The ignition process for a Traeger smoker is much simpler than a traditional BBQ.
Load those wood pellets, press the ignition button and you’re ready to go. But exactly how long will you be waiting for it to come up to temperature?
And what may cause a slow ignition period or temperature fluctuations?
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So, How Long Does A Traeger Take To Ignite?
The average ignition time for most Traeger Grills will be 4-5 minutes. However, there are a variety of factors involved which are covered if you read further.
The older Traeger Grill models can take a little bit longer by around 7-9 minutes. Now we have the baseline timings, let’s look at some factors which may affect the ignition time.
Checklist Before Igniting Your Traeger Grill
Below I have set out some preliminary checks before we get into the ignition time.
As it is key to understand a few things before even firing up your Traeger Grill.
Your Traeger Pellet Grill Is Clean From Previous Use
We have a whole article on maintenance which can be found here. Not abiding by even the minimal cleaning requirements can cause massive issues. From an auger jam to an overflowing burn pot, these will affect the ignition cycle.
Which Model Are You Using?
Traeger has many grill models that affect the period it takes to heat.
From the older and traditional Traeger Ironwood models, to the Traeger Pro models with WiFire Technology.
Make sure you know what type of smoker you have, as they have different grill components.
The newer Traeger Pellet Grills have a slightly quicker ignition time. They also let you monitor the grill temperature remotely from WiFi on the Traeger App.
You Are Aware Of & Have Started The Ignition Sequence
Did you know there is a specific start-up procedure on your Traeger Grill? There is an ignite button on the control panel for the type of smoker you have. This ignition procedure is vital for successful heating and cooking.
A Higher Cooking Temperature Doesn’t Always Take Longer
It might be common sense that heating to 250 will take longer than heating to 375.
But this isn’t the case with the technology in your Traeger grill. Heating to a high temperature will increase the speed of the auger motor. Thus increasing the speed the pellets are fed to the heat baffle through the auger shaft.
What Does A Traeger Pellet Grill Need To Ignite?
It isn’t as simple as just pressing ignite on your Traeger grill.
From high-quality pellets to keeping in mind colder temperatures.
Below is exactly what you need for a successful ignition process!
Good Quality Wood Pellets
There isn’t going to be fire without the fuel! A Traeger grill utilizes special hardwood pellets as fuel for heating.
The type of pellets used come in many varieties and flavors but the fact remains the same… No wood pellets = no ignition.
Here is how to fill the auger if you have ran out of the pellets.
Clean & Working Internal Components In Your Traeger Grill
We briefly discussed Traeger grills having complex internal components that make them work. Ignition can fail if these components aren’t maintained at a working level.
Like any machine, keeping a maintenance routine as per the manufacturer’s instructions. From a faulty heat baffle or igniter rod to excess pellets in the auger tube.
These are all situations that can stop the ignition process.
Sufficient Power To The Traeger Grill
A Traeger electric pellet grill requires electricity to work! So make sure you have connected it to a power outlet and power switch.
Use the Traeger brand power cord that comes with your model of the pellet grill. Be careful of using an extension cord as this may affect the power supply.
The Right Ambient Temperatures
A Traeger pellet grill should be installed and situated outside with ample ventilation. This will leave you to external factors like cold weather and wind chill.
Attempting to ignite your Traeger in sub-freezing temperatures will affect the ignition time. Or even stop it from igniting as a whole!
Is The Grill Lid Shut?
You should be igniting your Traeger with the grill lid closed. This insulates and traps the heat, allowing it to ignite faster and more efficiently.
What Can I Do If My Traeger Is Taking Too Long To Ignite?
Is there an error code? How long have you had your Traeger and is it clean?
This investigation will help you highlight the multiple issues that cause ignition problems. You should then contact Traeger customer service or fix yourself, based on the issue.
Be aware of safety issues and never make adjustments or fixes if you are not sure. Leave it to the professionals and contact Traeger if you have any issue.
Author: Charlie Reeves
Hi, I’m Charlie, I am head taste tester at Simply Meat Smoking! I love it grilling, smoking, and getting out in the yard with the kids! The family also love to test all my recipes (especially my EXTRA CRISPY pulled pork, smoky pork loin, and ANY SEAFOOD I grill)
You will usually find me playing with the kids, perfecting my brisket bark, or sipping beers with boys around the fire. Can’t wait to share all my delicious smoking and grilling adventures with you!
You can read more on our About Us page.
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