Helpful Reply? about propane consumption for Masterbuilt smoker

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ces1948
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2014/08/14 21:03:02 (permalink)

? about propane consumption for Masterbuilt smoker

Would anyone be able to tell me how many hours I would get from a standard 20lb propane tank at average smoker temps?
The burner is listed at 15,400 btu.  Also would you recommend something like this as opposed to an electric model with a 800 watt element. They are are both about the same price. I'm strictly an amatuer who only occasionly wants to use this cooking method.
 
http://www.walmart.com/ip/Masterbuilt-Propane-Smoker/21151685    propane
 
http://www.walmart.com/ip/Masterbuilt-30-Electric-Smokehouse/7811422?action=product_interest&action_type=title&placement_id=irs_middle&strategy=PWVUB&visitor_id=85769145057&category=0%3A5428%3A4089%3A4885&client_guid=06b5ccf8-89a3-4ca6-a7b7-a2cf46883c67&customer_id_enc=92f0d919090c538d5d76521fe7f642dc&config_id=0&parent_item_id=21151685&guid=495a6963-862c-4e34-ad44-286840d829a5&bucket_id=irsbucketdefault&findingMethod=p13n 
 
Thanks
 
post edited by ces1948 - 2014/08/14 21:04:08
#1
Foodbme
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Re: ? about propane consumption for Masterbuilt smoker 2014/08/14 23:57:49 (permalink) ☄ Helpfulby ces1948 2014/08/15 20:00:04
According to this web site, a 20# tank used with a 15,400 BTU Rated device should give you just under 28 hours of usage per tank.
http://www.ehow.com/how_11386194_measure-propane-usage.html
According to BBQ Experts, Propane gives you better flavor than electric and wood/ charcoal gives better flavor than propane.
1. Wood/charcoal
2. Propane
3. Electric
In terms of easy to use and control heat and the cooking process it's just reverse:
1. Electric
2. Propane
3. Wood/charcoal
 
#2
ces1948
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Re: ? about propane consumption for Masterbuilt smoker 2014/08/15 20:10:09 (permalink)
Foodbme
According to this web site, a 20# tank used with a 15,400 BTU Rated device should give you just under 28 hours of usage per tank.
http://www.ehow.com/how_11386194_measure-propane-usage.html
According to BBQ Experts, Propane gives you better flavor than electric and wood/ charcoal gives better flavor than propane.
1. Wood/charcoal
2. Propane
3. Electric
In terms of easy to use and control heat and the cooking process it's just reverse:
1. Electric
2. Propane
3. Wood/charcoal
 


Thanks for the info. If I am figuring this correctly it would cost a tremendous amount more to operate the propane smoker vs the electric smoker. Since I think all we're doing in this method of cooking is maintaining a low temp while creating smoke from wood it doesn't seem the method would matter. If it costs me $20 average to refill a 20# tank that gives me 28 hours of use versus about $3 to run a 850 watt heating element for the same 28 hours.
Am I off base here in my thinking? Thanks
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edwmax
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Re: ? about propane consumption for Masterbuilt smoker 2014/08/15 21:15:30 (permalink)
Not quite   ...    
1st: the 850 watts element is only 2900 BTU per hour.  And, this unit is thermostatic controlled.   Other-words the heat element does not run all the time once up to temperature (unless the outside is very cold).  This element maximum BTU/hr out put is only 20% of the LP 15400 BTU burner you listed.
 
2nd:  The 28hr run time of the 15400 BTU burner is calculated at full burn.   In the smoker, the burner will be running at a minimum output to maintain the proper temperature.   This would be about 15% to 25% of the 15400 BTU capacity of the burner.  Other-words, ... a 20lb lp tank will last ABOUT 4 or 5 times longer than the 28 hrs of the 'full-on' burn.
 
Whether you are using electric or gas smokers the BTU's required should be reasonably be the same for the same cooking.   The cost difference is the difference of cost electricity vs. cost of gas per BTU furnished.
 
Suggestion: I would look at getting the LP smoker.   Then If, you want electric later or that option because of high gas price, slide an electric hot plate into the bottom.  
post edited by edwmax - 2014/08/15 21:18:37
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mar52
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Re: ? about propane consumption for Masterbuilt smoker 2014/08/16 12:25:15 (permalink)
Taste vs. operating cost. 
 
I'd go propane. 
#5
ces1948
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Re: ? about propane consumption for Masterbuilt smoker 2014/08/16 12:47:28 (permalink)
Since we're "cooking" with the smoke would the method used to create the smoke matter as far as taste?
#6
mar52
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Re: ? about propane consumption for Masterbuilt smoker 2014/08/16 15:27:24 (permalink)
I don't know why but I've heard the taste differs.  I have no idea as to why.
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edwmax
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Re: ? about propane consumption for Masterbuilt smoker 2014/08/16 17:18:19 (permalink)
I have always placed charcoal briquettes on my electric smoker.   The results is that my guest swear the bbq could not have been made on any electric grill or smoker.   The same goes for the gas grill.   Since most smoking is done with 'low' indirect heat, the heat source has very little to do with the flavor.  It is the wood & smoke that makes the flavor.
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