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Author Topic: Help! Keeping the temp down using Slow n Sear!  (Read 1564 times)

Chitown600

  • Happy Cooker
  • Posts: 2
Help! Keeping the temp down using Slow n Sear!
« on: May 23, 2020, 01:49:43 PM »
Hi Everyone!

I'm a total newbie to charcoal grilling and I could use a bit of help controlling my temps when I want to go low and slow. My target temp is 225. But I keep peaking temps around 270 and almost 300!! Here is my current protocol:

I start with a single layer of briquettes in the SnS and light one end with a Weber starter. I put a few chunks of wood on top of the briquettes. I have all vents open until it approaches 150. When it hits 150 I follow the Weber instruction and leave the bottom vent open and I close down the top vent until it is just open a crack. I've also done a smoke where I close down the bottom vent to a 1/4 open and I get worse results.

I can't seem to keep it at 225, its maddening after I close down the top vent to a crack to see the temperature just keep rising! Please help me figure out what I'm doing wrong!

Thank you!

-Chitown

sonofabutcher

  • WKC Brave
  • Posts: 159
Help! Keeping the temp down using Slow n Sear!
« Reply #1 on: May 23, 2020, 01:58:36 PM »
What are you using to monitor the temps ? I leave my bottom 1/4 open and top 1/4 open and have great results with my sns. Light 12 briquettes and add hot water to the trough. Leave vents open until  it gets 20-30 degrees from set temp and I’ll close the vents to 1/4 . I run 250-275 so maybe try lighting 6-8 briquettes ?


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« Last Edit: May 23, 2020, 02:11:25 PM by sonofabutcher »

WildonionAB

  • Smokey Joe
  • Posts: 71
Re: Help! Keeping the temp down using Slow n Sear!
« Reply #2 on: May 23, 2020, 04:41:51 PM »
Follow the instructions from Adrenaline.  Sounds like you are lighting it wrong.

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Foster Dahlet

  • WKC Ranger
  • Posts: 1162
Re: Help! Keeping the temp down using Slow n Sear!
« Reply #3 on: May 23, 2020, 05:13:13 PM »
Hi Everyone!

I'm a total newbie to charcoal grilling and I could use a bit of help controlling my temps when I want to go low and slow. My target temp is 225. But I keep peaking temps around 270 and almost 300!! Here is my current protocol:

I start with a single layer of briquettes in the SnS and light one end with a Weber starter. I put a few chunks of wood on top of the briquettes. I have all vents open until it approaches 150. When it hits 150 I follow the Weber instruction and leave the bottom vent open and I close down the top vent until it is just open a crack. I've also done a smoke where I close down the bottom vent to a 1/4 open and I get worse results.

I can't seem to keep it at 225, its maddening after I close down the top vent to a crack to see the temperature just keep rising! Please help me figure out what I'm doing wrong!

Thank you!

-Chitown
Don't overdo the wood.  Lots of times they can spike temps and in a small space like a kettle, less smoke is more. Also, make sure the temp you measure is grate level, not the lid thermometer.  If you find your temp rises too fast, change your process and close your vents sooner.  There are no kettle police making sure you follow the instructions by the book.

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kettlebb

  • WKC Ambassador
  • Posts: 5871
Re: Help! Keeping the temp down using Slow n Sear!
« Reply #4 on: May 23, 2020, 05:34:21 PM »
My advice is ditch the SnS for low and slow. Use the snake method for low and slow. Much more stable in my experience.


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AnyThingGrilled

  • WKC Brave
  • Posts: 231
Re: Help! Keeping the temp down using Slow n Sear!
« Reply #5 on: May 23, 2020, 07:55:35 PM »

Follow the instructions from Adrenaline.  Sounds like you are lighting it wrong.

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+1
I follow the instructions and never have a problem. It’s an easy 250 for up to 8 hours consistently.


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bamakettles

  • WKC Ranger
  • Posts: 882
Re: Help! Keeping the temp down using Slow n Sear!
« Reply #6 on: May 23, 2020, 08:23:13 PM »
Full basket in the SNS, place a tumbleweed on one side.  Let it come up to temp and govern with the lower vents.  It works, just have to keep an eye out for the first hour.  If I hear “snake method” one more time...... never mind....the SNS works perfectly, just keep the vents about 1/4 open IME.


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pbe gummi bear

  • WKC Mod
  • Posts: 8900
Re: Help! Keeping the temp down using Slow n Sear!
« Reply #7 on: May 23, 2020, 10:11:10 PM »
\\ If I hear “snake method” one more time...... never mind....the SNS works perfectly, just keep the vents about 1/4 open IME.


The caveat here is that the kettle needs to have a good seal. The temps will have trouble staying down if your OT/lower vents aren't tight or your lid is out of round. The snake method is much more consistent in that regard.
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WildonionAB

  • Smokey Joe
  • Posts: 71
Re: Help! Keeping the temp down using Slow n Sear!
« Reply #8 on: May 24, 2020, 05:56:00 AM »
\\ If I hear “snake method” one more time...... never mind....the SNS works perfectly, just keep the vents about 1/4 open IME.


The caveat here is that the kettle needs to have a good seal. The temps will have trouble staying down if your OT/lower vents aren't tight or your lid is out of round. The snake method is much more consistent in that regard.
The SnS is very consistent to though. But you have to use it as per the instructions.  I've been using mine for years now and I like the ease of use.

Light about a dozen coals in my chimney. Pour into corner of SnS.
Fill remaining space with unlit coals and close lid on cooker. Leave both top and bottom vents wide open. I have a thermo probe at grill level monitoring temp.
When my temp hits 200f I close my bottom vent to 1/4 open and allow it to finish climbing to about 220 before I close top vent about a 1/3.
P.s I don't bother with water in mine anymore. I just mist my meats with cider vinegar every couple hours.

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kettlebb

  • WKC Ambassador
  • Posts: 5871
Re: Help! Keeping the temp down using Slow n Sear!
« Reply #9 on: May 24, 2020, 06:38:48 AM »
I didn’t like the SnS for low and slow due to the extreme temp fluctuations. I don’t like closing down my top vent at all. I want as much exhaust and clean air in the kettle for smoking as possible.

The snake is always consistent for me. I use my SnS for cooking and searing but not so much for smoking.


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RedWeberWanabe

  • Smokey Joe
  • Posts: 14
Re: Help! Keeping the temp down using Slow n Sear!
« Reply #10 on: May 25, 2020, 04:53:51 AM »
I have been holding on to a 55 gallon drum to build a UDS, but realize i can smoke and do the low and slow in my kettle with the snake method.  I get +10hours at least at 250ish with my bottom vents at 1/2 and top cents at full open.  I just check it every hour, it hasn't let me down yet.

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« Last Edit: May 25, 2020, 04:57:23 AM by RedWeberWanabe »

Chitown600

  • Happy Cooker
  • Posts: 2
Re: Help! Keeping the temp down using Slow n Sear!
« Reply #11 on: May 28, 2020, 03:32:21 PM »
Thanks for all your comments. I've finally got the temp under control! I think you guys were right about me not lighting it correctly and creating a good seal for the lid. I followed adrenaline's SnS instructions to a T this time. Here are the 3 things I tried differently that will hopefully help out other people experiencing the same issues.

#1 I used a chimney to light about 10 briquettes until they were COMPLETELY lit and NO smoke was coming off them. I dumped them into one corner of the SnS and filled it with unlit briquettes.

#2 I ran my grill temp thermometer through the TOP vent (as opposed to between the lid and kettle) to create a better seal where the lid meets the kettle. This should be mandatory and I'm not sure why they don't include this in their instructions. I saw them do it in their video but they do not explicitly mention it.

#3 Tip from the SnS manual: I used 3x 2 inch binder clips equally spaced around the lid to create a better seal. Not sure how effective this is but it can't hurt my chances.

RESULTS: About 2 hours in and grill temp is now maintaining around 225F with slow fluctuations of up to 15F above 225F. I leave the bottom vent at 1/4 open and make small adjustments to my top vent which hovers around 1/4 to 1/8 open depending on variables. I live in a high rise on the lake which experiences unpredictable high speed gusts of wind so controlling airflow is especially critical.

Thanks again and happy grilling!

SMOKE FREAK

  • WKC Ranger
  • Posts: 956
Re: Help! Keeping the temp down using Slow n Sear!
« Reply #12 on: May 28, 2020, 04:25:49 PM »
Hmmmm...

SMOKE FREAK

  • WKC Ranger
  • Posts: 956
Re: Help! Keeping the temp down using Slow n Sear!
« Reply #13 on: May 28, 2020, 04:35:23 PM »
Seems my response from last night got censored or something
« Last Edit: May 28, 2020, 05:08:34 PM by SMOKE FREAK »

bbqking01

  • WKC Ranger
  • Posts: 807
Re: Help! Keeping the temp down using Slow n Sear!
« Reply #14 on: May 28, 2020, 07:58:56 PM »
Or something ?


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