The set temp on the controller does not reflect the actual grate temp with its fluctuations as pellets dump, fire gets hotter, fire burns down and gets cooler, etc. It will show an average over time based on the controllers alogorythems. To get an accurate view of actual grate temps, which will vary side to side and front to back, you need a dedicated thermometer like some mentioned. You also have to watch the actual grate temps as the unit cycles through the pellet dump/recovery cycles as the temp will vary by as much as 30-50°. The unit does not stay at a constant, controller set temperature.