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Brinkmann ECB Temp too hot

post #1 of 21
Thread Starter 
I have a Brinkmann Gourmet Charcoal smoker. This is my second time trying to use it and I cannot seem to keep the temperature from getting too hot. I added a temperature gauge to it and it stays right around 350-400. I remove the lid and open the door for a while to clear out the heat but with the lid on it is too hot.

Any ideas on what I can do to lower the heat? I live in Houston, TX and it is only 70 degrees today. I am afraid I won't be able to use it this summer once temps get into the 90's.

I apologize if this has been asked before. I did a search and could not find what I was looking for.

Thank you,
post #2 of 21
I've got the same smoker you have and the first couple smokes had me fighting temps most of the time, then I learned how to control the temps.

Check out this link to a thread that has another couple links to ecb mods:


The links for the ecb mods are in a post by Walking Dude. He's got the same smoker as we do and has made mods to his that have helped him control the temps.
post #3 of 21
Thread Starter 
Thank you for your help.

I filled the firebox which holds about 8 lbs of briquets and fired the whole thing. I should have though of that first (decrease heat source). I guess my common sense has left me this week.

I will try again next weekend.

Thanks again!
post #4 of 21
Don't get too down on yourself, at least you identified a problem and will be easier to temper with next weekend. I love my ecb, and wouldn't hesitate to buy another, but mods are a must!

Happy smokin'!
post #5 of 21
I just bought the same smoker and am new to this. I fired it up yesterday and experienced the exact opposite thing. I was fighting to get the temp up to the proper level. I ended up using about 8 lbs of charcoal for the entire smoke of about 5 hours. Sounds like to much charcoal to me. I think it will take a couple times to get the proper amount of charcoal. After I was done smoking and let the coals sit, it finally got to the proper temp.
post #6 of 21
i have about 3 diff. threads on ecb mods........no make that 5.........PLUS.....when i can't get temps down.....i will place my lid off abit to the side........you have to play with this, to get get temps to hold steady..........my next mod will be circle dampers in the lid............






hope these help
post #7 of 21
Welcome..and consider a Roll Call Forum post before then :{)
post #8 of 21

Hot ecb....

Depending on what I smoke and how long I always vary the charcoal and wood amounts in my ecb.I've found with mine if I do a long smoke I fill the pan full of charcoal and wait for the high temp spike once it starts going down I throw on some wood then when I get the desired smoke on goes the meat it comes back up to ideal and stays.I add a little wood when i see it dropping.That has been my experience hope it helps I've been using ecb's for a while with no mods once you get the hang of em It's awesome.
post #9 of 21
I am brand new to smoking and got a Smoke n Grill from the Wife for my birthday. I have drilled all the holes in the fire pan and made a closing slider out of aluminum for them as well. Tonight I am adding threaded rod to make the pan stand on its own. I also found a grill grate that fits the bottom of the pan as well at Walmart. Here is the site that I found that has the mods listed:


I am thinking about making the damper on the lid tonight but I am not sure if it is necessary?
post #10 of 21
matt, you mite want to make this question in its OWN thread, but, to answer your question.........try the setup you have now, and see how it werks out........it you find temps getting to hot, then you may need to add the circle dampers to the lid.........
post #11 of 21

You seem to have plenty of experience with the ECB and have already made several mods, so I'd like to pick your brain.

I have a Gourmet ECB that I have added a 13" weber grate to the bottom of the firepan which is supported by bolts. This grate holds the burning charcoal/wood and allows the fuel to breathe. Do you think the drilled 5/16 holes are still neccesary or is this grate enough? Should I add the sliding mechanism to the base to cover the hole in the bottom?

I will install a better thermometer soon, but need a good tutorial on how I should do this. Hints?

During my first smoke, my fire got really hot (w/ 1 chimney of charcoal) when I first placed the base, waterpan, grates and lid over the fire. The warm/ideal/hot gauge was almost topped out. I let it sit for about 10-15 minutes with the lid on and the temp level dropped to "ideal". After about an hour the temp continued to drop almost into "warm". It seemed as if the fire wasn't getting enough air. What should I do to get more air? I though maybe I should open the side door a little so I opened it and the temperature did raise back up to "mid-ideal" (I'm assuming it's 225-250?). Is it okay to slightly open the side door and use it as kind of a damper?

Should I lift the mid-section w/ lid and all up off of the firepan/base and set it aside and tend to the fire? Do you shake the burnt ash out of the firepan? How often during the smoke?

What exactly does the brick do for the fire? What type of brick?

Thanks buddy, I'm sure I have million other questions.

Oh yeah, come to find out, my damn instant-read meat thermometer was broke too. Talk about smoking in the dark. A broken instant-read and the crappy ECB thermometer had the makings for a disaster... I got through it okay, next time I want to make sure I'm 100% prepared!
post #12 of 21
i use the sliding metal piece to help reg. temps.....the reason i drilled the holes, is i could'nt find a small enuff grate..........so just try the grate setup you have, and see how it werks....as too the temp gauge that came with the smoker, ignore it........you can get yourself a aftermarket one to put in the lid.....takes about a 1/2 hole or so.........but i just use my dual probe Mav. Redichek ET-73 digi thermo........one probe is for the smoker, to tell you what the temps are........and the other in placed in the meat.........if you are doing ribs, or abts, you won't need to use the food probe........

you always take the mid section off to tend to the fire, and add wood chunks to the chip box.......i shake the fire pan as often as i need to, to remove the ash, so the fire gets better air flow.......

the brick is used for a modified minion method.......i start the fire on one end, and let the fire burn around the pan........saves on charchol.......i have only done it once, so i need to fine tune the method.......any type of brick will do, but perferably solid, like a paver.....you can pick em up at any home improvement store for under .50 cents/piece........i just happend to have this one laying around.........

post #13 of 21
Trial and error, no better way...

No thermometer for ribs? Why's that?

Chipbox? My smoker didn't come with a chipbox. Is this something I should purchase? I'm assuming it's used to hold the soaked wood chips?
post #14 of 21
its a cast iron chip box, they sell for using in gas grills......i NEVER soak my chips.....i use the box, so my chunks won't catch fire.......they just smolder in the box

i don't use a thermo for ribs, because the meat in minimal and you have to much of a chance of placing the probe next to a bone, which will throw your times off......imho........others mite/may differ on my opinion
post #15 of 21
My ECB almost got 12 gauge'd for that very thing LOL. 1st things first check the above link and make the mods, then it is simply a matter of playing with it and figuring out what is gonna work. God I love this forum!!
post #16 of 21
Almost got 12 gauge'd PDT_Armataz_01_36.gif Took me a second to figure out what you meant by that.



Still laughing. That's the funniest thing I've heard all week... I can see it now. (Wife) "Honey, what the heck you doin shootin that gun in the backyard?" (Me) "I just shot the smoker, leave me the hell alone!!!!"

post #17 of 21
Yeah it most nearly had a head on collision with some fast movin buckshot, BUT for the record I love my ECB now
post #18 of 21
While being alot more G rated than the actual conversation....... pretty much dead on LOL
post #19 of 21
pic of my chip box

post #20 of 21
i found some old Webber grills in someones trash. I removed the aluminum dampers, the round one with 4 holes. I mounted them on the charcoal pan and top of ECB smoker, really helps.
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