What Happened? Creosote mess during seasoning!!

Discussion in 'Roll Call' started by sbhcom, Jun 4, 2010.

  1. sbhcom

    sbhcom Newbie

    Hello Everyone!  Been reading the posts for a couple of months now and I finally brought home my Wally Mart GOSM (Now Landman) 3405GW.  Well putting it together was a snap and I then proceeded to season according to the instructions.

    I placed a handfull of hickory chips (purchased at Walmart) and a couple chunks of Apple (purchased from a local tree service company) and filled the water pan.  All the wood was dry and seasoned well and I burned on low for an hour with the vent on top in the futherest closed position. 

    When the burn was over I went to empty the water pan found that there was exessive amounts of creosote to the bottom of the pan and the racks in the smoker were sticky to the touch.  I then removed the wood pan and burned the smoker on high to try to burn off the creosote and it seemed to help.  A couple of questions:

    What caused the creosote from developing?

    Did I screw the smoker up?

    Do I need to clean the entire smoker or can I just burn on high for a while?

    Thanks and I am looking forward to my first successful smoke? 
  2. gregzee

    gregzee Smoke Blower

    Pictures of what you see would help here. i would recoat with cook spray, load the chip box and turn it on high for another hour or so.  Foil lining the water pan makes clean up a lot easier to.
  3. bearcarver

    bearcarver Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    I don't know about the GOSM, but usually I think you should season it by running it way up for a couple hours. Then add some chips, and I believe the top vent should be wide open. At least that's the way I did my MES.

    I don't think you hurt anything, but I would burn it on high for awhile. I would then just clean the racks & the water pan before you throw any meat on it.

    Good luck on your first smoke, and don't forget the Qview,

  4. mr500

    mr500 Meat Mopper

    All the wood was dry and seasoned well and I burned on low for an hour with the vent on top in the futherest closed position

    TOP vents should be open 100%
  5. forluvofsmoke

    forluvofsmoke Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    The development of creosote in your case is caused by lack of ventilation. Smoke gets "stale" if it is contained for too long. I run my 3405GW with the exhaust vent fully open, except in very cold winter weather. Then, I will close it partially to contain the heat a bit longer.

    I haven't experienced what you describe, so I can't say that you must clean it out and re-season the chamber, though I do think it would be beneficial, as this could easily effect the flavor of your foods for quite some time. If the cooking grates are sticky, this will be transferred directly to the meat as well.

    Dish soap and hot water should do the job. Be sure to rinse very well, as any soap residue will give off a nasty taste as well.

  6. mballi3011

    mballi3011 Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member


    I'm with Erci on this one too. I think that you didn't have the vents open on the top of your smoker. Thus creating the creasote that you are worring about. Now I wouldn't worry to much just scrape the bottom of you water pan (you should do it every so often) and then light another fire and let it go for a while and then just scrap down the grates and you'll be golden.
  7. pineywoods

    pineywoods Smoking Guru Staff Member Administrator Group Lead SMF Premier Member

    Never run the smoker with the top vent closed. Personally I would clean out all the creosote wash everything and start over with the seasoning process. I would cover the burner and after scraping it out I would wash it out and rinse well then you can light the burner to dry it or let it sit in the sun. Once dry cover the burner again and coat the inside with Pam spray or cooking oil on a paper towel. Fill the water pan remove the cover from the burner and light it I would run it at around 225 for 1/2 hour then up to 325-350 for 1/2 hour then I would add chips or chunks to the chip pan turn it back to about 225 and let it run another hour
  8. Yeah buddy...Every surface inside your cooker is covered...Give it a good bath and start over... lest you taint your meat on future cooks......

  9. sinseven

    sinseven Newbie

    After my first smoke I had crusty charcoal stuff in the bottom of my water pan.. i thought it was just fried grease... Was it not? Do I need to worry about the sides of my smoker now? I cleaned the water pan and racks.. but didn't expect to have to do anything with the sides. This is a GOSM.. and I had the vent as closed as it goes on top.. which is like two 1" openings.. should i go full open next time?

  10. richoso1

    richoso1 Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    This the same advise I would have given you. And like Jerry said, never smoke with the top vent closed.
  11. sbhcom

    sbhcom Newbie

    thanks for all the help fellas, I cleaned what I could and burned on high for a good 20 minutes and let it cool and burned high again.  It smelles much better now.
  12. sqwib

    sqwib Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    1) Clean and rinse thoroughly

    2) Open all vents  fully opened to tab stops.

    3) Foil and fill water pan

    4) Add chunks to Chip Box

    5) Turn smoker up to highest point when wood starts to smoke turn to medium and try to keep temp at 250 degrees for a nice hardwood seasoning.

    6) I would not spray the smoker with Pam or use any cooking oil, it is not needed, however you can add a half cup of cooking oil to the water pan, not sure if this helps.

    NOTE: You can spray or oil the cooking grids and drip pan.


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