The Smokin' Pro barrel grill with offset smoker set up outside on a brick patio in front of a green lawn with blurry trees in the background.

Grilling Tips

Smokin' Pro Offset Smoker Maintenance and Care Guide

Maintenance of the Char-Griller Smokin’ Pro

To ensure optimal performance and longevity for your grill, it is crucial to maintain cleanliness and regular upkeep. This comprehensive blog will cover essential topics such as seasoning, heat maintenance, thorough cleaning, and more. Let us get started!

Seasoning Your Offset Smoker

When you get your new offset smoker, the first thing you need to do after assembling is season the grill. This can prevent rust, provide easier cleanup, and help it keep a non-stick surface.

Whether you bought a brand-new grill or rolling one out of storage for the summer, it is a necessity to properly season the interior. Thoroughly seasoning your grill or smoker will ensure protection and longevity for your unit, make it easier to clean, and help your food taste better
3 racks of ribs and a cast iron pan of macaroni and cheese cook on the main grate of an open Smokin' Pro grill. Whole bell peppers are roasting on the warming rack, which is just visible under the partly closed lid.A closed Smokin' Pro grill with attached offset smoker on the right and a side shelf on the left. The smoker is mounted on a cart with 2 large wheels. The grill sits on a paved patio in front of a green lawn and trees. 3 racks of ribs and a cast iron pan of macaroni and cheese cook on the main grate of an open Smokin' Pro grill. 4 whole bell peppers and 2 ears of husk-on corn on the cob roast on the warming rack.

Grill Seasoning Steps

  1. Get Your Oil!

    Lightly coat ALL INTERIOR SURFACES (including grills, grates, and inside of barrel.) with vegetable oil (spray vegetable oil is easiest but do not use near hot coals or fire). Be sure to layer on a decent amount and try to get every crevice. If you have a Side Fire Box, be sure to coat the entire interior of that as well.

  2. Build Your Fire!

    Build a medium-sized fire on the fire grate. Do not exceed 1.36kgs/3lb of charcoal in the barrel grill. Always put charcoal on top of the fire grate and not directly into the bottom of the grill.

  3. Get Your Grill/Smoker Fired Up!

    After the coal ash is over, spread out the coals, replace the cooking grates, close lid, and heat at approximately 250°F (121°C) for two hours. You should notice the grill smoking and the previously shiny, oiled interior will turn to a deep brown or bronze.

  4. Round 2

    Remove grates from the grill with oven mitts, allow to cool, then re-coat grates and return to grill at approximately 200°F (93°C) for two hours.

  5. Maintain the Seasoning.

    After this initial seasoning, maintain it by lightly coating oil after each use to prevent rusting and to keep the non-stick surfaces intact.

Once your grill is seasoned, it will make your day-to-day grilling more stress-free and extend the lifetime of your Char-Griller Grill.

How to Manage Heat in your Smokin' Pro

The first thing to know about controlling the temperature on your grill really comes down to charcoal placement. Depending on where you place the charcoal within your grill, you can create different temperatures and different temperature zones. For example, if you spread the hot charcoal on one side of the grill and leave the other side empty, you will have two zones for cooking - a hot zone for searing and a cooler zone for indirect cooking. Using your Side Fire Box, you can also use this as a sear station.

Temperature zones make it easy to keep parts of the grill at the ideal temperature for what you want to cook.

Controlling the temperature of your grill is all about controlling the air flow to the fire. MORE AIR = MORE HEAT. LESS AIR = LESS HEAT. By opening and closing the top and side dampers, you can easily control the temperature of your grill.

Ways to change temperature

  • Vents:

    Open the vent to allow more airflow. Allowing more airflow will allow your fire to be stoked, increasing your temperature. Closing the vents will do the opposite. Close in smaller sections if you want to slightly decrease the temperature.

  • Opening the grill:

    You may have heard the term before, "If you are looking, it ain't cooking." This is true! If you want to increase your grill temperature, let it rise naturally! If you want to cool the grill down, open the lid! If you want to cool down your grill, fully close the grill to allow no airflow.

  • Charcoal:

    If you want to increase temperature, add more charcoal! Stoke your charcoal to the side so it does not burn if possible.

Cool Down Your Offset Smoker

The best way to cool off your Smokin' Pro offset smoker is to fully close the vents. Close the lid and wait! Do not put cover on or touch the grill until grill is cool.

For more help maintain temperature while Charcoal Grilling, check out our BBQ 101 all about this.

Maintenance and Care of the Smokin' Pro

Finish Up

  • When you are finished grilling, clean your grates with a grill grate scraper then lightly coat your grates with flaxseed or other vegetable oil.
  • Next close both dampers and the hood allowing the fire to suffocate.
  • Wait until coals and ash have completely cooled before moving to the next step.

Clean Up

  • Wait until the fire is completely extinguished and the grill is cool to the touch before emptying the ashes.
  • Remove grates from grill with grate lifter.
  • Remove ash pan from grill.
  • Give the ash pan a few firm taps to loosen any ash that may be stuck.
  • Dump the ashes in a metal container and cover with water to ensure there are no lit coals, then you can dispose of the ashes.
  • IMPORTANT: Charcoal is porous and holds moisture. DO NOT leave charcoal in your grill while you are not using it. Charcoal and ashes left inside the ash pan may reduce the life of your grill.
A person wearing a red oven mitt pours coals from the EasyDump Ash Pan into a metal bucket

Cover Up

  • Extend the life of your grill by using a Char-Griller® custom fit grill cover to protect it from the elements. Weather resistant polyester material protects against birds, dust, wind, rain, and snow.

Get a Grill Cover for the Smokin' Pro

A grill with a left side shelf, right side offset smoker box, and a chimney coming up from the left side of the barrel grill lid, all covered by a custom Char-Griller cover

Watch more about how to clean up your grill.

Trouble Shoot FAQ about the Smokin' Pro

I am having difficulty lighting by grill. The best product you can get is a charcoal chimney. This can allow an easy dump for your charcoal grill. For more tips, check out this blog Different Ways to Ignite Charcoal - Char-Griller (
I have excessive smoke Ensure charcoal is fully lit before placing food on the grill. Clean ashes regularly to ensure proper airflow.
My food is sticking to the grate. Preheat the grill and brush grates with oil before cooking. Make sure your grill is clean!
Charcoal goes out during cooking

Keep the grates open. Add more charcoal if needed. Arrange charcoal evenly and consider using a larger quantity.

I have trouble regulating the temperatureControlling the temperature of your grill is all about controlling the air flow to the fire. MORE AIR = MORE HEAT. LESS AIR = LESS HEAT. By opening and closing the top and side dampers, you can easily control the temperature of your grill. The amount of charcoal used when grilling can also greatly impact your ability to control temperature. Dampers may need to be adjusted during the cook to account for changes in weather like wind or to accommodate for more or less fuel. When first learning how to operate your grill, always use the same amount of charcoal to best learn your grill’s damper control.

Keeping regular care and maintenance can drastically increase the life of your grill. Using these tips from regular seasoning, cleaning up and covering up is the easiest way to improve your grilling. 

BBQ 101 Video Series

For additional grilling resources and getting started with grilling, check out our BBQ 101 series

BBQ 101 from Char-Griller and Kingsford

Explore Grilling Recipes

xplore our line-up of recipes for grilling, smoking and more.