Chain Mechanism Troubleshooting and Maintenance
This article covers three essential aspects of chain mechanism care: inspection, cleaning, and adjustment. Depending on how often you use the grill, the chain mechanism should be inspected roughly twice a month.
Items needed for chain maintenance
- a 10mm open end wrench,
- a 4mm hex key,
- a soft brush, or old toothbrush,
- a chain cleaner,
- a chain lubricant,
- rags for wiping the chain.
How to inspect the chain mechanism
Using visual estimation, grasp the chain with your finger at a point at the right hand side of the mechanism, kipping your finger at the point use your other finger and push it left and right along the pathway. The chain should not be able to move. If the chain moves or “wrinkles”, the chain will need tightening.
Clean the chain
Whether or not your chain needs adjusting, you’ll want to keep it clean and well-lubricated. Use a cleaning agent and spray the chain or use a soft brush to apply the cleaner.
Wipe off excess grime
Next, you’ll want to wipe off the excess grime using a rag or towel, which will create a clean surface that’s friendlier to lubricants. Be sure to thoroughly reach all chain links by operating the grill in the “Continuous Mode” (adjust the rotation speed to the lowest).
Lubricate the chain
While in the “Continuous Mode”, evenly spray a layer of lubricant across the chain as it runs along the pathway. Be sure to also spray at the first pathway opening near the SMART Unit, where the lubricant can spread across the chain from the inside, and penetrate the entirety of the chain. Wipe off excess lubricant with a rag.
Adjust chain tension
As chains wear, they become longer. This is called “stretch”, which is a misnomer because nothing actually stretches. Chains lengthen as wear occurs between the rollers and the link pins. The major cause of chain “stretch” is wearing away of the metal where the link pin rotates inside of the bushing as the chain links flex and straighten as the chain goes onto and off of the main sprocket.
Using the 10mm open end wrench and the 4mm hex key, loosen the last screw located on the right hand side of the chain mechanism. Then move the screw right along the oval hole until the chain tightens. Then tighten the screw again on its new position.