How to manage a fire
1. The bottom air intake as well as top lid chimney exhaust is how you control your airflow & temperature within your Hero Smoker & Grill
2. When both are completely open, you are essentially allowing as much airflow and oxygen as possible into your Hero Smoker & Grill and therefore your fire will burn hotter. This is perfect for grilling meat Hot & Fast that needs a high temperature, however when cooking Low & Slow to cook hanged meat for example, you want to decrease the temperature so food cooks evenly and slowly.
3. By opening or closing the air dampers on top of the chimney exhaust as well as bottom air intake , you can control the amount of airflow and oxygen entering your drum smoker and therefore control the temperature more effectively.
4. Simply adjust the damper accordingly within the setting guidelines and use the readings from the thermometer to get to your desired cooking temperature.
5. You can certainly check on your food while smoking but try not to peek to often (we know it’s tempting yes) but doing so will cause a fluctuation in your internal cooking chamber temperature. You will firstly see a significant drop in temperature as heat is expelled, followed by a possible further increase in temperature afterwards (versus the internal temperature prior to opening the lid). This is due to the rush of oxygen that enters the cooking chamber when the lid is open, which then further ignites the coals and in turn raises temperature. So just make sure if you did peek to close the top lid properly and adjust either the damper on the chimney exhaust or bottom air intake (or both) to get back to your required cooking temperature.
6.Lastly, try to not take the whole process to seriously. Smoking is both an art and science and it take time to completely master – so relax and don’t give up should the food not come out as perfect as you expected the first couple of rounds. Practice makes perfect and experimenting is all part of the fun anyway. Enjoy the process!