for setting it up, I do the setup before I ever get what I'm about to cook ready to go in the smoker or on the grill. Having the meat ready THEN trying to set the thermo puts too much pressure on me to think clearly (but I'm old and losing it these days).

    One problem that I think Maverick created was in the layout of their instruction sheet. It skips from left column to right column where the sheet folds without any real indication of where the reader is supposed to go next. To overcome that, I have put my paper copy in a safe place. I downloaded the PDF and keep it on my computer. When I want to use the 733, I load the PDF and minimize it then load a minimized Notepad. Reading from the instructions, I then key in my own instructions that are specific to what I'm about to do, inserting the type of meat where it calls for the setting and the temp ranges where it calls for them, etc. I find that if I think my way step-by-step through what I want to accomplish then follow Maverick's instructions about pressing SET, MODE, etc. I can get the setup I need. To be certain that I get it right, I turn both units off then repeat the process following the instructions I wrote for myself in Notepad. I purposefully delete the Notepad after I've used it so that I will have to 'think' my way through the process the next time I use the device.

    After all that is done, I get the meat ready for the grill or smoker and take the Maverick with me when I take the meat to the cooker. This works for me, YMMV.
    Last edited: Sep 1, 2015
  10. gpb11

    gpb11 Meat Mopper

    Yes, that illustrates the ugly underbelly.  My ET733 works well and has great range, but the user interface just plain svcks.  

    It ought to be used as an example of what not to do.  I mostly remember how to use it now that I kind of understand what they had in mind in terms of setting/command structure, but it doesn't seem like they tested the UI with anyone not already very familiar with it.
    Last edited: Sep 1, 2015
  11. brickguy221

    brickguy221 Smoking Fanatic

    In programming the receiver on the ET-733, the biggest problem for me is the time between steps. The time is so short like 2 seconds or less that if you don't have the steps memorized well, then by the time you start to click on the next step, it is too late and you have to start over at the beginning. Were it not for that, the 733 would be perfect. On the old Weber I used to have, you could take as much time between steps as you wanted. With all of the steps you have to go thru on the Maverick, it should have been made to work the same way.
  12. I rarely plug the probes in before actually turning on either unit. I just follow the "golden" rule. Turn the receiver on first, then fumble around and find the transmitter on/off switch and turn it on next. The received always shows the --- in the display until I plug the probes in. When I first begin my smoke, I only plug in a single probe, the one I am using for the chamber temperature, until I have my WSM up to my desired temperature and some TBS coming out of the lid vent. Depending on what I'm smoking, I may not plug the second probe in for a several hours and this doesn't affect the set in any way I can see.
  13. daricksta

    daricksta Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Thanks, Bear! DaRicksta is in!
  14. bearcarver

    bearcarver Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Exactly what I do!

    My meat probe hangs down the side, outside the smoker until it's time. Then I wipe it with an alcohol wipe & probe the meat.

  15. daricksta

    daricksta Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Brickguy221, I've had this happen and I've always been able to fix it. You always turn on the receiver first. Then you make sure the both probes are connected to the transmitter and you turn that on. What you're supposed to hear is the beep notification that the two units are synced with each other. If you are only seeing blank lines your first action is to press the RESYNC button on the back of the transmitter. That's been the best fix for me. If that didn't work, I turned both units off, made sure the probes were fully connected to the transmitter, and then turned the receiver back on followed by the transmitter. That's worked every time when the RESYNC button didn't.

    You also said "it would only show 3 blank lines for each probe". OK, the FOOD (Probe #1) display screen will only show one line for the food internal temp. The BARBECUE (Probe #2) will display two lines for your smoker temp; 1 for your LO temp and one for your HI. I use it with the alarm function to let me know when the MES temp is a certain number of degrees above and below my set point so I can readjust the controller if I feel it needs it. For example, if my set point is 235° I set the HI at 250° and the LO at 215°.

    I advised to insert the probes before turning on the transmitter because my experience has been it's more difficult to get the two units synced without the probes in place--but I have been able to do it. More often than not when I see any blank lines on the receiver screen it's because one or both probes weren't fully plugged in.

    Remember that you don't have to program in meat type and your temps to use the ET-733. The probe temps will still display but the lines under SET for both probes will be blank. You will see the current temps on the right side. I forget if the ET-733 defaults to a particular meat and doneness setting the first time you use it and just stays there until you change it. I think when I got mine it might have said BEEF and MEDIUM RARE like the packaging and online photos of the therm show.

    I should probably scroll down and see if you already found the answer for this problem.
  16. daricksta

    daricksta Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    As I told Brickguy, I have a harder time syncing the units (I see blank lines) if the probes aren't plugged in before turning on the transmitter but I have made it work. Just took a few more times of turning the units on and off and pressing the RESYNC button. With the probes connected sync is almost instantaneous after turning on both units.
  17. daricksta

    daricksta Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    I like to use the metal rack clip for the BARBECUE probe, or both clips if I'm using both probes to monitor separate racks and not using one for FOOD.
  18. Mine has never once not synced with the probes disconnected. As long as the receiver is turned on first, it all works as intended. 
  19. brickguy221

    brickguy221 Smoking Fanatic

    Thanks guys for the tips and information.

    I still wish Maverick would have put more time between the steps when programming it. If a person doesn't have the correct steps and order of the steps memorized well, it will time out and you have to start over every time. [​IMG]
  20. dr k

    dr k Master of the Pit

    Has anyone ever wondered why Maverick Et-whatever has never made it to Consumer Reports?  Out of all my wireless remotes, all have never failed a boil tested out of the box at my altitude and all work perfectly and none are MAVand none have failed in 5+ years.  I have one Mav nonwireless oven/cooking chamber therm in my signature below that is great.  Maverick seems to confuse people with their 733 instructions and have probe longevity issues.  I support SMF sponsors like Vacuum Sealers Unlimited, A-Maze-N Products, LLC, just not all of them and Maverick is not one of them.  I see a 50/50 on Mav customer service, probe and user friendly issues.  Too may concerns and poor reliability compared to my threads and posts on therms. 


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