Smoking in Sub-Zero temps

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Fire Starter
Original poster
Jan 3, 2017
Hello all, I have a party on Saturday. I plan on doing a over night smoke of 4 butts Friday night. I just upgraded to a mes 40 and seasoned it last night. It was slightly above 0 during that. while watching the remote I seen that the element was on most of the time, though it did stay around 275. The outside temps should be -4 at the lowest Friday night. Which brings me to my questions, I know they are pretty well insulated but is it worth wrapping it? Or putting the box around it? Or should I leave it? Will the element needing to be on the whole time put wear and tear on it shorting its life?
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P.s. I had the mes 30 for a few years. And have always smoked year round. The last time I used it successfully it was -9 and the element was burnt out next time I used it. But it didn't have the remote so I never paid much attention to the element being on or off.
I've smoked year-round sense I started smoking and never thought nothing about it, but sense my last smoke with my 30 ended up being its last it made me wonder. Where are you from wurkenman?
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I just did 2 pork butts on Tuesday in -2 and smoked them for 6 hours at 250 and my MES performed well.  Held temps steady.  Just have to be quick when opening the door if you need to wrap anything, loses heat real quick.  Other than that it holds great.  I do watch the controller on the top of the unit because it tends to get condensation from the smoke and it will freeze on the controller.  I wipe this off pretty regularly because I've heard numerous stories of these units having issues.  I try to take extra good care of it so I hopefully won't have any issues.  Good luck.
6 hrs? Did you finish them in the oven. Thanks for the input on the controls, I'll wipe them down if I see any condisation.
No, tried to power through the stall without foiling but ended up wrapping them and getting to temp in the foil.  Didn't have time to form decent bark though as I had to bring them to work for a party.  Tasted great but no good bark.  Oh well.  Live and learn.  Next time I will give myself more time. is reader supported and as an Amazon Associate, we may earn commissions from qualifying purchases.

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