Awful WSM odor, new WSM

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Fire Starter
Original poster
Mar 21, 2007
I fired up the WSM for the first time about an hour ago, and was planning on making some ribs today. After reviewing some posts here, looking at the instructions, and looking at a couple other sites, I decided not to "season" the smoker (all indications were that it is not required, because it is porcelain coated).

Right now, there is a strong, almost toxic smell coming from the smoker. Anyone know if this should cook itself off soon. Or should I let it burn all day, and wait until tomorrow to actually smoke meat on it?

I am using Kingsford charcoal, and have not yet put any wood on the coals.


Thats burning the paint crap off. Get it pretty hot and then rub w/veg oil. I spray it w/Pam, much easier. I spray w/Pam each time I clean my smoker. Smokers have to be broke in, you can put some meat in there, but don't expect it to taste the best. Best to wait till tomorrow to put meat on there, or later tonight. Get the nasties out first. After that, it just gets better and better.
yup, what he said. Getting the nasties out is important, now oil that thing up and give it some more heat then you're ready to go
Tom, I'm not sure what your smelling, but a WSM does not need seasoned. It has to be clean to be porcelain coated and the porcelain does not burn off or set like regular paint.
After using the smoker all day, I now believe it might just have been the charcoal. I used charcoal many years ago in a Weber and on Hibachis, and don't recall that strong of an odor, but maybe the smoker makes it more concentrated(?)

That might be out in left field, but there was definitely no question that the odor was very strong, and a direct hit of the smoke to my nose smelled very foul.

That was my guess this morning Tom. If the charcoal wasn't offending your nose, is it possible you smothered the coals with too much wood and had some bad smoke going or was it just a charcoal fire? is reader supported and as an Amazon Associate, we may earn commissions from qualifying purchases.

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