There are many factors that go into purchasing a gas grill. We will highlight the most important ones. The size of the grill will be something you’ll have to determine by family size, average number of guests, and the most common meats you cook. The quality of the following components will determine the price of the grill you purchase and the years of useful life.
This is the section where your burners are located. This is usually the area that fails first on cheap grills. Since it can’t be repaired, it forces the owner to buy a new grill. Below are three common types of firebox.
- Porcelain Coated Firebox- This box is constructed of steel and covered with a durable porcelain coating. It is found on grills in the price range from $300 to $700. This construction is adequate; however, over time, due to cleaning and moving the cooking grates around the coating can chip and expose the steel underneath. Grease and moisture will attack the exposed areas and corrosion will occur. The thicker the underlying steel is, the longer it will take the corrosion to eat through the firebox. Porcelain coated fireboxes may hold up for several years; however, they typically will not last as long as stainless steel fireboxes or cast aluminum fireboxes.
- Stainless Steel Firebox- These fireboxes are extremely durable and resistant to the chemical attack of grease and moisture. These are found on mid to high range grills and will give years of service.
- Cast Aluminum Firebox- The characteristics of this box are similar to stainless steel. Cast aluminum and stainless steel fireboxes will last about the same amount of time and both will typically outlast a porcelain coated firebox.
Burners come in all configurations and types of construction, but when it comes to picking a good reliable burner, stainless steel is a safe bet. It is more resist to corrosion as would be a steel or cast iron burner. Our commercial grade grills, such as the BBQ 60G, come with burners that are made of steel pipe, but they are thick walled.
It is hard to evaluate gas valves, but more expensive grills usually have better ones. What is important with the gas valve is its ability to stay lit at very low temperature, avoiding “flame out”, along with ability to produce extremely high heat and everything in between. Less expensive models usually have problems meeting this criteria. At our store, we demonstrate the quality of the gas valve in our Broil King line of grills to all our customers.