Why Propane Smoker Not Getting Hot Enough [Solved]

You get your first new propane smoker and use it a few times to enjoy the tendering and juicy smoked meat. But your propane smoker was not getting hot enough when you tried cooking ribs last Sunday. 

So, you bought an adjustable regulator from Amazon to pump a little more gas. The heck is- it doesn’t bring any luck to you, and the problem remains the same. Now, you go nuts and ask- what makes my propane smoker not getting hot enough?

propane smoker not getting hot enough (solved)

Safety valve activation, clogged orifices, a frozen regulator, and a defective tank are the culprit that prevents your smoker from getting hot enough. Stay in tune with us till the end and read through the lines to fix those issues. 

Propane Smoker Not Getting Hot Enough [Reasons & Solutions]

The following issues will stop your propane smoker from raising enough temperatures to smoke meat or food. If you want to make your smoker hot enough, try to fix them immediately. 

1. Safety Has Been Activated

You turn the smoker valve, but the flame doesn’t move. If this is happening to your propane smoker, we bet the safety valve has been activated. It stops your smoker from getting not hot. 


To fix the safety activation issue, turn the smoker valve first. Then, you should turn the smoker tank off. Next, detach the smoke regulator from the tank.

Keep the regulator disconnected for 30-60 seconds from the tank. Then, reconnect the regulator to your smoker tank again. Afterward, turn your smoker tank and wait 30 seconds. Lastly, light up your propane smoker. We hope it will fix the safety activation issue. 

2. Clogged Orifice

Clogged orifices are another culprit behind not getting your smoker heat. Check the burner tubes and inlets of your smoker for insect nests in or around the orifice. Indeed, a smaller insect nest can even disrupt the airflow into your smoker burner. 


First off, you need to take apart the basic components of your propane smoker. So, use some common hand tools and disassemble the control valves, venturi tubes, and burners. 

Then, look for a spider or wasp nest hidden in there. You can use an air hose or air compressor to blow them out to ensure they are clean. Also, you can try out a thin wire to remove the dirt, debris, and insect’s nest to remove the block. 

3. A Defective Tank

A faulty or leaky propane smoker tank is another culprit that prevents your smoker from getting hot. You can effortlessly check the leak on your smoker. First off, ensure you turn off the valve of your propane tank cylinder.

Secondly, make a solution by mixing detergent and water. Then, use a sprayer to spray the solution over the hose assembly, including the tank regulator and valve. If you see any bubbles, understand there is a leak. 


Replacing the defective tank with a new one is an easy fix for a leaky tank. Just get a new smoker propane tank and change the existing tank

4. A Frozen Regulator

If you smoke your food under extremely cold weather, the regulator may freeze. Consequently, enough propane will not flow through the regulator into the burner, which is responsible for not getting enough heat. 


Turn the smoker flame off. Detach your smoker tank from the unit and keep it 3-4 meters away from the propane smoker. 

Now, take a commercial heat gun or a hairdryer. Set the heat gun or hairdryer to its lowest setting and start heating the regulator to unfrozen. Now, you can wrap up the regulator with a windbreak. We hope it will solve your issue. 

5. A Tripped Bypass Valve

New propane tanks have a safety bypass valve to prevent overflow situations. It may get tripped by hooking the tank with your smoker burner valve open. If the bypass valve gets defective, enough propane will not flow to the burner. Consequently, the temperature of your smoker will not rise. 


Start with resetting the bypass valve by turning off every smoker valve. Then, turn off the tank valve fully and disconnect it from the smoker. Next, reconnect the tank and slowly turn on the tank valve for about 1/2 turn. Afterward, open and relight the burner. If the bypass valve functions properly, you will get enough pressure and glow to make high temperatures. 


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

Yes, opening the vents one a propane smoker will make it hotter. When you keep every vent open, more air will get into the smoker. And the more air it will get, the more oxygen your fire smoker will get. As a result, your smoker’s fire will burn hot and make the smoker hotter. 

Should I soak wood chips for the propane smoker?

No, you don’t need to soak wood chips for the propane smoker. Soaked wood chips produce a low amount of steam and lower your smoker’s temperature. Indeed, you will not get enough temperature to cook the meat evenly by soaking wood chips. 

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

There are no surefire rules on how often you should add wood chips to your propane smoker. However, we recommend you add wood chips every 5-6 hours to get the best smoking result with a perfect smoke ring


Now, you learned what causes your propane smoker not to get hot enough. Follow and apply the solutions we provided above. We bet you can solve the issues and raise your smoker’s temperature to cook the meat like a pro in your propane smoker

However, you can hire a certified technician if you can’t solve the issue by following the above methods. 

About William

William is the founder of Fireplacehubs.com. 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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