Traeger Grill Not Igniting? – Ultimate Troubleshooting Guide

In a world where barbeque aficionados swear by the smoky and flavorful dishes they create, a Traeger grill not igniting can lead to a culinary catastrophe. This ultimate troubleshooting guide aims to restore the glory of your grill and save the day with tested solutions that are easy to follow.

The Basics

Before delving into detailed solutions, it’s crucial to grasp the fundamental knowledge of how Traeger grills operate. These grills utilize wood pellets and an electric ignition system, providing an optimum environment for grilling, smoking, and even baking.

How a Traeger Grill Works

Traeger grills function through a combination of electrical and mechanical components, working together to ignite wood pellets and maintain the desired temperature. The auger, controlled by the digital thermostat, feeds pellets into the firepot, where the hot rod ignites them, producing heat and smoke.

  • The hot rod ignites the pellets
  • The fan circulates air, spreading heat and smoke evenly within the grill
  • The drip tray directs grease away from the fire, preventing flare-ups

Safety Precautions

When dealing with grills, safety can never be compromised. Always ensure the grill is on a flat, stable surface away from flammable materials. Regularly clean the grill to prevent grease buildup, which can lead to fire hazards. Check the condition of the electrical components and ensure they are free of damage and properly connected.

The Role of Components

Each component in a Traeger grill plays a vital role in its operation. The digital controller allows for precise temperature control, while the auger and hot rod are instrumental in igniting the pellets. The fan ensures consistent heat and smoke levels, and the drip tray prevents grease from causing flare-ups.

  • Digital Controller: Maintains the set temperature
  • Auger: Feeds pellets into the firepot
  • Hot Rod: Ignites the pellets

Maintenance and Care

Proper maintenance and care of these components can prevent many ignition issues. Regular cleaning of the grill interior, including the firepot, auger, and hot rod, is crucial. Ensure that the grill’s software is updated and that all components are in good condition and properly connected.

Identifying the Problem

Steaks On Traeger Grill

To troubleshoot effectively, identifying the underlying issue is essential. This could range from a simple pellet jam to a complex electrical failure. Here are a couple of the most common problems and solutions.

Pellet Issues

If your Traeger grill is not igniting, the first thing to check is the pellets. These could be of poor quality, damp, or there might be a jam in the auger preventing them from reaching the firepot. The grill might show an error or simply fail to heat up.

  • Inspect the pellets for dampness or disintegration
  • Ensure the pellets are of good quality and suitable for Traeger grills

Addressing the Problem

Empty the hopper and auger, ensuring that there are no blockages or poor-quality pellets. Refill the hopper with fresh, high-quality pellets. Clean the auger and the area around it regularly to prevent jams. Consider using a pellet storage container to keep the pellets dry and in good condition.

Electrical and Mechanical Failures

Electrical and mechanical failures can also prevent the grill from igniting. Signs include the grill not turning on, the display not working, or the components not functioning properly. Inspect the grill for any visible damage to the components or wiring.

  • Check if the grill is receiving power
  • Inspect the components and wiring for visible damage or disconnection

Addressing the Problem

If the grill is not receiving power, ensure it is properly connected and that the outlet is functional. Check the fuse and replace it if necessary. If there is visible damage to the components or wiring, consult the manual or contact Traeger customer support for advice or replacement parts.

Advanced Troubleshooting Techniques

Traeger PRO 780

When standard troubleshooting fails to resolve the issue, there are a few more advanced techniques that can be deployed to get your Traeger Grill back in action.

Probing Temperature Sensor Issues

Temperature sensor issues can mislead the grill into thinking it’s at the right temperature, preventing ignition. Symptoms include inconsistent temperatures, overburning, and the grill not igniting despite appearing to operate correctly.

Resolving Sensor Issues

Clean the temperature probe carefully without causing any damage. If the probe is damaged or faulty, consider replacing it. Always refer to the manual or consult with Traeger customer support for advice on resolving temperature sensor issues and obtaining suitable replacement parts.

Testing Ignition Rod Functionality

A faulty ignition rod is one of the most common reasons for ignition failure. If the rod is not heating up, it won’t ignite the pellets. This can be tested by observing whether the rod gets red hot during the ignition phase.

  • Verify if the ignition rod is heating up during the start-up cycle.
  • Inspect the rod for any visible damage or wear.

Resolving Ignition Rod Issues

If the ignition rod is not functioning correctly, it may need to be replaced. Refer to the grill’s manual to find the correct replacement part and for guidance on how to replace it, or seek professional help if necessary. Replacing the ignition rod promptly can prevent further damage to the grill’s components.


Now that we’ve identified the potential issues let’s discuss how to solve them and prevent future occurrences, ensuring a smooth grilling experience every time.

Resetting and Replacing Components

Sometimes, simply resetting the grill can resolve ignition issues. Turn off and unplug the grill, wait for about 15 minutes, then reconnect and power it up. Consult your manual for any specific reset procedures for your model, and observe if the components are functioning correctly after the reset.

  • Ensure the grill is completely off and unplugged before attempting a reset
  • Follow the manual’s instructions carefully

Replacing Damaged Parts

In some cases, damaged components may need to be replaced. Refer to your manual to identify the correct part numbers and order replacements from reputable sources. If unsure about replacing components yourself, seek professional help or contact Traeger’s customer support.

Regular Maintenance and Updates

Regular maintenance is the key to preventing ignition issues. Schedule periodic cleaning of the grill’s interior, especially the firepot, auger, and hot rod. Inspect the components and wiring for damage and ensure they are properly connected. Replace any damaged or worn-out parts promptly.

  • Clean everything after every few uses or more frequently depending on usage
  • Inspect the components regularly and replace them as needed

Keeping Software Up-to-Date

Updating the grill’s software can also prevent operational issues. Regularly check for software updates and install them as soon as they are available. Refer to your manual for the correct update procedure for your model, and contact Traeger support if you encounter any problems during the update.

Utilizing Warranty and Customer Support

Man cooking on grill

When all else fails, it’s time to leverage your Traeger Grill’s warranty or seek help from Traeger’s customer support, renowned for their helpful and responsive service.

Leveraging Warranty

Your Traeger Grill’s warranty is an invaluable asset when facing ignition problems. It’s essential to understand the terms and conditions of your warranty, including what it covers and for how long. Always keep the purchase receipt and warranty card in a safe place.

  • Review your warranty terms and conditions carefully.
  • Keep all necessary documents handy for a warranty claim.

Making a Warranty Claim

If your grill is still under warranty and you’ve identified a covered fault, contact Traeger to make a warranty claim. Ensure you have all required documents and information handy, and be prepared to describe the issue in detail.

Contacting Customer Support

When you’re unable to resolve the ignition issue yourself, Traeger’s customer support can provide expert advice and assistance. Be prepared with your grill’s model number, purchase details, and a detailed description of the issue when contacting them.

  • Have all pertinent information ready when contacting customer support.
  • Be clear and detailed when describing the issue to receive accurate assistance.

Following Advice Carefully

Once you’ve reached out, follow any advice or instructions provided by the customer support representative carefully. Whether it involves performing additional troubleshooting steps, replacing parts, or sending the grill for repair, adherence to their guidance can ensure a faster resolution to your problem.


How often should I clean my Traeger grill to prevent ignition issues?

While the frequency of cleaning depends on usage, it is recommended to clean it after every 20 hours of cooking time or after cooking 5-6 bags of pellets. However, it’s always good practice to regularly check the components for any buildup or blockages and clean them as necessary.

Can I use any brand of wood pellets in my Traeger grill?

While Traeger grills are compatible with most high-quality wood pellets, using Traeger brand pellets is recommended to ensure optimal performance and prevent any issues. Using low-quality pellets can lead to ignition problems and might void the warranty.

Is there a specific way to store pellets to avoid them becoming damp?

Yes, wood pellets should be stored in a cool, dry place, away from direct sunlight and moisture. Using airtight containers or heavy-duty plastic bags can help preserve the quality of the pellets and prevent any moisture contamination.

What should I do if my grill is producing too much smoke?

If it is producing excessive smoke, it might be due to grease buildup or poor-quality pellets. Clean everything thoroughly, especially the firepot and the grease tray, and ensure you are using high-quality, suitable pellets. If the problem persists, consult the user manual or contact Traeger customer support.

Can I perform software updates on my Traeger grill using a mobile device?

Yes, many models are equipped with WiFIRE technology, allowing you to update the software using the Traeger app on a mobile device.

Ensure your grill is connected to Wi-Fi and follow the instructions in the app or the user manual to perform updates.

How can I ensure that the electrical components of my Traeger grill are in good condition?

Regularly inspect the electrical components such as wires, connectors, and the digital controller for any signs of wear, damage, or corrosion. Ensure all connections are secure and replace any damaged components immediately.

Avoid exposing the grill to adverse weather conditions to prevent damage to the electrical components.

Final Words

Traeger grills, renowned for their versatility and reliability, can occasionally face ignition issues. Understanding the basics of how the grill operates, identifying potential problems, and knowing how to address them can ensure your Traeger grill continues to deliver flavorful and smoky dishes.

Regular maintenance, prompt replacement of damaged parts, and keeping the software updated are critical in preventing issues and ensuring the longevity of your grill. So, arm yourself with this ultimate troubleshooting guide, and never let a non-igniting Traeger interrupt your barbecue sessions again!