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    Clogging question

    I’m ready to pull the trigger on a new MAK 2* but I have been reading about an issue (from Meathead’s review) with the auger clogging in wet conditions. I live in western NC, which literally is a temperate rain forest. So this potential issue concerns me. If I use a cover and empty the pellets after each use, do you think this is still a legit concern? It would be located on a covered porch so it wouldn’t be subject to direct rain incursion very often, just ambient humidity. How often do you guys see this in reality? TIA!

    #2
    I live surrounded by coastal waters on three sides and I understand humidity! My solution is to store all my pellets in 5 gallon buckets, think Home Depot buckets, and use a bucket top vacuum to remove them from the smoker and back into a bucket.

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    #3
    First, the issue of wet pellets and auger jams is a potential problem for just about every make of pellet cookers, not just MAKs. Most are designed to minimize that potential problem using various designs to channel any potential moisture away from the hopper, the most likely way that pellets can get wet.

    I have a MAK 2 Star and live near the ocean, so I can relate to your concerns. We get plenty of nighttime condensation and a lot of fog/drizzle and moist, salty sea air, and some heavy showers, so like your plan, I empty the hopper after every cook (takes seconds to do) and use a cover. Previous to the MAK, I had a Camp Chef DLX and used the same approach. Never had any problem either in the hopper or the auger.

    I would pull that trigger!

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      #4
      I have a 2 Star in Eastern NC, yes moisture is a concern, but that goes for every pellet grill. My routine is when I'm nearing the end of a cook I dump all my pellets and then set to grill while we eat, it ensures the auger is empty and heats everything enough for a better brush down of the grates.

      I wish mine was on a covered area, and some people roll theirs out of the garage or shed each use... but mine lives uncovered (well it gets the grill cover whenever it will be more than 48 hours before next use) year round.

      For pellet storage I use a rolling dog food bin, it fits perfect under the warming box and rolls around to the hopper side when it's game time. I use the one below, it's lasted over 2 years, but last night one of the wheel holding pieces broke so I might be buying something else or just living with it not having wheels.

      search on Amazon, IRIS Premium Airtight Pet Food Storage Container, Smoke 67qt

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        #5
        If you look in the top right corner you will see a huge puddle, we got a lot of rain last night. The MAK was uncovered during a break in the rain and loaded with pellets then recovered because I thought it was supposed to still be raining this morning. The MAK is smoking away just fine and the pellets were all dry. The only issue I have is the 2 times of the year when there is a lot of dew/condensation. But, as long as there are no pellets to get wet it doesn't matter. I smoke year round, even during hurricanes

        Click image for larger version  Name:	0103210941a.jpg Views:	18 Size:	3.46 MB ID:	967891
        Last edited by ItsAllGoneToTheDogs; January 3, 2021, 11:32 AM.

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        • HawkerXP
          HawkerXP commented
          Editing a comment
          I can't see nothing through all that steam! Because its a pellet pooper it can't be smoke. Right?

        #6
        Oh I thought you were having this clogging problem.....

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        • Nittany347
          Nittany347 commented
          Editing a comment
          Lol fortunately not that clogging problem!

        • RustyHaines
          RustyHaines commented
          Editing a comment
          Was my initial thought as well. Thought he was looking for Appalachia dance lessons and I was going to contact my kin to help him out.

        #7
        I keep my pellet grill covered when not in use. Simple enough. Keep pellets in a storage shed. I use bit boss pellets with a zip lock bag. Works fine so far, no problems. The key is to keep the pellets dry and the grill clean.

        I made this my practice for more time to BBQ, enjoy friends and family, and PBR.

        Comment


          #8
          I have had a 1 star for a couple years now and have never had an issue. I take preventive actions to ensure I have no issues. After a cook I clean up the grates, deflector and such. Put all back together, and start the grill cooking. I burn it at about 400 degrees f for about 30 minutes. Then I dump the pellets and continue running it until auger is completely out of pellets. That way it is impossible to have the auger freeze up from improperly stored pellets.

          Comment


            #9
            Thanks for the tips! Sounds like if I keep the MAK covered and store the pellets in a sealed container, not in the smoker, I shouldn’t have a problem.

            Comment


              #10
              Originally posted by Nittany347 View Post
              I’m ready to pull the trigger on a new MAK 2* but I have been reading about an issue (from Meathead’s review) with the auger clogging in wet conditions. I live in western NC, which literally is a temperate rain forest. So this potential issue concerns me. If I use a cover and empty the pellets after each use, do you think this is still a legit concern? It would be located on a covered porch so it wouldn’t be subject to direct rain incursion very often, just ambient humidity. How often do you guys see this in reality? TIA!
              I am narrowing down my choice of a new pellet grill and the all stainless Two Star General is at the top of my list and I saw that clogging comment as well. Like the person that posted the comment I live in Seattle and it can get damp, especially since I don't have a covered patio. It is the only comment like it I've found so I'm not overly concerned but it does add a very slight bit of doubt when spending that much.

              Comment


              • ItsAllGoneToTheDogs
                ItsAllGoneToTheDogs commented
                Editing a comment
                It's mostly a non-issue, but the humidity we had from the 8+"s of rain in a 3 day period was enough for the ash from my last cook to be damp. Would have happened on any brand grill.

                As long as you don't leave pellets in the grill for weeks without using it you shouldn't have an issue. I just bought an all stainless 2 star before even selling my 2018 2 star. I love this grill.

              #11
              I’ve had my 2 star since 2017. I’ve had it in humid, wet climates as well as dry. I’ve never had a clogging issue.

              Comment


                #12
                I think folks worry too much about humidity getting to their fuel - either pellets or charcoal. As long as there is not actual water getting into the pellet hopper I just don't see how it can be much of an issue. I store charcoal year round in hot humid Alabama, in the bin on my Performer, which is covered when not in use. I've never had charcoal become unusable due to being exposed to humidity. There is always fine powder in the bottom of the bin too, from dumping the bags into it. If you leave a bag out in the rain, it's another story. I also am still burning KBB that I bought on sale last in 2018, when we still had the magical $9.98 sale pricing for a 2 pack of 18.8 pound bags 3 times each summer. That was stored for most of the past 3 years in a rotten backyard shed with lots of holes in the walls and a tarp to cover holes in the roof. Still burns fine, and is now stored in the replacement metal shed.

                I will however second the use of the 5 gallon "Homer" buckets and lids. Due to the O-ring seal, those keep things VERY dry, and I use them for storing grain (malted barley) for brewing.

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