Am I bringing my WSM up to temp correctly?
First of all I have a maverick therm that I just checked for accuracy yesterday. The lid therm always reads around 30 degrees UNDER what the grate therm says. I have always had problems with it running too hot. Here is what I do:
-minion method, full ring of coals and 8-10 starter coals spread evenly on top.
-leave all vents open till 180ish then close 2 and leave 3rd open half way
-I put the meat on when it hits 235-245 and when the smoke turns blue (usually about the same time).
-close the 3rd vent 3/4 of the way.
-WSM will cruise around 250 for a couple hours then
-after couple hours it always increases to 280ish. About 45 mins of this temp I decide to all but close the last bottom vent.
-Temp will then hover around 275 for majority of the cook.
Why does my WSM refuse to cruise under 275-285? I dont care about 225 but I'd at least like to be in the 250-260 range. I can have all the bottom vents closed and it still goes at 275.
I've had it for a year but only done about 5 cooks in it. I just cleaned it out with a stiff bristled brush before this cook as it was covered in soot inside. Thanks for any advice!
Oh and I'm making 17 lbs of pork butt.
One reason I am exploring is when I bought it last year the door was definitely a less than ideal fit. Were talking 1/4-1/2 inch gaps b/w the sides of the door and the WSM body. I bent it into place some and also put it on upside down to get a tighter seal but I suspect that the seal is still less than adequate. Maybe I need an aftermarket door?