Pros & Cons – Pit Boss Competition Series Vertical Pellet Smoker

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Pit Boss has a wide range of vertical pellet smokers. However, only a few of them have WiFi connectivity and the ability to connect to the SmokeIT App. This Competition Series vertical pellet smoker is one such example. Right, let’s review its Pros & Cons.

Tap/Click above to review our video on the Pros & Cons of the Pit Boss Competition Series Vertical Pellet Smoker

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While the utility of WiFi connectivity and App support on a pellet grill is debatably ‘useful’, I don’t think there should really be any debate about its utility when it comes to vertical pellet smokers.

The Pit Boss Competition Series Vertical Pellet Smoker is one of the few WiFi connected vertical pellet smokers on the market.
This Competition Series vertical pellet smoker is one of the cheapest WiFi models on the market currently

When it comes to smoking foods, they are going to be in the smoker for many hours, maybe even overnight. Therefore, the ability to monitor and adjust the cook via your phone is obviously useful.

I think the controller fitted to the Pit Boss Competition Series 850 is pretty much their best controller to date, with PID technology, 5-degree temperature adjustment, and WiFi connectivity.

It also has an important feature called the P-Setting, which can be used to adjust between a more accurate temperature or more smoke production.

The controller on the Pit Boss Competition Series vertical pellet smoke is not their best effort.
This vertical pellet smoker does not get 5-degree temperature adjustment or P-Setting adjustment

As the P-Setting performs such an important role in giving the user precise control over how much smoke is produced. I really don’t get why Pit Boss has not provided that functionality on this controller.

With a pellet smoker such as this, with a large glass door, keeping the cooking chamber up to temperature can use quite a lot of pellets, especially during cold winter nights, for instance.

This Pit Boss Competition Series vertical pellet smoker features a large 60 lb pellet hopper.
There are no complaints from me on the hopper capacity, 60 lbs is going to meet the needs of any cooking scenario

However, I would note that it’s not a great idea to leave the pellets in there over long periods of time if you live in a humid environment. As over time, the pellets will become soft by taking on that moist air.


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If you already own a gas grill that’s in good working order, sure, a dedicated vertical pellet smoker can be the perfect partner for it. But what if you don’t already own a grill?

Being purely a vertical pellet smoker, you will need a separate appliance for grilling.
You can only smoke foods, therefore you’ll need a separate grill

For not much more than the price point of this vertical pellet smoker Pit Boss (and some other brands), offer horizontal pellet grill/smokers that also offer WiFi connectivity (check our database).

Therefore, before choosing to go with a vertical pellet smoker over a horizontal pellet smoker/grill, carefully consider what will suit your needs the best.

Now, if you don’t need a new grill, you only want to smoke foods, in terms of cooking area, per dollar spent, you will struggle to find a lower cost per square inch than this Competition Series.

The cooking area of the Pit Boss Competition Series vertical pellet smoker offers good value.
This Pit Boss Competition Series vertical pellet smoker offers 1,679 square inches over five racks

With a typical price of under $550 (check our database), that’s a very low cost per square inch of cooking area provided, which cannot be matched in value to a horizontal pellet grill/smoker.

Before I write these Pros & Cons articles, I check out multiple owners’ reviews, and unfortunately, this Pit Boss vertical pellet smoker is not without its fair share of negative reviews.

Owners reviews are critical of the build quality of the Pit Boss Competition Series vertical pellet smoker.
Damaged units upon delivery does not appear to be that uncommon

There seems to be a split between owners complaining about delivery damage and manufacturing defects. Don’t get me wrong, its not as if this issue is purely a Pit Boss problem.

However, Pit Boss products, in general, likely due to their budget-focused price point, have their fair share of negative owner reviews on build quality, etc.

My Final Thoughts On The Pit Boss Competition Series Vertical Pellet Smoker

While Pit Boss products, in general, do appear to have their issues with build quality, etc, there are actually many owners who have had a very positive with their Pit Boss pellet grill/smoker.

In regards to this specific model, its large cooking area, WiFi connectivity, and low price point are all ticks in its favor. I’m just disappointed that Pit Boss did not use the same controller technology as their other Competition Series models.

To review and compare all of your pellet grill/smoker options on the market today, please use the link below to check out our database.


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