How Long Do Traeger Pellets Last?
Traeger wood pellets are created with 100% natural hardwood, so they can be used in all pellet grills. Traeger pellets can be expensive, especially since the Traeger wood pellet grill is one of the most expensive wood pellet grills on the market.
Depending on whether you’re grilling on high or smoking on low, your 20-pound bag of Traeger pellets should last between 6-20 hours of use. It’s best not to store pellets in the hopper unless you plan on using the grill within the week. When stored properly, Traeger pellets will last 6 months to 1 year.
In this article, you’ll learn how long a bag of Traeger pellets can last if properly stored. You’ll also learn some tips for storage if you plan on making them last for a long time between uses.
How are Traeger Pellets Made?
Traeger pellets are made using a process called agglomeration. Agglomeration is the process of forming larger particles from smaller ones by subjecting them to very high pressure and temperature.
The wood is ground up and formed into pellets via agglomeration. This creates dense, homogeneous pellets that burn extremely efficiently, and emit less ash than traditional wood chips and chunks.
The answer depends on what you are cooking and what temperature you are using. The Traeger wood pellets burn at a rate of 1-3 hours per pound (high heat to low heat).
The average 20-pound bag of Traeger wood pellets will last anywhere from 6-20 hours depending on whether you are grilling (high heat) or smoking (low heat). The 20-pound bag costs about $20, so that’s a rate of about $0.33-$1 per hour depending on if you’re grilling on high or smoking on low.
Other brands of wood pellets may be less expensive; however, they are not quite as efficient as the Traeger ones.
The Traeger pellets can sit in the hopper for about 6 months. Many people have reported the longer they leave them, the stronger the flavor of smoke they emit.
It might be convenient to just leave a hopper full of pellets ready to go for your next beef brisket, pork shoulder, or smoked fish, however, you may ruin your Traeger pellets if you leave them in for too long. Especially if your grill is exposed to the elements when not in use, rain, humidity, and temperature fluctuations can cause the pellets you leave in the hopper to soften and not burn as well.
When you leave Traeger pellets in the hopper for too long, you could be facing one of the following issues:
- Clogging up of the auger
- A nasty mess from the Traeger pellets breaking down
Therefore, Traeger pellets are only sold by the bag, and you should take extra precautions in storing your wood pellets when not in use.
Most people want to keep their Traeger pellets close to their wood pellet grill, however, since most grills are stored in the elements, this will probably decrease the storage life of your pellets. Since they are formed together with ground material using pressure and heat, there is no glue holding them together making them even more vulnerable to breaking down in the presence of moisture.
If the pellets stay dry and aren’t exposed to moisture, they will keep their integrity for 6 months or years.
The best way to prolong the storage life of your Traeger pellets is to store them in a cool, dry place like a garage or shed inside of a watertight container. This keeps them away from moisture and humidity which can ruin them and make for a large mess.
Most importantly: do not store the Traeger pellets in the bag it came in. The bags are neither waterproof nor breathable, causing moisture to be trapped in the bag. The air outside and in your home still contains humidity, so opening and closing your Traeger pellet bag to refill your hopper will expose the pellets to an excessive amount of humidity.
If you use the grill and the smoker equally, plan on burning through 1/2 a pound per hour and getting about 10 hours of usage out of the 20-pound bags of Traeger wood pellets.
Make it a habit to check the expiration date and only buy as much as you will use within 6 months or so if possible. If you do this, you should be able to get 2-3 good grills or smokes before your 20-pound bag of Traeger pellets runs out.