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MES 40 blowing breaker


Smoke Blower
Joined Apr 10, 2015
Hi guys... I have a mes40 (3/4 yrs old) that has been sitting for a while... Finally decided to plug it in again, and it blows my GFCI every time... It will power on, bit as soon as the element kicks on, the outlet blows. Any ideas? Happens with AND without an extension cord


Smoking Guru
OTBS Member
SMF Premier Member
★ Lifetime Premier ★
Joined Dec 14, 2013
Also be informed on what else is on the circuit you're using .


Master of the Pit
OTBS Member
★ Lifetime Premier ★
Joined Dec 30, 2016
not sure i have an unprotected outside.. will have to run an extension into the house..

Just the smoker! its plugged into a 5th garage and only 3 plugs on this specific circuit.
If the smoker trips the breaker on an inside plug then my guessing is that your smoker is grounding out. My guess would be that the crappy MES connector for the ground wire has rotted away or came loose. You would need to check the panel for the heating element and check the ground wire (one that does NOT hook to the element tabs). If it is ok there then you will need to flip the smoker on it's face or back and take off the bottom panel and check the ground where there.

The MES takes the ground wire from the plug into the bottom panel and often connects to a bolt/nut which is also connected to the ground wire that then runs to the heating element. They don't run a single wire from the plug to the grounding endpoint but rather have this double ground wire setup.

I bet you find an issue with the ground wire OR you find something wrong with the wires connecting to the heating element as the connectors may be rotting or grounding out somehow there.

When you find the issue and if it is a bad connector be sure to buy Hi-Temp Stainless Steel connectors. The Supco brand works well:
Here are the connectors that work for the heating element and other male spade tabs:
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I think these Supco round connectors will work for the ground connector if it is rotted out:
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I hope this info helps :)


SMF Hall of Fame Pitmaster
OTBS Member
SMF Premier Member
Joined Nov 12, 2010
The wires to the element have probably rotted due to the crappy connectors Masterbuilt uses.. Clean the terminals on the element and, I would, directly solder the wires to the element... cut back the wires until you get to clean wire... tin the element ends, tin the wire ends... and solder... If you have heat shrink add it to the wires before soldering... You can wrap the solder joints with fiberglass electrical tape for extra protection.... Don't worry about the solder joint getting hot... It won't...

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