14 Common Pit Boss Pro Series 850 Problems Explained With Fixes

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As you are here, your Pit Boss Pro Series 850 wood pellet grill is probably giving you a hard time. 

Hey, don’t fret! You are not alone. Though this is a wonderful pellet smoker in terms of advanced technological features, sometimes it might malfunction due to some mechanical issues. Plus, the grill doesn’t always cooperate due to poor maintenance. 

However, let’s look forward to the common Pit Boss Pro Series 850 problems with the probable quick fixes below.

14 Common Pit Boss Pro Series 850 Problems Explained With Fixes 

Well, the most common issues with this heavy-duty wood pellet grill include temperature fluctuation, ignition issues, fire hazards, auger motor malfunction, etc. Below, I will point out the prominent problems in detail and show how you can quickly troubleshoot the grill at home. 

Not Turning On

Suppose, you are hosting a dinner and your guests have started arriving. Suddenly,  the Pit Boss Pro 850 grill isn’t turning on. Now, what should you do?

First, you should look into the causes of why your grill is behaving in an unexpected way. The possible reasons are as follows-

  • The grill is not plugged in
  • It’s plugged into a bad outlet or extension cord
  • The GFI circuit tripped
  • The fuse on the back of the control panel is burnt
  • Damaged power cord 

If the unit is not plugged in,  make sure to plug it into a 110-120V outlet. Also, you should make sure the power outlet works properly.

Secondly, the extension cord shouldn’t be damaged. And there shouldn’t be any bare wires to create any obstructions. 

Thirdly, the grill shouldn’t trip the GFI circuit (Ground Fault Circuit Interrupters) to be turned on smoothly. 

If it happens, wait for a few minutes to get the circuit on the fuse box reset. Please unplug any other device connected to the GFI. 

Sometimes, the grill might have a blown fuse and it needs replacement. And finally, check the power cord. If it is showing any wire, the connection is insecure and you need to replace the cord.

Temperature management

One of the biggest complaints about this wood pellet grill is the terrible temperature management. 

Many users reported that the built-in thermometer doesn’t show the accurate temperature. 

If you set the temperature at 200°,  the actual temperature is 230. And you can’t even understand that if you don’t use a separate heat probe.

That’s why you are suggested to track the temperature yourself with a different thermometer. And set the temperature at least 25° lower than your desired temperature to get a precise cook.

Also Read: 13+ Pit Boss Austin XL Problems: What Users Need to Know

Inconsistent temperature

Another major issue with this pellet smoker is the inconsistent temperature. Due to severe heat swings throughout, the taste and quality of your food decreases.

Nevertheless, the possible reasons for such major temperature inconsistency are 

  • Blocked air intakes
  • Uneven fuel burning
  • Poor heat distribution
  • Insufficient fuel sources
  • Inadequate air circulation

To get the issue resolved, you have to clear any blockage in the firebox for an interruption-free airflow. Besides, the air intake should be open and free of debris.

To experience an even heat distribution, check the fuel source. The fuel must burn evenly producing enough heat and smoke to maintain a steady temperature flow throughout. 

Indirect Heat Issue

The Pit Boss 850 Pro is subjected to indirect heat issues. Indirect heating rarely works in this wood pellet grill.

Therefore,  cooking large cuts of meat becomes challenging. Plus, if you try to grill keeping the sear plate open, it causes fire.

As the top rack and bottom rack are too close, reaching food on the back row of the bottom rack is nearly impossible.

Above all, the horrible temperature fluctuation makes it the worst when you aim at indirect grilling. 

If you too experience such troubles, contact Pit Boss customer support immediately. They will guide you on how you can make indirect grilling better with the smoker.

Fire Hazards 

As stated above, grilling with sear plates open leads to fire hazards. However, the best way to prevent this sudden fire is to never leave your grill unattended.

If the grill produces too much heat when there are grease or flammable materials, they catch fire.

So, I highly recommend giving your grill a thorough cleanup frequently. And if the grill accidentally causes a pellet fire, avoid opening the lid. 

Temperature Control Lights Not Working

Although it’s very unfortunate, the temperature control light of this pellet grill isn’t very long-lasting.

After a few cooks, the light quits working which causes a great trouble for the user. I mean, you cannot tell at which temperature the grill is working. Isn’t it annoying? 

Don’t worry, this won’t necessarily happen on every unit. Even if it happens, you can contact the Pit Boss team for a replacement. 

Combustion-air fan not running

Reportedly, the combustion air fan doesn’t run in the grill. At the same time, the pellet auger doesn’t stop anyhow.

If this happens, chances are, the connections between the auger and the combustion air fan are reversed.

Basically, it happens when the auger cable is mistakenly plugged into the fan. So, you need to replace the connection cable of the combustion-air fan with the cable that is connected to the auger.

If this doesn’t solve the issue, contact Pit Boss customer service for a replacement. 

Auger motor issues

Sometimes, the pellet auger in the grill doesn’t move at all. The potential causes could be a jammed auger, a block in the auger tube, etc.

If there’s excess dirt and grease in the auger tube, the motor will inevitably malfunction. So, keep the tube as clean as possible.

Nonetheless, sometimes the pellets in the auger tube absorb moisture and swell. Resultantly, the auger motor can’t rotate the auger at all.

To make the auger motor work, take the auger out of the pellet grill and remove the blockage caused by the resolidified pellets. 

However, if it’s not the jammed auger that causes the motor malfunction, call the Pit Boss Support Team for expert help.

Hopper won’t feed pellets

Well, this is probably due to the wet pellets in the hopper. Fill the hopper with dry wood pellets to get the issue resolved. 

Anyway, if you find the pellet auger doesn’t feed pellets to the firebox, chances are, you didn’t clean the auger for a long time. As a result, it got jammed because of grease buildup.

Try cleaning the auger tube thoroughly. Hopefully, it will start feeding pellets to the firebox to let the grill start.

Also Read: Best Wood Pellet Storage Containers (My Top 5 Picks)

LCD screen not working

There are several reasons which make the LCD screen of your pellet grill remains blank despite plugging in the grill. 

Well, the first possible reason is perhaps the circuit board fuse has been tripped. In that case, you need to replace the faulty fuse with a new one.

Secondly, the LCD screen doesn’t work because of tripped GFCI. However, the GFI could be tripped for many reasons such as moisture, electrical malfunction, overloaded circuit, etc. 

So, you must keep all the connections to the GFCI dry and there should be no overheating. 

Point to be noted, the minimum amperage for the GFCI should be at least 15 amps.

Above all, the extension cord of the Pit Boss grill should be 25 feet or shorter in length. Otherwise, it couldn’t deliver sufficient voltage to the pellet grill. 

Resultantly, the LCD screen wouldn’t light up.

Also Read: Pit Boss Smoker Tripping GFCI (Reasons & Solutions)

WIFI module issue

Now, this is perhaps the biggest complaint against Pit Boss Pro series grills. Their Pro 850 has a serious technical issue with the wifi module.

Apparently, the wifi module changes temperature on its own, that too by 70° more. Yes, you read it right.

Thankfully, it’s not an inbuilt design flaw with every 850 units. So, if your grill is subjected to the issue, contact Pi Boss experts immediately seeking professional help. 

They will guide you on how you can make the wifi module work as you want.

Ignition Problem

Apart from wet pellets in the hopper, a Pit Boss grill might have ignition problems due to a dirty igniter, faulty connection, or problematic control board. If you find a faulty igniter, replace it immediately. 

That being said, the igniter could be blocked by dirt, grease, and debris if you didn’t clean it thoroughly. In that case, clean the igniter and it will work without any hassle. 

Nevertheless, if you are using low-quality wood pellets, it also stops the igniter from working causing severe ignition issues.

So, always try to use high-quality pellets to make the grill start to fire smoothly. 

Control board not working

If the control board of your Pit Boss grill fails, there’s nothing you can do other than seeking for a replacement.

Also, call the customer support team and explain the control board problem in detail. Hopefully, they will issue you with a replacement. 

Not heating up

If the 850 pro series grill is not heating up to your set temperature, the issue lies in the pellet hopper. Probably, there are not enough pellets in the hopper. If that’s the case, refill it with enough wood pellets. 

Otherwise, the burn pot is at fault. If the pot has developed holes or corrosion, you should replace it. 

However, sometimes, the burn pot doesn’t get adequate oxygen to maintain your desired temperature. 

In such cases, you should keep all the air intakes open to deliver enough oxygen to the burn pot. 

At the same time, make sure the fan works properly to ensure sufficient air circulation. 

Also, check the P setting of the grill. If you increase the P setting, it means the grill will produce more smoke and less heat.

Conversely, decreasing the P Setting will lead to producing more temperature. So, adjust the P setting accordingly


If you are looking for a convenient pellet smoker to cook delicious meals in no time, the Pit Boss 850 is surely worth buying.

However, you can experience some common issues while running this powerful grill. No worries, these are just some random technical troubles that have simple quick fixes.

If you follow the guide above, you can easily address the common Pit Boss Pro Series 850 problems and fix them all by yourself. 

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