Why Won’t My Pit Boss Smoker Light?

If you own a pit boss smoker, you’ve probably experienced the frustrating situation of trying to light your smoker but it just won’t work. There are several reasons why this might happen and we’ll be discussing them all in this article.

Whether it’s a problem with the control panel, burn pot, or even just the wood pellets, we’ll be covering all the common issues that can cause your pit boss smoker to not light. So if you’re struggling to get your smoker started, read on to find out how to fix the problem.

Why Won't My Pit Boss Smoker Light

Why Won’t My Pit Boss Smoker Light

Pit Boss smokers are a great way to get that fantastic smoky flavor. However, there are times when things don’t go as planned, and one of the most common issues people face is trouble getting their Pit Boss smoker to light.

If you’re struggling with this problem, don’t worry, you’re not alone. We will cover some of the common reasons why your Pit Boss smoker won’t light and suggest some troubleshooting techniques to help get it fired up.

1. Control Panel Issues

One of the common issues that Pit Boss smoker users may encounter involves the control panel. The control panel is designed to allow users to adjust the temperature, monitor cooking progress, and control various components of the smoker. However, sometimes things do go wrong.

To start with, it is important to have a good understanding of the different buttons found on the control panel. The primary buttons include the on/off button, temperature control buttons, a temperature probe connector, and the auger motor switch.

One of the first steps in troubleshooting control panel issues is to check the display for error codes. This can help identify the source of the problem and guide you in finding a solution. If you can’t find any error codes, you can move on to check the fuse on the back of the control panel. Sometimes, a blown fuse can be the culprit behind control panel issues. If the fuse appears to be okay, another possibility is faulty wire connections between the control board and igniter wires. It’s important to ensure that the wires are connected to their appropriate colors to prevent issues like short circuits.

To avoid these issues, it is best to take care of the Pit Boss smoker’s control panel components. One of the best ways to do this is to clean them regularly to keep them free of grease and dirt. Also, you should keep a close eye on the wires and fuses to make sure they’re functioning properly. If you encounter any issues that you can’t solve on your own, contacting Pit Boss customer care can be a viable option. They can guide you through a fix or potentially send you replacement parts.

2. Burn Pot Problems

When it comes to grilling, there’s nothing worse than your Pit Boss smoker refusing to light. One fairly common issue that can cause ignition problems is a malfunctioning burn pot. To resolve this problem, follow these simple instructions.

Firstly, to access the burn pot, remove the grill grate and heat deflector. Inspect the burn pot for any holes or cracks which could prevent it from lighting properly. If there are any, consider getting a new Pit Boss smoker or replacement burn pot.

Corrosion or rust may also be causing the burn pot to malfunction. In this case, remove the pot and clean it thoroughly with a putty knife or wire brush.

A dirty fire pot can also be the culprit behind ignition problems. By emptying the fire pot after each use, you can reduce the chances of it becoming dirty. A putty knife or scraper can be used to clean it out thoroughly when needed.

By following these simple steps, you can easily resolve burn pot problems in your Pit Boss smoker. Remember to stay safe by following basic safety guidelines when handling any grill components. If issues persist, contact Pit Boss customer care for further assistance.

3. Temperature Dial Issues

Temperature control is one of the most important features of a Pit Boss smoker. If you are experiencing temperature dial issues with your Pit Boss smoker, it can be frustrating and make cooking difficult. However, there are a few troubleshooting steps you can take to resolve the issue.

The first thing you should do is check whether the temperature probe wire is connected securely to the control panel. If it is loose, that can affect the temperature readings.

Next, check the control board screen to see if it’s displaying any error codes. A blank screen can indicate an issue with the control board. Make sure that the LCD screen is functioning properly and not damaged.

If the temperature readings are still off, it might be due to a dirty temperature probe. Use a putty knife to clean the temperature probe and ensure that it is not touching any other grill components. This can cause inaccurate temperature readings and temperature swings.

Lastly, check if the ambient temperature outside is affecting the grill temperature. When it’s too cold, the grill temperature can decrease, and when it’s too hot, it can increase. Keep this in mind if you’re experiencing temperature fluctuations.

4. Wet Pellets Problem

One common issue that Pit Boss smokers can face is the use of wet pellets. This can cause problems with burning and smoke production, ultimately impacting the overall performance of the smoker. Wet pellets contain a high moisture content that can make it difficult for them to burn properly and produce the necessary amount of smoke.

To address this issue, it’s important to use high-quality pellets that have an acceptable moisture level. Typically, this range is between 5 to 10%. Lower quality pellets often have higher moisture levels, making them more prone to issues with burning and smoke production. When purchasing pellets for your Pit Boss smoker, make sure to check the moisture level on the packaging to ensure they are of high quality.

Storing your pellets properly also plays a significant role in preventing them from becoming wet. Pellets should be kept in a dry area away from any moisture, such as in a sealed container or plastic bag. Additionally, avoid leaving pellets in direct sunlight or in an area where they are exposed to rain or other sources of moisture.

By taking precautions to prevent the use of wet pellets in your Pit Boss smoker, you can ensure optimal performance and deliciously smoked meats every time. So be sure to use high-quality pellets and store them in a dry area for the best results.

5. Power Cord Issues

If you’re experiencing problems with your Pit Boss smoker not turning on, one of the first things to check is the power cord. A damaged or improperly connected power cord can cause the smoker to not receive the necessary power to operate.

To begin troubleshooting, first examine the power cord for any signs of damage like cracks, frayed wires, or other physical defects. If found, the power cord needs to be replaced to ensure the safe operation of the smoker.

Next, ensure that the power cord is plugged into a properly functioning power outlet. It’s essential to use a grounded outlet and avoid using a power strip or an outlet that is not designed for high powered appliances, as it can cause electrical short circuits and even fires.

If the power cord’s length is too short to reach a power outlet, use an outdoor or indoor/outdoor extension cord with a 3-prong grounded plug. However, using an extension cord can sometimes cause power quality issues, so try to avoid using one if possible. If the issue persists, try plugging the smoker directly into the power outlet without an extension cord.


In conclusion, there are several reasons why a Pit Boss smoker may not be lighting. By following the troubleshooting steps mentioned above, a majority of these issues can be resolved and homeowners can go back to enjoying their smoked meats and veggies.

If all else fails, contacting Pit Boss customer care is always a reliable option to consider, as they have experts available to assist with any technical issues that may arise.

Remember to always prioritize safety while using any electric-powered appliances like the Pit Boss smoker – inspect the power cord for damage and ensure you are following basic safety features. Happy smoking!