Why Is My Pit Boss Catching Fire and How to Prevent it: Essential Tips

Why Is My Pit Boss Catching Fire?

Your Pit Boss grill may be catching fire due to two possible reasons: grease fires and pellet fires.

Grease fires can occur when leftover grease from fat becomes trapped on the drip tray.

On the other hand, pellet fires can happen if the hopper continues to feed pellets despite low heat, resulting in an excessive fuel supply for a fire.

To address a fire, it is important to unplug the grill, keep the lid shut to cut off oxygen, clear the surrounding area of fire hazards, and use salt and baking soda to extinguish the flames.

However, it is always better to prevent grill fires by regularly cleaning the grill, using it with long, steady heat, keeping the lid closed, and ensuring it is located away from flammable items.

Proper use and care are crucial for owning a Pit Boss grill, and quick thinking and situational awareness are necessary in case of a fire.

Key Points:

  • Pit Boss grills can catch fire due to grease fires and pellet fires.
  • Grease fires can occur when leftover grease becomes trapped on the drip tray.
  • Pellet fires can happen if the hopper continues to feed pellets despite low heat.
  • To address a fire, unplug the grill, keep the lid shut, clear the surrounding area, and use salt and baking soda to extinguish the flames.
  • Prevent grill fires by regularly cleaning the grill, using it with long, steady heat, keeping the lid closed, and keeping it away from flammable items.
  • Proper use, care, quick thinking, and situational awareness are crucial for owning a Pit Boss grill.

Did You Know?

1. The term “Pit Boss” originated in the 1950s Las Vegas casino industry, referring to the supervisor in charge of overseeing the poker pits or game tables.
2. Pit Boss grills are designed with a specific fire management system known as the “Flame Broiler,” which optimizes the distribution of heat while grilling and reduces the chances of flare-up incidents.
3. One little-known fact is that Pit Boss grills are tested under rigorous conditions to ensure their safety. However, if the grill is catching fire, it might indicate a problem with the propane or gas supply, which should be addressed immediately.
4. The Pit Boss line of grills gained immense popularity due to their superior temperature control and versatility. They are not only suitable for grilling but can also be used as smokers, roasters, and even for baking.
5. Legend has it that the term “catching fire” originated from early pitmasters who would metaphorically describe a grill that was performing exceptionally well and cooking food perfectly as “catching fire.”

1. Causes Of Grill Fires And How To Prevent Them

Pit Boss pellet grills are renowned for their ability to cook food evenly and infuse it with a rich, woody, smoky flavor. However, even the most reliable grills can occasionally catch fire if proper precautions are not taken.

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This article aims to explore the common causes of grill fires and provide essential tips on how to prevent them.

There are two types of fires that can occur with a grill: grease fires and pellet fires.

Grease fires are often ignited by leftover grease from fat that has accumulated on the drip tray. As the grill heats up, the grease can become highly flammable, leading to a dangerous fire. To prevent grease fires, it is crucial to clean the grill regularly, removing any fat residue that may have accumulated.

Pellet fires, on the other hand, can occur if the hopper continues to feed pellets when it detects low heat. This results in an overabundance of fuel for a fire, leading to the grill catching fire. To prevent pellet fires, it is important to use the grill with long, slow, steady heat, ensuring that sudden outbursts of fire are avoided. Additionally, keeping the grill’s lid closed can block excessive amounts of oxygen from touching the flames and potentially igniting the pellets.

2. Grease Fires And How To Avoid Them

Grease fires pose a significant risk when using a Pit Boss grill. To prevent these dangers, it is crucial to follow certain preventive measures.

Cleaning the grill regularly and removing any grease or fat residue is essential. This ensures that there is no excess buildup that could ignite when the grill reaches high temperatures.

Using the grill with caution by applying long, slow, steady heat instead of high bursts of heat is also necessary. Sudden outbursts of fire can increase the likelihood of a grease fire, as the accumulated fat may ignite rapidly. By maintaining a consistent and controlled heat, the risk of a dangerous grease fire can be significantly reduced.

Keeping the grill’s lid closed is another crucial step in preventing grease fires. By limiting the amount of oxygen reaching the flames, the likelihood of a fire spreading and intensifying decreases. However, it is important to note that the lid should only be opened when necessary, as constantly opening and closing it can disrupt the cooking process and increase the risk of flare-ups.

3. Pellet Fires And Their Prevention Measures

Pellet fires can occur when the hopper continues to feed pellets into the burn pot, even when the grill detects low heat. This increases the risk of a fire. To prevent pellet fires, it is important to exercise caution and adhere to the manufacturer’s guidelines.

One essential prevention measure is to ensure that the grill is operated with long, slow, steady heat. This prevents sudden temperature drops that may trigger the hopper to release an excess amount of pellets. By maintaining a consistent heat, the grill can function properly, without risking an overabundance of fuel that could lead to a fire.

It is also advisable to regularly inspect and clean the hopper and burn pot. These components can accumulate debris, which may obstruct proper pellet flow and increase the risk of a pellet fire. By keeping these areas clean and well-maintained, the risk of a fire can be significantly reduced.

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4. Steps To Take When A Pit Boss Grill Catches Fire

In the unfortunate event that a Pit Boss grill catches fire, it is crucial to take immediate action to ensure everyone’s safety and minimize damage. The following steps should be followed:

  1. Unplug the grill: Disconnecting the power source is the first and most crucial step to prevent any further electrical hazards.

  2. Keep the lid shut: By closing the lid, you cut off the oxygen supply to the flames, helping to control and contain the fire. This step is crucial in preventing the fire from spreading.

  3. Clear the surrounding area: Move any flammable objects or materials away from the grill to prevent them from catching fire or fueling the flames.

  4. Extinguish the fire: Use a fire extinguisher if available, aiming the nozzle at the base of the flames and sweeping side to side. If a fire extinguisher is not readily available, you can also use salt or baking soda to suffocate the fire.

Note: These steps should only be taken if it is safe to do so. If the fire becomes uncontrollable or poses a threat, it is essential to contact emergency services immediately.

  • Unplug the grill
  • Keep the lid shut
  • Clear the surrounding area
  • Extinguish the fire

5. Tips For Preventing Grill Fires With A Pit Boss

Prevention is always better than a cure when it comes to grill fires. Here are five essential tips to prevent grill fires when using a Pit Boss grill:

1. Cleaning the grill regularly: Ensure that the grill is thoroughly cleaned, removing any grease or fat buildup from the drip tray and other components. Regular cleaning eliminates the risk of grease fires.

2. Using long, slow, steady heat: Avoid sudden bursts of heat that can ignite grease or cause pellets to catch fire. Maintaining a consistent and controlled heat minimizes the risk of flare-ups.

3. Keeping the grill’s lid closed: Limiting the supply of oxygen to the flames helps prevent the fire from spreading and intensifying.

4. Keeping the grill away from flammable items: Ensure that the grill is positioned away from any flammable materials, such as wooden structures or combustible chemicals, to prevent major crises.

5. Practice proper use and care: Following the manufacturer’s guidelines, including proper maintenance and use of the grill, reduces the risk of fire incidents. This includes regularly inspecting and cleaning components such as the hopper and burn pot.

Remember: Owning a Pit Boss grill offers the opportunity to create flavorful, evenly cooked meals. However, it is important to be aware of the potential risks of grill fires and take necessary precautions. By understanding the causes of grill fires and following the prevention tips provided, you can ensure a safe and enjoyable grilling experience. Stay vigilant, adopt proper maintenance practices, and practice situational awareness to prevent grill fires and protect both yourself and your Pit Boss grill.

  • Clean the grill regularly to remove grease or fat buildup.
  • Use long, slow, steady heat to minimize the risk of flare-ups.
  • Keep the grill’s lid closed to limit oxygen supply to the flames.
  • Position the grill away from flammable items to prevent major crises.
  • Follow the manufacturer’s guidelines for proper use and maintenance, including inspecting and cleaning components such as the hopper and burn pot.
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Frequently Asked Questions

Why does my pellet grill keep catching fire?

One possible reason your pellet grill keeps catching fire could be due to an issue with the pellet feeding system. If the pellets are feeding too quickly or inconsistently, they could accumulate and create a large buildup in the firepot. This excess fuel can easily catch fire once ignited, leading to the recurring pellet fires. It is essential to assess and potentially adjust the pellet feeding mechanism to ensure a more controlled and steady flow of fuel into the firepot, minimizing the risk of fire outbreaks. Additionally, regular maintenance and cleaning of the grill, specifically the firepot area, can help prevent pellet buildup and reduce the likelihood of future fires.

Do pellet smokers catch on fire?

Pellet smokers can indeed catch on fire if proper maintenance and cleaning are not observed. The accumulation of grease in the grease bucket over time poses a significant fire hazard. Failing to clean the grill regularly can result in a grease fire, emphasizing the importance of regular maintenance to prevent such incidents. Therefore, it is crucial to be mindful of the potential fire risk associated with pellet smokers and ensure proper cleaning practices are followed to avoid any mishaps.

Why does my Pit Boss pellet grill keep overheating?

You may experience overheating on your Pit Boss pellet grill due to the presence of excess grease and grime on the grill grates and temperature probe. When grease accumulates on the grates or in the grease tray, it becomes highly flammable, leading to increased temperatures. To prevent overheating, it is crucial to regularly clean your grill and remove any grease and grime build-up. By taking the time to scrub away the residue, you can ensure optimal performance and prevent potential overheating issues with your Pit Boss pellet grill.

Why is smoke coming out of the pellet box?

When smoke is seen coming out of the pellet box, it is typically known as backburn and is more commonly observed in AC grills without WiFIRE capability. Backburn occurs when the pellets in the auger reach the smoking temperature, leading to smoke escaping through the hopper. This phenomenon is peculiar and can be attributed to the non-WiFIRE functionality of the grill, resulting in the pellets heating up and causing smoke to emerge from the pellet box during Shutdown Mode.