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Probe Thermometer Recommendations?

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I have gone through several probe thermometers over the years, with a sticking point always seeming to be the probe wire, which fails with time. Taylor was good enough to send me one free replacement probe when I called them, but they said that one probe is all they'll replace for free, and I also found eventually that it was inaccurate. (It read about 10 degrees too low in the 130-200 Fahrenheit range, which really matters for lean pork and poultry, especially.)

Any ideas about whether there's a very durable and reliable one to be had?

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  1. I think this type of thermo has a common problem no matter who the manufacterer is. I have used a Maverick ET-7 and ET-73 with good results for bbq/smoking including overnight cooks. If the ET-73 looks good to you then wait a while - the ET-732 is the new and improved version and is slated to hit the market soon.

    For indoor oven cooking the ET-7 is a pretty good item. If all else fails, check which one Alton Brown uses ( I think its a Polder usually) or the Cook's Illustrated preferred one.

    2 Replies
    1. re: caliking

      The comark instruments #HLA 1 is a nice durable unit

      1. re: caliking

        Making a probe wire thin enough to pass through the seal of a closed oven door also makes it fragile. Mine hasn't failed yet, but I don't use it heavily, and I am in the habit of treating equipment like this with care. For example between uses I keep the probe neatly coiled up with the display in a ziplock in a drawer in the living room.

      2. I've had horrible luck with them too and have sworn off them completely and am back to my old fashioned instant read. Good luck.

        1. The ones with the plastic coated wire are $h!t. Must be a S/S braided wire coating.

          3 Replies
          1. re: ZeroSignal

            Mine's has the braided wire cover (Taylor, from Target). Are the plastic coated ones even oven proof?

            1. re: paulj

              Yeah they are oven proof but poor quality. Taylor makes good items but I dont think there probe style therm is up to par for what it is.

              1. re: paulj

                I assume the plastic is silicone, which can be heat-hardy.

            2. Comark #HLA 1

               
              1. i've had the classic Polder timer with probe for probably 10 years, and I've used it in the teakettle or in a pot of boiling water to tell me when it's boiling, in a BBQ, and in the oven - use it for bread braking. And I don't think I've ever had to replace the probe or maybe once. Lately it seems a little wonky - didn't signal the last loaf I baked, but i'm not complaining. I'll buy another one exactly like it.

                1. I've used Taylor, Polder and various off brands, and all I can say is "save the receipt and make sure there's a decent warranty". They have all been fairly accurate, tested in boiling water, but the probes seem to be the weak point. It's a total crap shoot. Sometimes they last years and sometimes they die after 2 or 3 months. And if you want to order a replacement probe it costs almost as much as a new unit.

                  1. Here's a tip.
                    The probe usually goes bad when moisture or water gets inside the probe tip where it connects to the wire. When you're done using it only wipe the probe tip with a damp paper towel and don't ever immerse it in water and "soak" it.
                    I've successfully brought back to life probes by "drying" them out in a toaster oven at low temperatures (warm...180 degrees).