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Dumb thermo question - foiling leads

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 
Read numerous times on here about people foiling their thermometer leads. Got an ET-73 that has some rough looking leads & a new ET-7 on the way (need more probes).

Was wondering what's the best way to do this? How many wraps?

Pics would be helpful.

post #2 of 14


take a single strip3 inches wide and fold in half lengthwise. Then fold again. Put your probe in the 1/4 inch away from the end and fold it over. Then jelly roll the rest of it.

post #3 of 14
You can buy replacement probes for $9 online, probably spend more than that in foil over a year. Not worth the hassle imho. I have one that I have been using at work for 2 years and it still works fine.
post #4 of 14

foil is cheap

Foil is pretty cheap. It's only a 3 inch wide strip your talking about it. Also, there are lots of units you can't find replacements for. I've never had a probe go bad after I started foiling. I've had at least 4 go bad not foiling and 2 were Guru probes. That's like $60 right there.

post #5 of 14
I have the Redi Chek remote thermometer from cabelas. You think one could find new leads on ebay for that? Is it just the heat that causes the leads to go bad? The wire running inside the woven sheathing?
post #6 of 14

foiled wires

it's a combination of heat, soot, grease that will turn the mesh hard so it kinks then the wires inside break. If you keep the crap off the mesh by foiling they stay pretty new.

Now the Stoker probes have silicon around them which wipes clean nicely. I have used them without foil before in a rush but generally I will foil them too.

post #7 of 14


not sure if this would work but isn't there a high temp heat shrink available that you could put on the wires???
post #8 of 14

foiled probes

it would loose it's flexibility. Hi temp silicon tubing would work I just don't know where to get it.

post #9 of 14
maybe im just dense but i just cant picture what yu re saying to do. i just ordered the et-73 so i would like to know how to do this trick. any pics?
post #10 of 14
I was told by the guy that sold me my ET73 that if those probes hit 300* they're done. At least not accurate anymore. I've never tested the theory...just what I was told.
post #11 of 14
I think it's more like 350. That's about the melting temperature of the epoxy holding the thermister in place. Once that stuff melts, it's a dead dude.

I wrap any probe that has mesh leads. Mostly to keep moisture out, which is the biggest issue. Not to mention, you don't have to clean them, which will also keep them safe. I just buy the cheap small rolls of foil and cut about 1" chunks of the entire roll with tin snips (you about have to mash the roll flat to get a good bite. Then just apply the foil like you would electric tape. It's actually harder to get the crap off then to put it on in the first place.
post #12 of 14
i know its 300+. The very first smoke I did with my new ET73 I ruined my smoker probe because my heat really spiked on me and shorted out the probe so right now I am down to one probe.

Not to hijack the thread but were can you get new probes online?
post #13 of 14
Check amazon, ebay, or google the probe replacement for your type therm and you should get some hits.

To echo Josh, it's worth the bit of time to wrap the probes in foil to protect them as the replacement of probes can get a bit costly. The hardest part of the process is taking the stuff off as it's all schmuzed up with spritz and meat juices .. PDT_Armataz_01_34.gif
post #14 of 14
You say 300f is bad for probes??? That is surprising to me because more than 90% of all recipes call for an oven of more than 300 degrees. Even heating a frozen pizza calls for 400f . We smokers are unique in that we cook at much lower temps than the great unwashed.

Could it be that just the very end of the probe is at risk or is the wire itself susceptible to high temps?

In the case of the probe the meat should protect it from 300+ F but a probe shoved thru a potato and used to monitor the actual smoker temps would be at risk over that temp? Is this right?

Like most men I threw out the instructions that came with my remote probes, ( real men don't read directions ) but I don't remember anything warning me about max temps.
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