25+ Common Masterbuilt 1050 Problems with Causes and Fixes

Every product is independently reviewed and selected by our editors. If you buy something through our links, we may earn an affiliate commission at no extra cost to you.

The Masterbuilt 1050 is undoubtedly a great smoker from their Gravity series. It features very well-built ergonomics aiming at skillful executions.

But sometimes, some of its features might malfunction causing trouble to the users.

On that note, let’s discuss some common Masterbuilt 1050 problems with the causes below. I will also explain how to fix these issues at home without seeking expert help.

For your information, all these issues are minor and primarily arise from the mismanagement of the grill. They are not inbuilt design flaws, so, no worries.

Masterbuilt 1050 Problems with Causes and Fixes

Here I go with the common issues in a Masterbuilt 1050 reported by users throughout the years. Followed by a detailed troubleshooting guide for each problem, hopefully, it would be of great help in running your smoker smoothly. 

Won’t Turn On

The very first problem lies with the startup. Sometimes, the unit just won’t turn on. However, let’s have a look at why the smoker sometimes doesn’t get turned on-

  • Power light issue
  • Jammed main circuit 
  • Cold temperature probe 
  • Defective extension cord
  • Dysfunctional heating element

Any of the above causes could stop the smoker from turning on. As the main circuit board is not grease or moisture-proof, it could accumulate with dirt over time causing the circuit to be jammed. 

Cleaning the entire circuit board is the solution to the problem. 

Next, check the heating element if it’s working or not. Besides, the smoker must feature a high-quality heating element to run smoothly. 

At the same time, you must inspect the extension cord as well. If the cord is somehow damaged, replace it immediately. 

Sometimes, the temperature probe is too cold to start the smoker. If it’s below 40° F, the smoker won’t turn on. So, try warming up the probe to start smoking in your Masterbuilt 1050.

Finally, check if the power light is switched on or not. If it’s not on, the unit will be off as well.

Fan Not Working

Sometimes, the charcoal smoker creates issues with the fan. Either the fan doesn’t get enough power or the motor is at fault.

In the first case, you must ensure safe and secure electrical connections for the fan to work correctly. Otherwise, replace the motor so as not to shut off the fan abruptly. 

Also, make sure to keep the fan free of dust and grease. Here, you will find a detailed guideline if your Masterbuilt 1050 fan is not working. 

Error Codes

Next, there might be error code issues. The reasons behind such codes might be many. Either the temperature probe isn’t fully plugged in, or the probe might malfunction. 

However, overheating of the grill could also lead to displaying such codes. In most cases, fixing the meat probe will solve the Masterbuilt 1050 error code issues.

Control Panel Not Working

If you find the Masterbuilt 1050 control panel not working, simply reset the smoker. Unplug it from the power socket, wait for a minute or two, then plug it in again. Then turn the smoker on and the control panel should work just fine. 

Also Read: Char Griller 980 Vs Masterbuilt 1050 – Features, Performance, and More

Controller Won’t Turn On

Sometimes, the controller just doesn’t turn on. It might be too old or might need a thorough cleaning. 

So, clean both the temperature sensor and controller and then turn the grill on. Please remember that the temperature sensor works as the temperature controller’s input. If you don’t clean it frequently, the controller doesn’t work.

Nevertheless, if the controller won’t turn on even after cleaning, you should think about a replacement. 

Display Not Working

The possible causes for such a mishap are a dirty smoker, overheating issues, physical damage, environmental factors, etc.

If you have been running the smoker for too long, it might malfunction and the display doesn’t work.

Also, dirt can get into the display panel to make the panel ineffective. Besides, too much cold or direct sunlight can make the display go bad.

However, start with cleaning the display panel thoroughly. Then reset the display control panel by unplugging the panel from the smoker and plugging that back.

Additionally, perform a software reset by holding the clear button for at least five seconds.

If the charcoal smoker is outside in cold temperatures, bring the display unit to a warmer environment. Unfortunately, direct sunlight will break the unit. If that happens, you need to replace it with a new one.

Also Read: Delicious Masterbuilt Smoker Recipes for Every Occasion

Causes Grease Fire

Yes, sometimes the grill causes a grease fire by leaking the food grease from the drip tray.

Probably, the drip pan isn’t placed properly. You must place the pan at least two inches above the bottom of the smoker.

Besides, to stop such sudden grease fires, you can use foil to cover the drip tray so that there’s no grease leakage to start the fire.

Weak WiFi Connection

Another common issue with Masterbuilt 1050 is the wifi issue. It is only supported by a 2.4GHz wifi network. 

So, if you want to run the smoker smoothly with wifi connection, you better buy a Fireboard and Fireboard control cable.

Poor Quality Materials

This gravity series smoker is made of poor materials according to some users. They reported a lot of disappointments as the grill started rusting after a  few usages. They also experienced the paint coating peeling off. 

However, this doesn’t happen for all. If you use the grill with care and maintain it properly, none of these issues would bother you. Just make sure not to leave the smoker outside for too long without any cover.

Smoke Leakage

Reportedly, the corner seal around the chimney of the smoker melts while high-heat grilling. It makes the smoke escape causing devastating smoke leakage.

Besides, the seal on the smoke box lid gets loose within a year. This also causes smoke leakage. 

In both cases, you should contact the Masterbuilt customer support unit. If the issues arise within one year of purchasing the smoker, the warranty might cover the damage.

Sensor Stopped Working

Sometimes, you might find the sensor not working without any sign of damage. In fact, some users experienced it after just five to six smokes. 

Resultantly, the smoker doesn’t display the cooking temperature. That’s why you have to use your own thermometer to measure temperature.

However, this is not a common fault in every Masterbuilt smoker. If your unit sensor fails, contact customer support immediately. 

Bluetooth stopped working

Although Masterbuilt smokers are well-known for their uninterrupted Bluetooth support, sometimes you may find the Bluetooth disconnecting frequently in some models. 

If your Masterbuilt Gravity 1050 is subjected to this issue, try resetting your Bluetooth connection. Hopefully, it will solve the problem. 

Glue Strips Issue

Masterbuilt used glue tape inside the smoker to attach the marketing picture which is hard to get rid of. As the glue tape doesn’t come off easily, the assembly of the smoker becomes hazardous, especially for a first-timer. 

However, as per instructions, you should burn it off for 1 hour at 250° and 30 minutes at 400°.

Does Not Stay Lit

One of the biggest complaints about this smoker is that it doesn’t stay lit. If you too experience the same problem, try using Masterbuilt fire starters.

Masterbuilt® Pure-Parrafin All-Natural Odorless Wax Fire Starters for Charcoal Grilling, Made for Gravity Series but Compatible with All Charcoal Grills & Fireplaces, 48-Count, Model MB20091521
  • Ideal for Gravity Series grills and other charcoal products
  • Easiest way to light your charcoal grill and reduce time to temperature
  • Odorless, smokeless cubes burn up to 1300˚F
  • Fire starters light when wet

If that doesn’t work, you need to ensure adequate ventilation for the smoker. Otherwise, the charcoal would die after a certain period.

Asides from proper airflow, the charcoal quality and quantity also matter. You must use good quality wood charcoal and add fuel at the right time to stay the smoker lit for a long time.

App Does Not Working

Masterbuilt gravity series digital charcoal smokers are controlled through the Masterbuilt app. But sometimes the app suddenly crashes due to a poor internet connection, an inappropriate phone model, or an outdated version of the app. Besides, the app cache could be full as well. 

To resolve the issue, restart your phone first. Then alternate the internet connection between your wifi and mobile data to see which works.

You might have to update your phone and the Masterbuilt app to the latest version. If your mobile isn’t compatible with the app, try using the app through other devices.

And of course, you have to disable your VPN service to let the app work. Also, clear your cache to fix the issue.

Temperature Control Doesn’t Work

Sometimes, the grill temperature is not measured by the reader of the controller. As a result, the grill becomes too hot without you even realizing it.

You should immediately call the Masterbuilt helpline and let them know about this issue in detail. If the controller is somehow defective, they will send a replacement.

Temperature Probe Not Working

Some of the users also reported issues with the temperature probe. Despite cleaning the probe properly, it doesn’t work after a few uses. 

No worries, as the manufacturers are supposed to send a replacement if you report about a faulty temperature probe.

Stopped Reaching Desired Temp

This is perhaps the most disturbing issue about Masterbuilt Gravity series smokers. The Masterbuilt 1050 fails to reach your desired temperature after you use the smoker for a while.

Apparently, the potential causes are-

  • Clogged burners
  • Defective igniters
  • Insufficient airflow
  • Poor/ wet charcoal
  • Loose chip tray 

All these reasons could lead to the smoker not getting hot enough. And the very first quick fix is to clean the smoker thoroughly so that the burner ports are unclogged.

Secondly, check the igniter and replace it if you find it at fault. Besides, ensure proper airflow to keep the charcoal burning to heat the smoker continuously. 

You might use a grill cover/wind block to increase the airflow around the smoker. 

Another possible solution is to avoid wet charcoal. Moreover, try using high-quality charcoal to get a decent heat flow.

Finally, make sure the chip tray isn’t loose from the burner material to heat the chips adequately.  

Fails To Light

When everything goes well, the Masterbuilt 1050 smoker is truly unbeatable. But 50% of the users reported that they sometimes experience the “failed to light” alarm. However, it might be due to the igniter switch. 

If the switch doesn’t work, the grill doesn’t ignite. So, check for the switch whether it’s alright or not.

Also, the ignition problems of Masterbuilt 1050 have a lot to do with faulty electrical connections. So, make sure all the connections are established properly. 

Hard Assembly Process

The new Masterbuilt gravity series smokers come with a challenging assembly system. Even with their detailed assembly guide, it takes several hours for a first-timer to set up the grill.

Nevertheless, if you still can’t do it right, you can watch YouTube videos on how to put the grill together. 

AC Adapter Not Working Sometimes

Talking about the AC adapter of the grill, it sometimes doesn’t work. In that case, it needs heavy-handed maneuvering of the plug in the outlet. Otherwise, try using a heavy-duty extension cord to get it turned on.

Fire Hazard Issue

As stated above, the smoker sometimes catches fire. At times, it happens due to excess grease in the grease trap. Simply cleaning the grease should fix the issue.

Also, the metal sometimes gets subjected to rust and then starts bubbling. As a result, it exposes the insulation causing fire hazard.

In the second case, you must be very careful and contact Masterbuilt customer support experts. 

Performance In Cold Temps Isn’t Good

Like any other grill and smoker, this charcoal smoker is also weather sensitive. It doesn’t work well in colder months. 

In fact, it doesn’t start if left in cold weather for too long. Besides, you will see a massive heat difference between the middle shelf and the bottom shelf. 

The food on the bottom shelf will be burnt. But the upper and middle shelves will be at least 30° cooler than the grill’s actual temperature reading.

So when you leave the grill outside during those chilling winter days, make sure to cover it up properly. 

And it’s best to use the smoker in a secured area where the environment cannot influence its performance. 

Fire Box Issue

A matter of concern for the grill is the not-so-good firebox. Due to the weak material quality, the firebox gets hot too easily. 

Sometimes, it cannot secure the fire inside the box causing a terrible fire hazard. Masterbuilt should truly be concerned regarding this issue.

Poor Customer Support

The common complaint against Masterbuilt is their not-so-satisfactory customer support. Whatever problem you face, it’s difficult to reach them. It might be due to their hectic schedule dealing with countless customers at a time.

But they should really pay a bit more attention to improving their service by replying to clients promptly. 


To sum up, Masterbuilt 1050 is indeed a great smoker with some easy-to-use features. With the removable drip tray, it’s a very convenient grill for novice BBQers.

Still, it might be subjected to some issues with time. But worry not, Masterbuilt has an effective troubleshooting guide for most of the problems.

In case you cannot follow the guide accordingly, I have discussed the most common issues above for your rescue. 

Above all, maintain your grill properly to keep it running for years.

Happy smoking!

Leave a Comment