Buyer’s Guide to Gas Grills

Spring is so close we can taste it.The world outside is defrosting and the biggest craving grill fanatics have is a hot juicy burger with some perfect sear marks. Dripping like icicles… yum.
Of course, we are the biggest fans of repairing your grill and keeping it out of the nearest landfill. If you’re even slightly curious as to whether or not you could refurbish your grill, give us a call. We are friendly and we answer the phone 🙂
However, sometimes you just need a new grill. We did some research and found that when reviewing grills, Consumer Reports looks at these aspects:

Preheat performance: Evaluates the temperature and evenness over the grill’s surface after a 10 minute preheat using thermocouples. It also gives an indication how quickly the grill reaches its maximum temperature.
High temp evenness: Evenness of heating over the grill’s surface at the highest setting, using thermocouples.
Low temp evenness: Evenness of heating over the grill’s surface at the lowest setting, using thermocouples.
Indirect cooking: This indicates how well the grill will slow cook foods when only some of the burners are on and the food isn’t placed directly over the flame.
Convenience: Evaluates construction and materials, and useful accessories such as electronic ignitor.

These are great things to know when you’re looking at the purchase of a new grill, because of course, how the grill cooks is one of your top concerns. However, being in the repair business, we have a different view of grills and would like to share some other things to keep in mind.

Get the Grill You’re Happy to Own

Do the Hood Test:

First, firmly grip the handle of the hood. Instead of opening the grill, shake the grill from left to right. How does it feel? Is the handle firmly in the hood? Is the hood firmly on the grill? Does the grill move a lot when you do this? Do any parts of the hood or body warp with the left-to-right movement?

  • Why? If the “casting” is not actually casting but just sheet metal, you will be able to tell how thin the metal is with this test. The thinner the metal, the faster it will corrode, even if it’s stainless steel!! You will also get a feel for how the grill is made – are the parts put together well, will they hold up on the drive home, the journey to your patio or backyard?

Do the Weight Test:

Grab the grill with both hands and gently lift to see how hard it is to lift. If you can’t lift it, tilt it backward (carefully!) by lifting the front with both hands. Note if anything shifted. If anything shifted, try to determine what it was. Open the grill and lift the cooking grids -how heavy are they?

  • Why? The heavier the grill, the more material used to make it. The more material, in most cases, the longer it will last. The heaviest part of a grill will be the body and this is a good indicator of what kind and how much material is in the grill. It’s okay if some things shift slightly (like the cooking grids or heat plates) but most things should stay in place with a bit of movement. Even some cooking grids are made of sheet metal, formed into grids. These rust out the most quickly.
  • ** THIS DOES NOT APPLY TO THE WEIGHT OF THE HOOD ALONE**
    While it may sound conspiratorial, it’s true – grill companies put heavy material such as lead into the handle of the grill hood so it feels nice and sturdy when you open it! We wish we were kidding.

Do the Manual/Model Test:

Is there a manual in the grill you’re looking to purchase? Can you find the model number on the grill itself? Does the model number on the grill match the model number on the manual? (This is especially important if you buy a floor model grill).

  • Why? You will need your manual to use your grill to it’s maximum potential. KEEP YOUR GRILL MANUAL!! Additionally, if you plan to use this grill for more than one season, there’s a high likelihood that you will need to purchase some part or accessories. You’ll need the correct model number and if you can’t find it now, you won’t be able to find it when you’re on the phone with the friendly representative asking for it.

Do the Customer Service Test:

Call the number of the brand of the grill you’re looking at. If you get in touch with them, tell them you’re looking to buy one of their grills and which do they suggest?

  • Why? In this industry, many manufacturers don’t bother to pick up the phone. If you ever need anything from them, it’s important to know if you can get in touch with them. If you do talk to someone, this question will be different from most they get. You’ll have a chance to see how honest or helpful they are.

The sad truth for far too many people is they don’t know to look for these things and instead they find themselves looking once again for a new grill just a few years down the road.

If you’ve ever sought service from our company, you know we have our customers in mind when we pick up the phone. That’s why we’re so excited to announce that we will be selling grills in addition to grill parts this season.

You can trust the grills we list on our website the same way you’ve learned to trust our help and grill repair.

If you can’t repair your grill or are in the market for a new one, visit and feel free to email us with feedback! The grill website is still a work in progress but we’re too excited not to share!

Fire up that grill this weekend!

-GG

Finding Your Model Number – with Video

Hey y’all! Grill girl here!!!

Today we’re going to be finding the model number on a Charbroil 463268606

You can use these tips to find the model number on most types of grills. And don’t worry – if you can’t find the model number or the number is illegible, we can still help you fix your grill.

On grills with front doors, the best place to check first is inside the doors. If the model number isn’t there, try going around the the back of the grill.

You’ll be looking for a label or sticker that has tiny print. Usually the model number will be listed along with certification information and maybe even a serial number.

We’ve also written post about how different manufacturer’s format their model numbers so you know what to look for. You can find that post here: What’s a Model Number?

Thanks for watching!!

-GG

Thanks to RutgerMuller for our beats

Replacing the Heat Shield – with Video

Hey Y’all! Grill Girl here!


Today we’re going to be replacing the heat shields on Charbroil 463268606 grill.

You will notice it’s time to replace the heat shields (or heat plates, vaporiser bars, flavorizer bars) when they are rusting excessively or have areas that have rusted through, leaving holes. In this case, we could bend the heat shield in half, it was so rusted.

This is a very simple job and usually all you have to do is lift out the old heat shield and set in the new heat shield.

Notice there used to be a peg in the casting of the grill that has rusted away to nothing. You can just rest the heat shield on the casting of the grill. It is still far enough away from the burner that no flames will touch it.

We used a stainless steel plate to replace the original porcelain coated plate. The stainless steel will long outlast the original.

Look at that pretty, shiny new stainless steel part!

Thanks for watching! -GG

Thanks to RutgerMuller for our beats

Pancake Day – Pancake Burgers


Grill Grilling Parts

Grilled Pancake Burger

It’s Mardi Gras. Some people refer to this as pancake day because pancakes were a great way to get rid of the indulgent things in the house like flour, eggs, milk, and sugar. Whether or not you give up something indulgent for the Lenten season, we think it’s a great excuse to eat pancakes.
Well, we saw a recipe for savory “pancakes” as the bun for a burger over at jamesvsburger.com. We wanted to see how it tasted with a classic pancake that had some sweetness to it.
Of course we kept the bacon.

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Season Ground Beef – we used Monterey Jack cheese, cumin, cayenne pepper, salt and pepper

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I like to roll the ground beef into balls to help regulate the size, then they’re easy to smash into round patties

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You’ll need to heat the grill with the griddle on it. We started that early because it was cold here today

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Start the bacon on the griddle and grill burgers on the remaining space

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When the bacon is done, start the pancakes on the griddle using the bacon grease

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I used the warming rack as a holding space for the cooked pancakes. They stayed warm and crispy

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The Result

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See those grid marks from the warming rack?

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Then we had a party. #pancakeday Happy Fat Tuesday!

You’ll Need:

  • Pancake mix and ingredients needed to follow directions (We used the “just add water” version)
  • BACON
  • Ground Beef
  • Burger seasonings of your choice (we used cumin, cayenne pepper, salt and ground black pepper)
  • Monterey cheese (optional)

Directions:

  • Make burgers
  • Grill bacon on griddle
  • Grill burgers
  • Make pancake batter (according to box)
  • Grill pancakes on griddle in bacon grease
  • Assemble
  • Enjoy!!

Happy Fat Tuesday Y’all!!
-GG

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