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Bad Q from my uds


Joined Oct 31, 2016

Hi everyone, I'm hoping you can help me. Built a uds earlier this year and the first two or three times I used it everything was awesome. Delicious bbq. Since then I've developed a problem though. I can't seem to get to blue smoke anymore and everything I cook has a bad tasting something on the outside that I assume is creosote. Now when cooking I never get past a light white smoke to blue, but I don't know why. Wasn't originally a problem. The uds has three 1 inch intakes with pipe nipples, one with a cap and two with ball valves. For exhaust I have four 1 inch holes in the top of my lid. Originally I had 90 degree pipe nipples in them, but when the bad taste problem started I was worried I didn't have enough exhaust and so I took out the nipples in the lid. It didn't fix the problem. I've been using kinsford and chunks of apple wood I got from Walmart. Please help me. I'm desperate to get back to the amazing Q I was making at the start. Thanks!


Legendary Pitmaster
Staff member
OTBS Member
★ Lifetime Premier ★
Group Lead
Joined Jun 1, 2008
It sounds like a draft issue. I know most guys have more than 1 intake so I am not sure if that is causing the issue or not. But if it doesn't have good intake and proper exhaust you will get thick smoke and nasty Q.

Are you using more fuel than before? Are you using the minion method? Have you changed to a different Kingsford? Have you tried a nice lump instead to see if that helps? with Kingsford you are burning wood and binders. Lump is pure wood so they burn different.


Meat Mopper
Joined Mar 30, 2013
I'm running 6 1" holes in my lid. It makes some good q. Have you changed smoking woods? I usually use chips for flavor. I have used chunks before and haven't noticed any off flavors. How are your temps holding?


Fire Starter
Joined Jun 26, 2013
Are you using a water pan or soaking woodchips/chunks? Either could create steam that looks like white smoke. I don't use either. I have only two 1" intake holes and they are 90 degree piped up and valved with 3/4" ball valves. I get white smoke when I first get things going, or if I take the lid off for too long during a cook, but otherwise I get TBS most of the cook time. I have a kettle grill or dome lid with the circular vent. That's all I use for ventilation.

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