Wondering why your auger is making noise?
It can be a little unsettling to hear your vertical smoker suddenly make all these strange noises.
If it is a grinding noise that happens every now and then during the cook, then there could be an issue with the smoker’s auger.
This definitely isn’t normal and should be fixed.
Keep reading this article to learn about the causes for this problem as well as the solutions.
What Is a Pit Boss Auger?
The actual auger in a Pit Boss is essentially a big screw.
This rotating auger rod will have a blade at the end which is what helps feed the hardwood pellets into the smoker’s burn pot.
This auger motor is primarily controlled by the Pit Boss control panel.
And when the set ideal temperature has been achieved, the auger push rod should automatically slow down or stop altogether.
Hence, the pellet auger has a direct impact on temperature.
Why Is the Pellet Grill Auger Making Noise?
The most common reasons behind a noisy auger usually boils down to pellets getting stuck in the auger blade.
And how do you know what is causing this issue to occur?
And there could be issues with the bearings and screws.
However, something as unexpected as rust could also be the culprit!
Is It Not Turning?
If you find that the auger isn’t even turning then you might be dealing with a jammed auger.
This means that there’s something obstructing the auger feed tube from going through its usual rotating motion.
There are three main causes that can lead to an auger jam.
These include: a build-up of food particles or hardened meat juices, rust formation, or even wet pellets.
The Wood Pellets Could Be Stuck in the Auger
The wood pellets don’t immediately go into the burner or fire pot.
Your smoker has a little delivery system.
Dry pellets are kept in the smoker’s hopper; which is essentially a storage container.
The auger and the auger motor will then control the speed and amount of pellets that get transported to the fire burner pot.
The pellets will have to travel along the auger feeder tube. Along the way, these wooden pellets can get stuck and then end up jamming the auger.
Broken-down pellets or wet pellets can cause this to happen.
When this does happen, you’ll most likely start hearing a squeaking noise whenever it turns.
If your auger ends up getting too stuck, your smoker might just turn off during a cooking session.
In some cases, the smoker might not turn on if the issue persists.
If this is the problem that you’re facing with your smoker, then the only way to solve this is to get rid of the pellet or pellets that’s causing the jam.
You can do this by turning off the smoker and removing the auger fan as well as the motor.
These are located beneath the hopper box.
After that, you’ll need to unscrew the auger and take out the auger push rod.
From here, you should be able to get a visual of the pellet piece that’s stuck.
Then all you need to do is clean the inside of the auger tube as well as any pellets that might be stuck on the auger rod.
Are the Auger Motor Bearings Acting Up?
Faulty auger bearings might be the cause of the strange noises.
You can usually tell if the bearings are the cause if you hear a ‘clicking’ noise.
The only solution to this issue is to replace the bearings on your auger.
You’ll need to start by switching off the motor to your system.
After that, you’ll need to loosen the collar set screws on your auger. Then you’ll be able to take out the motor.
Next, go ahead and remove the screws on the end plate but don’t pull off the silicone sealant.
Once you’ve removed the auger, you can proceed to clean the area and reassemble new bearings onto the auger motor.
Then put everything back in its place and you’re good to go!
Could the Auger Screws Be the Issue?
Some of the screws that are attached to the motor can sometimes end up bending or twisting over time.
This can greatly affect the movement of smoker’s auger.
You’ll be able to pin point this as the cause for the noise if you hear your pellet grill producing a noise that’s similar to a ‘screech’.
If you hear this sound, you don’t want to let the system continue to run because the faulty screws are actually causing damage.
To solve this, you’ll want to disassemble everything and take out the auger rod.
If the kinks aren’t too bad, you might be able to bend things back into place.
If not, you might just need to get yourself a new auger and just throw out the old one.
All About Replacing the Auger in Your Vertical Smoker
To go about replacing the auger, you’ll first need to get your hands on a ratchet wrench.
In some cases you can also use a socket wrench.
You will want to use this to remove the bolts are keeping the auger motor and bracket in place.
You’ll need to turn the auger counter clockwise in order to pull it out. Then just push all of the loose dry pellets out of the way.
You’ll want to get it out of the entrance way.
For the ones that are left in the tube, just use the rod to push the remaining pellets into the fire pot.
After that, you’ll just need to screw in the new auger and you can use your smoker normally again.
We hope that you found our article useful in helping you with your pellet smoker auger issues.
If all else fails, you can always feel free to reach out to the customer service team at Pit Boss.
Their friendly customer care team will help you out, no problem!
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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