cleaning your mes 30?

Discussion in 'Electric Smokers' started by flyweed, Jun 5, 2010.

  1. domapoi

    domapoi Smoke Blower

    Haven't seen any pictures of JoeSchmoker yet, but I wonder if he has one of those spiky hair styles from rinsing his electric smoker off with a hose?
  2. bearcarver

    bearcarver Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Gee I hope not!

    LOL----And I always worry if I squeezed enough water out of my sponge, before I clean something off inside my MES.

  3. captturbo

    captturbo Smoke Blower

  4. tjohnson

    tjohnson Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Insider OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    If you let the goo build up, eventually you'll have a fire, and then just go back to SAMS and get a new one!

    I call that "Self Cleaning"

    smokesontuesday likes this.
  5. bearcarver

    bearcarver Smoking Guru OTBS Member

     CaptTurbo (quote)

    Exactly Bear! My food is wrapped and recirculating when the cleaning begins. No worries about the element. I never let the water fly. I use a scrub bucket and a scrubby pad. You can put a wet scrubby sponge against the window if you have let it cool at all. I don't do it immediately but it is still quite warm when I clean it. I think waiting defeats the purpose. Hitting it soon gets it before the crud dries out and hardens.

    From Bear:

    Yup, I think that's a good idea. It's very seldom that I put water in my pan, but just the heat should make it clean a little easier.

    If I leave the door closed, it should still be warm until after I eat.


  6. joeschmoker

    joeschmoker Fire Starter

    LOL!  Well, my hair might be a little spiky, but it's only about a 1/16th of an inch long.  I did unplug the unit first.

    I propped the door wide open and had the hose on very low.  I didn't get any water inside the smoker and I just set it in the sun for a few hours to dry out any water behind the seals, although I did run a paper towel around the backside of the seal too).
  7. eman

    eman Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member

    Clean a smoker ? NEVER!  Just the racks and pans . Now that the  newness of having a window has worn off i don't bother cleaning it either.
    Last edited: Jun 13, 2011
  8. joeschmoker

    joeschmoker Fire Starter

    Not just the newness of the window, but its usefulness also.  It may have been because I was smoking so many things with bacon, but after about an hour I could barely see through the glass anyway.  And you don't really need to see through it in the first half of your smoke as much as the last half.  Was it all the bacon I was using or does the window get harder to see through after a couple/few hours no matter what you smoke?
  9. bearcarver

    bearcarver Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    I think I should mention---I know a guy who had his MES door go up in flames.

    That is why I don't let too much fat accumulate on things other than the racks & the window.

    I just did the door real good a couple weeks ago, and I got rid of the little fat piles that were causing the little camp-fires, here & there, that I could see glowing in a few smokes---First time I did that in 6 months.

  10. imstew

    imstew Newbie

    I used to spray mine with simple green, soak, and hose out.  Then the contacts on the heating element corroded off.  I took the back off, reconnected the elements AND food grade siliconed the heating element attachment plate after taking it loose.  What a pain, you would think they would have spent a extra dollar and put gaskets in.

    I still spray out my smoker, a nice patina in a saute pan is OK but layers of grease in my smoker is kinda icky.
  11. I soak the racks then scrub them and clean the drip pan(always use foil). I also use hot soapy water on the door and glass and always wipe out the bottom of the smoker and any built up grease on the sides. I also clean the temperature probe and the light. Never thoght about using the hose! Maybe taking it to the car wash would be faster. lol
  12. smokinal

    smokinal Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    It's easy if you foil the drip pan & water pan. The grates just fit in the dishwasher. The glass cleans up with rubbing alcohol & I never clean the walls.
  13. bearcarver

    bearcarver Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    LOL----Good one!

  14. kielbasa kid

    kielbasa kid Smoke Blower

    O.K.!  My turn. First; here is why I now have an MES 30 analog and CLEAN the unit after every use and will NEVER again have LP gas.[​IMG]

    I always see macho "city" fellas, trailering their ATVs back home, caked in mud, like it's a badge or medal but the same guys wash and polish their cars and will break your face if you touch it. My wife cleans her house oven, so what's the diff' with her's and mine outside? Nada!

    Considering the lengthy prep' time for a smoke, what's another half hour after you have devoured the presentation? Nada!

    Take it from a non-macho man who is still having his home rebuilt after eleven months.

    "Once burnt; twice shy".

    Here are the simple tools needed for a safely and reasonably cleaned MES analog 30.


    The SS scrubs are dipped in hot water to scrub the walls. The #4 SW polishes and cleans the rails and thermometer. Clean the thermometer as well as the probes if you want an accurate reading. Crud insulates. The screw driver simply removes the 2 bolts that hold the element. The spatula, scrapes the bottom and scoops out the crappola.

    BTW: Once you know how much your door's thermometer is consistantly in error (mine is 31 degrees), I simply add that to what it reads and I am in business. 


    As you can see, I am not completely anal but the rig is quite presentable AND SAFE TO USE.

    The grates do not take anything much to clean. Simple dish detergent, a nylon scrub brush, a laundry tub and a 20 minute soak, while you are cleaning the cabinet.

  15. I clean my electric smoker using a high pressure water unit connected to hot water. One of the cheapos you can pick up at harbor frt.

    I always unplug the unit.

    Of course i do not have any digital controls but if i did i would make sure i did not spray there. I would suggest using a hair dryer or hot gun to dry out the digital components if you think it got wet.  I also do it only when the son is shining good enough to dry out quickly. I have used a heat gun on the element to dry out the prongs when i thought they had some moister on them. I melted a plug once because i ignored the prongs and plug in. This was moisture just from condensation.

    As one can see from KK,s pictures an ounce of prevention ETC. ETC.

    Happy and safe Cooking

  16. bearcarver

    bearcarver Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    I should mention to ALL:

    When I got my new MES 40, and semi retired my MES 30, I decided to clean my MES 30 real good.

    I laid it on it's back, and used a strong cleaner & steel wool pads, and scotch bright pads, and a lot of elbow grease.

    I only used enough hot water to wet the sponges, to get the cleaners to work. I was not planning on rinsing it with a hose, or any amount of water, because plugged in or not, the water may go someplace where I wouldn't want it to go. I was planning on sopping any excess water up with a sponge when I was done.

    Guess what---I didn't have to sop it up. It disappeared on its own! It didn't evaporate---It went through the corners & edges of the inside of the smoker box. Where did it go???

    I didn't take it apart to see, but I would guess it went places I didn't want it to go. I did not test it, because I'm sure it was wet inside the walls for days. I'm sure it's dry now, but I have not had a reason to test it since that day.

    Long story short, I would not use a hose on an electric smoker, plugged in or not.  Maybe that's just me, but that is me.

  17. I should also mention i have never had an insulated smoker.

    As Bear said i would worry about where the water went also.

    Is there any electrical stuff in the bottom. I wonder what kind of insulation is in the walls and would water leaking in move or damage the insulation ?
  18. I was just reading the MES Manual and it says not to use any cleaning agent and just to wipe down after every use with a damp towel.

  19. When everything else fails, read the instructions
  20. Instructions i dont need no stinkin instructions


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