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creosote inside my smoker

 
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piggy06



Joined: 31 Mar 2008
Posts: 7

PostPosted: Wed Sep 24 08 8:25 am    Post subject: creosote inside my smoker Reply with quote

I have a 6ft offset that cooks great. I have no problem getting up to cooking temp or maintaining temps We usually cook at around 250-300. I have checked my thermometers and they are dead on. The problem is a heavy build up of creosote on the inside of the cooker. This past weekend the stuff started to actually drip onto the meat. Any idea whats up with that?
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J0K3R-X
BBQ Fan


Joined: 02 Aug 2008
Posts: 357
Location: New Port Richey, FL

PostPosted: Wed Sep 24 08 11:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

What kind of wood do you use? Do you soak your wood in water or use damp wood? Is the wood that you use fully cured/dried? Damp or wet wood can cause more creosote buildup than normal.
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txfireguy2003
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Joined: 27 Nov 2007
Posts: 130

PostPosted: Wed Sep 24 08 11:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm with JOK3R, too much moisture if it's dripping. Strangely enough though, I've actually had water dripping out of my offset in the past when using wood that I thought was well cured. It seemed really dry, and had been sitting out for almost a year. No problems with creosote though, either before or after cooking with that "wet" wood. I would think your buildup might be caused by a fire that's not burning cleanly ie not enough air. I know when I fight fires that are well ventillated, meaning they are getting plenty of air and burning well, I come out and my helmet is clean (relatively) but when I fight a fire in a house that is sealed up pretty well and choking the fire, my normally yellow helmet is brown/black when I come out. You can tell when I fire is not getting enough air by the color of the smoke, brown/yellow/dark/thick smoke means not enough oxygen. Nice light grey/blue smoke means clean burning fire...when dealing with natural fuels like wood that is. If the fuel source is dirty or man made or a petroleum product like plastics, that's out the window, but hopefully that's not a problem with cookers!!! Very Happy
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JamesB
BBQ Super Pro


Joined: 19 Oct 2005
Posts: 2406
Location: Irving, Tx

PostPosted: Wed Sep 24 08 3:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Simple fix... Scrape/clean all of the build up out of your cooker. In the future use only well seasoned wood. No soaking prior. Aim for a small, hot, clean burning fire. No smoldering wood! Preheat logs on top of, or if your firebox is big enough, inside your firebox... I have two 8' trailered offsets and neither have any creosote buildup after years of use using these guidelines. Good luck!
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piggy06



Joined: 31 Mar 2008
Posts: 7

PostPosted: Wed Sep 24 08 7:39 pm    Post subject: creosote Reply with quote

One thing I did not mention is that we cook with charcoal and use well seasoned pecan for smoke. We also use a water pan that is placed at the opening of the cooker from the firebox. Could the water pan be the culprit?
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J0K3R-X
BBQ Fan


Joined: 02 Aug 2008
Posts: 357
Location: New Port Richey, FL

PostPosted: Wed Sep 24 08 8:03 pm    Post subject: Re: creosote Reply with quote

piggy06 wrote:
One thing I did not mention is that we cook with charcoal and use well seasoned pecan for smoke. We also use a water pan that is placed at the opening of the cooker from the firebox. Could the water pan be the culprit?


That sounds very possible!
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buroaks
Newbie


Joined: 20 Jan 2008
Posts: 74

PostPosted: Thu Sep 25 08 2:50 am    Post subject: Creosote Buildup Reply with quote

The primary factors in the formation of creosote are:

* A flue too large for the the size of the fire
* A restricted air supply
* Unseasoned or rain-logged wood
* Cooler-than-normal surface flue temperatures

In the smoker situation a restricted air supply is almost an absolute. Flue size is not an issue. Wet wood is very probable, as well as the surface of the smoker being cooler.

A water pan should not be the problem since creosote is vaporized, unburned carbon emanating from the wood upon combustion.

Creosote is not only a problem for its gooey drips but is highly flammable, i.e. flue fires.

You will just have to determine which of the above factors relate to your situation. To rid yourself of it, I'd burn it out with a high temp fire.
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