Choosing A Gas Grill
Grill, grills and more grill! That’s what you’re probably saying to yourself when you start looking for a new gas grill. The options seem limitless and, for the most part, they are. The grilling industry has grown tremendously over the past couple of decades with new makes, models, materials and options being added all the time. In the end, however, there are only a few things you really need to know: 1. your budget; 2. the grills durability; and, 3. how hot does it get. There are many more factors, but these are the ones that really matter.
Gas grills come in several different price ranges … and there is definitely a difference between the grills in these differing price ranges. For purposes of simplification we’ll break them down into 3 categories; cheap ($200 – $900); middle of the road ($900 – $2,500); and, high end ($2,000 – $10,000). The big difference between a “cheap”, “middle of the road” and “high-end” grill, usually comes down to the materials used in making them. The best quality gas grills are usually made entirely out of 304 grade stainless steel, while others are made from other types of metals, including lower grade stainless steels.
One of the main reasons “high-end” gas grills are so expensive is because 304 stainless steel is expensive in comparison to other types of stainless steel, and other types of metal. 304 grade stainless steel is much more resistant to corrosion than most other types of stainless steel, which means it will last a lot longer than most other types of grills made from other types of metal. Most “high-end” or “top-of-the-line” gas grills are warrantied for life (some parts are warrantied for shorter periods, such as igniters and electronics), and there is a reasonable expectation to not have to replace anything on the grill for 5-10 years. Many of the “cheap” grills will advertise that they are made from “stainless steel”, but they are usually made from a grade of stainless steel that will rust and corrode relatively quick, or only “part” of the grill is made from stainless steel. These are the grills that will usually get replaced every 2-5 years because big holes have formed in the bottom of the grill or the burners.
If you are on a budget, but want a grill to last more than 5 years, you can find some “middle of the road” grills that are made entirely out of 304 grade stainless steel. These grills usually have a smaller body and thinner gauge of stainless steel, which is how manufacturers are able to sell them for quite a bit less than the high-end grills. These grills should reasonably last 10-15 years … if not longer. They may also be missing all the bells and whistles of a high-end grill, but those are novelties more than necessities!
Just remember, if you’re buying quality make sure the whole grill is made from 304 grade stainless steel, or combined with other types of corrosion resistant metals, such as brass.