What Is the P Setting on a Traeger, How to Use It

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A Traeger grill combines traditional cooking methods with technology. On the technological part of the grill, there is the P-setting button. But do you know what does? I will explain exactly how it works, so you can understand how using it improves the cooking experience with your Traeger!


What Does the P-Setting Do?

The P-setting on your Traeger’s control panel helps monitor the temperature. It is used when the outside ambient temperature is either too cold or too hot or when your grill temperature is running too hot or cold.

Depending on what the P-setting on, a pause cycle assesses if the current settings are giving the correct temp, this will adjust the feed rate of the pellets.

If it is hot, it will pause and slow it down; if it is cold, it will pause and speed up.

When used correctly, it is a very important setting to understand and utilize. This is because getting temperature consistency on your Traeger grill does the following;

– Accurately and precisely set an exact temperature to cook your food.

– Adjustment for harsh weather conditions like extreme cold or hot temperatures.

– Consistency of temperature settings for a long period of cooking time.

What Does ‘P’ Mean?

The ‘P’ in your grill’s P-setting means pause. When the setting is active, it will pause your temperature cycling.


How Does the Pause Setting Work?

So, you’ve set the P setting on your pellet grill controller. What exactly happens? To understand this, we need to know what happens when your grill is heating or cooling.

A Traeger wood pellet grill uses hardwood as fuel. Wood pellets are fed through the hopper and down into the auger at a constant ignition rate, which will depend on the temperature you have chosen.

With the P-setting on, a pause cycle assesses whether the current settings are giving the correct temperature, which will adjust the pellets’ feed rate.

If it is hot, it will pause and slow down, and if it is cold, it will pause and then speed up.

Tip: The brands of pellets are important. If you go for a cheaper option, then it can cause blockage and even break machine parts.

When Is the Right Time to Use the P-Setting?

Okay, so let’s say your grill’s temperature and smoke output are too high. You are trying to cook the perfect brisket but burning the bark.

We will need to adjust the P-Setting to help cool it down. What should I adjust it to?


Setting the Pause Correctly: P1 or P5?

The lower the number of your P- setting, the higher the temperature it will run. The higher the number of your P-setting, the lower the temperature will run.

There are five stages of this setting.

One is the lowest setting.

5 is the highest setting.

Finding the sweet spot, depending on your situation, is a trial and error process. If you want to cool down because of the high outside temperatures, keep between the P3-P5 settings.

If you want to heat up because of low outside temperatures, keep between the P1-P3 settings.

Do All Traeger Grills Have a P-Setting?

All the new Traeger pellet grills on the market today have automated settings built in. The only newly manufactured model with a pause temperature control is the Scout Pro.

What Is the Default P Setting?

The factory p-setting on any new Treager is P-2. Knowing these settings will help you start getting the temperature right.

As I said, most newer grills will already have this installed. Your Traeger grill has many temperature probes and smoke settings.

Automatic adjustment is constantly happening so you can have a consistent temperature, a consistent temperature = beautifully cooked food with a smoky flavor!


How to Adjust the P Setting on a Traeger Pellet Grill

To see if your grill is compatible with changing the P-settings look for a sticker on your controller. The sticker should be in the top right corner of the LCD control board.

It will either be blank or read “call service”.

– Remove the sticker to expose a small hole.

– Get a small screwdriver.

– Gently insert the head of the screwdriver into the hole.

– Poke it once and it will display your set P-setting.

– Poke again, and the P-setting will be raised.

Follow the above to make these micro adjustments via your P-settings.


The lower the P-setting the shorter the pause.
This is if you are cooking in cold conditions.

The higher the P-setting, the longer the pause.
This is if you are cooking in hot conditions.


Seeing The LEr Error?

If you’re getting the LEr error, it means your grill is not heating. See the LEr error troubleshooting guide to determine the issue.

Are There Risks When Using the P-Settings?

The safety precautions you have to remember when setting my P-Settings are;

– Do you have enough pellets in the auger if they are feeding faster?

– Are the pellets being fed too slowly and extinguished?

– Do not just turn off the grill without checking the volume of wood in the firepot.

– Keep an eye out for the ash build-up.

Smoke On!


Hi, I’m Charlie, I have been meat-smoking and grilling for the past 15 years. I have an array of different smokers, thermometers, and have a love for finding the right wood and charcoal combo My favourite recipes are my EXTRA CRISPY smoked pork belly, juicy pulled pork, smoked brisket, duck poppers, and ANY SEAFOOD I grill).

I loves sharing his tips with beginners, helping them navigate the world of smoking. I find it’s not just about cooking; it’s a quest for that perfect smoky flavor.

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 recipes with you!

You can read more about me on our About Us page.

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