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New Grill: $250/3-years or $600/6 years?

Nuke's picture

I know the subject is rather cryptic, but they don't really afford you much space in the subject line to be descriptive. Sorry.

With the house just finished being repainted and the back deck cleaned and stained, I am looking to replace my Sunbeam 540 grill with something new to go along with the new-looking home appearance. The Sunbeam has been going down hill of late with an inability to heat on windy days, the internal sparky not working, the side-burner hasn't worked in +2 years, the bricks half incinerated (lol) from massive usage, and the grate looking like it lived in hell.

To further the good-bye notion of departing with the current grill is a condition that Sunbeam has gotten out of the outdoor appliance business and parts are scarce. I could find the burner and grate replacement which will cost me $70-80 plus shipping, but nothing else. This was a grill I paid Home Depot $169 for some four years ago. I think I got my money's worth.

Anyway, I am thinking of a new grill and do not know if it is worth buying a $500-600 grill to hold me over the next 5-6 years, or buy a $250-300 grill every 3-4 years. I grill mostly steaks, brats, fish, the occasional rack of ribs, etc. and 95% of the grilling activity is just for myself (wife rarely has me grill her anything and we have no kids).

I see the most common grill manufacturers like Weber and Char-Broil at the 'big boxes' (Home Depot and Lowes), but wonder if soething like a Capt'n Cook or Turbo might be appropriately worth considering (see these at as well. Anyone care to offer some advice on this one of the most important outdoor living applaince?

(post #176304, reply #1 of 6)

I paid around 400 bucks for my Weber Genesis gas grill 8 years ago, and it's still going strong.  We replaced the burners 2 years ago, (nice thing about Weber is their customer service and parts availabilty), and when we couldn't find them locally, the company sent them to us for free.

We're consolidating houses, and gave that grill to my MIL to replace her 3-year-old, falling apart Sunbeam.  She was thrilled, and now we have a decent grill to use when we cook at her house.

If I were to buy another gas grill today, I would get a Weber in a heartbeat.  I love the way they cook--evenly, with many levels of control--they are reliable, and the company supports the product.  They have a variety of sizes, and since you're just cooking for yourself, the smaller ones would work pretty well.

Our other grill is a 3-year-old Kenmore gas grill, made by Weber, along with an ancient charcoal/hardwood smoker.  I like the Weber-made Kenmore as well as my old Weber.  The smoker gets used for pork butt and ribs, mostly, as well as charcoal grilling.  It's a good combination for us, but we often cook for a crowd, so the extra space is nice to have.  I also like the option of just quickly firing up the gas grill to cook a few brats, or getting that hardwood-charcoal fire flavor for steaks.



"Happiness does not depend on outward things, but on the way we see them." 
-Leo Tolstoy

(post #176304, reply #2 of 6)

I wish I could ermember the BTU rating of the Sunbeam 540 I had. Honestly, did Sunbeam's model number mean anything inherently (like 540 for 54000 BTUs)? I went looknig at some of the Genesis introductory models $600 and their heating capacity seemed somewhat lower than those of Turbo in the same price range.

Of course, I have no loyalties--how could I when the first grill I've ever owned stops maknig grills? lol BTW, a friend of mine also has a Kenmore. I really didn't even know Kenmore had grills. Are all Kenmore grills made by Weber?

While I have no kids and my dear wife rarely does the 'grill' thnig, I do not want to short-sheet myself in terms of being able to grill for ten people if the occasion called for it.

(post #176304, reply #3 of 6)

So, I went into a retailer here in one of Atlanta's suburbs that happen to carry Weber grills. I was originally looking for the Genesis Silver C, but they do not carry the Silver C, just the A and B. I ask them about their pricing policy and was told they will match anyone. Asked how this applies to Weber products and got the 'Weber List Price only' response, with them claiming that if they sell below Weber's list price then they'd have their Weber license pulled.

I mentioned I found that Weber policy strange and explained why. If one goes to the Weber website ( and drills down via Grills, Gas Grills, Genesis Line, Silver Series, and selects any of the models therein Weber provides two buttons for purchase: Find a Retail Dealer and If one follows the button you are taken to that product on Amazon's website where both the Weber list price and the Amazon selling price is shown--and they are not the same.

That was when the women got upset. Her physical stance was one where she did not want to deal with the situation. She restated two more times the Weber policy placed on them and was quite surprised to here that an online dealer was allowed to offer Webder grills at a better price. I asked if they had Internet access to show them and they said yes, but they made no move to ante up the PC/Internet for me to show them.

They said any decision as to discounting on Weber grill products would have to come from the store manager, who coincidentally was not around. They asked for name/number (I gave a couple of numbers) with a promise of follow-up, which I am still waiting on. Not trying to be cheap mind you, but the sales tax locally is a wash with the S&H from Amazon. The price difference is on the Silver B is $100.

And here I thought only men got upset over grill-related things. :)

(post #176304, reply #4 of 6)

Has anyone tried the Vermont Castings grills available at Home Depot?

I love their wood stoves, but am leary of leaving Weber grills.

(post #176304, reply #5 of 6)

I went with a BBQ Galore Turbo Classic. Picking it up today since they are assembling it.

(post #176304, reply #6 of 6)

Consider a Big Green Egg.

It's a grill/smoker/oven.  Charcoal powered.

I also had a cheap gas grill, and decided to trade the convenience of gas for the character of real BBQ.  

With an electric starter, it takes 30 minutes to get the thing up to temp and ready to cook.  When done, I close all the vents and the coals go out, so I add only a few lumps of charcoal each time I use the grill.

The body of the egg is made of ceramic, and will last forever unless you drop it.

I'm still learning to cook with it, but so far, the flavor beats a gas grill.