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Best Rated Premium Gas Grills

If you’ve got enough scratch to be looking at premium gas grills, then you’re in luck. Why? Because the under $1000 range, down to about $800, is one of the sweet spots for gas grills. You’ll get a lot of features for the price in a solid, long-lasting grill.

Check prices on our favorite premium gas grill at Amazon

 

Best Rated Premium Gas Grills

ModelsOur Star RatingWhere to Buy

Genesis II E-410
(4.7 / 5)Amazon
BBQGuys

Saber Cast 500
(4.5 / 5)BBQGuys

Genesis II LX E-240
(4 / 5)Amazon
BBQGuys

Broil King Regal S490 Pro
(3.9 / 5)Amazon
BBQGuys

As you’ll see at the bottom of the page, we’re aiming to discuss grills priced between $800 and $1000. Getting the best value grill in that price range is going to narrow things down a bit. Truthfully, the $800-$1000 range is under served. There should be more companies making grills in the range. But as you can see by the list above, it’s pretty limited. So without further adieu, here is our pick,

Best Premium Gas Grill Under $1000 For 2017

Weber Genesis II E-410

The Genesis II E-410 is a great grill. It’s got an excellent balance of solid build, great grilling capability and some nice features that make it an excellent buy for the price. While its retail price might be just a bit over, you’ll be able to find this best rated gas grill for under $1000 in many places.

Why is it so great?

First up, the build:

  • 4 stainless steel burners
  • Porcelain-enameled Flavorizer bars
  • Porcelain enameled cast iron cooking grates
  • 646 sq inches of grilling space
  • 198 sq inch collapsible warming rack.
  • Stainless steel side prep workspaces
  • Easy-to-use Grease Management System

Four burners is nice, giving the grill a bit of space to work with. 646 sq inches isn’t massive, but you’ll notice that in the under $1000 range, it’s on the larger side.

Stainless steel everything is great, but the associated costs with building an all stainless grill will shoot it out of this price range. The Genesis uses a mix of porcelain-enameled cast iron (solid, cost-effective choice) and stainless steel. Kinda the best of both worlds.

One nice thing about the E-410 is it is iGrill 3 ready. Meaning you can buy the $100 dollar plus Bluetooth temperature gauge, put it on your grill and have the data from the temperature probes show up on your phone.

Another thing we like is the open cart design. While it might not look as nice as doors, in theory it’s easier to build, allowing Weber to put the money elsewhere in the grill. Plus, it makes it much easier to get to stuff under the grill.

Keep in mind – at this price range, you’re not getting an entirely stainless steel grill. The frame and lid will have cast aluminum or iron. Weber claims a welded tube frame, as opposed to rivets, which should lend a fair amount of stability over the years.

One thing we like to take a look at: the warranty. Weber warranties the cookbox, lid assembly, burners, ignition system and grease management system for 10 years in regards to no rust-through or burn-through. The Flavorizer bars and grate are for 5 years and everything else for 2.

A note – the grease management system. Props to Weber for trying something even though it looks decidedly lo-tech. Any drippings are guided down into the drip pan at the bottom. Easy to get to, no muss, no fuss.

Right?

Some people have reported wind issues. Unknown if they were grilling in a wind tunnel as the pan is supposed to lock in place fairly well.

The bigger issues – bugs and animals. Perhaps the random dog or cat that really likes the drippings of what you’re cooking. Being open like it is, you’ll need to keep an eye on it.

Barring that one issue, the Weber Genesis II E-410 is a fantastic choice.

Check prices on our favorite premium gas grill at Amazon

 

 

Saber Cast 500

Up next is a non-Weber grill. I mention that because Weber seems to have a lock on so many awesome grills at so many price points.

But there’s competition.

The Saber Cast 500 is a solid grill. The major difference it has with the Genesis II E-410 is the Saber Cast is an infrared grill.

A what?

Yup, this $1000 bad boy is an infrared grill, meaning we don’t fully understand the science behind it. I mean, we would, but here’s the important thing – it cooks awesomely.

Okay, a little science – infrared cooking means the food isn’t being cooked directly over a flame. The burners are each in their own little stainless steel box. They direct their heat at a perforated sheet of stainless steel, which is directly under the grates.

If it sounds like they’re putting an uncessary extra step in the process, you’d be half wrong. There is an extra step, but for infrared cooking, it’s crucial.

But here’s the great thing about infrared cooking: no flareups. Because the food is not directly over a flame there are no flareups. The hot grates allow you to sear a steak and get decent grill marks. Also, because the heat is radiating upwards towards the food, as opposed to hot air and flames in regular grilling, the food will dry out much slower, resulting in juicier steaks, shrimp, hot dogs, chicken, etc.

Is it perfect? No. It’s still a fairly simple grill. And if infrared was such a perfect way of cooking, it would have overtaken the grill market, but it hasn’t. Some people like the old ways.

I’ll put it this way – my next grill, I’m going to take a hard look at an infrared gas grill. If it will produce moister food, with less flareups and make everything easier, I’m all for it.

Oh, and they claim it uses 30% less fuel. Which is kinda sweet.

Here are the specs:

  • 3 burners
  • 24,000 BTUS (but kinda don’t count because it’s infrared)
  • 500 sq inch main grilling area
  • 175 sq inch warming rack
  • 304 stainless steel burners, grates, infrared emitter, lid, doors, shelves
  • Remainder of build is enameled steel and cast aluminum

Only issues that seem to come up are these: If you leave it outside and uncovered rain can roll down the lid and get into the drip pan. Solution: don’t leave your $1000 grill outside and uncovered. Either get a cover for it, bring it inside, or stand over it lovingly with an umbrella. Also, some people have reported trouble with low temperatures. Your mileage, as they say, may vary.

Last point – the warranty. Stainless steel (except grates and burners) are lifetime for structural integrity. Meaning they may look bad, but if they’re not falling apart, then they just look bad. Burners are ten years, grates are five and everything else is two. If it falls under warranty, they’ll replace it, but you’re on the hook for installation. All in all, a decent warranty.

Check prices on the Saber Cast 500 at BBQ Guys

 

Weber Genesis II LX E-240

“Hold on,” you might be saying. “That’s a dinky little grill for the price.”

You might be right. Or, like that little kid who knocked me out in high school (Hi, Matt!) the Genesis II LX E-240 just might be punching above its weight.

The obvious question is why does a grill this small cost this much?

The answer is simple: build.

Let’s take a look at some specs.

  • 380 sq inch main grilling area
  • 114 sq inch fold down warming rack
  • 29,000 BTUs
  • 12,000 BTU side burner
  • Side burner has a closeable lid, allowing it to do double duty as a workshelf
  • Fully enclosed cart
  • Porcelain coated steel cart and hood
  • Stainless steel burners
  • Stainless steel grates
  • Stainless steel Flavorizer bars

That right there at the bottom is the reason for a two-burner grill to come in just under $1000. The Weber Genesis II e-410 is a physically larger grill with 4 burners, but its grates and Flavorizer bars are made out of porcelain coated ceramic. While the Genesis II LX E-240 only has two burners, it has more stainless steel where it counts.

Bonus points for being iGrill3 compatible as well as including a light (although that light is… small).

If you’re looking for a great quality smaller grill constructed with upgraded materials, the LX E-240 is a grill to look at. However, if you simply need a larger grilling area, the other grills here, like the Genesis II E-410, the Saber Cast 500 or the Broil King Regal S490, might be a better match for you. Otherwise, this compact gas grill might be exactly what you’re looking for.

 

Broil King Regal S490 Pro

Remember all the stuff we said about balancing features with build quality?

It all gets thrown out the window when it comes to the Broil King Regal S490 Pro

4 burners? Check. Side burner? Yup. Rotisserie included? Bird yes. More stainless steel than you can shake a grill mop at? Yes, yes and yes. Made in the USA? You bet.

  • 500 sq inches main grilling area
  • 195 sq inch warming rack
  • 50,000 BTU main cooking area
  • 10,000 BTU side burner
  • 15,000 BTU rear rotisserie burner
  • Stainless steel cooking grates
  • Stainless steel dual tube burners
  • Stainless steel workshelf, side shelves and enclosed base.
  • Slide-out propane tank tray

Honestly, we don’t know how Broil King does it. They pack more features into a grill in this price range than any other company.

Which makes us pause. If it’s too good to be true… Yeah, we can’t say that’s the case with the Regal S490 Pro, but we’re wary.

The one thing that starts to make us pause is the warranty. The cookbox has a limited lifetime warranty with the burners and rotisserie burner getting a ten year guarantee. The Flav-R-Wave cooking system, grates and other stainless cart components all get 5 years with everything else (including the paint) coming in at 2 years. Honestly, that’s a little slim. And makes us wonder if it was built better, might the warranty also be better?

That’s the main reason we don’t put this grill as our top pick. If Broil King had an amazing reputation of making fantastic grills that last for years and they backed it up with a warranty to rival Weber or Saber Cast, we’d put it in the top spot.

While they’ve got a decent reputation, their warranty doesn’t instill a lot of confidence for the long haul. But, that’s us.

If you really need a rotisserie or the 4 burner size, then have at it. Or, if you’ve got no problem with plunking down another grand for a grill sooner rather than later, then take a shot on the Broil King Regal S490 Pro. Just make sure you know what you’re getting.

 

 

What To Look For In A Premium Gas Grill

The $800 – $1000 range of premium gas grills is, in our opinion, a great price range to be shopping for a grill. While most grills in this range won’t have as many bells and whistles as the higher priced luxury grills, you’ll walk away with a solidly built grill for your hard-earned money.

Does that mean all the grills in this price range are fantastic? Heck no! That’s the purpose for this whole article. We’re pointing out a few of the models we think stand out at this price point.

What should you look for?

Honestly, no frills.

Generally, the fancier the grill gets, the quality of the product will drop comparatively. Meaning you’ll get a fancy grill that likely won’t last that long. Or that will be more expensive than the price range we’re looking at here.

You’re not going to find an all-stainless steel grill that is built well with good quality steel for under $1000 that’s going to last ten years. As much as we’d all like it to happen, it’s just not.

In other words, avoid the built-in things. The refrigerators, the ovens, the islands: avoid those. Rotisseries, maybe. Look for a grill that cooks and cooks well. Yes, there will be stainless steel. But I’d try to stay away from it as much as you can. Why? It costs the manufacturer more. And to come in under a certain price point, they’ll scrimp elsewhere.

Make sure you read the warranty. See what it covers and compare it to other grills you’re looking at buying. Once purchased, make sure you register it. Grills from major manufacturers will streamline the warranty and repair process. Store brands, and some other major brands, too, may not stand behind their products as much. Weber, Broil King and other major brands have reputations to uphold and will stand behind their products as long as they’re taken care of.

The under $1000 gas grill market is a great price range because you are able to find grills with some decent quality features. The top selling, top rated brand in this range is the Weber for a good reason – they make a great grill. There are others, of course. We’ve listed some below. But as always, be wary of grills from unknown or less than reliable manufacturers. Check the warranty carefully. And don’t forget to focus on the most important function of all in a grill – how well it cooks.

 

A few things to note:

  • Price: all of the grills on this page are between 801 and 1000 dollars. These prices are street prices, not recommended retail. They may go up a little or down a little based on promotions, upgrades, etc. If you’re looking for grills under 800, then check out this post. Looking for something a little more, perhaps the 1000-2000 range? We’ve got ya covered.
  • Rating: this is our rating based on our own experiences, experiences reported by users across the internet and a big cup of our own LTB special sauce. We’ve gotta tell ya – that special sauce has a bit of a kick, and has a tendency to give one pretty rotten hangover. The point being? Take our ratings with a grain of salt. Would you buy something based off of a friend’s recommendation, find out it sucks, then blame them for all your woes? Didn’t think so. And we’re friends, right?

If you’re not quite ready to spend a thousand bucks on a shiny new gas grill, here are a few posts you might want to take a look at:

Buying A New Gas Grill? Check Out These Best Rated Gas Grills

Best Rated Gas Grills Under $300

Best Rated Gas Grills Under $500

Best Rated Gas Grills Under $800

Portable Gas Grills – Best Of Both Worlds

Good Luck! Oh, and stop on by again and tell us what you think.

LTB

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Best Rated Gas Grills Under $800

Looking for a gas grill in the 500 to 800 dollar range? Good for you, you’re starting to get into the price range with some good pickings. Most of the major grill makers will have a gas grill in this price range. Another good thing – most of these grills will cook well.

Heck, you may even be able to get a nice shiny stainless steel grill with a couple of pretty nice features in this price range. Whoo-hoo!

But hold on a second there, partner. Don’t get ahead of yourself. Yes, you can find those things, but beware of the quality of the stainless steel. Even the bigger manufacturers may put out grills with lower quality steel simply because the customer wants it. That don’t mean its going to be good. Check what other people say about it. If you can get your hands on it, if it feels flimsy – it probably is. And for the other features – take a good look at what you’re really going to use. In our opinion it is always going to be better to get a higher quality barebones grill without all the extra stuff but a longer warranty from a better manufacturer.

So, keeping that in mind, here is what we found over on Amazon. Check them out and lets us know what you think.

We’ve put the 7 grills we recommend in this price range in a handy-dandy interactive chart for ease of perusal. There are 8 columns, most of which don’t need to be explained. Three of the columns, however, we will explain:

  • Price: all of the grills on this page are between 501 and 800 dollars (except the Napoleon Mirage 485RB. It’s a bit over 800, but it’s awesome). If you’re looking for grills under 500, then check out this post. Looking for something a little more, perhaps the 800-1000 range or even the 1000-2000 range? We’ve got ya covered. The single dollar sign represents something from 501-600, the double dollar sign 601-700 and the triple dollar sign 701-800. These prices are based on what we see over at Amazon, not the manufacturer’s listed retail price, which is often higher. These prices can go up and down based on availability, promotions, product upgrades, etc. We don’t monitor these in real time, but if we see a change we’ll adjust accordingly.
  • Rating: this is the average rating given by users over at Amazon. While some of the things they say need to be taken with a grain of salt, it can give you a good idea if people dig it or not.
  • Features: if there is something special the grill offers, we list it here.

 

 

Best Rated Gas Grills Under $800

ImageGrill NameBurnersTotal BTUsMain Grilling Area (sq. inches)Total Grilling Area (sq. inches)FeaturesPriceRating
Napoleon Mirage M485RB

Click here for full specs, updated prices and more reviews at Amazon
461,500485675infrared rear burner (13,500 BTUs), stainless steel cart, backlit knobs, stainless steel cooking rods and sear plates$$$5.0
Napoleon LA series LA200SBPSS

Click here for full specs, updated prices and more reviews at Amazon
235,000325435side burner (8,000 BTUs), folding side shelves with lock on burner shelf, backlit knobs, porcelainized cast-iron cooking grids, $5.0
Dyna-Glo Dual Fuel Charcoal and Gas Grill Combo

Click here for full specs, updated prices and more reviews at Amazon
230,000350 (x2)934charcoal and gas grill combo, side burner (12,000 BTUs), 10,000 BTU electronic ignition burner for charcoal unit, enameled cast-iron cooking grates, adjustable charcoal tray, thermometer$$4.2
Broil King Signet 90

Click here for full specs, updated prices and more reviews at Amazon
340,000400635side burner (10,000 BTUs), rotisserie burner (15,000 BTUs) and rotisserie kit, cast-iron cooking grids, electtronic ignition, thermometer$$4.4
Weber Spirit E-320

Click here for full specs, updated prices and more reviews at Amazon
332,000424530side burner (12,000 BTUs), porcelain-enameled cast-iron cooking grids, thermometer$4.4
Weber Genesis E-330

Click here for full specs, updated prices and more reviews at Amazon
338,000507637side burner (12,000 BTUs), sear station (10,000 BTUs), porcelain-enameled cast-iron cooking grates, thermometer, individual electric ignition, comes in 3 colors$$$4.7
Char-Broil Combination Charcoal and Gas Grill

Click here for full specs, updated prices and more reviews at Amazon
336,000390 (x2)502 (x2)side burner (12,000 BTUs), porcelain-coated cast iron grates, electric ignition, dual cooking areas, adjustable charcoal grate height, slide-out ash pan, thermometer$4.5

 

If this isn’t the price range you’re looking at, here are a few posts you might want to take a look at:

Buying A New Gas Grill? Check Out These Best Rated Gas Grills

Best Rated Gas Grills Under $300

Best Rated Gas Grills Under $500

Best Rated Gas Grills Under $1000

Portable Gas Grills – Best Of Both Worlds

Good Luck!

LTB

Best Rated Gas Grills Under $300

You’ve got your heart set on a gas grill but you just can’t afford to shell out any more than 300 bucks. Does this sound like you? We feel for you, we really do. We’ve been there ourselves. Gas grills can be pretty awesome. Unfortunately with all the extra technology and bells and whistles and stuff, the prices asked for a good quality one are going to be much higher than your run-of-the-mill kettle barbecue grill.

But don’t despair. There are a few choices to be had in the sub-300 dollar range of the gas grill market. First thing you should do is take a look at portable gas grills. Why? Truthfully you’ll likely get a better grill that will last longer if you buy a portable gas grill as opposed to a full size gas grill in this price range. Simple as that. Smaller, sure. But it will do the job.

Which leads us to the second point – forego all the bells and whistles and get yourself a gas grill that does one thing well – cook. Get something with decent heat made by a respected manufacturer with a warranty for a couple of years. Look past all the stainless steel, the rotisseries, the infrared, the this and the that. Just get a grill that cooks well.

If you can, of course, try bumping up your budget a couple of hundred bucks to the $500 dollar range. If you can’t, we understand. Times are tough, wallets are tight. But just the extra couple hundred bucks will open up a few more choices. Even an extra 100 will take you up to the Weber Spirit E210, Weber’s lowest priced freestanding gas grill. If you can’t swing that, then read on friend.

With those things in mind, here’s a few of the best rated grills under $300 that we found. Happy hunting.

Char-Griller 3001 Grillin’ Pro Gas Grill

–> Click here to check out full pricing, specs, more reviews and images of the Char-Griller 3001 Grillin’ Pro gas grill at Amazon–>

This grill wins our award for the Best Named Gas Grill Under $300. If we had an award for that. Come on – it’s the Grillin’ Pro! What does this grill bring to the table other than an awesome name? How about 3 burners pumping out 40,000 BTUs? How about 438 sq. inches of primary grilling space backed up with a 192 sq. inch warming rack. How about a 12,000 BTU side burner? Sound good? Wait, it gets better. Electronic ignition, porcelain coated cast-iron grates, plus a pair of awesome looking smoke-stacks on top of the hood. Some of the reviews on Amazon say it is hard to put together, some say it’s no problem. Just keep it in mind. As an added bonus, if you go to Char-Griller’s website, you get to see their stock photo of this grill surrounded by a yellow glow of holy awesomeness. At least that’s what we’re calling it here. You can almost hear the angels singing. All kidding aside, this looks like a great little grill from a decent company.

Char-Broil 36,000 BTU 3-Burner Gas Grill 

–> Click here to check out full pricing, specs, more reviews and images of the Char-Broil 36,000 BTU 3-Burner gas grill at Amazon–>

This is a decent little grill with a number of nice features from Char-Broil. Its three burners have independent controls and push out 36,000 BTUs, as the name so proudly exclaims. 545 sq. inches of cooking surface divided into a 380 sq. inch primary cooking surface and a raised 174 sq. inch warming rack. It also has a 12,000 BTU side burner for keeping sauces warm or any other thing you feel inclined to do with a side burner. Piezo push button ignition and porcelain coated wire grates round out this well-reviewed little grill on wheels.

Broil-Mate 155154 Liquid Propane Gas Grill

–> Click here to check out full pricing, specs, more reviews and images of the Broil-Mate 155154 Liquid Propane gas grill at Amazon–>

While the name does not impress, this grill may. Comes with Broil-Mate’s Dual-H burner system that pumps out 40,000 BTUs over a 700 sq. inch cooking area (400sq. inch primary and 300 sq. inch warming rack) Cast iron cooking grids, their Sure-Lite™ electronic ignition system and a thermometer built into the hood round it out. No, this isn’t a top-of-the-line grill with lots of fancy parts and side-burners and all that. But for the money, it’ll likely cook up what you need to cook. Reviews at Amazon are running abuot a 4.0 out of 5, so not bad considering the price. Broil-Mate has a decent warranty on this grill (Limited lifetime on the oven, 5 years on the burners and 2 years on everything else) so it’s probably not going to be garbage in a year or so.

Char-Broil TRU Infrared Patio Bistro Infrared Gas Grill

–> Click here to check out full pricing, specs, more reviews and images of the Char-Broil TRU Infrared Patio Bistro Infrared gas grill at Amazon–>

And runner-up for our name contest that doesn’t exist is the TRU Infrared – props to Char-Broil for not only going with all caps, but dropping the unnecessary “e”. Again, kidding aside this is a nice little grill that actually looks pretty great. Not something that looks bargain basement priced at all. Kinda fancy. But the real question – how does it cook? Well, 240 sq. inches of primary and 80 sq. inches of (including the little warming rack on top) starts us off. Then we get to the infrared part of the concept – if you’re looking for a budget infrared grill, this is probably going to be one of your top choices. If you’re not sure of the benefits of infrared grilling – then either do some research or keep walking. The burner pumps out 13,000 BTUs, which isn’t much, but apparently is fine for heating with infrared. While the reviews are plentiful and positive and the price is nice, some have raised questions about the durability of this little grill. If you’re looking for a compact, smart-looking grill that cooks with infrared heating and is cheap, then this is likely for you.

So there you have it – 4 gas grills that run under 300 bucks but aren’t going to fall apart on you in a month or so. If you’re ready to bump up to the next price level, then go ahead and check out our Best Gas Grills Under $500 article, or maybe go back to our gigantic Best Rated Gas Grills article. Heck, check out Portable Gas Grills just for kicks. Or even drop us a line or leave a comment below.

Happy Hunting!

LTB

 

 

The LTB Barbecue Buying Guide Part 1

Hey folks, this is part one in what I’ve planned to be at least a 2 part buying guide. It may end up being a 4 part buying guide, it depends on how long winded I get and how much time I’ve got. We’ll see. If you’re looking to buy your first barbecue grill, you might want to start with Part 2 of the LTB Barbecue Buying Guide. It goes into more detail than this guide and is geared for those wonderful people who have yet had the joy of buying their first barbecue grill. If you’ve already experienced this joy, then keep reading for some guidance towards the rapture of buying your second (or third or fourth) barbecue grill.

The LTB Barbecue Buying Guide
Part 1


So you need to buy a new grill. Well, maybe need is too strong of a word. Want? Desire? Obsess? Whatever the reason, you’re in the market for a new barbecue grill. So you go to your local hardware store or big box store of your choice and are dazzled by three things – the size of grills nowadays, the features and above all the price. Sticker shock? Yeah, that’s what it’s called when you mouth hangs open despite your best efforts when you see the price of a grill you like the looks of.

What’s an average Joe to do?

Read this article, that’s what. This article and the ones associated with it represent the best barbecue buying guide you can find on the internet. Well, maybe not, but it’s a good starting point, right? Since you’re here, have a look around. Odds are good you’ll have learned something and hopefully are closer in your search for your new awesome barbecue grill.

Now, if you’ve never bought a grill before in your life then you need to go over here to our nice and shiny guide for people, like you, who have never bought a barbecue grill before in their life. Its chock full of information and terminology explanations that will set your mind at ease. Those of you who already know a little about grills should keep reading. Why? Because this guide here is for people who already have a grill and are looking to replace what they have for whatever reason. People just like you.

First things first
Take into consideration how often you will realistically be grilling outdoors. “Every day!” you say. “Every weekend!” Well, while the enthusiasm is commendable, the reality will more than likely fall short of that. There are lots of things that will conspire against your best laid plans to migrate into an all-barbecue all-the-time lifestyle. Family, work, sick kids, bad weather, allergies, the incessant cleaning of the grill – all these and a myriad of other reasons can keep you from your dream. So take a dose of reality and try again. A good rule of thumb is to start with how many days you actually grilled outdoors the previous season. That’s probably how many you’ll barbecue this year. Maybe add 50% on top of that, but much more than that may be wishful thinking.

Self Reflection
No, not that kind. We’re talking grills, man, grills. Take a look at what you have now. What are the pros and cons of your setup? What would you like to have? What features have you found on your current grill that didn’t work? What were some that did? What have you seen on grills in stores, on the internet or at friend’s houses that you thought were rather cool. Is there a direction you’d like to take your family’s grilling experience that you cannot do without a special feature your grill currently does not have? Answers to these questions will go a long way in helping you figure out what you’re looking for. They may even set a clear direction for your grill shopping.

Good Enough for Santa Claus
Some may find it useful to write out a wish list of things they would like. While this is a good way to start, it can also be a frustrating time waste. Sitting around, making a list, checking it twice, fretting over this feature and that. Examining the BTUs and grilling space. BE A MAN as Don Corleone would say. Perhaps it’s just the nature of this writer, but going back and forth between the extremes of pouring over the endless minutiae of a gourmet grill and longing for just a rack over some coals helps me get to the point where I can buy a grill in peace.

Here are some of the things you will need to put some serious consideration into before you buy your next grill. If you care. If you are overwhelmed, don’t pitch in the towel, just go the easy route, get a Weber Charcoal Kettle Grill or a Smokey Joe and be done with it. For those who want something more than that, read on. The list that follows comes in no particular order.

Price
Yes, I listed this first, but that doesn’t mean it should come first. While it is important, some people focus on this too much but not in the way you may be thinking. Some people will say “I’ve got 1000 bucks to buy a grill with” and if they are unlucky, one of three things will happen.

  1. They focus on getting a grill that costs 1000 dollars or darn close to it. They don’t focus on what they need and can find themselves with ridiculously more grill than they could ever reasonably use.
  2. They want to get the most features for the price and by a second or third tier bargain grill that breaks down far sooner than a higher quality grill with less features. Or…
  3. They stretch their wallet farther than they should and buy a grill for 1000 bucks, but forget the extras. You know, the tongs, the thermometer, the fork, the spatula, the grill brushes, the basting brushes, the rubs and sauce and all the other stuff that you’ll end up spending money on. They find out they need/want to pony up another 300 bucks or so to actually get all the stuff they need.

Don’t be that guy. Price is important but don’t fixate on it. Remember – you get what you pay for. Quality doesn’t usually come cheap. Buy the best grill you can afford and don’t look back. Pay for quality and only cry once.

Features
These can be divided up into three basic categories – things you can’t live without, things you’d like to have and things you don’t care about. There may be some things you actually hate and won’t buy a grill that has them, but I don’t really think you’ll need a separate category for those. You may find out that things you think you can’t live without, after a bit of reflection, can move to the other two categories, freeing up your options quite a bit.

Fuel source – charcoal gas or electric.
Wait, did you say electric? Yes, I did and believe it or not, it does have its place. But as far as the great debate between charcoal or gas – the choice is yours. Like the time spent on getting the charcoal just right? Charcoal’s for you. Hate it? Go with gas. Like the smokiness that comes from a charcoal grill? Go, charcoal, go! Hate it? Gas, here I come. Hate the concept of cooking over open flame connected to a can of highly pressurized exploding gas? Charcoal, sweet charcoal. Comfortable with it? Gas is your friend. Truly, there are great arguments to be made for both and people whose opinions I respect come down on either side of the fence for this. One thing you will find – the sheer number of gas grills available on the market today outweigh the number of charcoal grills. I think this is owed primarily to the cooking convenience of gas compared to that of charcoal.

Double barreled
You can go another route – get yourself two grills. Crazy, I know, but hear me out. If you like the futzing with the charcoal on the weekends then get yourself a reasonably priced charcoal grill for the weekends. Weber’s classic charcoal grill runs between 100 and 150 bucks. But for those times when you want to grill quickly, like during the week or for unexpected guests, get an inexpensive gas grill. Good gas grills are around 500 bucks. If you’re really on a budget, join the 7% of Americans who have an electric grill. Cheap, easy, and while many people claim they’re not “authentic grills” it’s better than cooking a steak or a burger in a pan. Medium sized quality electric grills can be about 250 bucks or more. So for about 400 bucks including accessories (charcoal chimney, tongs, spatula, fork, etc.) you can set yourself up with a good charcoal grill for the weekends and the big cookouts and have a cheap electric or gas grill for the times you want to grill but don’t have the time to mess with the charcoal.

Size
This is more about honesty than anything else. How many people will you honestly cook for? Do you see yourself cooking for maybe 4-10? Or is it closer to 15-20? Or more? Seriously try to estimate the number of people who you will realistically be cooking for over what you imagine the lifetime of the grill to be. Start with a smaller grill and want to upgrade in 3-4 years? Possible, and may be a good decision. You might even be able to sell your old grill for a bit of cash. Buy an enormous grill and never actually use it to its full potential? That’s a waste of money.

Heat
If you’re going with gas, this is going to be a consideration. Do yourself a favor – don’t get wrapped up and caught up in the BTU race. Yes, BTUs are important. But the marketing guys at the barbecue companies and the stores that sell them love the BTU factor. Why? How often do you catch yourself debating horsepower with your car buddies or phone battery life when purchasing a new phone? Or zoom capabilities on a new camera. It’s in most guy’s nature to want more. More zoom, more horsepower, more BTUs. A well designed grill can have lower BTUs and do a great job of cooking, better even than a poorly designed grill with higher BTUs. Point? Keep BTUs in mind, but cost, features, and size are going to be more important than BTUs.

Those 5 things (price, features, size, fuel source and heat) are going to be the basic things you’ll need to get sorted out first before you get much closer to buying your new grill. Once those things get narrowed down a bit, you can start to focus on smaller issues. Like what, you say? Like the following things you’ll need to take into consideration down the road before you plunk down your cash.

Materials – what’s it made of? Stainless steel? Aluminum? Cast iron? Cheap metal painted over with something black? Each choice will have an impact on the price of the model you buy. While we here at LBT are fans of stainless steel and would recommend narrowing your preference to that, aluminum does have it’s place, as well as cast iron in some situations. Stay away from cheap metal, though. It won’t last long and you’ll end up needing to replace the grill sooner rather than later.

Durability/Stability – If you’re shopping at a place where you can actually handle the grill itself, give it a good shake or two. If it feels rickety you may want to pass on it – floor models should be set up as well as they can be. If it’s still shaky, then it’s shaky and not something to be relied upon. If you don’t have the luxury of looking at your top choices in person, then read as many reviews as you can before you buy online. And be sure the place you buy from has a good return policy. Amazon comes to mind.

Name brand vs. store brand – Name brands are the big boys. Store brands are either made by the store (hence the name) or made by big companies and rebranded in a deal between the store and the company. A deal that may only be in place for a year or two making replacement parts difficult to find down the line. Although store brands can do a fine job and be good grills if you take care of them, LTB recommends that whenever possible you stick with name brands.

Now, go to it. Figure out some of the things that only you can answer – how many people will you be cooking for? What will your fuel source be? What’s your budget? What features can you live without and which ones are must-haves? Keep durability in mind as well as BTUs and what the grills are made of. Try to stick with a name brand whenever possible. And remember these last two very important points – 1) A grill is simply a tool – it allows you to be the best cook you can be. 2) If you take good care of that tool it should last a fairly long time, no matter how much it cost. the flip side is this – if you don’t take care of it, it will last a very short time, no matter what the cost.

Good luck and happy grilling.

LTB

4

Thinking Of Buying A Napoleon Grill? Here’s The Skinny. (Updated for 2018)

So you’re in the market for a quality gas grill.

You’ve done your research and the name Napoleon keeps popping up. You read that they’re a well-respected company that makes fine gas grills, along with a few electric grills, built-in grills, etc.

You’ve even read a handful of Napoleon grills reviews and are just about ready to pull the trigger.

Hold on.

We’re not saying you shouldn’t buy a Napoleon gas grill. Heck, a lot of our readers have and been quite happy with them.

What we’re saying is before you get all clicky with that credit card of yours, take a closer look. There are some finer detailed points about Napoleon gas grills, as well as their charcoal and electric cousins, that you should know about. There’re some things that the fine folks here at LTB like, sure. But there are also a few things we’re not happy with.

And in the end, if you’re fine with what you see, then by all means pull that trigger. You’ll likely get a great grill that will last you for a long time.

But we’re here to help ensure that.

Click here to check prices on our favorite Napoleon grill at Amazon

 

Wait…Napoleon?

If you haven’t heard of them, Napoleon has been making grills for some time now and they are a highly respected brand that puts out quality grills.  That’s all.  Just a company that makes good grills that pretty much everybody seems to love.

They started in Ontario, Canada, making wood stoves back in the 1970’s. Since then they have been making stainless steel grills and with each passing year their reputation increases. They also make other things, like fire tables and pits, patio heaters and such.

But…grills. And lots of ‘em.

 

Wide Range of Product Lines

Our first beef with Napoleon (get it…beef) is their product lines are unnecessarily confusing. Truthfully, we’ll give them credit where credit is due: they’ve improved their product line since the first publishing of this article.

What used to be 6 different lines (four with the name “Prestige”) has slimmed down to… 6. But luckily there are only 2 with the “Prestige” name.

Currently (edge of summer 2018) Napoleon has 5 freestanding gas grill product lines plus one line exclusive to a particular retailer. They are, in descending level from top to bottom:

  • Prestige Pro – top of the line, best of the best for Napoleon. With a price tag to match.
  • Prestige – in Napoleon-land, they’re second only to the Pro, but an easier to swallow price tag.
  • LEX – A decent midrange line for Napoleon.
  • Rogue – A step down from the LEX line, and a fine grill, as long as you know what you’re getting.
  • Triumph – Cheapest of the non-Canadian Tire lines.
  • Legend – sold exclusively at Canadian Tire (they don’t just sell tires)

And then, following at the back of the pack, come the portable and charcoal grills.

This is just for their free-standing grills. The company also makes some built-in grill heads that follow the same product naming procedures as their main free-standing lines.

They also offer a line of modular outdoor kitchen products, most under the name Oasis. However, if you’re doing the full Napoelon, you’d need to pick up one of their built-in grill heads. And you probably will, because what’s the point of buying their modular cabinets and storage and such just to go with a built-in grill from some other company, right?

 

Breaking Down The Different Napoleon Lines

As mentioned above, Napoleon has 6 gas grill lines with a grand total of 25 different grills (29 if you live near a Canadian Tire). That’s a lot of grills. And with the habit of giving their grills short names with numbers and a bunch of letters, then it can get more than a little confusing.

Lucky for you, the LTB crew slogged through the Napoleon website and broke things down for you.

First thing you need to take a look at is what the names mean. Essentially, the first group of letters tells you which line it belongs to. PRO is for the Prestige Pro line, P is for the Prestige line, LEX for the LEX, R for the… you get the picture.

The numbers that come next tell you the sq inches of primary grilling space. Notice that’s not the total amount of grilling space. To get that, Napoleon adds in the square inches of the side burners and everything. So if you’re wondering how much primary cooking space you’re gonna have, just refer to the numbers in the model’s name.

Last come a series of letters. For the most part, they follow this pattern:

R = Rotisserie

B = Infrared burner mounted at the rear

SI = Side burner

-XX = Indicates the finish of the grill. SS stands for stainless steel, CH for Charcoal, B for midnight blue, and K for black. Note that the black models have black hoods and doors, while the charcoal and blue ones have stainless steel doors and stainless hood.

So, for example, the Prestige Line all start with 500 sq inches of grilling area, 4 burners and 48,000 BTU’s. The models with an infrared rear burner have the same cooking area but a grand total of 66,000 BTU’s and 5 burners.

Add a side burner and you’ve got 6 total burners, 760 sq inches of total cooking area and 80,000 BTU’s. Notice that’s “cooking area’ not “grilling area”. The size of the grill head hasn’t changed, they’re just adding in the 260 sq inch side grill to the total cooking area.

Most manufacturers do this, but we want to point it out when we can.

That out of the way, let’s dive in.

 

Napoleon Pestige Pro Line

The pinnacle of the Napoleon’s gas grills, their Prestige Pro line is the best of the best. They also carry the biggest price tags. Let’s take a look.

ModelsOur Star RatingWhere to Buy
Napoleon PRO825RSBI
Napoleon PRO825RSBI
(4.6 / 5)Amazon
Napoleon PRO665RSIB
Napoleon PRO665RSIB
(4.3 / 5)Amazon
Napoleon PRO500RSIB
Napoleon PRO500RSIB
(4.8 / 5)Amazon

PRO825RSBI

The big dog of the bunch and all of Napoleon’s line. Their flagship models comes with pretty much everything. It has 1245 sq inches total cooking area, too many burners to count, and lots of stainless steel.

This grill is a 490 pound behemoth and takes some time to explain. While it follows the standard naming style of Napoleon’s grills, with the RSBI standing for Rotisserie, Side Burner and Infrared burner, there’s a lot more going on than just that.

First up is the main grill head. 825 sq inches of grilling area, 4 burners with a fifth infrared burner at the back, along with an included rotisserie kit. There is a smoker chip tray in the main section to help you get that nice smokiness as well, with its own fire controller. On the right is a “sizzle zone” – two infrared burners along with a warming burner with 420 sq inches of space. On the left is a side burner with a reversible cast-iron grid – not for grilling, but for pots and woks. 10 total burners. And BTU’s? A freakin’ lot. Like 123,000.

Whew. That thing’s a beast.

PRO665RSIB

Less beastly than the 825, but still formidable. 665 sq inches for the main grilling area with 5 burners underneath with 60,000 BTU’s. The side infrared burner has 345 sq. inches of grilling space adding up to 1010 sq inches total. There is an included rotisserie kit along with a rear infrared burner as well as a built-in smoker chip option.

PRO500RSIB

The smallest of the Prestige Pro line, it comes with a 500 sq inch main grilling area, a rotisserie kit, an infrared rear burner, a 260 sq inch infrared burner and lots of shiny stainless steel.

 

 

Napoleon Prestige Line

The Prestige is probably going to be the best deal if you can afford a couple of grand for a grill. Not the biggest, not the fanciest, but a good solid grill with lots of features. Plus – made in Canada.

ModelOur Star RatingWhere to Buy
Napoleon P500RSIB-SS
Napoleon P500RSIB-SS
(4.6 / 5)Amazon
Napoleon P500RSIB-K
Napoleon P500RSIB-K

(4.6 / 5)Amazon
Napoleon P500RSIB-B
Napoleon P500RSIB-B
(4.6 / 5)Amazon
Napoleon P500RSIB-CH
Napoleon P500RSIB-CH
(4.6 / 5)Amazon
Napoleon P500RB
Napoleon P500RB
(4.3 / 5)Amazon
Napoleon P500RB-K
Napoleon P500RB-K
(4.2 / 5)Amazon
Napoleon P500-K
Napoleon P500-K
(4.5 / 5)Amazon
Napoleon P500SS
Napoleon P500SS
(4.7 / 5)Amazon

And the breakdown by model goes a little something like this…

  • P500RSIB-SS

    Top of the heap in the Prestige line. Rotisserie kit included, infrared burner plus side burner, all wrapped up in a stainless steel finish. 6 burners, 80,000 BTU’s, 500 sq inches of primary grilling area, 160 sq inches of side burner and a 260 sq inch warming rack.

  • P500RSIB-B

    Same as above, but with a nice cobalt blue hood.

  • P500RSIB-CH

    Same as above but with a nice charcoal hood.

  • P500RSIB-K

    Same as above but with nice black hood and doors.

  • P500RB-SS

    Mid level of the Prestige line, comes with a rotisserie kit and rear infrared burner, but no side burner, just dual outboard shelves. 5 burners (4 plus the rear infrared) takes it up to 66,000 BTU’s and the standard 500 sq inches primary/260 sq inch warming rack totaling 760 sq inches of grilling area. That’s the same as all the grills in the Prestige line, minus the side grill. A shiny stainless steel finish tops it off.

  • P500RB-K

    Same as above but with black hood and doors.

  • P500SS

    The bottom of the Prestige line, but still a mighty fine grill. 4 burners, 760 sq inches of “grilling area,” and 48,000 BTU’s. No Rotisserie kit, and no side burner.

  • P500-K

    Same as above but with black doors and hood.

So, overall, every grill in the Prestige line runs a 500 sq inch main grilling space with a 260 sq inch warming rack. As you go up the line, higher spec’ed models add in a rear infrared burner and rotisserie kit and then a 140 sq inch side burner.

Nice.

 

Napoleon LEX Line

The LEX line bills itself as high-end stainless steel grills for an affordable price. But are they?

Let’s take a look.

ModelOur Star RatingWhere to Buy
Napoleon LEX730RSBI
Napoleon LEX730RSBI
(4.5 / 5)Amazon
Napoleon LEX605RSBI
Napoleon LEX605RSBI
(4.3 / 5)Amazon
Napoleon LEX485RSIB-1
Napoleon LEX485RSIB-1
(4.4 / 5)Amazon
Napoleon LEX485-1
Napoleon LEX485-1
(4 / 5)Amazon
  • LEX730RSBI

    730 sq inches of primary grilling space, infrared bottom and rear burners, a range side burner and a rotisserie? A freakin’ ice bucket? That’s a lot of grill. Unfortunately, it’s the top of the line of Napoleon’s “Made in China” grills. If that bothers you, then look elsewhere. If not, then for under two grand, you’re getting a heckuva lot of grill.

  • LEX605RSBI

    Essentially the same grill as the LEX730RSBI, minus about 125 sq inches of primary grilling space. And minus about 200 bucks.

  • LEX485RSIB-1

    Notice the letters after the name are slightly different than the two higher models in the LEX line. With this one, you’re losing 120 sq inches of grilling space, as well as the bottom infrared burner. Still have the rotisserie and the infrared side and rear burners, though.

  • LEX485-1

    If you’re following along, you can guess that this is the same grill as the LEX485RSIB-1, only without the rotisserie kit, the infrared rear or side burners. Still a solid grill. In the opinion of the LTB staff, this is where the LEX line gets affordable. But our wallets may not be as thick as yours.

If you notice, the LEX line looks a lot like the Prestige PRO line, just at a cheaper price point. Part of that is due to the LEX line (and every line not named Prestige or Prestige PRO) being made in China. But while there are similarities, you’ll need to take a good hard look at exactly what you’re getting. And what you’re not.

Is Napoleon’s LEX line affordable? Every person will need to answer that themselves with one good eye on their bank balance.

 

Napoleon Rogue Line

If the LEX line is a little rich for your blood, but you’re looking for something a little fancier than the Triumph line, then the Rogue is for you.

ModelsOur Star RatingWhere to Buy
Napoleon R425SIBPBE
Napoleon R425SIBPBE
(3.7 / 5)
Napoleon R425SIB
Napoleon R425SIB
(3.9 / 5)Amazon
Napoleon R425SB
Napoleon R425SB
(4.1 / 5)Amazon
Napoleon R425
Napoleon R425
(4.2 / 5)Amazon
Napoleon R365SIB
Napoleon R365SIB

(3.9 / 5)
Napoleon R365SB
Napoleon R365SB
(4 / 5)
Napoleon R365
Napoleon R365
(3.7 / 5)
  • R425SIBPBE

    No rotisserie but an infrared side burner. And Black. Did we say black? Yes, it’s black. Because who really needs stainless steel when you can have black. Top of the Rogue line – 3 burners, 36,000 BTU’s. And black.

  • R425SIB

    Same model as above, but stainless steel.

  • R425SB

    Don’t care for infrared cooking? Want a regular range side burner? The R425SB has you covered.

  • R425

    Just want a grill? No side burner, 425 sq inches of primary grilling space? Nothing fancy? Here’s your grill.

  • R365SIB

    425 sq inches too much for you? Happy with 365, but need an infrared side burner? This one’s for you.

  • R365SB

    Smaller grill, but really like the range side burner, not the infrared? The R35SB should keep you smiling.

  • R365

    Bottom of the Rogue line, the R365 is a grill that doesn’t have a lot of frills but… doesn’t have a lot of frills. Truthfully, although street price is around 600 bucks, you might want to keep looking.

The Rogue line has some interesting models, and if we were looking for a budget grill, we’d look long and hard here. But as with many things Napoleon, you’re paying for the name. Other companies may not put as much of a premium on their name but still make solid grills.

 

Napoleon Triumph Line

If you don’t have the scratch for a Rogue or higher but still want a Napoleon, then the Triumph is the line for you (if you don’t live near a Canadian Tire, that is). While the grills are cheaper, they are smaller as well. In all honesty, this is the area where it’s a good idea to look at other grills, because a portion of the price is going to be the Napoleon name.

ModelsOur Star RatingWhere to Buy
Napoleon T495SB
Napoleon T495SB
(3.6 / 5)Amazon
Napoleon T410SB
Napoleon T410SB

(3.7 / 5)Amazon
Napoleon T325SB
Napoleon T325SB

(3.4 / 5)Amazon
  • T495SB

    495 sq inches of primary grilling space and a range side burner.

  • T410SB

    410 sq inches of primary grilling area and a range side burner.

  • T325SB

    325 sq inches of primary grilling area and a range side burner.

See the pattern? We don’t work for Napoleon so we have no need to sugar-coat things and build these grills up into something they’re not. They’re basic grills. That’s it. But look elsewhere and compare them to other grills on the market, because for the price, there are others out there that might suit your needs better.

 

Napoleon Legend Line

The Legend line is Napoleon’s cheapest line of freestanding gas grills. To go any cheaper, you’ll need to get one of their portable gas grills (not a bad idea).

Now, does cheap mean bad? Not necessarily.

You’ll need to understand that the grill comes with Napoleon’s President’s Limited Warranty, not their President’s Limited Lifetime Warranty. We discussed it earlier, but in a nutshell, less is covered and for less time.

Will you get a good grill? Yeah. But in all honesty, unless your heart is set on owning a Napoleon above all else, you might look elsewhere. You probably can get more grill for your money by going with a different brand.

Oh, and these are only available at Canadian Tire. If you don’t live near one – keep looking for a different grill.

  • LD485RSIB

    Rotisserie kit, infrared side and rear burner, 6 total burners – the LD485RSIB has a lot. Not a bad choice if you’re strapped for cash.

  • LD485

    Same as above, minus the frills. But missing out on the frills leaves you with a good, solid grill, but not a showstopper. Four burners. No muss, no fuss.

  • LD410

    A little smaller than the LD485. Same basics but less grilling space and minus one burner.

  • LD325

    Same thing, even smaller. Two burners, 325 sq inches of primary grilling surface. LD325, compact is your name.

If you’re not planning on swinging by a Canadian Tire, keep looking. However, if you are, and you’re tight on cash, and you just have to have a Napoleon, give these a once over. But take a good look at other options, too.

 

Stainless Steel Construction…Or Something Less?

Napoleon touts the stainless steel construction of their products. And no doubt they have lots and lots of stainless steel in their grills. Hoods, doors, grills, plates – all kinds of stainless steel going on.

But be aware of what you’re really getting.

On many of the models, there is a significant amount of non-stainless steel. For example, on their flagship product, the Prestige Pro 825RSBI, while there is a fair amount of stainless, some parts are aluminum castings. Yes, those part are warranted for life, but it’s not stainless steel. Other parts are porcelain enameled steel.

Okay, not bad, right?

But when you get down to the lower levels, you’re dealing with more and more non-stainless things. Like galvanneal metal. What’s that you say? Well, you can go over here to check out more info than we here at Love That Barbecue can understand. Or you can go here to get a shortened version of it.

Or just read this – it’s like galvanized steel, but better.

Here’s the thing – are we faulting Napoleon for not using stainless steel? Of course not.

Is anybody being fooled by the black metal that isn’t stainless steel? If you are, then it’s kinda silly because if it was stainless, they wouldn’t coat it with something to make it black.

But by using powder coated galvanized steel and black enameled galvanneal on a grill they tout as “stainless steel” it’s a little deceptive.

Totally liar-liar-pants-on-fire? No. But if I’m shopping for a Prestige P500-K at one of the major online retailers and see their ad copy say “made from shining and durable stainless steel” and then later under ”Material Type” it says “Stainless Steel” and I buy it, thinking I’m getting an all stainless steel grill for about 1500 bucks only to find out I’ve gotten a grill with a body made from fancified galvanized steel?

I’d be a little pissed.

Napoleon Grill Warranty – When Lifetime Kinda Isn’t

The next point in the overview of Napoleon’s Grills is their warranties.

Take a deep breath because we’re going to be wading through some mud here. And frankly, even more than the is-it-or-isn’t-it stainless steel issue we looked at above, this one gets my goat.

Okay.

Napoleon used to offer a number of different warranties for their different product lines. However, they’ve narrowed it down to two. The President’s Limited Lifetime Warranty covers all their gas grill lines except the Legend line which is exclusively available at Canadian Tire. The Legend line comes under the President’s Limited Warranty. Notice the lack of “Lifetime” in the title. We’ll come back to that later.

Let’s take a look at the details of the President’s Limited Lifetime Warranty first. They offer this warranty on the Prestige Pro line, the Prestige line, the LEX line, the Rogue line and the Triumph line.

Here are the conditions.

They guarantee the components will be “free from defects in material and workmanship” for the following periods:

Aluminum Castings / Stainless Steel Base                Lifetime

Stainless Steel Lid                            Lifetime

Porcelain enamel lid                       Lifetime

Stainless Steel cooking grids         Lifetime

Stainless steel tube burners                          10 years plus5

Stainless steel sear plates                             5 years plus5

Porcelain-enameled cast iron cooking grids            5 years plus5

Stainless steel infrared rotisserie burner                  5 years

Ceramic infrared rotisseries burner (excluding screen)          3 years

Ceramic infrared bottom or side burners (excluding screen)                            2 years

All other parts                   2 years

First of all, what the heck is the “plus5”?

That’s an extended coverage where you can buy replacement parts for half off current retail price. So, for example, you buy a grill with stainless steel tube burners and they crap out after 9 years – covered. After 10 years? You’re ponying up for half the replacement price.

One kind of shady thing about the warranty – they’ll send you the part, but you have to take care of installing it. And another – after the first year, they reserve the option of just paying you the wholesale price of the replacement part and then they state they’ve fulfilled their end of the bargain.

The other issue – the warranty is buried. To find out what it covers, you have to go to the individual grill on the website, click on “manual” and then scroll down through the PDF file to read it. Compare this to Weber which has the warranty front and center and easily clickable from each product page.

Now, in Napoleon’s defense, it’s not completely buried. If you click on Support, you’ll find a link to Warranties along with a whole bunch of other stuff. On the Warranties page, it tells all the details of the warranties and what lines they apply to.

This is the thing, though – when looking at the warranties, it all seems a little underhanded. Maybe it’s my aversion to lawyerly things. Maybe it’s all the parsing they do. But it seems – not upfront.

For example – the TravelQ grills are portable gas grills that compete with the Weber Q series portable gas grills. Napoleon’s warranty on their TravelQ series is billed as the President’s 10 Year Limited Warranty. Really, it’s a 5-year warranty with a plus5 tacked on.

Remember the plus5? That’s where they’ll sell you the replacement parts at half the cost of retail.

Sure, Weber’s warranty is 5 years. That’s not the point. The point is the optics, as the politicians say. If you’re gonna say it’s 10 years, make it freakin’ 10 years. Don’t weasel your way to 10 years and make it sound like you’re doing someone a favor.

Another thing that is for the lawyers – they list their warranty next to three other warranties in a bid to show how much better Napoleon’s warranty is. But instead of naming the competitors, they go with “competitor A”, “competitor B” and “competitor C”. Now, maybe the lawyers told them to do that, and I get that.

But if you’re going to compare apples to apples, make sure the apples are the same kind. While the details of the warranties look different, maybe they aren’t. Maybe there’s no “buyout” option. Maybe all of the competitor’s grills are made in North America, not some in North America and some in China.

As far as the President’s Limited Warranty that they bestow on the Legend line, the conditions aren’t as good. For one thing, all lifetime options are out. The major things that the Lifetime warranty covers are reduced to 25 years.

However – they offer replacement “at our option” free of charge for the first 5 of those 25 years only. From years 6-25, replacement parts are offered at 50% off full retail price. Other parts, such as stainless steel sear plates, cooking grids, etc. are covered for only two years. Other parts (regulators, casters, etc.) are under a 1-year warranty.

The point? Read that warranty well. And compare it directly to the other products you’re thinking of buying.

Where Are Napoleon Grills Made? Canada?

If you do much digging at all on the internet about Napoleon grills, you’ll likely come across a fair number of people complaining about being duped. Many of the complaints have to deal with the location of manufacture for the particular grill they bought.

See, Napoleon touts their Canadian-ness every chance they get. No problem there – Weber waves the red, white and blue whenever they can. The problem Napoleon runs into is some of their grills, while designed in Canada, are made in China.

Not all of them. But some. And when someone buys a grill, thinking they bought a “Made in Canada” grill but they ended up with a “Made in China” grill? That might be a little upsetting.

Does Napoleon’s warranty guarantee they will stand by the grill? If you’ve read above, the answer is, probably, as long as you read the fine print.

But how can you find out if the grill you want to buy is made in China or Canada?

You have to ask.

Or Are Napoleon Grills Made in China?

As much as I looked, I couldn’t find information about where they made their particular grills on their website. Looked all around, downloaded multiple manuals. Spent more time than I care to divulge digging.

But found nothing.

Only internet rumors.

So I emailed Napoleon.

Their answer was this – Prestige and Prestige Pro line are made in Canada. The rest are made in China.

Now, the Chinese-made gas grills are made under Napoleon’s supervision, and they go through their quality control. And the company has an excellent reputation.

Also, as stated above, whether the grill is made in China or Canada, the warranty it is bought under will apply to it.

But, in LTB’s opinion, they should make the country of manufacture far more clear than they do.

 

Verdict and Conclusion

Don’t get us wrong. Although it may seem like we did a lot of tearing apart of things in this article, we actually really dig Napoleon grills. What we don’t dig is so many lines and grills that it’s confusing to the consumer. We don’t dig warranties with so many conditions. We don’t dig touting their “Canadian” grills or their “stainless steel” grills but upon further digging finding out the truth isn’t as clear-cut as they’ve intimated.

Are we calling them out for lying? Of course not. Nothing in what we’ve seen makes us think they’ve lied to the consumer.

But there is a gray area and in some things, Napoleon seems to tread further into the grey area than we’d prefer.

They make awesome grills. And we’d like them to be a little more upfront. Not in a “Boxy But Good” way, but cut back a little on the marketing speak and have a little more straight talk.

Good Luck!

LTB

(note: all photos in this post are courtesy Napoleon Grills)