Pit Boss ER2 Or ER3 Code (7 Reasons To Fix)

Pit Boss Er2 or Er3 code is the diagnostic error on the grill, pointing that fire fails to establish or has gone out after initially establishing. The major reasons for occurring these errors include:

  • Lack of sufficient pellets in the hopper to burn.
  • Jammed auger.
  • Failing inducer fan.
  • Defective hot rod igniter.

Also, degradation in power supply to the grill or at times, only faulty igniter wiring connection to the controller leads to the ignition failure and triggers the ER3 errors.  

pit boss ER2 Or ER3 code

However, first off, ensure that there are enough pellets in the hopper and the auger is turning freely. If needed, inspect the auger feed system and the fire pot for any blockage. Or, consider replacing the faulty igniter wiring or the bad igniter itself.

Keep on reading to get detailed troubleshooting to eliminate the Er2 & Er3 error on the Pit Boss.

What Does ER2 Or ER3 Error Code Meaning In Pit Boss Pellet Grill

Your pit boss pellet grill or smoker displays the Er3 error code only when the control board detects that the fire has not been established for a longer time. Due to ignition failure, the grill can’t able to boost the temperature above 160°C.in half an hour.

On the other hand, the Er3 error on the pit boss pellets grill is almost similar to the Er2. It mainly refers to that the fire was established but extinguished after some time. 

The potential causes for both of these error codes are similar. The only difference is that if there is an ER2 code, you may need to consider replacing the bad igniter that is not applicable for fixing the ER3. This is because the fire has already been established once but has failed to keep it on. 

Quick Solutions For Pit Boss ER2 Or ER3 Code

Before heading to the detailing part, let’s make your further reading easier through the below quick table highlighting all the probable reasons with their quick solutions:

Probable Reasons Possible Solutions 
Empty hopper > Fill the hopper with sufficient pellets
Jammed auger > Clean the auger using paper towels.
Failed Combustion Fan> Replace the defective combustion fan. 
Insufficient airflow> Clean the burn pot. 
Faulty igniter wiring connection to the controller> Inspect all the igniter wiring to the controller and replace the worn-out ones. 
Interruption in the power supply> Replace the blown fuse.
> Check for cracked power cords.
> Test the outlet.
> Ensure you are connecting your grill to the correct circuit breaker. 
Faulty hot rod igniter> Replace the bad igniter. 

Pit Boss ER2 Or ER3 Code [7 Easy Solutions]

Well! After previewing the quick table, go through the in-depth insights into all the responsive factors for occurring Er2 or Er3 code with effective solutions:

1. Empty Hopper

If there is continuous ignition failure in your Pit boss pellet grill, higher chance your hopper is going through out of pellets. Basically, a sufficient amount of pellets is quite needed to start the ignition process in the pellet grill. 

When the controller board says, the rotating auger pulls pellets from the hopper to the fire pot.  

pit boss empty hopper

As the pellets fall into the burn pot, the hot rod igniter burns the pellets and starts combustion. In case, there are not sufficient pellets in the hopper, the complete combustion process gets stuck. 

So as for the first step, start troubleshooting by checking the pellet condition in the hopper.

How To Fix:

Inspect the hopper and check whether there is a sufficient pellet in the hopper. If not, fill it with fresh pellets at an adequate amount. After filling the hopper, prime the auger until they fall into the burnt pot.

Above all, you need to ensure that the pellets are away from moisture contact as it will highly affect the ignition process. The pellet should be high quality and in proper sizes. Otherwise, it will create a jam in the auger and prevents it from turning.

The high-quality wood pellets have moisture content between 8-10% and a very low ash content, below 0.7%. 

Tip: If you smoke often, consider the regular cleaning of your hopper. Use a shop or ash vac with extension wands to clean the hopper and inside the auger tube. 

2. Jammed Auger

In most cases, it is seen that the hopper is full of quality pellets but the auger is not moving freely. It is another concerning factor behind the ignition failure in your pellet grill. Here either there is a blockage in the auger or the auger has failed which is preventing it to move constantly. 

pit boss jammed auger

While grilling several foreign objects enters into the hopper and get stuck in the auger. In most cases, the auger gets clogged due to the dampened pellet that is made from compressed sawdust. Also, if you grill keeping the lid open in the rain, the humidity or water enters the auger and creates a jam with dust.

Whatever the fact is, you need to ensure a clean and well-working auger to diminish the Er2/Er3 error on the controlled display. 

How To Clean A Pit Boss Auger

Step #1: First, disconnect your grill from the power source/power. Unplug the power cord from the power source. 

Also, if you have cooked in it just now, let it cool completely before heading to the cleaning procedures.

Step #2: Now remove all the pellets from the hopper and keep them in a bucket. 

Step #3: Remove 4 screws holding the control panel. Also, disconnect the screws on the back and front of your hopper and detach it from the connection.

Step #4: After removing the hopper, you will see the auger motor. 

Now take a ratchet wrench along with an Allen tool. Remove the Allen head nut to disconnect the auger motor from the shaft.

Step #5: Once you’ve removed the motor, you will find a single screw holding the auger in place. Remove the screw and turn the auger counterclockwise to pull it out.

Step #6: Now manage some sandpaper and a wire brush and scrub the auger thoroughly. When done, clean the loose grim from the auger using paper towels.

Step #7: Now that the auger is clean, put back everything back together. Fill the hopper again and prime the grill. 

After cleaning the jammed auger, now check for the error codes on the control display screen. 

3. Failed Combustion Fan

After cleaning the auger and still, if there is the same error code, you may be encountering a failed combustion or induction fan on your pit boss. Almost all pellet grills including the Pit boss equip a combustion fan under the hopper that blows air into the combustion chamber to create flames and intensify the fire.

failed combustion fan

But in case, the combustion or induction fan fails to turn on freely, there will be a lack of oxygen that extinguishes the fire. As a result of the fact, the grill triggers the Er2 or Er3 code. 

The major reasons for a failed induction fan include:

  • Faulty wiring connection
  • Jammed or frosted fan blades due to clogging or being stuck with any wires.
  • Broken the fan blade itself.

How To Fix:

First off, check for faulty wiring connection from the inducer fan to the control panel. If there are any kinks or damages in the yellow wire, it may lead to insufficient voltage for why the fan stopped turning. Replace the faulty wiring.

replace the faulty wiring

Then try to kickstart the fan manually using your hand. But before that, remove the hopper panels to access the fans. Clean the grime and grease from the fan blades using a damp cloth or paper towel. 

Then apply machine oil to ensure the motor spinning better. It is an effective way to prevent the fan from failing in the future. 

Now inspect the fan brackets to see if they are bent. If so, you’ll need to replace the whole part. Remove the old fan and install the new one with the help of an electrician. 

4. Insufficient Airflow In The Burn Pot

Insufficient airflow in the pellet grill is another major reason for the fire to go out and trigger the ER3 and ER4 error codes. Higher chances are the burn pot may be corroded which is interrupting its normal function. Also at times, the air holes on the burn are blocked by ashes that restrict the airflow. 

Basically, the fire needs oxygen to burn. If there are no holes in the burn pot or blocked by debris, there will be a lack of oxygen and consequently, the fire goes out. So in this phase, you need to clean the burn pot and ensure a fluent airflow for burning.

How To Fix:

Most pit boss models have a removable burn pot that you can easily assess. Just remove it from the place and clean out all the stuck debris from the pot.

clean out all the stuck debris from the pot

It’s better to vacuum the burn to unclog all the holes effectively. After cleaning, look for any cracks or damage in the pot. If needed, replace it with a brand-new one.

5. Faulty Wiring Connection Of The Igniter To The Control Board

If you are experiencing an igniter problem in your pellet grill, the faulty wiring connection of the igniter to the control board is one of the main culprits to blame. 

faulty wiring connection of the igniter to the control board

Either there has a loose wiring connection or any of the wires of the igniter have been cracked. When this happens, the igniter fails to build a snug communication with the controller that stops the ignition process. 

As a result of this fact, you will encounter ER2 or ER3 on the control display. So in this troubleshooting step, you need to inspect the control board wiring to find out the misconnected or damaged wiring. 

How To Fix:

Before heading over to fix any electric wiring, be sure you have disconnected the power supply from your pellet grill. Turn off your grill and unplug it from the power connection. 

Now inspect all the igniter wiring connections to the control board screen. It will be purple and white so be sure to inspect those. Look for the misconnected cords and fix those. Don’t miss to replace the worn-out wires. 

6. Interruption In Power Supply

If still, you are struggling with no ignition error on your pellet grill, it could be something as simple as a faulty power supply to your appliance. As the pit boss grill needs a fluent amount of electricity to function properly, thus degradation in voltage supply will affect the function.

 interruption in power supply

Anyway, there are several factors that you may blame here. Look over the below major ones:

  • Faulty extension cord
  • Connecting the pellet grill via an extension cord
  • Non-functioning power outlet
  • Blown fuse
  • Damaged Hot Rod Igniter

How To Fix:

Here are a few simple steps to follow in order to fix the power supply issue in your pellet grill:

Step #1: Replace The Blown Fuse

Generally, a pit boss grill uses a 5 amp, 120-volt fast-blow fuse on the control board. Take off the grease tray and cooking grates and check whether the grill turns one. If not, you likely need to replace the blown fuse.

Step #2: Inspect The Power Cord

Now check the power cord to see if it is cracked or missing on any part. If you find potential signs of damage, you need to replace the cord. 

If all ok, check whether the cord is too short or loose. Ensure the cord is on the correct gauge that is used with the correct circuit breaker. 

Step #3: Test The Power Outlet

When you ensure all the cords and wiring of the pellet grill are in well-working condition, it is time to check the power outlet. To test the outlet, simply plug the pellet directly into the 110v wall outlet without using any extension cord. 

If you find any issue with the outlet, call a professional or electrician for help. 

7. Faulty Hot Rod Igniter

A damaged or non-operational hot rod igniter is one of the leading reasons for triggering the ER2 code on the pellet grill. Basically, when the pellets reach into the burn pot through the hopper and auger, the ignitor rod creates a flame and the smoke starts producing. 

faulty hot rod igniter

In case the igniter has stopped working, how the fire will be established? 

Thus after performing all the above steps, replacing the faulty igniter rod on your Pit Boss pellet grill will be the last action to perform. 

Through it requires a professional hand, yet you can do it by yourself if you have got the replacement part. 

How To Replace The Pit Boss Igniter

Follow the below section to get a basic idea about replacing the igniter on your pit boss pellet grill:

replace the pit boss igniter

Step #1: First off, make sure you’ve disconnected your pellet grill from the power connection. Let the grill cool completely if you’ve grilled recently. 

Step #2: Now start by taking off the flame broiler and cooking grates by sliding them out. By doing this, you will access the fire pot.

Step #3:  Disconnect the four screws holding the burn pot together using a Phillips screwdriver. When done, wiggle the burn pot to take it out.

Step #4: Then you will see a set of screws that are keeping the hot rod ignitor in place. Turn the screws counterclockwise, loosen the igniter, and take it off the grill.

Step #5: When done, feed the igniter back through the grill’s burn tube.

Remove the screws that hold the plate under the grill hopper together.

Step #6: Then, pull the igniter wires back through the burn tube and Cut the zip ties holding the wires. 

Step #7: Now you can remove the igniter from the grill by simply disconnecting it from the purple and white wires.

Step #8: Then, take your new igniter and reverse the process above to install the new one. Connect the burn pot and plate under the hopper.

Step #9: Insert the ignitor tube and tighten the screws to hold the igniter in place.

Step #10: Finally, reassemble the pellet grill and connect it to the power connection. Then check if everything is working fine.


Why has the fire gone out in the middle of the cook in my pit boss?

This would be related to the insufficient airflow through the system. So go through the cleaning of the grill especially the blocked air holes in the burn pot. Also, ensure the inducer fan is turning freely.

How to Prevent the Error Code Er2 on Pit Boss?

In order to prevent the Er2, you need to concentrate on the proper maintenance of the grill. Always try to inspect and ensure that the igniter and the wiring to the controller are in a well-working condition. If needed, contact a professional for help. 

Why does the temperature swing in my Pit Boss?

If there is an unusual temperature swing in your pit boss, be sure there would be simply bad weather to blame. If there is too cold outside, the grill has to work hard to compensate. At times, air blockage due to clogged firepot causes this issue. 

In Closing

Whenever you are encountering a pit boss  Er2 or Er3 code control display, be sure the source of the problem is in the bad ignitor that needs serving or replacement. But before proceeding to a replacement, go through the simple fixing like checking the hopper or cleaning the auger feed system or burn pot. 

 We’ve described all the needed procedures very clearly. Hope that there should be no confusion left over after thoroughly reading. If still have, don’t hesitate to let us know through comments.

Note: You may be struggling with any other pit boss error code. In that case, you can read our ultimate guide on the full list of pit boss error codes and how to fix them.

About Christy

Christy has a fascination for grilling and tasting different recipes & loves writing in this field. Over the years, she could enrich her practical skills & experience in fixing grill issues. She also loves doing research & enjoys sharing her knowledge & expertise with others.

Leave a Comment