| |

The Camp Chef Woodwind WiFi Review

IMG 3483 scaled

Smoking-Meat.com is supported by its readers. We may earn an affiliate commission at no extra cost to you if you buy through a link on this page.

Read this article without ads

I am so thrilled to be able to announce the launch of the brand new Camp Chef Woodwind WiFi— one of my favorite pellet smokers is now even better.

I can tell you that I've been using this thing for the last few weeks and you can color me impressed!

What's so great about WiFi capability?

This means you can connect the unit to your home wifi via a few easy steps and voila! it can then be controlled via an app on your smartphone or tablet from virtually anywhere in the world.

Need to run to the store, do errands, go to work, get a good night sleep even and still be able to monitor and/or control the temperature of your smoker and up to 4–yes four– pieces of meat, now you can!

I guess you can tell that I'm pretty excited about this machine😀

Let me just back up and tell you about my experience:

It arrived well packaged like all of the stuff I receive from Camp Chef

IMG 3295

I had to install the following:

  • legs
  • hopper lid
  • bottom shelf
  • cord wrap/handle
  • upper grate rails
  • front lid handle
  • chimney

I was able to install all of these components in about an hour by myself although I did ask for help when it came time to sit the unit up on its legs after installation.

Keep in mind that I will be slower than most since I am stopping every little bit to take pictures of the process.

Also, this did not include installing the propane fueled sidekick (flat griddle) which mounts to the right side of the unit.

The Hopper

Many pellet smokers are not able to contain a full 20-lb bag of pellets and while I've never understood this, Camp Chef has made their hoppers large enough to hold 22-lbs which means I can fill it with a full bag of pellets and the hopper is not spilling pellets out of the top.

There's also a handy window on the front of the hopper so you can see how many pellets you have left with just a quick glance.

On the back side of the hopper is a chute which allows you to empty out the hopper for cleaning, changing out pellets, etc.. Pull the knob on the left side of the hopper and the pellet will start flowing out. Nice!


Let's face it, cord storage is such an easy thing to add to something like a pellet grill. It's not something I miss too much if a pellet grill doesn't have it, but it sure makes me smile when a company is thoughtful enough to add it.

IMG 3296

Bottom Storage Shelf

This is not something I typically use often but it's a nice feature nonetheless and is sturdy enough to hold several bags of pellets. I tend to lay the top grate down there in the event I am cooking something tall (like  a turkey) and need the extra headroom.

IMG 3306

Upper and Lower Grates

This unit not only has a lower grate but also a full sized upper grate. Lots of pellet smokers do not have this feature even if there's room to add one and/or you have to purchase it as an extra add-on.

It's easily removable if you need extra height or you need room to get in there and baste something while it's cooking.

IMG 3304

Easy Ash Removal

As with all of the Woodwind pellet smokers, there is a cup on the bottom of the smoke chamber that let's you clean the ash from the firepot quickly and efficiently.

Pull the lever in between cooking sessions and the ashes fall down into the cup, empty the cool ashes into an appropriate container and you're ready for your next session.

Direct Flame Setting

I haven't used this feature much on my other Woodwind SG since I have the searbox mounted to the right side on it and that allows me to sear steaks, tri-tips, etc. at temperatures up to 900°F but I could see myself using this a little more often on this unit.

If you're not familiar with this feature, there is a lever on the right side of the unit that moves the flame deflector from over the firepot all the way to one side. This allows the flames to come up through the slotted drip tray and to the food on the grate.

Here is the deflector over the top of the firepot:

IMG 3421

And here's the flame deflector moved over out of the way:

IMG 3422

The drip pan has notches that are designed to allow the drip pan to guide the juices down to the grease bucket while letting the flames come up and through to the grate.

IMG 3418 IMG 3420

While this direct flame method doesn't work as well as the 900°F searbox, it definitely works well enough and is an excellent feature.

The Full-Color WiFi Controller

This is my favorite thing about the new Woodwind WiFi– not only is the controller full color but it very easily connects to your home wifi and can be monitored and controlled on your smartphone from virtually anywhere in the world.

Click here if you need help with the Camp Chef Connects App

This means if you're right in the middle of a cook and you need to run to the store.. no problem. Need to go to work, run some errands or even catch some sleep? No problem!

You'll be able to know exactly what's going on and even turn the temperature up and down if you need to or change the smoke settings via the app on your smartphone from anywhere in the world.

IMG 3405

As if that's not enough, there are 4 probe inputs on the controller and it ships with 4 meat probes.

IMG 3400

You can monitor up to 4 briskets, chickens, pork butts, steaks, or anything else you want to smoke and in any combination right on your smartphone!

This means you don't need a fancy secondary thermometer to do this if you own this special version of the Camp Chef Woodwind.

My overall opinion

I've always loved the Camp Chef Woodwind but this one takes things to a whole new level with the 4 probes and wifi capability. This unit promises and it delivers on nearly every feature you'd want in a pellet smoker.

Let's just say that I can't imagine anyone being disappointed with this.. it's absolutely LOADED with well thought out features.

I do have one gripe but it's not a big thing.. I'm being really nit-picky to even mention it:

I'd like to see Camp Chef add the ability to power it on remotely without needing to confirm this on the smoker controller for those times when you want to make sure it's ready to go before work and then you can start it preheating on your way home from work so it's ready when you get there.

For now, you can tell it to “Power on” using the app but you then have to walk out to the smoker to confirm. I'm sure this is for liability reasons.

I've gotten used to being able to do this on the REC TEC and while it doesn't have near the features that the Woodwind has, I enjoy this feature.

If you're in the market for a new smoker and you want to purchase the very best at a heck of a deal, do yourself a favor and get one on order now.

Get Jeff’s Products!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


  1. Jeff:
    I have a DLX 24 with all the Sidekick attachments. It gets pretty heavy when the pellet box is full, and difficult to maneuver around the patio. I was always thinking about ways to add wheels to the legs under the pellet box. Then I saw in the replacement parts section of the Camp Chef website, that I could get legs with casters for about $85. Ordered immediately and installed them in 15 minute by my self. Now I move it easily around the patio.

  2. Jeff:
    I’ve had a Traeger and Louisiana pellet grill and enjoyed both. Was very interested in the Camp Chef Woodwind you are reviewing and was ready to pull the trigger on this grill. Then I read several review comments:
    *poor customer service
    *auger not working and had to remove the bottom panel to get it to move
    *paint peeling within a year
    *grill taking 45 minutes to heat up

    I know one can always read horror stories about a product, but wanted your opinion/experience with this grill as it seemed to be exactly what I am looking for.
    Really enjoy your web site and recipes! Thanks for your input.

    1. I have one for 2 years now with sear box. No problems like you mentioned. Really an awesome BBQ grill at a reasonable price. Bob

  3. Jeff,
    Just looking at the Woodwind 36…does it have a water pan or can you just put a small pan inside? Just curious your thoughts on this. Funny story, my wife laughed at me for spending $20 for a rub recipe online….but we have been using it for over 10 years!

    1. Jeff.. I appreciate your support! Those rub sales are what kept this site going for years and years and I have people like you to thank for believing in me.

      I don’t typically use a water pan in my pellet smokers but you can definitely place a shallow pan of water right below the grate if you want to.

      Have a great weekend!

  4. Hello Jeff! Love your rub and sauce! My wife appreciates the lower amount of salt. I had a BGE but got tired of having to take everything out/apart to add more charcoal/wood and all the extra wires (although the Cyber Q worked great) on long, overnight cooks. I am looking at vertical electric cookers with pellet/hopper capabilities but don’t know how good they are (auger jams?) and the “keep water 3/4 pan or danger of fire” bothers me. So I am back to Rec Tea Bull vs CC Woodwind for ease and simplicity, and probably the Rec Teq with a Char Broil (small grill) infra red grill instead of a sear boxl. My only big hesitation is I am 73 and need to find an army to help me get the grill down and back up onto our deck. That leaves me with Ace Hardware and a Traeger Timberline 850 “delivered to the door assembled” for $6-800 more. Is the Traagar worth it? Thanks!

    1. Jim, I really prefer the RecTeq and the CC models over almost anything else.

      I’d post something in a local classified for someone/handyman to put the smoker together and place it where you want it. Offer to pay $100-150 bucks. Not bad for a couple hours of work at most. You can watch to make sure they are being careful and following the directions.

  5. I love my woodwind 24! The Wi-Fi controller app is excellent! I believe the reason you cannot turn on start up with the app is due to liability. When you start the smoker you need to leave the lid open. There’s been many cases where people did not do this and the door blew open with a loud boom during the start up. One are the best Features is the sidekick. I opted for the BBQ box over the Sear station. It’s a great way to reverse sear Beef and poultry.. There is also a Facebook support group for more ideas along with tips and tricks. One thing I did do, was to buy some high temperature gasket and go around the openings on the door. This way I can regulate the smoke with more precision via the adjustable smoke chimney. I have also achieved 530° in the box using lumberjack pellets. I love my woodwind!

    1. I have not used a smoke tube in the CC Woodwind however, I think it would work well if you wanted more smoke flavor or if you were cooking at higher temperatures (which would decrease the smoke output). Placing it next to the probe access panel on the left side of the smoke chamber should provide enough air to keep it going.

  6. Hey Jeff – I’m considering the WW 24 Wifi as I’m ready for a new grill/smoker. Being that you’ve had this equipment for some time now, I’m curious if the review stands up? Is it something you’re still using regularly? If so, what have been the main issues? Appreciate all you do! Cheers, Steve.

    1. Steve, I still use this same unit regularly and I continue to be pleased by it. The ONLY issue I have found so far is that it has developed a vibration or hum that is very annoying and I have not been able to figure out what is causing it. I simply lay something heavy on the hopper and the sound goes away. Easy to mitigate but I’d rather make it go away completely.

      It sits out in the weather but it’s always covered and I have never had an issue with the pellets getting wet or any water getting through the cover through rain, ice, and snow.

      It heats up quickly and connects easily to my Wifi network so I can monitor/control it even when I am not home.

      Let me know if you have other questions about this smoker before purchasing.

  7. Hello! Purchased a CC WW 36 based on your thorough review. Thanks for that! I do have a question. With the deflector over firepot for smoke mode… what is the highest temp you have got? I can only reach 430 and that is with the exact pellets I dumped from my Traeger that got to 500 day prior. Trying to see if this is going to be the norm eventhough advertised to reach 500. I don’t really use slide and grill feature as I think it’s gimicky so got the searbox attachment. Thanks for any insight into my issue!

  8. New to pellet smoking and the Camp Chef. After reading the many reviews, I believe I am leaning towards the 36in with either the sear box or sidekick.
    I’m ditching my old Weber I’ve had for 10+ years. I do have a Kamado Joe ceramic smoker as well but the Weber is end of life.
    Two questions:
    1) Can you use any pellets or is it recommended to only use Camp Chef pellets? If not required to use CC pellets, what pellets do you recommend or have had success with?
    2) As a long tie griller of steaks and burgers, I love getting the sear. I was originally looking at the sear box but it appears the sidekick has more versatility but can still get a pretty good sear. What is your recommendation?

    Thanks! Great blog and commentary. Very helpful.

    1. Camp Chef is a great smoker and I do recommend the larger 36-inch model. You can use any food-grade pellets as long as they are high quality. I like the Camp Chef pellets however, I usually pick up Pit Boss pellets locally from Lowes, Walmart, Etc. and have really good success with them at a great price.

      I used to recommend the sear box and then I got my hands on a the sidekick and the rest is history. It is definitely more versatile and will give you awesome sears as well as allow you to do other things like veggies, eggs, bacon, toasted bread, etc.

  9. I just upgraded a CampChef DLX 24″ grill with a Woodwind WiFi/PID controller. I’ve had it for about a month, and had 6 or 7 cooks. Smoke settings do not work. Numbers 1 and 10 are basically the same. Also, I can no longer update firmware-even standing next to it, it says that Bluetooth is not connected although my phone says it is. The app does not give me a warning or notification when probes hit their mark. None. if you are not staring at the phone/app, you won’t know. Camp Chef quality and support used to be top notch/no questions asked, but under the pandemic, wait times are ridiculous, and tech support via email is not helpful. They said it was a notification setting on my phone (it wasn’t). It doesn’t matter that I have 4 probes if none of them warn me when they hit their mark. I was happy with the regular controller, and just wanted an wifi upgrade. This controller and the app seem like they’re not quite ready. Please save your money until Camp Chef gets their act straight.

  10. I added the wifi controller gen1 as shown here, and it is very finicky on connection. I installed it March 2020 and by August it would no longer connect to bluetooth or wifi. It first started failing to connect to wifi then a week or two later it stopped connecting to bluetooth,

    Not sure I can recommend it to anyone but hoping the gen2 works a little better for you guys trying to upgrade.


    Ok, y’all, I bought a SG24 wifi pellet grill. First off I would say it was pretty easy putting it together having no issues.

    I was also able to easily connect my iphone to the unit via wifi and it has worked great. After the burnin, I’ve had two cooks so far. A rack of ribs and a brisket. Both turned out fantastic and grill worked perfectly.

    Then it happened! On the third cook, went to turn it on and nothing. My wifi screen would not power on so I had no idea where I was. Moving the selector switch around and blindly clicking on things but not knowing what I was selecting, i finally got it to startup (still no screen). I was able to control the overall cook of the pork shoulder via my phone app.
    How the heck does the unit’s controller display go out after just two cooks? I also keep it covered up with a large ATV heavy duty cover out of the weather elements when not in use.

    Now, I have to call Camp Chef and hope they pick up my phone call to discuss this and help me troubleshoot it.

    What is it with these smoker’s controllers? I had a Masterbuilt controller go out after just 3 cooks and because it’s a discontinued model, they no longer carry any of those kinds of parts. Now the same thing with a Camp Chef. Are you kidding me? I’m getting sick to death of these controllers and it completely baffles me why these manufacturers of smoker grills can’t make a controller that wont go out after 2-3 cooks. Frustrating!!

  12. I am looking at the Camp Chef Smoke Pro SG24 Wifi pellet grill for my husband for Father’s Day (the Woodwind is a bit out of my price range). Do you know much about this product or would you recommend it? He is a complete gadget man and loves to grill, but I want to make sure I am buying the right grill. Thanks.

    1. Caroline, I am a big fan of the Camp Chef line of pellet smokers.. the Smoke Pro SG Wifi is a good one and has a wifi controller with all of the other nice features such as upper and lower grates, ash cleanout, slide and grill technology and it’s compatible with the sidekick griddle/burner if he ever wants to add that on at some point.

  13. I am hearing the Wifi controller does not work well with Android Smartphones but Apple is fine? Any info on that ?

  14. Jeff,

    I have 3 GMG Jim Bowie smokers & a new Traeger 1300 which I love despite the hassels with the WI-FI connecting to my internet. It seems every time traeger updates their software my Traeger goes “offline” despite my WI-FI extender that can handle a 10,000 Sq.’ home. Needless to say, Traeger has problems with their WI-FI system (the Timberline 1300 ($1999) was bought in 11/19).

    Question to you is: What grade stainless does your recommended grill have? If it contains any iron, which cheap stainless has, it won’t last 18 months on any property on the Gulf or Atlantic coast. My $2,200+ Weber Summit grill lasted less than 18 months on Marco Island despite being outdoors only 7 months per year under our lanai. Weber wouldn’t disclose the grade of their stainless, saying that was “a trade secret” but all you need to do is put a magnet on it and if it attaches, it is cheap stainless with iron in it as opposed to marine grade stainless that costs more. I have had the exact same weber Summit in our Wisconsin lake home for 16 years with no problem, but do not recommend your new favorite smoker to your customers if they live in proximity to saltwater!!

    Love your rubs (far less salt than Traeger & better humidity proof packaging) and your fabulous cookbook.

    And BTW, Weber refunded my $2,200.

    Steve Riley
    Marco Island, FL.
    Cable, WI.
    Dillon Montana

    1. Steve, I just tested the stainless parts on the Camp Chef Woodwind and the REC TEC Bull and it is magnetic all over, not partially magnetic as some types can be such as 304. I have not seen any reviews from people who live in a climate like yours but it would be know to see if they are seeing these issues.

      I do not have any specs on hand as to the exact type of materials these 2 grills are actually made from.

      For what it’s worth, there are more stainless parts on the REC TEC Bull than on the Camp Chef Woodwind.

  15. Hi Jeff

    Long time subscriber and I love your website. I just bought a Camp Chef PG24MZG on Amazon. I performed the break-in using Bear Mountain hickory pellets. When I got done, I noticed that I had pellet dust shavings everywhere on the inside of the grill. Is this normal? I sifted the remaining pellets in the bag to get rid of the remaining dust in the bag. I noticed that your Woodwind grill has dust on the inside of it as well. Won’t this get on the food when cooking and are there specific brands of pellets that you use that are not filled with dust? I hate to think that I always have to sift every bag that I buy to get rid of the dust.

    1. Phil, just like with cooking on a charcoal grill or camp cooking over a wood fire, pellet smokers do have a small bit of ash that can potentially get onto the food. I’m pretty persnickety about my indoor cooking but I just have to choose to not worry about it as much when I’m cooking outdoors since I know the pellets I use are made from hardwood and are food grade.

      There’s no way that I am aware of to cook outdoors over wood or charcoal and not get some organic material on your food. I wouldn’t think most of it is coming from the dust that’s already in the bag, I think as the pellets burn, some of that ash just gets carried up with the air/heat currents.

      If it is the unburned pellet wood dust, I’d be interested to see how it’s getting through the auger, out of the burn pot and up to the grate without getting burned.

  16. Hey Jeff,
    I went with the 36 but have a lot of smoke escaping around the lid. Was wondering about yours?
    My first was not square to the barrel and they sent out another that arrived today. Unfortunately, it was dropped at some point on the bottom right side of the lid. Trying to get the corner to straighten out again. ARG!

    1. Wow.. that must be very frustrating. I am sorry to hear about all of the trouble you are having with it. Some smoke does escape around the lid.. the only way I know of to truly fix this is to apply some felt strip around the perimeter of the door. It’s never been a big enough deal for me to worry about on the pellet smokers but it can be done successfully.

  17. Jeff-

    About to pull the trigger on a pellet grill.

    If you had to only pick one would it be a Rec Tec Bull or the new Camp Chef Woodwind?

    1. I would have to go with the 36 inch Woodwind with the SideKick over the REC TEC. Having said that, you’d be very happy with either of those I think.. both excellent pieces of equipment.

  18. Jeff, I am seriously looking at the Camp Chef Woodwind to replace my Jen-Air gas grill. Here’s my question. If I throw some chicken and burgers on the grill (not the side sear box) will they have a smokey flavor or be more like the tase of a gas grill. My family loves when I “smoke” food but don’t want everything smoked.

    1. Herb, one of the things about pellet smokers is that they burn wood pellets very efficiently. You will only get smoke flavor at very low temperatures. When you get up above about 250°F, the pellets are burning so efficiently that little to no smoke is created and your food will not have a smoke flavor.

      For this reason, many people bake cakes, pies, breads, etc in their pellet smokers at high temperatures and these items are not smoke flavored.

      If you want a smoke flavor, cook for an hour or two at the lowest setting then move it up to 225°F.. no higher.

  19. I owned a Traeger the 34 before the sawhorse leg design. I loved the grill, it did what I needed. I was thinking about the Weber but no go. The RecTec would be my choice or the Camp Chef. I like my grills to feel like grills and love the width of both. I don’t like the new sizes of the Traeger, the stack up approach, which is more like of a smoker than a grill. I am torn because I plan to purchase a Nuke as well for the open fire grilling as well so a smaller size smoke may work. I am scared to purchase the Pit Boss/Cuisinart models, for some reason I just feel they aren’t built to last.

    I have been looking at the CampChef Wifi 36, I love the price and the design (width and top-shelf design) of the smoker/grill. The only thing I am worried about is the quality of the build, the thickness of the metal, how well it will stand up to conditions (although it would be stored unless used) and when I watch the videos the controller knob seems cheap to me when compared to all the other Pellet grills in this price range. These things mentioned can you provide some insight?

    1. Aaron, I really like the Camp Chef Woodwind and the REC TEC.. both are worthy smokers in my opinion. I agree that company’s sometimes go cheap on a few of the components to get prices down and the knob on the new Woodwind controller is probably one of these things. Having said that, the knob turns very easily, and you do not have to apply much pressure to get it to perform its function, I really can’t imaging it breaking under normal use.

      I can’t speak for the longevity of the new Camp Chef Woodwind Wi-Fi since it’s only been out a short while but I have used mine several times a week since I received it and have had zero issues. The 36 is a great size and I think they are brilliant to include 2 shelves as standard options.

      I also love the sidekick with the griddle and use it ALL the time even when I’m not even firing up the smoker. I do eggs, bacon, sandwiches, steaks, you name it and it will sear the living heck out of something if you want it to without even trying that hard. It’s a work horse.

      I don’t know the gauge of the metal used.. CC would be better suited to answer these questions if you want to call them but I do know that mine has no issues holding temperature even when it’s 30°F outside. We didn’t get much colder than that this year in Tulsa so I can’t speak for single digits or below.

    2. Thank you, Jeff! You may not realize but it is great to have someone like you provide insight on these smokers. My Traeger was perfect, but those original thin straight legs with no bottom shelf started to bend when moving it from my garage to the house. I now have a dedicated space for a smoker so I think I am going to go with the Camp Chef after reading your full review. Thank you again for the input… Keep up the good work!

    1. Rodney, if connecting to Wi-Fi is not your thing then I agree that it would not be a great thing to spend your money on. Camp Chef has some pellet grills that work really well that don’t have the Wi-Fi option or you can check out some of the Pit Boss models at your local stores.. I’ve had excellent service from those as well and at really great deals.

  20. I’ve read that the food probes for CC and other companies break often….too often….and the companies are not replacing them for free. Is there a reliable 3rd party brand out there for these that Work With CC?

    1. I’ve never had any problems with the CC probes or most of the probes that I use actually. Probes have one fault.. they are not waterproof and you cannot get them wet and this includes the cables. I spray some cleaner on a paper towel or use a kitchen cleaning wipe to clean mine.. nothing else and they last for years.

      The most vulnerable spot is where the cable meets the probe.. if you get water in there, it wicks down into the probe and it’s dead. I’m not sure why all of these are not waterproof.. it seems like a simple solution.

      To answer your question, I don’t know of any aftermarket probes that work with CC.

  21. I have the CampChef Woodwind wifi unit and so does my son. When it works it seems to be a great smoker. And I love the searing attachment. The issue I have had is with the controller. I’m on third controller. And just the other day I was smoking ribs on it. And right towards the end it did what the screen called a flame out. Now it was a bit windy here in Spring, but I have GMG unit at my lake place and have not had any of the issues. And my sons unit he was doing steak and the reverse sear. When he cranked it up to 450. The unit started to climb temperature wise.once it got near 400+ degrees, the screen started to flicker and the unit shut off. We let it set for a while went back to restart. It seemed to be working then screen started flickering and the unit froze up. Had to shut it off. Had to finish the steak in the Oven. It almost seems like there might be a design issue with the WIFI controller. Don’t know if anyone else has had similar problems. I know mine was one of the first of the line.

    1. Tim, I have not had any issues with the one that I have however, I am sorry to hear that you have not had the same experience. Hopefully others will jump in here and comment if they’ve had similar issues.

  22. I’m with Camp Chef on the autostart feature. I wouldn’t want any fire producing product to power on without me verifying that something flammable hasn’t blown onto the smoker, like the cover, or my deck umbrella, or something casually left draped over the unit. I think you may be out of luck with this one.

  23. Jeff- First time on your site and was drawn here by the Woodwind review. I am looking at the Woodwind and the Grilla Grills Silverbac. I don’t need the 36″ Woodwind so it appears the size is about equal.

    Any opinion or comparison on the two grills?


    1. Ken, I have the Grilla Silverbac as well as several models of the Woodwind and while the Grilla is a nice grill, I’m just not able to a much smoke as I like.

      With the Woodwind, I am able to get plenty of smoke as long as I keep the temperature at or below 225°F.

      I do like the double wall setup on the Grilla especially for colder climates and the cabinet underneath the grill for storage is nice.

  24. Why would you want remote power on? First of all, it’s recommended that it be started with the lid open. If not, there can be potentially explosive consequences (see any YouTube clip). Second, why are people trying to leave their cook unattended? All this automation has led to folks setting it and forgetting it like it’s an oven. It’s an open flame folks. Grease in the wrong place at the wrong time and you’ve got a fire on your hands. The Wi-Fi controller should be seen as a convenience feature, not a reason to leave your smoker unattended. This WiFi controller is being pitched the wrong way.

    1. Which one is going to produce more smoke, the RecTec Bull or Camp Chef Wifi 36? Your review of the Bull said it puts out the most smoke of any pellet grill. Has that changed with Camp Chef’s ability to adjust the smoke level?

      1. While the REC TEC Bull does not have many of the extra features that the Camp Chef Woodwind has, in my opinion, it puts out more smoke than any other pellet smoker I have used including the new Woodwind Wifi.

  25. Hi Jeff, Leading towards a Woodwind to replace my Weber propane grill, but have a few questions.

    Any issues with having the smoker on a Composite deck?

    We get a strong wind from the backside – I have a piece of plywood there to block some of it, but will this wind impact the smoking capability?

    I do a lot of grilling on my propane grill even during the winter in Northern Michigan. Will I be able to get grilling temperatures in the cold north? Also is the Searbox worth the extra cost?

    One final question, I read some smokers leak too much and you need to seal with Lavaloc – does the Woodwind need this too?


    1. No issues with a composite deck although I always recommend a pad of some sort be placed under and in front of the grill since you will inevitably drop something or drip some grease and it’s nice to have something there to protect the deck from that.

      Wind always impacts cooking.. I’m thinking the plywood will help some but I can’t say it won’t still affect your cooking. It probably won’t have any trouble maintaining temperature but may use more pellets to do so.

      Regarding grilling temperatures, the Woodwind will easily hit temperatures around 450-500 °F. I don’t know how this will be affected if you have a lot of wind. The plywood may be enough to allow it to hold these temperatures just fine but every situation is unique. They do make blankets for tese that I hear are really nice in colder times of the year for any pellet smoker. Not only for saving on pellet consumption but in helping it to hold in the heat.

      The searbox is something I love using and allows me to sear steaks, cook burgers, etc. at super high temperature. It is rather small but does give me that grilling capability so I don’t need an extra grill. The sidekick may be a better option if you are wanting versatility since you can always slide the flame deflector out of the way and use the flame broiling capabilities inside of the smoker. It’s not quite as good as the searbox but it does work.

      I do not feel it is necessary to seal up pellet smokers, you can adjust the opening of the chimney and the door fits pretty good. If you wanted to place some felt around the perimeter of the door to make it seal better around the opening, it wouldn’t hurt anything but I just haven’t personally found that to be necessary.

    1. There’s no doubt that the REC TEC is an awesome looking machine (especially the bull horn handles on the front) and it has a lot of stainless steel. It also holds an absolutely precise temperature which is something you won’t get on any other pellet grill.

      Where the Woodwind WiFi wins (in my humble opinion) is in all of the extra features.. things you won’t see on the REC TEC like hopper cleanout with the pull of a lever, ash cleanout from outside of the pellet grill, ability to pull a lever and have flames up to your grates during cooking, and 4 meat probes.

      You’ll love either one but my pick has to be the Woodwind WiFi 36. Like every other pellet grill, it does not hold a precise temperature but rather a range of +/- 15 degrees. In all of my cooking, this does not affect the outcome but if it’s important to you then go with the REC TEC.

      Otherwise, go with the Woodwind and enjoy all of the extras.

      REC TEC

      Camp Chef Woodwind WiFi

  26. Does the Camp Chef change fan speeds with this new PID controller? Also,which smoke setting would be comparable to the old “High Smoke” setting? I’m curious if the new grill smokes any more when set on 10 than the old grills do when set at “High Smoke”.

    1. Reed, unfortunately it does not.

      I have done some testing at 225°F with the smoke setting at 10 and, in my opinion, it is very similar to hi smoke on the older controller with similar swings in both directions.

  27. I am looking at the woodwind WiFi or the traeger timberline 850. Have you done anything with the timberline & if so do you feel there is justification in the $800 price difference?

    1. I am not sure about the cubic inches of space but here are the in.² of the upper and lower grates.

      Upper grate: 382 in.² /Lower grate: 429 in.² / Total: 811 in.²

  28. Save your money on the add on controller. It will not blue tooth connect to either my phone or tablet. Tried several times and finally went and manually set it.

    1. Jeffrey, I purchased and installed the wi-fi add on controller. I have an Android phone.
      There was a bug in the Android app where it always wanted to update the firmware but that has been fixed.
      The trick to getting it to connect correctly and reliably is to turn the smoker on for a minute or two before you try to
      There are some bugs in the software I have let Camp Chef know about
      if the app goes behind another app or the screen goes dark, it has to reconnect
      It uses a lot of power on my phone
      it tries to connect the blue tooth often

      one ‘feature’ is you have to connect the bluetooth before you can connect via Wi-Fi (didn’t happen last time I used it.

      I am very happy with it.

    1. The searbox is really nice however you can technically do a little searing inside the smoker using the slide and grill feature. The sidekick is more versatile since it comes with a griddle but you can purchase add-ons like the covered grill and the pizza oven.

      I initially got the searbox with mine instead of the sidekick but now that I have the sidekick.. I find myself using it more and more.

  29. Hi Jeff: I’m a great fan of your smoking style and and of Camp Chef’s Woodwind. I was able to acquire a Wi-Fi retrofit kit From CC and installed it on a very chilly day in about 45 minutes, give or take a few. In my opinion, It works wonderfully and is a welcome improvement to the already outstanding pellet grill.


    1. Jeff, I am a big fan and have been using your recipes, rubs and sauces for years . All winners every time. Lately , I have been experiencing issues with the 3-2-1 method for St Louis ribs. I have a Weber Summit withe the smoke box. I have been using pellets with great success.
      However, recently, my ribs after the 2 hour braising , I have them drop significantly in temperature a d cannot seem to get them done in the next hour. I try and keep the Weber between 225 and 240. I have great variances depending on conditions.
      Can you make any suggestions to help me over come this!

    1. Thank you, Art. I asked that question as well a couple of weeks ago and I was not getting a clear answer. I appreciate you getting that information as several have asked about this.

  30. Jeff ..
    Have you done a side by side comparison of Woodwind vs Traeger ??
    I have a dealer for each close by to my home and was seriously considering purchasing a new grill / smoker

    1. There’s no doubt that the REC TEC is an awesome looking machine (especially the bull horn handles on the front) and it has a lot of stainless steel. It also holds an absolutely precise temperature which is something you won’t get on any other pellet grill.

      Where the Woodwind WiFi wins (in my humble opinion) is in all of the extra features.. things you won’t see on the REC TEC like hopper cleanout with the pull of a lever, ash cleanout from outside of the pellet grill, ability to pull a lever and have flames up to your grates during cooking, and 4 meat probes.

      You’ll love either one but my pick has to be the Woodwind WiFi 36. Like every other pellet grill, it does not hold a precise temperature but rather a range of +/- 15 degrees. In all of my cooking, this does not affect the outcome but if it’s important to you then go with the REC TEC.

      Otherwise, go with the Woodwind and enjoy all of the extras.

      REC TEC: https://www.rectecgrills.com/grills/rt-700
      Camp Chef Woodwind WiFi: https://smoking-meat.com/woodwind-wifi

      1. The Camp Chef website claims that the new WIFI models: Woodwind Wifi 20 (MODEL #: PG20CT), Woodwind Wifi 24 (MODEL #: PG24CL), and Woodwind Wifi 36 (MODEL #: PG36CL) all have a new PID controller. Shouldn’t they now maintain temperature as well as the RecTec?

        1. Kirk, not necessarily.. you see, to simply create smoke with pellets, you need smoldering without fire. To create heat you need fire. This fluctuation in the heat is what keeps the smoker at temperature while still producing smoke.

          REC-TEC’s ability to maintain a perfect temperature and still have plenty of smoke has to do with the way they cycle the fan off and on, off and on.. more so than their PID controller.

          If the PID is only trying to maintain a certain heat level with no concern for smoke, then it can do that easily.

          The Camp Chef Woodwind Wifi has something new on it called a smoke selector in which you can select a number 1 through 10 to let it know how much smoke flavor you want. The higher the number, the more smoke you get and the wider the fluctuations. The lower the number, you get less smoke and smaller fluctuations in temperature.

          I can tell you that these fluctuations are no different than what you have on your home oven. The difference is that pellet smokers show you actual temperature, your oven shows you set temperature. I have used the REC TEC side by side with many other pellet smokers and the precise temperature does not change the quality of the cook, the length of the cooking time or the end result in any way.

          While my OCD self loves the precision, it’s not doing anything for me in reality. An average of 225°F cooks just as well as a precise 225°F in the same amount of time.

          I feel that pellet smoker companies should try to do a better job of explaining this to potential customers.

      2. But which one is going to give me more smoke flavor? The RecTec Bull or Wifi 36? Your review of the Bull said it puts out the most smoke of any pellet grill. Has that changed with the Camp Chef ability to adjust the smoke level?

  31. Will try your duck recipe. Have not made one since weber kettle indirect cooking days.. now when was that, about 45 years ago. Have purchased all your recipes as well as your book. Great stuff. Got a Yoder YS640 some time back with direct cooking feature as well as aluminum grill grates for grilling and heavy chromed grates for smoking. Have a diffuser with a trap door for cleaning and direct grilling. Is made of heavy steel, weighing 335 pounds. It also has wi-fi. Thank you for a great book and the best recipes. Converted your bbq sauce to a honey jalapeno so I can use yours for mild and honey jalapeno as hot. Thank you for the the smoking meat lessons.
    God bless! Wishing you and yours a happy Thanksgiving.

  32. I have a Camp Chef Woodwind that I have had about 8 mo. Can the WiFi controller be added to my smoker?
    Thanks for your help