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I bought my Cookshack smoker about 12 years ago or so.  I know it was the 50 lb model so I think it's the SM050.  It does not have a digital display.  Just a analog knob with Off - 250F.  It's worked flawlessly until now.

I had added two small chunks of wood and then turned to smoker on to 225F as I usually do.  The door was kind of closed but not shut tight and latched as my turkeys were not ready to go in yet.  I was prepping those and then realized the grease in the smoker had caught fire.  Bottom line is it got hot enough to warp the grates and prevent the door from closing until it cooled down.

I see no visible damage but now the thermostat no longer seems to work.  The heating element is on no matter what position I have the knob.  Even in the off position, the heating element is on.

Any ideas on what I need to replace to get my smoker working again?  The probe?  The whole "knob thing" inside which I assume is the thermostat?  I'm not really a "fix it" kind of guy so any ideas would be appreciated.  Even suggestions as to where I might take it to get fixed would help.



Last edited by Drew Tomlinson
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There should be a label on the back with the model number and manufacturing date.

I have replaced 2 thermostats on SM008 smokers because they would not heat up.  I also have a Smokin Tex that required a new thermostat because it would go to max heat and never cycle on/off (but would shut off with knob turned all the way down).

Replacing a thermostat the first time is a 2 job.  Biggest thing to keep in mind is that you don't want to kink the capillary tube. There are some You_tube videos that help.

I bought 3 thermostats from Smokin Tex. Used one in a Smokin Tex and 2 in a couple of SM008s that I repaired.  You have to call Smokin Tex directly to order.  Same thermostat is used in all their analog models.

One of the SM008 had a stainless steel shield that covered the bulb.  Found out it deflects so much heat that the Smokin Tex thermostat doesn't work well unless the bulb is exposed.  So I used a couple of stainless steel clips to hold it in place instead of the OEM cover.

Last edited by LonzinomakerCS

I called Cookshack and spoke with one of their support people.  He said the way the heating element turns off is that "something has to push something".  I didn't quite understand but hope it becomes apparent after I remove the back panel.  It was his suggestion to check that first and possibly bend to ensure contact if that seems to be the issue.  If not, then replace the thermostat with the PA300.

I'll report back when I find the time to see if I can fix it.  I'm not a very handy guy so I will need to allocate way more time than this should take. 

If anyone knows of a link showing how to replace a thermostat, please share.  I've Googled it but have not been able to find one.



Disassembly is pretty simple. Removing the back (and top if necessary) will reveal the insulation, possibly 2 layers.  It is fiber glass so wear gloves, long sleeves and eye protection.  If the line from the temp probe is not visible, you will need to remove the first layer of insulation carefully and set it aside. You will see the temp probe going through the insulation and smoker wall.  It may be captured by a threaded nut.  Loosen and remove, then remove the probe.  The LINE is a very thing hollow tube with liquid in it. This is what operates the switch.  As the fluid expands it closes the switch via a diaphragm and the power to the element comes on.  As it it cools it flows away from the switch which opens breaking contact.

Installing a new unit is the reverse.  BE CAREFUL!  The line/tube, while sturdy, cannot get kinked or it will block the flow. It will come coiled up. Drop the probe through the hole below where the controller mounts and secure the new controller and carefully pull the probe down and secure. Put the insulation back in place and you are finished. The kit will come with instructions.

Good luck.

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