Masterbuilt Propane Smoker Not Smoking [7 Easy Solutions]

Masterbuilt propane smoker not smoking mainly due to the loose chip tray, using wood chip’s wrong size and type, uneven distribution of wood chips on the tray.

Also, the malfunctioning propane smoker itself, inadequate oxygen flow in the smoker, improper temperature setting, and poor quality wood chips are responsible for it.

We presented the detailed discussion below through in-depth research on the above problems. Following this Propen Smoker troubleshooting guide, you will learn everything about the smoker’s not smoking issue that you need to know.

So, go through the article, learn the detailed causes, and follow the solutions to fix the trouble by yourself.

Masterbuilt Propane Smoker Not Smoking [7 Easy Solutions]

For the following major reasons, your Masterbuilt propane smoker takes a very long time to produce smoke or produce very light or no smoke. So, let’s discuss the details:

1. Loosen Chip Tray

After smoking for a few months, suddenly, your Masterbuilt smoker can stop smoking due to the loose chip tray. The chip tray is designed in a way to “spring” onto the burner element.

After using the smoker several times, your smoker’s chip tray becomes loosened. When the chip tray rises off the burner element, the wood chips fail to get enough heat. As a result, your Masterbuilt propane smoker stops smoking.

The smoker will not smoke unless the burner element is full-on at 600 degrees F. But the loose tray hinders the burner element from attaining this temperature. The chip tray becomes loose for the following reasons:

  • Frequent use of your propane smoker
  • Design flaw
  • Dirty tray


Reset your Masterbuilt propane smoker’s chip tray properly on the burner element. Bend the tray back in place and ensure the chips are getting enough heat to create smoke.

Avoid your smoker’s frequent use and adequately clean the tray. Set the chip tray close to the burner heating element.

2. Using Wrong Size and Type of Wood Chips

Are you wondering, “why is my smoker not smoking?” Don’t wonder, using the wrong or different wood size and type is responsible for your propane smoker not smoking.

Most of the users in their Masterbuilt propane smoker use the hardwood. But if you choose the wrong wood type between chunkier chips and thin shavings, your propane smoker will fail to smoke.


Compared to thin chips, the chunk hardwood burns for longer and creates more smoke.

Thus avoid thin chips and use chunk size wood. ¼” to 1” is the size of the ideal chips for your Masterbuilt propane smoker. If you use the mixed larger and smaller chips, it will create more smoke.

3. Wood Chip’s Uneven Distribution on the Tray

Another reason your Masterbuilt smoker stops smoking is the uneven distribution of wood chips on the tray.

The chips stack together thickly for the uneven distribution. As a result, the smoker fails to generate heat properly.


On the bottom of your Masterbuilt propane smoker’s chip tray, thoroughly spread the chunks or thin chips.

Properly spread the chips out and ensure the wood chunks are not stacked on the tray. Ensure the wood’s evenly distributed in a manner, and your propane smoker will start smoking.

4. Defective Propane Smoker Itself

If your Masterbuilt smoker itself is faulty, it will stop smoking. The main factors cause this issue are:

  • Refilled or new propane tank’s air blockage
  • Faulty propane tank regulator
  • Triggered safety regulator
  • Shut-off valve malfunction
  • Damaged propane tank


If suddenly your Masterbuilt propane smoker stops smoking, you should check the smoker first whether it’s working perfectly or not. Replace the faulty smoker or follow the fixing ways below:

  • Properly clean the propane tank’s air blockage
  • Replace the damaged propane tank, malfunctioning regulator, faulty shut-off valve, and triggered safety regulator.

5. Insufficient Oxygen Flow in Smoker

Propane smokers produce smoke through the burning of wood chips. The wood chips require adequate oxygen or airflow to burn.

Now, if your propane smoker doesn’t get sufficient oxygen flow, it will not produce smoke. The factors responsible for this are:

  • Improperly positioned tray creates oxygen flow blockage
  • Chips are not igniting properly
  • The system has inadequate airflow


To get the maximum smoking output from your propane smoker, ensure that there is adequate oxygen flow in your Masterbuilt smoker. The other easy fixing ways are the following:

  • Ensure the proper position of the chip tray in your propane smoker so that it doesn’t create the airflow blockage
  • Make sure the chips are igniting properly
  • Ensure good airflow in the unit

6. Incorrect Temperature Setting

The too-high or too-low-temperature setting is one of the main reasons why your Masterbuilt propane smoker is not smoking.

This is because your propane smoker fails to get hot enough at a lower temperature setting. On the contrary, a high-temperature setting causes your propane smoker’s overheat.


225 and 250 degrees Fahrenheit are the ideal temperature setting range in your Masterbuilt propane smoker. Make sure you set the temperature within this range.

7. Low-Quality Wood Chips

Using poor-quality wood chips in your propane smoker is another reason why it is not smoking. Wood’s perfect water content increases the smoke. Vapors rise from the burning wood’s water content. 

The low-quality wood contains excessive moisture or water content. As a result, your Masterbuilt propane smoker fails to burn the wood and create smoke.


Use high-quality wood chips in your Masterbuilt propane smoker, and it will generate smoke ideally. Avoid using damp wood or wood that contains excessive moisture. Instead, use perfectly dry and seasoned wood.

Properly optimize your wood’s moisture content by 30 minutes of soaking the wood chips in water. And then add them to your Masterbuilt propane smoker to get the highest smoke.


How often should I add wood chips to my Masterbuilt propane smoker?

After starting, you need to add wood chips to your propane smoker every four hours. But if you add wood chips every 30-45 minutes in your smoker, you will get the perfect flavor from the smoking meat.

Do you soak wood chips for the Masterbuilt propane smoker?

Soaking the wood chips for your Masterbuilt propane smoker is not necessary. You can use either pre-soaked or dry wood chips in your propane smoker. Dry chips produce greater smoke by burning faster. The pre-soaked chips generate less smoke and burn slowly.

What is the best way to smoke out of a propane smoker?

The best way to smoke out of your propane smoker is to remove its dirt build-up and keep it clean, smoking meat at the perfect temperature. Also, using hardwood chips and having enough cooking space is essential for smoking out in the best way.

Does opening the vents on a propane smoker make it hotter?

Yes! Opening your propane smoker’s vents make it hotter. The flame in your propane smoker gets more oxygen due to the broader or open-air vent, and the cooking temperatures become hotter. Ultimately set your propane smoker’s vent open before starting it.

Do you have to season a Masterbuilt propane smoker?

Yes! You have to season your Masterbuilt propane smoker at least once before the first smoke. After conducting the first smoke per year, you can season it multiple times according to your convenience.


Hopefully, the above comprehensive guide was helpful for you, and now you know why your Masterbuilt propane smoker not smoking.

If you face such an issue with your propane smoker, pay attention to every detail and fix all the problems by yourself. If you fail to resolve it, comment on your trouble. We’ll ASAP tell you the fixing ways.

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.

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