Auger gunked up

Mr. X

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EX4, Genesis, couple smokey joes and a no name propane smoker
So I had my first major malfunction on Easter since getting my replacement spoke fire. It has been rocksolid since but on Easter I had my first flame out. I was cooking a ham and two chickens so tried to restart without cleaning the pellet mess down below. Not a good idea! Today I took theAuger assembly out and realized there was quite a lot of material blocking one of the lower auger drive parts. I think I will make it a habit of every few months to take the auger out to make sure it is not full of material. I forgot to get a picture but it was about an inch and a half at the very bottom on the motor side where it was compacted. I would say I have to a quarter of the opening was having issues because of this
 

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So I had my first major malfunction on Easter since getting my replacement spoke fire. It has been rocksolid since but on Easter I had my first flame out. I was cooking a ham and two chickens so tried to restart without cleaning the pellet mess down below. Not a good idea! Today I took theAuger assembly out and realized there was quite a lot of material blocking one of the lower auger drive parts. I think I will make it a habit of every few months to take the auger out to make sure it is not full of material. I forgot to get a picture but it was about an inch and a half at the very bottom on the motor side where it was compacted. I would say I have to a quarter of the opening was having issues because of this
Additionally after relighting it took forever to get back up to temp. The auger took 30 seconds to take out so a worthwhile maintenance item
 
When I replaced my auger, it had a lot of compacted pellet dust. Almost like it had gotten wet. Not sure how as I’ve never spilled water.
 
Just keep in mind the auger just spins and the pellets move down the auger. Dust in the very end of the auger (beginning) is probably not an issue that should alter the performance. If it were to get so clogged that the pellets could not enter the auger then it could cause an issue. The area shown in the picture looks like an area where pellets likely cannot enter in their intact form. That’s probably why it packs up with dust. It looks like a pinch point or crevice of sorts.

Of course, cleaning it out won’t hurt.
 
The auger took 30 seconds to take out so a worthwhile maintenance item
Exactly why I do this every couple of cooks.
Why that often you ask?
Because.. Just because.
 
I do not want to get in the conversation about the dust causing problems. I just want to say that a small weep hole at the bottom of the anger chute could eliminate the problem by letting dust fall out.
 
I do not want to get in the conversation about the dust causing problems. I just want to say that a small weep hole at the bottom of the anger chute could eliminate the problem by letting dust fall out.
I have to expect something like that will be added to the gen 3!
 
Back when they first came out, with the original auger assembly, that area towards the back would get so compacted that the wood would grab a seam in the assembly and slow down the rotation of the auger. I could hear mine grinding wood while it ran. There is also a cotter pin that protrudes too much and (i think) contributed to the compaction problem. They fixed the problem with a one piece assembly that has no seams, thus no place for the compacted wood to grab. I think the have also recently gotten rid of the cotter pin. Don't know what they replaced it with. Its worth it periodically to empty out the pellets and break up any compacted pellets in the auger with a long screw driver and vacuum the pieces out.
 
Back when they first came out, with the original auger assembly, that area towards the back would get so compacted that the wood would grab a seam in the assembly and slow down the rotation of the auger. I could hear mine grinding wood while it ran. There is also a cotter pin that protrudes too much and (i think) contributed to the compaction problem. They fixed the problem with a one piece assembly that has no seams, thus no place for the compacted wood to grab. I think the have also recently gotten rid of the cotter pin. Don't know what they replaced it with. Its worth it periodically to empty out the pellets and break up any compacted pellets in the auger with a long screw driver and vacuum the pieces out.
The real problem was that the mechanically fastened two piece auger assembly would fail eventually under the stress of the dust. The dust would force a small breach and then the moaning sound of the auger would start. The welded assembly was a huge quality upgrade and I might add, a necessity.
 
The real problem was that the mechanically fastened two piece auger assembly would fail eventually under the stress of the dust. The dust would force a small breach and then the moaning sound of the auger would start. The welded assembly was a huge quality upgrade and I might add, a necessity.
My SmokeFire has been almost flawless since the black welded auger was added.
 
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