JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Whether you’re a year-round griller or more of a seasonal or holiday barbecuer, now is a good time to take a look under the hood, so to speak. Even if you keep it clean and covered, grills don’t last forever. So, when is it time for a new one?
Consumer Reports’ Paul Hope says if your grill is still under warranty, fixing it is a no-brainer. If it’s not, do some quick math.
“Get a cost for the parts that need replacing. Add it up and if it’s more than about half the cost of a new grill, it might be worth considering splurging,” he said.
Here are the five signs it may be time to replace your grill.
Number 1: A firebox that’s cracked or rusted through.
“Not only is it not gonna cook well, but it’s also unsafe,” Hope warned.
He says there really is no fix for a damaged firebox. You’ll need to replace your grill.
Number 2: If a burner is pumping out uneven or yellow flames. That means there’s a clog and your grill isn’t getting as hot as it could. Clean the holes in the burner tubes with a toothpick. If the flames go back to blue, it’s fixed. If not, you can try new burners.
Number 3: Grates that are flaking or cracked.
“Flaking grates need to be replaced because it can actually break off and get into your food,” said Hope.
Number 4: Cracked hoses and connectors.
“If you’ve got a leaking or cracked hose, replace it immediately,” said Hope. “The last thing you want is a gas leak near an open flame.”
Number 5: An iffy ignitor.
“An igniter is a part you want to replace immediately when it starts to falter because gas can build up inside the grill,” Hope explained.
If you decide your grill needs replacing, Consumer Reports has tested more than 500 models.
CONSUMER REPORTS TESTS: Best Gas Grills of 2023
A couple of standouts for price and performance are the Even Embers GAS8560AS grill for about $400 and the Cuisinart 5 Burners Dual Fuel GAS2556AS Walmart grill for about $500.
Watch below and see how Consumer Reports tests gas grills to find the best of the best:
Consumer Reports says when cleaning your grill, don’t use a wire grill brush, because the small sharp bristles can break off, stick to the grates and then to your food and accidentally be swallowed.