Smoke Daddy Pellet Pro 440 Wood Pellet Grill w/ PID Controller Review
Pellet Pro has been one of those “Fly Under The Radar” wood pellet grill manufacturers that has been turning out quality models at price points that tend to be friendlier than the direct competitors. Yet they don’t cut corners when it comes to quality and innovation
This shows up with a gold star next to its name in the Pellet Pro 440 wood pellet grill. It’s made from heavy-duty 13 and 14-gauge steel that’s protected by a fire-rated black powder coat. Even the drippings pan is 13-gauge steel, which most of the competition don’t boast.
Yet it’s not just a piece of pig iron-producing hot smoke. There’s a fair amount of innovation built into the Pellet Pro 440. This includes its PID digital controls which let you dial in the heat you want. This translates into a temperature range as low as 160 and as high as 450-degrees Fahrenheit. It also makes adjustments to the number of wood pellets being delivered to the 9-hole fire pot, for superior temperature control. Under ideal conditions, the PID controller on the Pellet Pro 440 can be accurate to within 5-degrees.
It comes with a large 20-pound wood pellet hopper, which will conveniently hold one full bag of wood pellets at a time. A small, yet strong a 2RPM .4 amp Auger Motor delivers a steady stream of wood pellets to the firepot. A .48 amp fan motor then keeps the fire fed with a steady stream of oxygen, while also helping to waft the hot smoke up into the primary cooking chamber.
The grill grates measure in at a total of 440 square inches. They have a thick coating of non-stick porcelain to help food release easily as well as making for easier cleanup.
Construction & Ease of Assembly
The Pellet Pro 440 is made from robust 13 and 14-gauge steel with a protective black powder coat. This makes it stable as well as durable while providing a fair amount of corrosion resistance. You see this echoed in the nonstick porcelain coating on the grill grates.
Assembly is a little bit tedious with the Pellet Pro 440 wood pellet grill. The instructions have some points that might leave you scratching your head. This, and the fact that it weighs over 100-pounds mean you really should get another pair of capable hands to help you. All things being equal, you and a friend should be able to get it together in a little over two hours.
For the most part, the PID controls are very accurate. Though if you place the Pellet Pro 440 in a sunny location on a hot day the thick metal and the heat-absorbing black powder coat will have a tendency to run 7 to 10 degrees over the target temperature. This isn’t so much of an engineering fault as it is the laws of physics at work.
The 440 square inch primary grill grate is just big enough to let you smoke an average size brisket, a pair of Boston butt pork shoulders, or up to three full racks of pork spareribs. Though this isn’t just a smoker at the high temperature of 450-degrees, the Pellet Pro 440 is capable of making a smoky steak or a perfectly wood fire flavored hamburger patty. Though the indirect heating method it uses won’t necessarily put the same crusty sear as a direct flame charcoal or gas grill. Still, it will mark it with proper preheating.
If you wanted to make a pizza on the Pellet Pro 440 you will need to use fresh dough, rather than a frozen store-bought one. Then you can preheat a pizza stone for 20 minutes at maximum heat, or simply place it right on the pre-heated grill grates.
The Pellet Pro 440 offers a single 440 square inch primary grill grate. This is enough to let you grill for a family of four to six. An average brisket flat will just fit, as will two pork shoulders or up to four porterhouse steaks.
The accurate PID digital controller is one place where the Pellet Pro 440 stands apart from a lot of the competitors. It has the ability to keep the internal temperature of the smoking chamber within 5 degrees of where you set it. Though a hot sunny day can put this to the challenge. To get around it, you might want to set the temperature 5 to 10 degrees under where you want it to be in the peak days of summer.
Ease to Clean
The porcelain coating on the 440 square inch grill grates gives them nonstick properties. This means less food sticks to the grates for less scraping later on. The porcelain coating is also thick and durable. So, you can scrape it with a wire brush or steel wool without worrying about damaging it.
The drippings pan is large and made from robust 13-gauge steel. It’s easy to remove and pour away. Though it can hold heat for a while after a grilling session, so you might want to use oven mitts.
You should also give the thermal probes a wipe down after a long smoking session to remove any soot or grease. This will help keep the PID controller accurate in the long-term.
The Pellet Pro 440 BBQ Wood Pellet Grill comes with an impressive 7-year limited warranty. This is better than most of the competitors and makes a statement about the manufacturer’s build quality.
The Pellet Pro 440 has a great price tag for everything you get. The single 440-square inch grill grate lets you grill and smoke larger pieces of meat. The PID digital controls are relatively accurate and let you dial in the heat for broad temperature range it offers. The 7-year limited warranty also makes a confident statement about materials and build quality.
- 7-year limited warranty
- 440-square inch porcelain-coated grill grates
- PID controls
- Great value for the price
- Instructions aren’t always clear
- Heavy and awkward to assemble alone
- The dripping tray can stay hot