Char Broil Electric Smoker Troubleshooting [9 Easy Fixes] 

Char Broil electric smoker troubleshooting guide contains the solution to all major problems, including the smoker won’t turn on, keeps shutting off, smoker not smoking, and smoker not heating. The other issues are the smoker’s tripping breaker, error codes, failure to cook properly, no display, and smoker flare-ups. 

char broil electric smoker troubleshooting

The faulty heating element is the main culprit that is responsible for creating almost all these troubles. Thus to fix these, you need to replace the defective heating elements, tripped circuit breaker, and damaged thermostats.

To dissolve the error codes, just restart your electric smoker. Also, properly set the cooking temperature because low temperature causes the smoker’s shut off and won’t turn on difficulty. 

After intense research, we developed a complete guide to getting rid of all these above troubles. So, thoroughly read it till the end to learn how to troubleshoot your Char Broil electric smoker. 

Char Broil Electric Smoker Troubleshooting [9 Easy Fixes]

The major factors that prevent your Char Broil electric smoker’s smooth functioning and their effective solutions are: 

1. Smoker Won’t Turn On

Your Char Broil electric smoker’s no power is one of the main reasons why your Char Broil electric smoker won’t turn on.

char broil electric smoker not turning on

Several internal and external causes hinder your electric smoker’s turning-on process. Those are: 

  • The defective main circuit board fails to distribute the power throughout your electric smoker
  • The heating element malfunction or the heating element is not working 
  • Defective thermostat 
  • The temperature setting is too low or below 40 degrees Fahrenheit 
  • Damaged extension cord 
  • Bad power light 
  • Malfunctioning controller 


When the temperature setting, heating element, and digital timer are shut off, your Char Broil electric smoker will not turn on. So you need to follow the solutions below to fix it: 

  • Replace the faulty main power board and make sure the outlet is evenly distributing power throughout your electric smoker 
  • Replace the malfunctioning heating element, bad thermostat, lousy power light, damaged extension cord, and defective controller 

2. Smoker Keeps Shutting Off

Your Char Broil electric smoker keeps turning off and won’t run continuously is another major problem with this smoker.

char broil electric smoker keeps shutting off 

Usually, when the unit fails to detect the perfect cooking temperature, your Char Broil electric smoker keeps shutting off. Several factors cause this, including the following: 

  • Improper Probe connection 
  • Smoker detect incorrect temperatures due to the defective Probe 
  • Dirty smoker or rust build-up in it 
  • Defective GFCI outlet 
  • Controller malfunction 
  • Blown fuse 
  • Probe’s insecure wire connection 


If, after starting your electric smoker, it runs for a few minutes and then keeps shutting off, you should follow the ways below to solve it. 

  • Ensure proper Probe connection 
  • Replace the faulty Probe and make sure your smoker is detecting the correct temperature 
  • Properly clean your electric smoker and remove its rust build-up 
  • Replace the faulty GFCI outlet, blown fuse, and malfunctioning controller 
  • Ensure the Probe’s secure wire connection 

3. Smoker Not Smoking

Char Broil electric smoker not smoking is another trouble that you may encounter while using this unit. Your electric smoker turns on, runs well, and gets too hot but doesn’t create any smoke.

char broil smoker not smoking 

However, the following culprits are responsible for your Char Broil electric smoker’s no-smoke issue. 

  • Defective heating element 
  • The tray is not getting enough airflow or heat to burn the chips
  • The smoker is in the off position 
  • A faulty outlet or tripped circuit breaker  
  • Lack of proper ventilation 
  • Using wrong or poor-quality wood chips 
  • Dirty chip tray 
  • Distance between the tray and heating element 


So to fix your Char Broil electric smoker not smoking issue, do the following: 

  • Replace the tripped circuit breaker, faulty heating elements, or bad outlet
  • Make sure the chip tray is getting enough airflow or heat to create enough smoke
  • Check your electric smoker and make sure it is in the On position
  • Ensure there are built-in-air flow issues in your smoker 
  • Properly clean the dirty chip tray 
  • Ensure proper ventilation 
  • Use correct and high-quality wood chips 
  • Make sure there is no excessive distance between the tray and the heating elements

4. Smoker Not Heating

Your Char Broil electric smoker stopped heating is a major problem that you may often encounter after using it for several cooking sessions.

char broil electric smoker not heating up

After going through the preheat cycle, if your Char Broil electric smoker not heating up and the heating elements are cold, it’s a serious problem. The major causes of it are: 

  • The smoker is in the Off position 
  • Faulty controller 
  • The broken or poor-quality heating element 
  • A defective power source or smoker is not getting power 
  • Damaged or melted heating wire
  • Closed or blocked vents 
  • Loose electrical connection 


If your Char Broil electric smoker not getting hot enough, you must check the power source outlet. Remove the heating element’s cover plate, which is located on your electric smoker’s back. Now unplug the heating element from the outlet and reconnect it. 

If following this process doesn’t solve the trouble, then follow the other solutions below: 

  • Make sure your electric smoker is in the On position. 
  • Replace the defective controller, poor quality or broken heating elements, faulty power source, and damaged heating wires 
  • Ensure your electric smoker is getting sufficient power 
  • Check the vents, ensure they are open, and remove the vent’s blockage. 
  • Tighten the electrical connection 

5. Smoker Keeps Tripping Breaker

The tripping breaker fails to supply sufficient power to your electric smoker. Thus your Char Broil electric smoker tripping GFCI also leads to other problems such as your smoker won’t turn on, keeps shutting off, and many more. 

tripped circuit breaker

It’s another major factor that you can’t overlook. The main culprits causing this trouble are: 

  • Using a smoker and other electrical appliances in the same circuit 
  • Water or moisture in the controller 
  • Damaged electrical cord or faulty electrical wiring 
  • Defective controller 
  • The faulty circuit board or electrical connections 
  • Smoker consume low ampere and uses low-watt heat output below 750 
  • Lousy heating elements


If your Char Broil electric smoker keeps tripping the breaker, then replacing the tripping breaker is the prime solution. The other fixing ways are: 

  • Don’t use different electrical appliances and your electric smoker in the same outlet to avoid overheating. 
  • Make sure the controller is not in touch with moisture or water. 
  • Replace the defective or damaged electrical wiring, faulty controller, bad heating elements, and malfunctioning circuit board
  • Ensure your electric smoker consumes enough ampere and uses adequate watt heat output. Make sure your smoker’s heat output consumption is more than 750

6. Char Broil Electric Smoker Error Codes

According to the Char Broil electric smoker manual, your smoker can display two types of error codes, and those are ERR1 and ERR4. Let’s discuss the causes and solutions of each:

i). Error 1 (ERR1)

The ERR1 error code on your Char Broil electric smoker means there are issues with the cabinet temperature sensor. Unplugged Meat Probe is mainly responsible for the Cabinet Temperature Sensor error code in your electric smoker. 


Make sure the cabinet temperature sensor is functioning properly. However, plugging in the Meat Probe is the prime solution for removing Char Broil electric smoker error code 1. 

ii). Error 4 (ERR4)

A damaged meat probe causes displaying error code 4 on your Char Broil electric smoker. Chafed or damaged wires mainly cause this issue. 


If you see your Char Broil electric smoker displaying the error code 4, be sure that the Meat Probe goes wrong. So immediately replace the damaged Meat Probe, and your problem will be solved. After replacing the Meat Probe, reset your smoker to function normally again.

7. Smoker Will Not Cook Properly

You turned on your Char Broil smoker, it is generating heat and smoking, but it is not properly cooking the food.

Char broil electric smoker not cooking properly

For the following reasons, your Char Broil smoker may fail to cook properly.

  • The smoker’s door is left open 
  • Insufficient preheat temp 
  • damaged extension cord 
  • Setting the too-low temperature 
  • The smoker is not heating up or not getting hot enough to cook 
  • Using inappropriately rated cord 


If you see your smoker is running, but the food is not cooking properly, then you should fix this trouble in the following ways:

  • Ensure that your smoker’s door is not open 
  • Ensure sufficient preheating temp 
  • Replace the damaged extension cord 
  • Set the appropriate temperature (Not too high or too low)
  • Make sure your smoker is heating properly and it is getting hot enough to cook 
  • Use appropriately rated cord 

8. Smoker Flare-Ups

So, another concerning problem with your Char Broil electric smoker is that it flare-ups.

char broil electric smoker flare-ups

The accountable causes behind it are:

  • Excessive cooking temperature or temperature set too high 
  • Dirty smoker or grease build-up in the smoker
  • Excess fat in meat 
  • Loosen heating elements 


Flare-up from your electrical smoker is an annoying issue, and it destroys the cooked food. The resolving ways of it are: 

  • Set the cooking temperature at an adequate level and avoid setting excessive temperature 
  • Properly clean the smoker and remove its grease build-up 
  • Cut off the meat’s excess fat before smoking it 
  • Tighten the heating elements 

9. Smoker Has No Display

Suddenly you may experience your Char Broil electric smoker failing to turn on, and its display is totally blank. Factors responsible for no display on your electric smoker are: 

char broil electric smoker has no display
  • A damaged or faulty thermostat 
  • No power in the smoker or tripped GFCI breaker 
  • The broken or defective heating element 


One quickest and easiest way to solve your smoker’s no-display issue is to unplug your smoker and wait for 1 minute. Then again, re-plug it and see whether resetting the power solves the problem or not. 

However, your electric smoker’s no-display issue can cause controller failure also. So if power resetting fails to solve it, you need to fix it immediately. The resolving ways are: 

  • Replace the damaged or defective thermostat, tripped GFCI breaker, and faulty or broken heating elements 
  • Make sure the power outlet is working well, and your electric smoker is receiving enough power 

Well, if you don’t have any experience in doing the task, you can hand over the task to a professional.

Alternatively, you can watch the video given below on how to replace the heating element of an electric smoker.

How To Reset Char Broil Electric Smoker?

If you experience Char Broil electric smoker error codes, you need to reset your smoker. The easy resetting steps are: 

  • Unplug or turn off your electric smoker 
  • Press the smoker’s start/stop button and hold it for 10 seconds 
  • After 10 seconds, plug the smoker back into the outlet 
  • Your smoker will automatically reset by itself 

After resetting your smoker, you must reconfigure the smoker’s network settings and username. 


How do you preheat a Char Broil electric smoker?

To preheat your Char Broil smoker, press the smoker “On” button. Select either Meat Probe + Cook Time or Cook Time + Cook Temperature. Your electric smoker will start preheating. 

How does an electric smoker work?

The electric smoker works by heating its cooking chamber. The air circulates through the cooking chamber. And via convection, the electric smoker heats food. The smoker includes an electric heating element, water pan, cooking chamber, grill racks, and electric heater to work. 

How long does it take for a Char-Broil smoker to heat up?

Heating up your Char Broil smoker requires 30-45 minutes. Set your smoker’s desired temperature, and the preheating will require 30-45 minutes. However, the ideal smoking temperature is 200-225 degrees F. 

How do I get more smoke in my electric smoker?

To get more smoke from your electric smoker, you should ditch the chip tray, control the vent position, avoid over-smoking your food, and avoid soaking wood chips. Also, smoke your chicken in hotter settings, learn to control the temperature swings, and easily clean the unit using foil. 


Throughout this Char Broil electric smoker troubleshooting guide, we explained each major issue’s detailed causes and solutions. Confidently, now you know what major problems you may encounter in using the Char Broil smoker and their fixing ways. 

However, if you think your Char Broil smoker is going through serious troubles and the above solutions are not enough to fix it, you can let us know. We’ll help you immediately with a solution. 

About William

William is the founder of He has real life practical skills in fixing smoker & heating appliance issues. He loves to share his knowledge & helps others in fixing their appliances & saving their money. William firmly believes that anyone can repair his or her unit with the correct guidance & knowledge. See more at about us.

4 thoughts on “Char Broil Electric Smoker Troubleshooting [9 Easy Fixes] ”

  1. My smoker flashes err 1.
    Replaced meat probe, reset it, and still flashing err 1.
    If I unplug the probe, then I get alternating err 1, and err 4
    Not sure what to do next?

    • Hi Kevin

      Unplugged Meat Probe is mainly responsible to flash err1 & damaged meat probe causes displaying err4 on your Char Broil electric smoker.

      Well, as you have replaced the meat probe & reset the smoker, now ensure the cabinet temperature sensor is functioning properly. Also, plugging in the Meat Probe is the prime solution for removing Char Broil electric smoker error code 1.

      Hopefully, your problem will be solved.

      Wish you all the best.

  2. Have tried everything is heating up, got to 240 degrees and have Mesquite and hickory pellets in it. NO smoke at all, vents are open???

    • Hi Robert

      Your Char Broil electric smoker not smoking at all due to one or more reasons like a defective heating element, the tray is not getting enough airflow or heat to burn the chips, the smoker being in an off position, a faulty outlet, or tripped circuit breaker, lack of proper ventilation, using of poor-quality wood chips, dirty chip tray, or distance between the tray and heating element.

      Well, to fix the problem, check all the above mensioned issues one by one & fix them following our solution guide in smoker not smoking section in the article.

      Plus, it will be helpful for you to read our solution guide in detail on char broil electric smoker not smoking.

      Hopefully, you will get the solution.

      Wish you all the best.


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