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Why Does My Pellet Grill Keep Tripping The Breaker? (Solved)

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Pellet grill keeps tripping your electric breaker switch? When was the last time you even thought about your electrical system? 

The average person spends around 12 hours a day at home, but how much of that time is spent worrying about their electricity? If you’re like most people, it probably isn’t much.

But it doesn’t take long for things to go wrong with electrical systems because a faulty switch or loose wiring can cause problems quickly.

If you don’t know what to look for, then those problems are difficult to diagnose and expensive to fix. 

When your pellet grill starts tripping the breaker, you have no idea where to begin. In this article, you’ll learn what causes a pellet grill to trip the breaker, and what you can do about it. 


What Is a Pellet Grill?

A pellet grill is a type of grill that uses wood pellets as fuel. The pellets are made from compressed sawdust and are very efficient, providing heat that is evenly distributed across the grill.

Pellet grills are a great choice for those who want the taste of smoked meat without having to deal with the hassle of charcoal or propane grills.

They are also very easy to use and provide great results. However, when it comes to dealing with electrical issues, pellet grills can be a pain in the neck.

A pellet grill is designed to use wood pellets as fuel. For centuries, people have been cooking food over smoldering logs of wood at low temperatures.

Pellet grills use an auger system to feed hardwood pellets into a fire pot where they combust and produce heat that is distributed across the entire grill through convection (hot air). 

It provides even and consistent heat and saves you work by not having to refuel or adjust vents throughout the cooking like you would on a charcoal or gas grill.

For many, making them an excellent choice for those who want convenience along with tasty slow-cooked meals. 

Why Does My Pellet Grill Keep Tripping the Breaker?

From water leaks to faulty switches, here are the areas to check when your pellet grill keeps tripping the electric breaker switch.

When your pellet grill trips a breaker, you might wonder, “How many amps does a pellet grill pull?”

The answer might surprise you — they typically only pull around four amps for the first 5 to 10 minutes, and then drop down to less than two amps for the cook.

That’s much less than the average breaker load, so what’s the problem?

There are several reasons why your pellet grill might be tripping the breaker.

Some of these reasons include old wiring, lack of proper grounding, and even faulty switches.

Before you start tearing everything apart, it is important to diagnose the problem with an electrician or do some significant research first!

A Wet Hot Rod

Moisture inside the burn pot, or on the hot rod (heating element) itself is the most common cause when a pellet grills trips the breaker.

A buildup of rust or other residue in these areas may also be the culprit.

To remedy the problem, unplug your pellet grill and scrape away any rust or buildup inside the burn pot or on the heating element.

These parts will malfunction with moisture present, so make sure you also eliminate moisture inside with a fan or a butane torch. 

To prevent further damage to your pellet grill and future breaker trips, it’s a good idea to weather-proof the sensitive parts (electrical housings) of your pellet grill.

Some grills come with this installed already, but others don’t. 

Old Wiring

Older wiring can be a big reason why your pellet grill is tripping the breaker.

If your wiring is old and outdated, it might not be able to handle the load of a pellet grill, which often draws somewhere around 750 watts.

That’s even less than most traditional stoves, so it’s important to make sure your wiring is up to date.

You can have your wiring updated by a professional electrician, if necessary, but it’s best to have them diagnose the problem first. 

Improper Grounding

Wiring isn’t the only potential culprit, however. If your grill isn’t properly grounded, it might also trip the breaker.

Make sure that your grill is plugged into an outlet that is properly grounded — and if it’s not, have an electrician install a grounding plug for you. 

A grounding plug is a type of electrical plug that helps to prevent electrical shocks. It works by providing a path for the electricity to flow safely to the ground.

If your grill isn’t properly plugged into a grounded outlet, it might trip the breaker. You can have an electrician install a grounding plug for you if necessary — it’s a routine job for them. 

Faulty Switch

Although much less common, faulty switches can also be the cause of electrical issues with your grill.

If your switch is old or faulty, it might not be able to handle the load of your grill. To easily test your switch, simply turn it on and off rapidly (without turning the grill on).

If it keeps tripping, you might want to consider either replacing or rewiring the switch.

You should never attempt to work on electrical issues by yourself if you aren’t experienced with home repairs or electric work.

Not only can faulty wiring cause a fire hazard, but an inexperienced person working with electricity is also at risk for electrocution!

It’s much better to have a professional diagnose and repair the problem so that everyone stays safe. 

How to Weatherproof Your Pellet Grill

Your pellet grill is a big investment, and to keep it running the way it should, it needs to be taken care of. 

To keep it safe from the elements, make sure the grill is situated in a covered area, away from the reach of bad weather. This will keep rain and snow out of places it doesn’t belong. 

If possible, elevate the grill off the ground using a platform or stand. This will keep it safe from flood waters and heavy downpours. 

To top things off (literally), invest in a quality cover to make sure that moisture stays out.

At the end of the day, the best thing to do is keep it indoors, such as inside a garage or shed. Even when indoors though, you should still keep a cover over it just to be safe. 


Pellet grills are convenient, but they can also trip your home’s breaker if you’re not careful. By following our tips, you can avoid this issue and enjoy your grill worry-free.

Do you have any questions about pellet grills or using them safely in your home? Let us know in the comments below!


Lover of the outdoors and great food. If I'm not in my backyard cooking up a feast, I'm deep in the backcountry camping....and cooking up a feast! Follow along and let's create something great.