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View Full Version : Weber OTG 26.75 Temp Drop


Faston
08-28-2014, 10:06 PM
Hello,
Need some help obtaining linear temp through the whole cook process. Using charcoal only I have started my fires with an old electric heater that does a good job of getting the fire burning. I've set for 75% direct, 25% indirect for veggies. After carefully sorting the charcoal in the direct area the heat across the whole charcoal area is very consistent. I let it settle in around 20 minutes before I load any meat. The initial temps according to the Weber thermometer are super hot, around 475. I have always left the bottom vents fully open and closed the top vent to ~50% open. When the temp drops it does so quickly and opening the top vent fully does not seem to help much. Temp drops to below 300 and really doesn't go much past 300. I am thinking of starting my Q's with more charcoal but really I have been starting with a fairly heavy load of charcoal. I have also considered adding more charcoal to the back area where the grate lift is. But this bugs me cause I know the temps should climb nicely in the back and the front area of the coals will be much colder. Should I remove the whole hot grate loaded with meat then add the coals? I really don't want to have to remove a hot grate loaded with meat due to the mess it may create and the ease of getting my meat contaminated with whatever happens to be around.

I really wish there was an adjustment for grate height as it would enable you get a more even sear if you flip your meat at the middle of the cook.

The answer is most likely simple but I could use some help from the Weber folks.

One other question if I may. I keep all of the coals from directly touching the side of the grill. I don't want to ruin the finish on the kettle. Does anyone else do this?

Thanks!

retired trucker
08-29-2014, 12:19 AM
Not sure about the temp drop, but letting the coals touch the side of the unit should not be a problem, as they are warranted against burn through and rust through for 10 years. The insides and outsides are a heavy coating of porcelain. My limited experience with my new Kettle, has shown me that the top vent only lets heat out. The bottom vents control the air in, and therefore the temp it runs at. The heat rolls to the top of the lid and then back down over the grill, cooking the food. If the top vent is open, then the heat escapes, lowering the overall cooking temp. At least that is what I understand from my limited experience.

Other more experienced Webber owners will chime in and correct whatever I have said that is wrong. That is what is great about this site, all the collected knowledge.

Have a Blessed day!

Omar

martyleach
08-29-2014, 12:36 AM
I have a 26". I light a whole chimney of briquettes and let it burn for 30 minutes until they are getting gray on top. Throw those in the back of your grill and wait a bit for the grill to heat up. I then shut the bottom vent about half way and the top as well. Temp will drop to 375 or so and hold for 2-3 hours. Shut the bottom a little more if you want lower temps but give it time to stabilize. Don't expect quick temp changes.
To light a chimney, just put paper towels under the chimney that have some vege oil on them and then light. Briquettes take off really fast. With the coals in the back of your grill, you will have great heat zones. I put my veges in the front (indirect) and my steaks (on Grillgrates) in the back right over the coals. Or chicken in the front, etc.

Enrico Brandizzi
08-29-2014, 07:07 AM
First of all I love my 2 26 OTG. I can cook every way I want. Smoke, roasting and grilling: no problems!
I may suggest you not use lump except for grilling. It burns too fast and too hot. Briquettes last much longer.
You can set the briqs in touch with metal side with non problem. I did this many many times.
To control T, first use low vents. If you can not reach the T you want then you can close A LITTLE the up vent. Just a little because it will influence cooking T seriously!

Old dude BBQ
08-29-2014, 07:19 AM
Hello,
I have always left the bottom vents fully open and closed the top vent to ~50% open.

Always? Look at what you've changed recently - do you use the little weber aluminum do-hickeys that hold charcoal? Are you using one or two? (should be just one because two seem to compete for oxegen) Have you moved your grill recently? Changed charcoal brands? Sometimes an almost full ash pan can interfere with airflow as well. Has it been raining and do you have old charcoal in the grill? Sometimes damp charcoal remenants can impact your cook temps ...

Faston
08-29-2014, 08:57 AM
Thanks tremendously for the responses. This place is great, getting help from others who have the same cookers is invaluable.

I have been cooking on a horizontal offset the last 1.5 yrs then prior to this many years on a Bandera. It appears I am going to need some time to get the fire right.

I use grate level thermometers on my offset so the Weber top thermometer is very different to get used of.

BTY, I always use a full chimney of briquettes to start the fire for my offset using the very large Old Country chimney. I have used the electric starter for my Weber because it works well and is what I have used for grills for many years. I start a lot of coals. Dampness of charcoal may be a problem cause I live right on the coast. Everything gets wet outdoors. Downstairs where I store stuff I have to use a heater in winter and a air conditioner in summer to keep that room above dew point. It's a major PIA.

I have never seen anything written on the the accuracy or longevity of the Weber thermometer. I am guessing that their accuracy is more than adequate for the job. I wonder if anybody has felt a need for upgrading the mechanical Weber thermometer with a mechanical thermometer they feel is superior. I have no interest in using electronic thermometers except for my Thermapen.

Thanks again for the help!

jham0077
08-29-2014, 09:32 AM
I'd say leave the top vent open and control it with the bottom vent. I do close my top sometimes but I've noticed it drops temps pretty fast. And I don't have to close it too far. If it's a new un-seasoned grill you might get some uneven temps too. Not sure why, but my 22.5 was all over for the first 4 uses.

Old dude BBQ
08-29-2014, 09:38 AM
I have never seen anything written on the the accuracy or longevity of the Weber thermometer. I am guessing that their accuracy is more than adequate for the job. I wonder if anybody has felt a need for upgrading the mechanical Weber thermometer with a mechanical thermometer they feel is superior. I have no interest in using electronic thermometers except for my Thermapen.

Thanks again for the help!

Weber has a decent thermometer and it lasts - but it's not a tell tru and it isn't at grate level so there will always be some deviation. I use a maverick wireless system that monitors grate level heat and meat cooking temperature - there can be a 25 degree difference between grate temp and what the dome thermometer is telling you - SinIf you don't want to use a Maverick, you might want to consider a grate-level thermometer mod. If I were doing this I would put it in the dome in a place where it's angled up for easier viewing but also where the stem doesn't protrude below the dome-edge. That way if you set the dome on your deck, it won't damage the thermometer mod ...

dadsr4
08-29-2014, 10:24 AM
Weber has a decent thermometer and it lasts - but it's not a tell tru and it isn't at grate level so there will always be some deviation. I use a maverick wireless system that monitors grate level heat and meat cooking temperature - there can be a 25 degree difference between grate temp and what the dome thermometer is telling you - SinIf you don't want to use a Maverick, you might want to consider a grate-level thermometer mod. If I were doing this I would put it in the dome in a place where it's angled up for easier viewing but also where the stem doesn't protrude below the dome-edge. That way if you set the dome on your deck, it won't damage the thermometer mod ...
You can try this, if you want. It's inexpensive and easy to adjust for different cooks.
http://www.bbq-brethren.com/forum/showthread.php?t=131835