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Yet another MES 30 temp issue thread...

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 

Hi guys,


Let me start by saying that I have searched and read most if not all the MES temp threads. I know the Gen1 is deemed better than the Gen2. I know MB will possibly replace my control unit. I know a PID would solve the issue (not really, it would solve the temp issue but not the issue of a brand new smoker not getting to temp).

Moving on...


New MES 30 owner here. I am 99.9% sure it is a Gen2 unit. Having a tough time with how long my smokes are taking. Easily double the "average" (only two smokes so far). So today I hooked up my Maverick to test rack or chamber temps and it was WAY low! I had the MES set to 275* for an hour and the highest I got on the Maverick was 200*. I put the meat in (Pork Loin) and the chamber temp dropped to 180's. I also dropped the MES to 230 at one point... stupid I know but I am trying to figure this out.


I was using a potato on the same rack as the meat (2nd rack down as per Bear). I even moved the potato to the rack right below the meat later in the smoke and while it read slightly higher (186-188) it still was no where neat the 230 I had the unit set at. So the temp probe is through the potato and sticking out about 3/4-1". I have the potato as far back as it will go in the chamber so I am reading within about 3-4" of the back wall at this point.


I am going to double check the Maverick with some boiling water here as soon as the pork is done.


I am at a loss here. Other than checking the Maverick is there something I am doing wrong?


Thank for your time!


post #2 of 9
Thread Starter 



Maverick confirmed good. boiling water shows 212 on the nose. Tried running the smoker at 230* on the panel and the Maverick showed 186 centered on the 3rd shelf down. Not good.


I let the MES go through several heat cycles after I took the loin out to rest so I would think the internal temp would have stabilized enough to get an accurate reading. It hung at 186 for at least 10 minutes or so before I pulled it.


Good news is the loins came out OK maybe a tick dry but not too bad.



post #3 of 9

Try again with a smaller Potato or get a wine bottle cork.

post #4 of 9

Are you using an extension cord to power the unit?

How cold is it outside where you live.

post #5 of 9
Thread Starter 

I am using a cord but it is a 12 gauge I use for my higher powered tools. The unit gets up to "275" very quickly probably 20 minutes or so (from ~30*).


It's fairly cold it was in the 30's today but sunny.


I am going to try either the close pin idea I saw in another temp thread or I will cut a small piece of wood and drill a hole through it.


The potato was the smallest we had and it was in the smoker for 4+ hours including the warmup time so I don't think it should have been influencing the reading at that point.


Thanks guys,


post #6 of 9
You simply have the common gen 2 blues. This is a well known issue with theae units. Masterbuilt will send you a new controller, which may or may not get you closer.... but don't count on it. Best advice? Send it back because this is the most common problem but not the only one. SEND IT BACK. Get a gen 1 or the just released new generation mes.
post #7 of 9
Thread Starter 

Send it back or take it back?


I must have gotten a "new old stock" one as I literally just picked it up right before Christmas. I'll do some research on the new models here...



post #8 of 9
Thread Starter 

Ok, so I did some testing today after calling Masterbuilt. The support gal told me a Maverick meat probe was not meant to measure air temp and that was likely the cause of the issue. Of course I know most on here do this without issue.... I did ask her if the smoker wasn't reading low why have my smokes taken so long. She agreed the time was longer than is "should" be.


So today I plugged the unit in and let it heat with the vent closed and nothing in the smoker except one rack. After the 1 hour warmup I inserted an oven thermometer (don't tell the wife!) :) and let it heat for another 1/2 hour. At that time I verified the MES temp (276*) and I also verified the element was not on. I then opened the door and looked at the oven Thermometer (mounted RIGHT next to the MES probe) and it read just a tick over 275! Ok, then I hung my Maverick probe in the cabinet (close to the MES probe) and again let the temp stabilize for a 1/2 hour or so. The Maverick was reading 321*! I opened the door and moved the Maverick to the left side (looking in) and let the temp normalize again. Now it was reading closer to 300*. Not so bad. The last test I did was move the Maverick to the same location as the MES probe and then install the water tray (Empty). After the temp normalized (about a 1/2 hr) the temp read 290 when the MES was showing 276. I am very much OK with the MES being low as I can adjust down very easily. I guess I'll know more on my next smoke but as of right now it seems "OK".


Thanks for all the input.


post #9 of 9
Thread Starter 

Couple things after today's smoke.


1. Even in -3* temps the MES30 was able to keep ~235* chamber temps the whole time.

2. Putting a foil pan in the MES below the meat (even on the lowest shelf) seems to make the unit struggle to get up to temp in the 2nd rack down.

3. Filling the water pan with cleaned wash gravel and then covering with foil REALLY helped dampen the temp swings.


It was -3 out today when I started and after a 2 hour preheat the internal temp never varied more than about 5-7* between element cycles. Most of the time the temp was within a couple degrees. Once the meat was up to about 100* internal the temp swings were more like 2-3 degrees.


Still learning!


Oh, I added the cold smoker and so far I think it is a good addition. I filled the hopper once and had to shake it once during the smoke but the unit put out a nice smoke for a long enough time to get the meat up to about 165-170. Much better than adding chips every 1/2 hr or so.



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