We know how it goes. You plan and research and save money and you finally get your new smoker. You can't wait to get it home and cook some of the best bbq that you have ever experienced.
One task that stands between you and bbq nirvana is getting your new smoker seasoned. Seasoning is not a hard task just view it as the beginning of your new experience. You want to season your new smoker so that you have a nice coating to help protect the new bare metals as well as establish a nice base coating on the grates that will develop more every time you use it.
Here is our recommended method: #1 Clean out the cooking chamber. During the manufacturing process there may be metal filings, welding residue etc. inside the chamber. Some will even go as far as telling you to use a bucket of soapy water and a rag. That is just a matter of preference and we normally don't do that. Using a rag will help remove any cuttings and things that are inside and that is what we normally do.
#2 Next we recommend getting some aerosol cans of non stick spray. There are tons of brands and mixes on the market but the main thing we recommend is to buy some that has canola oil in it. The canola oil has a burn temperature and it leaves a nice golden coating behind. Flax seed oil is another great one. I normally don't see it in aerosol cans and would have to be wiped on. I prefer the aerosol because it is easier to get onto the inside walls and grates. Liberally spray the walls, racks, inside the doors and all of the interior surfaces with a liberal coating of the oil.
#3 It's time for fire! Open the exhaust and air intakes and build a fire. Keep it going and add wood as needed to heat up the cooking chamber to 300 degrees. Once it reaches 300, hold the temp there for 1-2 hours. There will be some smoke and funny smells but its all perfectly fine. After the smoker has been at temp for the recommended time, close the exhaust and all of the air vents.
#4 The easy part. Get a bucket or container of water (about a gallon give or take) open the chamber door and throw the water in there. It doesn't have to go any certain place just as long as it is in there. THERE WILL BE LOTS OF STEAM! DO NOT GET BURNED! Do it quickly and close the lid. Now forget about it and go inside and just let it set until the fire goes out and it cools off. When you open the lid you will see a nice golden color on the grates that the steam helped to "set" on the grates.
NOW you are ready to make the best bbq the world has ever tasted. Enjoy