Heatermeter 4.3 issues

JRob

New member
Hi all, long time no see!

I've been running my heatermeter for a couple years now, and for the last year or so, it's been glitchy as hell. So far, I haven't done much as far as troubleshooting, but I have the following issues:

1.Probe issues: my original case was slightly oversized and the probes would pop out unless held in place by a rubber band. I printed a new case this spring and solved that problem, but I'm having random issues with probes not sensing, giving weird readings, etc. All of my probes are thermoworks pro, and to my knowledge are in good working order (they work fine with other thermometers).

2. Lack of ability to make changes in the pitdroid app - After much frustration, I realized pitdroid wasn't storing my login credentials, so it just wasn't accepting inputs (took me forever to figure this out because probe alarms worked, but I'm assuming that is handled by the app, rather than on the Pi). However, if I set a pit temp on the app, it will re-set itself to 255 if I put the Heatermeter in open lid mode. Every time. Setting a temp via the web console seems to work better, but also isn't foolproof.

I can't see how to check firmware version, nor do I see a version number on Bryan's Github page. I suppose my first course of action is to simply reflash firmware, but haven't done that yet since I have no idea if my current FW is current (although I guess I should do it anyway since something may have gotten corrupted)...

I'm just wondering if anyone has advice on these issues, if they're common or user error... I'm really close to pulling the trigger on replacing my heatermeter with a Thermoworks Signals, but all in all, I have no reason to do so if my HM will just work.

Any thoughts?
 

JRob

New member
Another issue that's bugged me since day 1: There's no way to close the pitdroid app other than going into my phone's settings and force closing it. After I end a cook, I get "server disconnected" alarms for a couple hours until I remember to force close it. Is this normal? (has happened on every android phone I've had for the last 2 years... ZTE Axon 7, Pixel XL, Samsung Galaxy S9+, and now Samsung Galaxy Note 10+)
 

JRob

New member
Edit: Just found my firmware version:
LEDE Reboot SNAPSHOT r4558-438dcbfe74 / LuCI lede-17.01 branch (git-17.100.70571-29fabe263)
Kernel Version4.9.34

 

Bryan Mayland

TVWBB Honor Circle
The latest snapshot versions have more sane version information, so I'm not sure what version you're running there. The new version string is like this: LEDE Reboot SNAPSHOT 20200401. That indicates it is the 2020-Apr-01 snapshot.

I've never used the PitDroid app, so I can't speak to its operation and I know it is somewhat out of date. HeaterMeter is designed as a webui, and that's all I test with. Changing the SetPoint through the webui is a core function of HeaterMeter so it is tested out the wazoo and should always work. If it is "not foolproof when using the webui" then maybe you can provide more information about what issues you're experiencing there. It should always work, 100%, no exceptions (unless you do not have network connectivity, of course).

As for probes dropping off or reading erratically, that's often an indicator that they're noisy / getting bad power. Look for a little yellow or red squiggle icon near the probe temperature that would indicate a noise condition. Newer snapshots also allow clicking on this icon to see a visual representation and can provide more information as to if the power line filtering option can help in removing it. If they were also popping out on their own frequently, then it could also be they're not making a good physical connection? I've not experienced any problems with my thermoworks probes coming out so that shouldn't be a problem.
 

JRob

New member
1.The latest snapshot versions have more sane version information, so I'm not sure what version you're running there. The new version string is like this: LEDE Reboot SNAPSHOT 20200401. That indicates it is the 2020-Apr-01 snapshot.

2.I've never used the PitDroid app, so I can't speak to its operation and I know it is somewhat out of date. HeaterMeter is designed as a webui, and that's all I test with.

3. Changing the SetPoint through the webui is a core function of HeaterMeter so it is tested out the wazoo and should always work. If it is "not foolproof when using the webui" then maybe you can provide more information about what issues you're experiencing there. It should always work, 100%, no exceptions (unless you do not have network connectivity, of course).

4. .As for probes dropping off or reading erratically, that's often an indicator that they're noisy / getting bad power. Look for a little yellow or red squiggle icon near the probe temperature that would indicate a noise condition. Newer snapshots also allow clicking on this icon to see a visual representation and can provide more information as to if the power line filtering option can help in removing it. If they were also popping out on their own frequently, then it could also be they're not making a good physical connection? I've not experienced any problems with my thermoworks probes coming out so that shouldn't be a problem.
Thanks for the reply Bryan. I numbered your points for reference in my reply..

1. I haven't ever updated it, so this firmware is 2 (maybe 3) years old... I think it was Christmas 2017 when I built my HM.... I'll update to the current snapshot.

2. I assumed Pitdroid was out of date as it's caused most of my problems. I typically run the webui on my laptop when I'm smoking, but use pitdroid on my phone because it's just easier access than the webui. I'll change that.

3. I'm not actually sure if the webui has been glitchy at all for me. Since I use both simultaneously, it's possible that all of my issues have been from Pitdroid ultimately. I'll move to the webui exclusively for my next couple smokes and see if I come across glitches.

4. Is there any troubleshooting I can do to resolve noisy conditions in my probes? Or is that just an indication that it's time to replace them? As for them physically popping out, my original case was ever so slightly oversized, so the female ends were inset very slightly. Since I reprinted my case I have no issues in that regard, but I posted that tidbit thinking/wondering if it's possible that the previously less than ideal connection could have caused any of the issues I'm seeing... Of course I left that curiousity out of my post.

I appreciate the quick and thorough reply. I'm sure most of my issues are of my own making/not staying on top of developments over the past 2 years, etc... The heatermeter really is the best investment I've made into my BBQ thus far, which is probably also why it's frustrating me to have issues I don't fully understand and can't just call support and have someone walk me through them. Thanks for being the constant presence you have been over here!
 

Andrew F

TVWBB Super Fan
Just for giggles I'll toss my latest find in, just in case it helps.
My HM was being a pill and not updating with the web UI. It was also randomly deciding to connect to the web on the phone, but not on the laptop. Yeah, that was a weird one.
A new WIFI adapter from amazon solved the problem. Connection is much faster and no problems when changing settings.

I don't think this is your problem, but when all else fails....
 

VicusJ

New member
I have the V4.3.3 HeaterMeter and changed to a Rasp Pi Zero W just as those became available - the onboard WiFi of that little guy is amazing and been working flawlessly for me. For the price, might be something to consider instead of an adapter. I can't speak for adaptability with older versions of HM though.
 

JRob

New member
I have the V4.3.3 HeaterMeter and changed to a Rasp Pi Zero W just as those became available - the onboard WiFi of that little guy is amazing and been working flawlessly for me. For the price, might be something to consider instead of an adapter. I can't speak for adaptability with older versions of HM though.
I agree. Love my Pi Zero W. I've never had a wifi issue with it. In fact, it does better on Wifi than my phone does at the same location.
 

Bryan Mayland

TVWBB Honor Circle
4. Is there any troubleshooting I can do to resolve noisy conditions in my probes?
The latest snapshot has the noise graph feature where once you're logged in (there's no "Login" item on the home page with the graphs), you press "N" on the keyboard and in a couple of seconds a graph will start displaying like this
noisegraph.png

It should look something like that, with the value bouncing +/- 1 unit. The buttons on the right switch between displaying each of the probes. If it is jaggedy and all over, that's noise and you can try moving the wires, different power outlets, different power supplies, swapping probes between ports, etc. There's a lot of things that can cause noise so you'll have to play around to see what is causing it. If you see a nice sine wave in there, then turning on "A/C input line noise filter" in configuration can reduce the noise by sampling one complete sine period which effectively cancels the noise.

Note that having the noisegraph on adds extra overhead to the processing and can reduce the effectiveness of the filter, or cause some missed updates so I wouldn't leave it on all the time.
 

Andrew F

TVWBB Super Fan
Andrew - which WIFI adapter did you buy? I'm in need of a new one that will work with my HM. I received a new one from Amazon today, and it's not working. This is the one I bought https://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/B0088TKTY2/tvwb-20 I inserted it into my Windows 10 laptop, and it is recognized, but from device manager it appears that it's the rtl8192eu & not the rtl8192cu.
I got the:

Panda Ultra 150Mbps Wireless N USB Adapter - Windows XP/Vista/7/8/8.1/10, Windows Ce 6.0, Mac 10.4-10.10, Mint, Ubuntu, Fedora, openSUSE, Lubuntu, BackTrack5 R3, Kali Linux, Raspberry Pi/Pi 2

 

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