I ended up cutting my losses and dumping the mash instead of struggling through it since I was already greatly annoyed. My heatstick developed a short and I could not figure out where the leak was. I could have continued without it, but most of my reason for using it was to get the boil going good enough to get the DMS out. I was using pils malt, and I always
have DMS issues with that using my normal method sans heatstick (since I have to keep the lid on partially to keep the boil going). Instead of pressing on and making flawed beer I just said hell with it and am saving the hops and yeast for next week. Grain isn't that big of an investment.
So yesterday I built a couple new heatsticks so I have a spare if one craps out. I gooped JB Weld and plumbers putty on as thick as I could get it over the exposed wiring and potential leak locations to try and keep this from happening again.