Tips for Assessing the Quality of a Pellet Grill
We all have budgets to work with, but be clear on the fact that cheap isn’t the same as affordable. If you’re in the market for a pellet grill, a lot of them may actually look nice at first glance, especially if you need to save a bit of cash. Then it will cost you more as time goes by. You’ll find parts corroding and breaking down, and soon you have to buy a new grill without even five years from your first purchase. In the end, you’re better off spending a bit more cash in exchange for a quality grill.
Question is, how exactly is a pellet grill’s quality assessed? The first thing you have to look for is good construction. At the store, pull the lid up and try to feel its weight . Now close the lid and observe how it lays on the grill. Does it provide a tight seal or are there gaps? Check out the hardware, joints and welding, if any – everything should feel solid.
That’s hard to do if you’re e-shopping, but some honest-to-goodness research is often good enough. Check out reviews and compare the different brands and specs available in the market. If you have any questions, definitely, you should ask them.
Another factor that impacts the quality of the pellet grill is the material with which it is made. These days, most pellet grills are made with painted steel. Still, steel and paint quality can vary. With a good high-temp powder coat paint, the grill can endure high heat without flaking or blistering. This is actually quite crucial, considering that corrosion is will begin when the steel is exposed.
Even with a well-painted grill body, you still need to see what’s inside the grill. The fire pot and diffuser plate can also rust and are the two parts that most often need replacement. With some brands, you will be able to upgrade to stainless steel for the grill and hopper lids, including the firepot, drip pan and diffuser. Many people find stainless steel pellet grills attractive, and of course, they are also known for being corrosion-resistant, durable and easy to maintain. The most desirable pellet grills are those made from commercial-grade 304 stainless steel, but as expected, they are also the priciest. The good news is, there are pellet grills made from 430 stainless steel, which are easier on the pocket yet equally durable.
Of course, on top of being durable, a well-built pellet grill also performs better. Because of the high quality materials and good construction, the grill is able to retain heat better, which means it is more efficient, even in cold weather.