Author Topic: New used smoker. Time for a 2nd element?  (Read 3062 times)

Offline Boggler

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New used smoker. Time for a 2nd element?
« on: May 21, 2020, 11:51:08 AM »
Hi guys,

I have been reading these forums a lot recently. So much great information.

I just picked up a used BTIS1 with an Auberins PID.

The set up was very easy. Temp went up to 250 within 15 minutes. After I put stuff inside, the temp never gets back to near 200. Seems like little to no recovery.

My PID was set for 250 for the first 18 minutes, and then 225 for the next several hours.The PID shows that power is constantly being directed to the element so I doubt this is the problem.

Is it really time for me to add in a 2nd element? Should I replace the element? If I am going to replace the element, should I just replace both?
If I replace both, should I just do the 900w element?

There are a few threads that link to a guide on some site that doesn't exist anymore.

Any guidance is appreciated!

Offline cathouse willy

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Re: New used smoker. Time for a 2nd element?
« Reply #1 on: May 21, 2020, 05:12:23 PM »
Welcome to the forum Boggler. The Bradleys have a 500 watt heater that can struggle with a large load.There are a number of things that can help,bring the food to room temp before starting your smoke,a brick or two in the bottom of the cabinet can help hold the heat, keep the smoker out of the wind, keep the vent open, if closed it will trap moisture in the cab and cool it down especially with poultry. A second element is an option but in my experience not necessary, my original is wrapped in a suit of hot water tank insulation and lives in a cabinet and I've never had a problem with heat. There are others here that swear by the second heater mod so hopefully they can help with that.

Offline Habanero Smoker

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Re: New used smoker. Time for a 2nd element?
« Reply #2 on: May 22, 2020, 02:06:13 AM »
Hi Boggler;

Welcome to the forum.

Cathouse willy has given you some good advice.

I've converted to a second element and love it. That plus a temperature controller; such as the Auber, improves the performance and makes your cooks more consistent; especially during colder climate. If you do the second element mod, you only need one element; but it couldn't hurt to have a spare element around. Except for a bad batch of elements that were produced so time ago, an element will last for a long time. I have no experience with the 900w heater, but from the videos I've seen, it seems like an easier installation.


Offline DanKhile

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Re: New used smoker. Time for a 2nd element?
« Reply #3 on: May 22, 2020, 08:11:28 AM »
I replaced the 500W with the 900W - much better recovery.  I have purchased and installed the Smoker fan and Auber WSC-1200GPH Dual Probe PID in hopes of regulating tighter control of heat and having staged temp / product temp monitoring / threasholds.  having a bit of an issue with Autotuning the PID controller, but it must be operator error on my part - the controller has been in "Auto Tune" for 6 hours this time and this is my third attempt - can't seem to get to the finish line.  I can still smoke and use the smoker with the original Digital Smoke generator controlling the heat - it is just not as accurate as I am hoping for -