This is a common question when new Traeger owners or people consider buying a Traeger grill. How hot do Traeger grills get? The answer is: just about as hot as it gets when it’s not operating! A Traeger grill has its highest temperature setting calibrated at about 450 degrees Fahrenheit (F), but the actual temperature reached while grilling varies by ambient temperature and quality, dryness, and hardwood blend of the pellets. Most often, a Traeger grill on high runs from 350 degrees to 450 degrees Fahrenheit.
Things You Need To Know About How Hot Do Traeger Grills Get
How a Pellet Grill Maintains Temperature
A grilling system consists of a pellet hopper, an auger, a fan, and a cooking chamber. The hopper holds wood pellets and drops them in the auger that precisely feeds the pellets into the fire pot for burning. The amount of pellets consumed by the fire and airflow determine the grilling temperature. Airflow (through the electronically controlled induction fan) and the auger activation are precisely manipulated by the grill controller. With feedback from a temperature probe inside the grill, the controller turns the auger on for a bit of time and turns it off. This is called the duty cycle. For example, if you set your Traeger to 150 degrees F for smoking, it might turn on the auger for 10 seconds and turn it off for 70 or 80 seconds. Duty cycles are typically stated as a percentage of the time the auger is running. A duty cycle of 50% is off half the time. A duty cycle of 100% is on all the time.
Each temperature setting on your Traeger has a different duty cycle. That said, the ON time of the auger is always the same, and its OFF time is variable. Low temperatures have longer OFF times, and high temperatures have shorter OFF times.
When you program the grill controller for a set temperature, the controller ignites the pellets and begins a heat-up process to the predetermined temperature. Once it reaches that temperature, the controller takes input from a temperature probe inside the grill and adjusts the temperature based on feedback to keep that temperature.
The other significant factor determining grilling temperature is airflow over the firepot. If enough air circulation over the fire, the fire will burn hotter, but the heat source will be spread out over a larger area. So, in this scenario, it’s best to make sure the firepot is fully covered with coals to make sure the heat is even. The need for an efficient, reliable and affordable way to cook food is a growing one. More and more cooks are using pellet grills as a heat source. These new and improved pellet grills use technology to make cooking easier and faster while still providing the reliability needed for long-term use.
Grill heat is the key factor to keep in mind when cooking with a gas grill, but other things can also affect the grill’s temperature. There’s plenty of room for error outside the grill.
Wood Pellet Quality Affects Grill Temperature
Because the compaction of wood pellets impacts their ability to produce heat in the grill, how well pellets are manufactured is a significant factor in how well they perform. That is why it’s important to make sure pellets are well manufactured, so they’re capable of producing higher temperatures.
If your pellets look suspiciously light, compacted pellets can often be found near the bottom of the bag. If there is a ridiculous amount of sawdust at the bottom, like two handfuls or more, the pellets are likely not well compacted. It may be worth switching brands.
Another way to tell poor pellets (without using up a whole bag) is to look at them. Pellets that are not highly compressed and are easy to crush in your hand will be good.
For a Hot Grill, Keep Your Pellets Dry!
The quality of the pellets and their environment are important factors in the cooking performance of your grill. A damp wood pellet could decrease your grill’s ability to get hotter than it would if the pellets were dry. This could lead to the pellet grill not being able to cook as hot or produce any smoke. Pellet quality problems often occur because pellets are stored outside and in moisture. Pellets stored in an airtight container can usually be safely left out in the sun. But a proper container is necessary to protect them from humidity.
Ambient Air Temperature Can Adversely Affect Grilling Temps
I haven’t noticed much difference between grilling in the summer or grilling in the winter. In Michigan, where I am located, the ambient air temperature can drop below zero and be as cold as -10 degrees F for months. But that’s still a pretty good day to grill.
The heat from the barbecue can get a bit too intense for the food. A grill wrap can help keep food warm and cook food in a quicker time.
A grill blanket is an insulated wrap for your grill. You can buy them at most of the big-box stores that sell grills. In addition, many retailers like Camp Chef offer them as part of their starter packages for grills.