11 Gas Grill Maintenance Tips for Hassle-Free Cooking


cleaning a bbq grill

We Canadians love our grills. Approximately two-thirds of Canadians own a grill and we use them a lot during the warm weather months.

One survey found that 7% of Canadians cooked all of their meals on a grill during the summer. Another 2019 Research Co. survey found that during the summer, 27% of Ontarians grill outdoors an average of five times per week.

Almost two-thirds of people who own barbecues have a gas grill, which is powered by natural gas or propane. Gas grills are the most popular outdoor cooking appliance because they’re so convenient and easy to use.

To keep the appliance functioning optimally, regular gas grill maintenance is essential.

The benefits of doing gas grill maintenance

Despite how often we use our grills, a surprising number of people do very little or no gas grill maintenance. That Research Co. poll found that while 65% of grillers clean their appliance after every use, 32% of grill owners only clean their barbecue “a few times” during the summer and 3% of grill owners never clean it.

Here are the main benefits of doing regular gas grill maintenance:

  • grills will have fewer fire-related safety hazards
  • food flavour is enhanced
  • cooking performance is more consistent and efficient
  • the appliance is more reliable to use
  • well-maintained grills last a lot longer
  • there’s less risk of food exposure to contaminants and bacteria

Nothing spoils a backyard cookout like being unable to deliver that meal everyone is looking forward to devouring in a timely manner (or even at all) because an unreliable grill hasn’t been maintained.

Use these essential gas grill maintenance tips to keep your grill in top shape.

1. Clean your grill after each use

man doing gas grill maintenance

One of the main reasons some people rarely or never clean their grill is because they believe the built-up gunk from past cooking sessions adds a unique flavour to their food. Grilling experts and scientists disagree, however. Leaving burnt-on food particles, old marinade, and built-up grease on a grill is considered unhealthy. It raises the risk of mould, bacteria, and carcinogens getting into the foods you cook.

The high temperatures grills produce kill a lot of the bacteria that accumulate inside the appliance, but not all of it. A barbecue’s grates should be cleaned after each grilling session, ideally while it’s still warm to make the process easier. If you forgot to clean the grill after its last use, give the grates a cleaning during the pre-heating process of your next cooking session.

Try to avoid using grill cleaner sprays after every grill session unless a clean-up job is particularly challenging. Even the products that are marketed as being safe are going to contain some chemicals that you should avoid adding to a cooking area. If a grill is cleaned shortly after being used with a high-quality wire brush, scraper, or cleaning brick/stone, that should be more than enough to remove most leftover grease and food residue.

Don’t use cheap wire brushes to clean your grates. Some grilling experts recommend not using any type of wire brush to clean a barbecue because of the safety risks. There have been more reported cases in recent years of tiny wire pieces breaking off cleaning brushes and being ingested by people. A recent CBC story detailed the life-threatening ordeal a B.C. man went through when a single wire bristle from a grill cleaning brush got lodged in his intestine.

2. Check the fuel line and regulator

One of the most serious hazards with grills are gas leaks. Leaks can be easy to recognize if there’s a persistent gassy odour around a grill even when it’s not in use. Interesting fact: both propane and natural gas are odourless in their natural state. The sulphur-like “rotten egg smell” they have actually comes from additives that are included to alert people to leaks.

Don’t wait for your nose to identify a potential gas leak, however. Give the grill’s fuel line/hose that’s connected to your natural gas or propane source a period inspection (at least twice a year).

A leak test is simple to do and doesn’t take much time. The easiest method is to use a leak detector spray that will pinpoint where a hose is leaking. Another method is to create a small mixture consisting of 50% water and 50% liquid dish soap. Apply the mix to the fuel line with a brush or spray bottle and turn the fuel valve on (don’t light the grill). If the soapy mix bubbles up in one or more specific areas, you’ve identified where the leaks are.

If you find a leak, replace the faulty hose with a replacement made by a reputable manufacturer. Patching leaky fuel lines is not recommended. Fuel lines that are cracked or showing signs of wear should also be replaced before any leaks can occur.

The other important part of a grill’s fuel delivery system that should be inspected occasionally is the regulator. This metal part regulates gas pressure and controls the flow of gas to the grill. Make sure it’s tightly connected and in good condition. If a grill can’t reach the kinds of high temperatures it’s previously been able to reach, that may be a sign that the regulator needs to be replaced.

Fuel lines can also experience blockages caused by nesting insects, especially spiders.

3. Inspect and clean the burners

Over time, grease, food particles, and debris can clog a grill’s burners, leading to uneven cooking temperatures. This can cause hot spots and flare-ups that might burn some areas of your food, while leaving others undercooked.

By cleaning the burners, you ensure a consistent and reliable cooking surface with even heat distribution.

Regularly inspect the burners for signs of cracks or blockages. Burners are typically made with cast iron, cast stainless steel, or cast iron, so keep an eye out for signs of rust or corrosion.

Grills that are used an average amount should have their burners cleaned about once a month. This task can be a tad messy and involves a little more work to remove a grill’s parts to get access to the burners to clean them, but it’s an essential part of gas grill maintenance. A wire brush is the main tool used for the job.

While cleaning, look for insect blockages that can impede the flow of fuel to the burners. The venturi tubes, which deliver gas and air to the burners that create flames, are a part of the burner system that critters like to nest in.

4. Inspect and maintain the ignition system

A functioning, reliable ignition system is essential for hassle-free grilling. Gas grills have one of the following types of ignition systems that create an electrical spark that ignites the fuel in a grill’s collector box:

  • battery-powered: this is one of the most common types of ignition systems and is powered by a 9V, AA, or AAA battery
  • piezo: force is applied with a small part like a spring-loaded hammer to a crystal to generate a spark
  • electric-powered: this newer type of ignition module runs on electricity and is commonly found in high-end grills

Fixing an issue with one of these types of ignition systems could be relatively simple and involve replacing a dead or weak battery, removing grease and debris that is impeding spark generation, or reconnecting a loose wire.

For more serious issues that require the replacement of wires, electrodes, or other essential components, you may be better off just replacing the whole ignition system.

Luxury grills like this Alfresco model have their ignition control knob conveniently located on the front panel.

5. Regularly check and empty the drip tray

Another essential gas grill maintenance task is to regularly check and empty the drip tray or pan that collects grease and food particles. This part of a grill helps maintain the appliance’s cleanliness and prevents flare-ups.

Most grills use disposable aluminum drip trays and pans. If you prefer a more eco-friendly option, some barbecue models can accommodate reusable drip trays. Just like when you cook indoors, accumulated grease shouldn’t be disposed of down the drain.

drip tray cleaning

How often should you empty a drip tray? That depends on a couple of things, including how big the pan/tray is and how often your grill is used. Emptying a drip tray/pan every 4-8 uses of a grill is generally recommended.

6. Inspect the grill’s structure

As part of your gas grill maintenance checklist, do a once-a-year inspection of the appliance’s structure. The lid and main lower part of the grill (known as the firebox), should be sturdy and intact.

One of the main things to look for is any sign of rust and corrosion, which is a common problem with cheap grills. Minor rust spots can be fixed with a rust remover and painted over with grill-safe spray paint. Grills with a lot of rust on them are better off being replaced. A rusty grill’s unappealing appearance isn’t just an appetite-killer, using them also increases the risk of food contamination.

High-quality grills use more long-lasting materials like 304 stainless steel. Grills that are made with thicker gauge high-grade stainless steel are much more rust-resistant and retain heat better.

Premium grills also use the welding process more in their construction, which is more durable compared to the bolt and screw method used to construct lower-quality barbecues. Regardless of your grill’s quality, look for any cracks or splits in the firebox.

You’ll likely notice if there are any issues with the other parts of the grill when you use them, including the lid, cabinet doors, base and shelf platforms, wheels, and side table. Ensure all bolts, screws, and fasteners are tight and secure. Loose parts can affect the grill’s stability and performance.

7. Protect your grill from the elements

Barbecues may be built for outdoor use, but any grill will last longer if it’s kept covered, even if your outdoor kitchen has a roof over it.

A grill cover protects the appliance from rain, snow, and UV rays. Grills that have less exposure to the elements tend to function more reliably and require less maintenance. Covering a grill also prevents critters like birds, mice, and squirrels from using the appliance as a home.

Make a habit of covering your grill as soon as it’s cooled down enough. It’s not uncommon to forget to put on the grill cover after cooking. Grills that range in quality from average to high shouldn’t have any issues if this happens on occasion, even if they get directly rained on. Cheap grills won’t fare as well in these situations, however.

If you’re not a winter griller and don’t own a built-in grill, it’s wise to move your grill to a shed or the garage for off-season storage for some extra protection.

Should you need to replace your grill’s cover, try to get a replacement made by the grill’s manufacturer for your specific model. Avoid cheap grill covers, which don’t breathe as well as higher-quality covers. This can trap moisture and accelerate how quickly the grill starts to rust.

An adjustable pergola is practical and helps protect your outdoor kitchen investment.

8. Season your grill grates

The process of seasoning your grill grates is very simple and helps elevate your grilling experience.

It involves applying a thin layer of oil to the grates and heating them at around 400-450° F for 20-30 minutes to allow the oil to bond with the metal. Because you’re using a lot of heat, a high-heat oil must be used like canola, vegetable, sunflower, or peanut oil.

Grate seasoning has several benefits:

  • it creates a non-stick surface that makes cooking easier
  • heat is more evenly distributed on the cooking surface
  • the flavour of food will improve over time
  • cleaning the grates becomes easier
  • it adds a protective layer that extends the life of your grates

If you find that food still sticks to your grates even after they’ve been seasoned, it could be because they’re low-quality grates. Food will stick to the grates more if a grill hasn’t been preheated for long enough as well.

9. Maintain proper ventilation

Built-in grills that are incorporated into outdoor kitchen cabinetry or an island need vent panels to prevent gas from building up while you’re cooking.

Ensure that any vents are clear and unobstructed. In addition to this safety hazard, blocked vents can also cause grills to function less efficiently.

Grill vent hoods are a great investment, especially if you have a more enclosed outdoor kitchen design. Here’s why:

  • they extract grill smoke from your cooking area efficiently
  • the grill area will get a lot less grease build-up
  • food smells are removed from the kitchen quicker
  • kitchen surfaces require less cleaning because there’s less smoke stain and residue build-up
  • cooking heat exits the kitchen faster (which you’ll appreciate on hot days)

10. Give your grill a deep cleaning

Doing all or most of the above maintenance tasks will make your gas grill easier to use, but that’s still not quite enough. Gas grills need a deep cleaning at least twice a year, ideally in the spring and fall. If you grill often during the spring and summer, a monthly deep cleaning between May and September is advisable.

Disassemble and clean as many grill parts as possible, including the grates, burners, flavourizer bars, rotisserie rod, heat plate shield/deflector, and warming rack. Wipe down the removed parts with a paper towel or rag to remove heavy grease and debris. Then let them soak in some soapy water for 45-60 minutes before giving them a thorough scrub (check to see if your burners can be cleaned this way).

With most of the grill parts removed, it will be much easier to clean the appliance’s interior. Wipe down the lid and firebox to remove as much grease and debris as you can before giving it a scrub with a brush and some soapy water. Let the interior dry before reassembling the removed parts.

Once the interior grill of the grill has been cleaned, focus on its exterior to remove grease, smudges, liquid stains, and heat stains. Once again, use soapy water and a sponge or microfibre cloth to prevent scratching. Avoid using abrasive cleaners that could damage the grill’s finish. Apply a stainless steel polish to make the grill’s exterior shine.

Use a grill cleaning spray or degreaser to help with particularly stubborn cleaning jobs. Soap residue and chemical residue from any cleaning products you used can be burned off by operating the grill at a high heat for about 20 minutes before cooking on it again.

If you don’t have the time, patience, or comfort level to do your own grill cleaning, there are plenty of grill cleaning and maintenance companies in the GTA you can hire.

A good deep cleaning at least twice a year helps keep a grill looking like new.

11. Keep a spare propane tank handy

If you power your grill with propane, having a spare propane tank is smart and practical. Running out of propane in the middle of an outdoor cooking session is frustrating and disruptive, leaving your guests waiting and your food half-cooked.

By keeping a spare tank on hand, you can seamlessly switch out the empty one and continue grilling without interruption. A spare propane tank provides the peace of mind that you’ll always be prepared for impromptu barbecues or extended grilling sessions. This “safety net” is especially useful during busy holiday seasons or when you host large gatherings, where having a consistent fuel supply is critical.

Being proactive with your fuel management lets you avoid the stress of rushing out to refill or exchange an empty tank during busy periods, which also takes up more of your time. This task can be done at your convenience to ensure your grilling experiences are smooth and enjoyable.

It also helps to keep tabs on the propane level of the tank you’re using with a monitor. There are lots of cheap, unreliable propane level monitor products out there, so spend a little more to get a gauge that’s reliable and durable.

Is it time for a new gas grill?

A quality grill should last anywhere from 7-15 years with proper care and maintenance. Here are some signs that it’s probably time to buy a new grill:

  • food isn’t being cooked evenly
  • the grill is hard to light
  • flare-ups occur frequently
  • it’s rusting and parts regularly need to be retightened
  • the barbecue takes longer to heat up and doesn’t retain heat well
  • you’re replacing parts or making repairs too often

Even if your grill still works, you might want to upgrade to a higher-quality model that’s more reliable and offers modern features like smart technology, under-lid lighting, LED backlit control knobs, lift-assist lids, and stylish finishes.

Premium grills are worth the investment and are one of the most essential elements that go into transforming backyards into luxurious outdoor kitchens. If you enjoy what a luxury range adds to your home, a high-end grill will do the same for your outdoor space. As Outeriors president Daniel Albo recently told the National Post, “Any luxury feature that can go into an indoor kitchen can go outdoors.”

grill with strawberries in bowl by sink

Luxury gas grills are a surefire way to elevate anyone’s outdoor cooking experience.

Get the most out of your gas grill

By following these gas grill maintenance tips, you can ensure that this hard-working appliance rewards your family with years of reliable service and plenty of delicious meals.

If you’re looking to upgrade your grill or are planning to add an outdoor kitchen, look no further than Outeriors. We carry the highest-quality gas grills and are outdoor kitchen design specialists.

Start planning your custom-designed outdoor kitchen by scheduling a free consultation with one of our seasoned design consultants.

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Buying a Gas Grill? 7 Things To Consider

buying a gas grill hero

Outdoor grilling has become a fundamental part of the lifestyles of Canadians.

Even our long winters do little to discourage many of us from firing up a snow-covered grill for some juicy burgers and tender veggies.

70% of Canadians own a grill or smoker, according to the 2023 State of the Barbecue Industry Report. A 2019 Research Co. poll found that 27% of Ontarians use their outdoor grills an average of five times per week during the summer.

With barbecuing being such an essential and regular part of our cooking routine, you may be thinking of buying a new grill. There a several types to choose from including gas, charcoal, wood pellet, and electric grills.

We’ll explain why buying a gas grill is your best option and seven of the most important things you should consider before making a purchase.

Benefits of buying a gas grill

There’s a good reason gas grills are the most popular type of grill in Canada and the U.S. Research from the Hearth, Patio & Barbecue Association (HPBA) shows that 64% of grill owners have gas models.

Whether you favour natural gas or propane, here are some of the benefits of buying a gas grill to do your backyard cooking:

  • push-button ignitions make lighting easy and safe
  • quick heat-up times
  • control cooking temperatures
  • create zones to cook different foods
  • more time-efficient than charcoal grilling
  • low-maintenance and easy to clean
  • more cooking options with extra features like side burners and rotisserie attachments

Propane versus natural gas grills

“Gas grill” is a somewhat broad term that can be a little confusing for some people. That’s because gas grills come in two different types: propane and natural gas.

Both types share numerous similarities, but they do have some notable differences. Here’s a brief comparison of some key natural gas and propane grill features:

  1. Fuel: most propane grills use a refillable 20-pound propane tank (some cottages and rural homes use a larger propane tank that is refilled onsite). Natural gas grills require a hookup to a residential natural gas line.
  2. Convenience: both grill types are super-convenient to use. One of the few differences in this area is that propane grills can run out of fuel and need regular tank changes, whereas natural gas grills have a constant fuel supply. Unlike natural gas grills, propane grills have some mobility, too.
  3. Product cost: Natural gas grills typically cost a little more than comparable propane models. They have a slightly more complex design and come with a longer connection hose and fitting. If a natural gas line has to be installed, that will also add anywhere from a few hundred to a couple of thousand dollars extra to your upfront cost.
  4. Fuel cost: the prices of propane and natural gas fluctuate, but natural gas is always cheaper to use than propane.
  5. Taste: there’s no difference in taste between identical items cooked on each type of grill.
  6. Heat output: The heat output on propane and natural gas grills is comparable. Propane grills typically have higher BTU ratings (British Thermal Units), which measures how much heat energy a grill’s main burners produce per hour. Propane and natural gas grill burners function a little differently from one another, so it’s harder to make a direct BTU comparison between the two.
  7. Environmental friendliness: propane and natural gas are clean-burning fuels (in fact, propane is considered the cleanest-burning fossil fuel). Both fuels are far more eco-friendly to use for grilling than charcoal.
hamburgers on grill

Gas grills are fuelled by either propane or natural gas.

7 considerations when buying a gas grill

Buying a major appliance for your home isn’t something to take lightly and buying a gas grill is no exception.

The grill you buy has to serve your cooking needs, be reliable and safe to use, make grilling easier, last a long time, and look good in your outdoor cooking area.

If you’re looking for the best barbecue for your needs, consider these seven essential things before buying a gas grill.

1. Your budget

New gas grills can cost as little as $100 and as much as $10,000 or more for the highest-end models. Needless to say, you get what you pay for.

Cheap grills are cheap for a reason: corners have been cut for everything from the product’s design to the construction materials to the assembly. We’ve probably all used a cheap grill with a flimsy-feeling lid or ignition button that never works. That doesn’t make for an enjoyable grilling experience.

Low-quality and even medium-quality gas grills that are poorly cared for can rust out and be landfill-bound after only three or four years.

That’s why you should invest as much as you can in a high-quality gas grill that will last you for at least a decade. It’s not unreasonable to spend as much on a new grill as you would on a new indoor kitchen range.

Grills are the anchor and workhorse of an outdoor kitchen. If you grill a lot during the spring and summer, consider that your backyard cooking space may be getting used more often than your indoor kitchen.

Some luxury grills come with convenient features like:

  • digital control panels
  • interior lighting
  • LED backlit control knobs
  • lid lift-assist systems
  • smart tech

Learn more about the benefits of buying a premium grill.

man using Lynx grill

Premium grill brands like Lynx, Kalamazoo, Alfresco, and Coyote are worth the higher cost.

2. Grill manufacturer reputation

The global grill market has grown rapidly in recent years and there are more grill manufacturers than ever before. When you start looking for a grill to buy, there’s a good chance you won’t be familiar with the majority of the brands you come across.

With so many grills available to buy, you need to do your homework to ensure you’re buying a gas grill from a reliable manufacturer.

Online reviews are one of the best resources to determine which manufacturers not only make high-quality products, but also how good their customer service is.

Reputable and well-established grill manufacturers typically provide better, more accessible customer service for their products.

Many American and Canadian premium grill brands do all of their manufacturing and assembly in-house. Most of the grill brands sold at big-box retailers are made overseas. That can make it harder to get good customer support and replacement parts in a timely manner.

Higher-quality grills also tend to come with better warranties (10 years or more). Buying a gas grill from an established brand gives you the peace of mind that a longer warranty will be honoured years down the road.  

Outeriors only carries premium grill brands that are synonymous with high quality, such as Lynx, Kalamazoo, Alfresco, and Coyote.

3. Construction material quality

Several factors will affect how long a grill lasts, including how often it’s used and how much it’s directly exposed to the elements. Perhaps the single biggest factor that impacts how durable a grill will be is the quality of the materials used to make it.

Consider the demands that are placed on grills: they’re always outdoors, being heated to temperatures up to 600°F, and are regularly getting splattered with hot grease. It’s no wonder cheap grills don’t last very long.

That’s why it’s so important to spend a little more on a higher-quality grill that’s made with more durable construction materials.

The metal a grill is built with is one of the most important details to look at if you’re evaluating the appliance’s construction materials. Many grades of stainless steel are used to make grills. You should choose a grill made with high-grade steel, such as 304 stainless steel.

ALFRESCO ALXE-56BFG stainless steel grill

Here are some of the benefits of buying a gas grill that is constructed with thicker gauge, high-quality stainless steel:

  • they’re more rust-resistant
  • your grill will last longer
  • they retain heat better
  • the finish won’t discolour as fast

Better quality grill construction materials and parts, as well as higher craftsmanship and design standards, will result in a better cooking experience and fewer headaches. For example, you should encounter fewer issues with things like a starter that won’t work, flare-ups while cooking, uneven heat distribution, and foods excessively sticking to grates with a well-designed grill.

4. How much functionality do you want?

Another thing to consider when buying a gas grill is your cooking style and how much functionality you want your grill to have.

Do you like to keep your menu simple with grilling staples like steaks, burgers, and hot dogs? Or do you like to regularly try new recipes and grill up a wider variety of foods? 

Grillers who like to keep things simple can get by with a simple grill to handle their basic cooking needs. More adventurous cooks will want to have access to some extra features that will enhance their grilling experience. Examples include:

  • warming racks
  • a smoker system
  • a rotisserie attachment
  • precise heat control for multi-zone cooking
  • a searing burner
  • smart tech functionality

Complete outdoor kitchens add even more functionality to a backyard than a lone grill can provide (even a high-end grill with lots of extra features). Complement a grill with cabinetry, countertops, and outdoor appliances and now you’re really maximizing the functionality of your deck or patio!

5. Grill size

Choosing the right grill size is another thing you have to consider. Once again, your cooking style should factor into your decision-making process. A bigger cooking area will be needed if you tend to grill a number of different foods at a time.

Artisan grills in 3 different sizes

Another factor that will guide you is how much deck or patio space you have. Putting an extra-large grill in a small outdoor cooking area isn’t very practical, for example. And if you are having an outdoor kitchen designed, the grill has to be the right size to accommodate other kitchen features like appliances.

How many people you usually cook for is another important factor that should help determine the size your grill should be. If you rarely grill for anyone other than your family, a mid-size 30″-36″ grill will suffice.

If you’re among the 40% of grill owners who use their grill for entertaining (according to another HPBA consumer survey), you’ll naturally want something bigger for larger gatherings. Grills in the 42″-56″ range should provide a large enough cooking area to fulfill your hosting duties.

6. Freestanding or built-in?

If you’re buying a gas grill, you have to decide whether you want a freestanding or built-in grill design.

Freestanding grills are the type most commonly sold in stores. They typically cost less than built-in grills, but don’t last as long. Freestanding grills also have more mobility than built-in grills. Their wheels or casters allow you to move them around on a deck or patio and it’s easier to take a freestanding grill with you if you move.

While freestanding models are the most popular type of grill, an increasing number of homeowners are choosing built-in grills for their backyards. Stationary built-in grills are incorporated into a fixed structure like an outdoor kitchen island or cabinet design, which is either prefabricated or custom-made.

Although they come with a higher price tag than freestanding grills, built-in grills are essential for an outdoor kitchen. Not only are they the focal point of an outdoor kitchen, but they also provide a more professional, high-end appearance if you’re looking to create a showpiece in your backyard.

7. Grill colour

For a lot of grill buyers, aesthetics won’t be much of a concern. Most people are more concerned about a grill’s functionality, not how it looks.

Anyone who is buying a gas grill to install in a professionally-designed outdoor kitchen will care about functionality and looks, however. Their grill style and colour have to complement the rest of their outdoor kitchen décor.

Gas grills mainly come in neutral colours, notably stainless steel and black. Neutral colours match well with almost any design aesthetic. Grills made entirely with primary colour finishes are available, but can be harder to find.

If you’re looking for a gas grill with a non-traditional look, premium brands like Aspire and Hestan have some stylish and creative options. They offer gas grills with attractive colour accents that add a distinct look to an outdoor kitchen.

Trex, the world’s largest manufacturer of composite decking, has identified one trend that could affect what grill colour some consumers choose. Their 2023 Outdoor Living Forecast believes we’ll see more nature-inspired, light neutral colours used for home exteriors, including outdoor kitchens.

Heston grill with red accent colour

Most grills come in neutral colours like this stainless steel grill. Hestan grills can be customized with 9 control panel colors such as red shown in this photo.

Talk to an expert before buying a gas grill

We hope these tips for buying a gas grill help you make a more informed buying decision.

Here’s one more interesting stat from a recent State of the Barbecue Industry survey we’ll leave you with: did you know that 83% of grills are purchased in-store and only 15% are bought online?

Consumers clearly still appreciate the value of getting a hands-on experience with a grill before buying it.

Check out some of the finest premium grills on the market by visiting the Outeriors showroom. We have fully-outfitted outdoor kitchen displays featuring gas grills, cabinetry, appliances, countertops, fire pits, and more. While you’re visiting, get some expert advice from our design professionals on how to choose the best gas grill for your backyard.

You can also schedule a free consultation to meet with one of our designers to plan your outdoor kitchen project.

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9 Winter Grilling Tips To Enjoy Your Barbecue Year-round

Outdoor grill with snow on it

One of the things some Canadians most look forward to in the spring is firing up their slumbering grill for the first time since the fall.

For many Canadians, however, barbecue season doesn’t stop when the snow starts falling – it’s all year long.

A Weber survey found that 43% of Canadians grill year-round. An older Ipsos-Reid poll produced similar results, finding that 39% of us partake in winter grilling.

The appeal of enjoying flame-cooked food that is fresh off the grill is strong. It must be to get anyone to abandon the stove in their perfectly warm house and go stand in front of a grill when it’s -20 degrees and there’s a foot of snow on the ground!

Barbecue year-round with these winter grilling tips

As cold as our winters can be, we’re surprised more Canadians don’t treat themselves during the season to the taste of delicious grilled food that doesn’t come in take-out containers.

There is simply no substitute for the taste of hot-off-the-grill, home-cooked food. And for some of us, a meal grilled in the winter tastes that much nicer knowing it required a little more work and perseverance to get the job done.

It doesn’t require too much more of an effort to use the grill during inclement weather, however. Try these winter grilling tips to satisfy your appetite for freshly grilled food, even when the weather won’t cooperate.

winter grilling tips

1. Dress for warmth and practicality

Canadians don’t need a reminder to bundle up when they’re going out into the frigid winter weather.

Along with dressing in layers, covering your head, and wearing the rest of your winter attire, there are a few other things to consider when you’re cold-weather grilling.

If you’re wearing a scarf, ensure it’s tied around your neck and not dangling, which could become a fire hazard. Also, don’t use thick winter gloves that make it harder to work the grill and carry things. Get some heat-resistant grilling gloves that are lightweight and designed for warmth.

Because you’ll be going in and out of the house a few times to do your cooking, try to choose a jacket and footwear that are easy to put on and take off.

A hot, grilled meal is reward enough for your efforts. And if you need any additional motivation to fire up the grill when it’s freezing outside, remember this: at least there isn’t a single annoying bug to contend with!

2. Keep the grill close

Having a barbecue that is easily accessible is an important part of winter grilling. Remember, the closer a grill is to the indoors, the more inclined you’ll be to use it in the winter.

Ideally, you want the appliance to be located as close to the house as possible so you don’t have to break out the snow shovel to get to it. Not too close, though – always keep a grill at least 10 feet from your house and any wooden fixtures.

Having some type of overhead covering is also recommended for year-round grill use. When it’s warm, a covering will protect you from the rain and hot sun, as well as give you more privacy. And in the winter, a grill that is located in a covered, more controlled environment will be much easier to use. Being exposed to less moisture will extend the life of the grill as well.

If your built-in grill or movable grill can’t be located closer to the house and does require some snow shovelling to get to, keep a couple of things in mind:

  • be careful using a metal snow shovel around your grill so you don’t dent it (a plastic shovel is safer to use)
  • sand, salt, and ice melting products will damage patio and pathway stones, wood and composite decks, and grills

Be sure to move grills with wheels before the snow starts falling. And never use any type of grill in the garage during bad weather, even with the doors open. It’s a fire and carbon monoxide hazard.

Outdoor grill in cabinetry with snow on ground in winter

Keep your grill located as close to your house as possible to avoid having to get out the snow shovel to access it. 

3. Have sufficient outdoor lighting

The short days and long nights of winter will make good lighting around your outdoor cooking space essential.

Having sufficient lighting for your winter grilling tasks makes it safer to navigate around the backyard and to get a good look at how the food you’re cooking is progressing. You don’t want to tie up one of your free hands with a flashlight or your phone with its flashlight turned on.

If your backyard lighting isn’t up to snuff, buy an all-weather lamp or install a permanently mounted light fixture by the grill. Even a small clamp or clip-on grilling light will help while cooking.

Some premium grills come with useful features like under-the-lid lighting and backlit knobs that are very useful for cooking after dark.

4. Use a good grill

Speaking of premium grills, let’s get into why they’re worth the investment, especially for winter cooking.

A grill’s cooking efficiency is even more important when it’s cold outside and getting your food cooked just right is more of a challenge.

Premium grills cook your food more evenly and have useful features like zone heating that allows for variable cooking temperatures on your grill surface. A feature like this is quite handy when two or three different types of food need to cook at different temperatures.

High-quality grills function more reliably as well. They’ll start when they should, provide accurate temperature readings, and are made with better parts and materials than cheap grills. Inexpensive grills are constructed with low-quality metals that rust faster and don’t retain heat as well as premium grills, which increases the amount of time it takes to heat up the appliance and do your cooking.

You’ll appreciate all of these premium grill benefits because you can get your cooking work done faster so you can get back inside to the warmth of your home and start dining.

5. Grill “smarter”

Another benefit of cooking with a luxury grill is the smart features some of them offer. Models like the built-in Lynx Professional Smart Grill deliver a 21st-century outdoor cooking experience with high-tech features such as:

  • the MyChef™ automated cooking system that cooks at precise temperatures for the optimal amount of time
  • responsive grill controls that can be activated with voice commands or a smart device
  • alerts sent to your smart device informing you that the grill is heated up to the desired temperature, that it’s time to flip your food, and when your food is done cooking

If your grill lacks any smart features, get a smart meat thermometer. These great, inexpensive devices involve inserting a probe into the meat on a grill so the internal temperature can be monitored. The cooking progress is monitored via a smartphone app that alerts you when the temperature is higher or lower than needed.

Making use of this smart grill tech gets you closer to producing perfect cooking results every time. You’ll also have to spend a little less time out in the cold keeping an eye on your grill.

Lynx Professional Smart Series grill

Smart grills have handy high-tech features that let you spend less time in front of the grill in winter and more time in your warm house while cooking.

6. Adjust your grilling routine for the winter

Your regular summer grilling routine will need a few adjustments for the wintertime. Let’s start with heating up the appliance. Factor in some extra time to get the grill heated up to the cooking temperature you want.

Even when it’s hot outside, opening the grill lid too much will add to your cooking time. Needless to say, it’s even more important to keep the grill cover closed as much as possible in the winter so less heat will be lost.

Remember that a grill will use more propane or natural gas in the winter as it works harder to retain heat and take longer to heat up. If you have a propane grill, plan accordingly and have an extra tank on hand (which is a good idea no matter what time of the year it is).

Now let’s talk about some good winter grilling practices for handling your food. Don’t move your uncooked food outside until it’s ready to go on the grill. When the food is done cooking, put it into a heated container (preferably a type that retains heat more effectively like ceramic) and get it inside pronto. You don’t want to create any extra work by having to reheat the food.

Any grill is easier to clean when it’s still warm or hot. Once your cooked food is moved inside, scrape off your grates before they cool off and things like meat residue, grease, marinade, and barbecue sauce harden.

7. Leave the new grilling recipes for the summer

Sub-freezing weather is not the time to be experimenting with complicated new grilling recipes.

Keep the menu simple with grilling staples like steak, sausage, burgers, chicken, hot dogs, and vegetables that can be cooked in aluminum foil or a pan.

Sticking with what you know and choosing fast cooking, low-maintenance foods will help you keep the grill lid closed more and lessen your time spent outside.

steak and sausage on grill

Keep your winter grilling menu simple and leave the new recipes for warmer weather.

8. Prep for your winter grilling in the fall

The fall is the best time to give grills a thorough cleaning after their heaviest period of use during the spring and summer. Taking the time to do some grill maintenance is much more important if you plan to do some winter grilling.

Grills that aren’t cleaned often enough will build up bacteria from the leftover grease and food remnants.

Disassemble as many parts as possible to make cleaning easier, including the grill grates, warming racks, and rotisserie rod. Leave the drip trays in place until you’re done cleaning the grill interior. Let the removed parts soak in warm water and some dish detergent for a short period to loosen some of the caked-on grill gunk.

In the meantime, give the grill interior a good scrubbing with some warm water, dish detergent, and a grill brush. Make sure the flavourizer bars and burners are properly cleaned off.

Use a degreaser or grill cleaning product and a brush or scrubbing tool to clean each part that was removed. Rinse and dry them off before putting them back in the grill.

Look for a product specifically meant for use on a grill exterior to clean it and protect its finish. Finally, lightly apply a coating of vegetable, peanut, or canola oil on your cast-iron grates and run the grill on high for 30 minutes. Seasoning grill grates helps prevent them from rusting and food from sticking to them.

9. Cover up

covered grillBy the time your meal has been eaten, the grill will have cooled off enough to be covered. Spending just a few seconds to cover a grill every time after using it will protect it from corrosion and prolong its life.

Covering the grill also makes it easier to get started the next time you’re ready to cook outdoors again.

The inside of the cover must be dry before putting it over a grill. If the interior of the cover is damp, the moisture can get trapped and cause the grill to rust quicker.

If your grill needs a replacement cover, spend a little more on a high-quality cover that is made with a durable material that won’t fade and has vents with good airflow to let out moisture. Also, be sure that the cover fits your grill snugly.

With the right approach, it’s always grilling season!

Follow these winter grilling tips and you can enjoy the benefits of using your barbecue at any time of the year.

Let Outeriors help get your backyard ready for winter grilling use and a lot more functionality when the weather warms up.

Our outdoor kitchen and living space designs will maximize your family’s enjoyment of your backyard. The high-quality products we use are built to withstand the Canadian winter (and look great while doing so).

Start a dialogue with Outeriors about getting your outdoor kitchen project rolling by scheduling a free design consultation with us.

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7 Benefits of Grilling That Make Us Love Cooking Outdoors

benefits of grilling hero

Grilling is a beloved part of Canadian summers. Cooking and dining outdoors are responsible for some of our most memorable summer experiences.

Any opportunity to get outside and enjoy the precious few months of warm weather we get is an opportunity worth taking. And if enjoying the best weather of the year can be combined with the many benefits of grilling, it’s a win-win.

There’s something about the combination of the outdoors, cold beverages, a hot grill, and good company that never gets old. As chef, restaurateur, and TV personality Bobby Flay says, “Grilling means good times, good friends, and hopefully, great food.”

Being able to grill and eat outdoors provided us with a welcome escape from the inside of our homes during the pandemic and gave us a brief sense of normalcy, even if it was a short trip to the backyard.

10 interesting grilling facts and stats

Before we get into the benefits of grilling, let’s take a look at some revealing facts and stats that show how we use our grills.

  1. 80% of Canadians own an outdoor grill or smoker. 
  2. The most popular foods to grill for Canadians are (in order): steak, hamburgers, ribs, sausages and hot dogs, vegetables, fish and seafood, and chicken.
  3. The top reasons given for why people use their grill: flavour (72%), lifestyle (52%), entertainment (40%), convenience (33%), and health (18%).
  4. 22% of Canadian grill owners use the appliance 4-6 times per week during the summer. 27% of Ontarians use their grill that frequently.
  5. 56% of men say they grill year-round, compared to 45% of women.
  6. Corn is the most popular grilled side dish for Canadians, followed by potatoes.
  7. 7% of surveyed Canadians said they cook all of their meals in the summer on the grill. Conversely, 9% of people who own grills never use them.
  8. During the summer, 65% of grill owners clean the appliance after every use. 32% only clean it “a few times”, and 3% never clean their grill (yuck!).
  9. 67% of men surveyed said they were their family’s primary griller. 18% of the women surveyed stated that they were most likely to be in charge of grilling duties in their home.
  10. The most popular day of the year for Canadians to grill is on Canada Day.

*Data taken from surveys, polls, and studies conducted by the Hearth, Patio & Barbecue Association, Research Co., Michigan State University, and Applegate. 

man grilling

Two thirds of Canadians own an outdoor grill.

7 benefits of grilling everyone should know

“I profoundly believe that the power of food has a primal place in our homes, that binds us to the best bits of life.” – Jamie Oliver

We couldn’t agree more with the cooking guru. Grilling plays a big role in this concept, which is one of many reasons so many of us enjoy firing up the barbecue so often.

As for that mysterious 9% of grill owners who say they never touch their appliance, all we can say is that it’s their loss!

You’re likely familiar with some of the benefits of grilling. However, you might not know why, for example, food cooked over a flame tastes better compared to other cooking methods. We’ll explain why.

Almost no one (except about 9% of people who own grills, apparently) needs much coaxing to fire up their grills more. When you find out more about the benefits of grilling, however, your chef’s apron will become a staple of your summer wardrobe.

1. Grilling is a healthier way to cook

The world-renowned Mayo Clinic says in this article, “Healthy cooking doesn’t mean that you have to become a gourmet chef or invest in expensive cookware. You can use basic cooking techniques to prepare food in healthy ways.”

The most effective ways to cook healthier food include:

  • grilling
  • boiling
  • steaming
  • baking
  • stir-frying

One of the biggest benefits of grilling is that cooking meat on grates causes a lot of the excess fat to melt and drip off instead of being reabsorbed into the meat, as it would in a pan. The cooked meats still retain their juiciness and all of that extra burned-off fat never enters your body.

Grilling over flames and using high cooking temperatures also reduces the amount of time required to cook food. That helps meats retain important nutrients like thiamine and riboflavin.

The benefits of grilling also extend to another food group – vegetables. Shorter cooking times by grilling helps veggies retain more of their vitamins and minerals, as well as their flavour, colour, and texture.

While traditional vegetable cooking methods like boiling and steaming are relatively healthy, more of the food’s nutrients and some of their flavour get left behind in the water they’ve been cooked in.

Another reason it’s easier to lower your calorie intake by grilling your food is you don’t need to cook as much with butter and oils.

There are a few more things you can do to eat healthier when grilling:

  • spend a little extra to buy organic meats
  • cook leaner cuts of meat like sirloin steak, chicken, pork tenderloin, and extra lean ground beef
  • trim as much visible fat and skin from your meats before grilling them
  • make your own healthier sauces and marinades instead of using store-bought grilling condiments, which are loaded with sugar
grilling chicken and veggies

How fortuitous that the very process of grilling over a grate and allowing fat to drip off results in healthier, tastier meat dishes.

2. You can’t beat the taste of grilled food

“Grilling is the best way to cook, bar none. There is no other cooking technique that gives you this much flavour for your effort.” – Elizabeth Karmel (chef, author, and all-around grilling expert)

This quote highlights another of the main benefits of grilling – it doesn’t require any extra work to produce delicious tasting food. The unique flavour that only comes from grilling is simply inherent to the cooking process.

Why is that the taste of a burger cooked in an oven or on an electric grill inside can’t compare to the taste of a burger cooked on an outdoor grill, though?

A George Foreman electric grill isn’t in the same league as even the cheapest outdoor grill when it comes to the taste test for a few scientific reasons. Here’s a simplified breakdown of “the science of grilling”. It involves three main factors.


Most people think the distinct flavour from grilled meats comes from the smoke generated while cooking, but it’s only one part of the equation.

This smoke is created when dripping fat hits the hot briquettes and burner in a gas or propane grill, or charcoal briquettes in a charcoal grill. Other methods can be used to generate smoke while grilling, such as cooking with flavoured wood chunks and chips, as well as smoking pellets.

Smoke functions essentially like a cooking ingredient. As the food absorbs the smoke, new flavours develop to produce that smoky taste.

The Maillard reaction

What do toast, coffee, and grilled meat all have in common? They all derive part of their taste from something called the Maillard reaction. It’s a reaction that occurs when you cook with temperatures in the 280 to 300°F range (138 to 149°C).

Food with amino acids react with the sugar molecules and break down to produce new flavour molecules. This process occurs on the surface of the food and produces that charred brown crust that enhances its taste so much.


A chemical reaction called caramelization plays another role in how grilled meat tastes. Once again, cooking with high heat activates the sugar molecules in food to bring out a sweeter taste.

Caramelization is very similar to the Maillard reaction, except it occurs in foods without protein. Meat has protein, so the caramelization process occurs with the foods you use to cook your meat with, such as sauces, marinades, and rubs.

Grill marks look nice, but don’t add flavour

Since we’re discussing where grilled foods get some of their flavours from, let’s briefly talk about grill marks. Grill marks don’t add flavour to food, despite the prevailing myth that’s out there.

Most people prefer the taste of grilled meat more than meat that is cooked with other methods. The association of seeing meat with grill marks has a powerful effect on us because we instantly make the association the food will taste better.

The association we make is so strong that food manufacturers and fast food chains have capitalized on this by adding artificial grill marks to some of their food products.

I’ve been fooled by this visual trickery for years. It’s only by researching this article that I’ve come to realize that most of the grill marks on the frozen and fast food I’ve bought over the years were nothing more than fake and superficial branding. How disappointing.

steak and vegetables on flaming grill

“The science of grilling” tells us why grilled food has such a distinct, flavourful taste. (Photo by Mustafa Türkeri from Pexels)

3. Grilling gets you outside

“The key to good grilling is to recognize that you are setting yourself up to cook in a whole new environment. This is actually one of the main purposes of grilling – to get yourself outside.” – Barton Seaver (chef, author, and seafood expert)

Canadians don’t need much of an excuse to get outside during the summer. As long as the temperature is at least 15°C, less than 40°C, and it’s not raining cats and dogs, most of us are good to go for some outdoor time.

Another of the big benefits of grilling is that it gets you outside and one of the benefits of being outside is that your body gets vitamin D naturally from the sun. Vitamin D helps the body absorb minerals we get from food like phosphate and calcium, which keep our bones and muscles healthy.

You might be surprised to learn that the quality of air inside most homes is worse than the air quality in most outdoor settings. Spending more time outside is good for our health in the following ways:

  • fresh air has fewer pollutants than indoor air, which boosts the cleansing function of the lungs
  • your body gets more energy from being outside
  • fresh air improves our mood
  • fresh air improves your ability to focus
  • our cells get more oxygen when we’re outside, which helps us digest food better and heal faster
outdoor cooking and dining area

Getting outside more for activities like grilling is good for your health in multiple ways.

4. Grilling outdoors is more convenient

One reason we love grilling so much is that it’s the most convenient way to cook next to using the microwave.

This is the case, at least, if you have a much easier to use gas or propane grill instead of a charcoal grill. Charcoal grills are comparatively harder to light and can take 30-45 minutes before they’re ready to use. Gas and propane grills are ready to cook on in about 10-15 minutes.

The food prep times may be the same as when we cook inside, but it’s the faster cooking times that is the real difference-maker with grills.

Cooking a meal outside when the weather is hot also doesn’t add heat to your interior living space. Even if you have air conditioning, the appliance will have to work harder to keep the house cooler when the oven is running.

One more of the benefits of grilling we love is that cooking right on the grates means there are fewer pots and pans to wash up.

5. Grilling is a great way to socialize

“Grilling takes the formality out of entertaining. Everyone wants to get involved.  I love the culture of grilling. It creates an atmosphere that is festive but casual.” – Bobby Flay

When we celebrate special occasions and holidays during the summer like Canada Day, Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, and Labour Day, it’s often outside with the grill fired up.

Compared to other cooking methods, grilling is more sociable. At a backyard gathering, people tend to gravitate around the cooking area, which gives anyone operating the grill an opportunity to socialize with their guests. This makes grilling ideal for entertaining at home.

Barbecuing appeals to all of our senses (with the exception of touch), so it’s not surprising that the grill becomes a spot where people congregate. Everyone loves the smell of grilling food, which is accompanied by the sizzling sounds of dripping grease and the satisfying “plop” a juicy burger or steak makes when it’s flipped over.

There’s also the sight of the grill’s flames, the billowing smoke, and the mouth-watering sight of food you can’t wait to devour. And finally, there’s the all-important moment when we finally get to savour the delicious taste of freshly grilled food.

The combination of all of these things ends up making grilling feel a lot less like tedious work, especially if you’re cooking for a large group of people.

people watching man grilling

Grilling appeals to four of the five senses we have, which is why the cooking area tends to become the area people gravitate to at a backyard gathering.

6. You can grill almost anything

Grilling is one of the most versatile cooking methods because almost anything can be cooked on a grill – and we mean anything.

Adventurous and resourceful cooks know that barbecuing staples like meat, seafood, potatoes, and vegetables are a tiny fraction of what you can cook on a grill.

To get you thinking outside the box with your summer menu options, here are some ideas for unconventional things to cook on the grill that will surprise you:

  • bread
  • fruit (pineapple, peaches, and watermelon are particularly tasty)
  • pizza
  • quesadillas
  • rice (try this recipe)
  • eggs and bacon

7. Anyone can cook on a grill

One of the many things that makes grilling so great is that virtually anyone can do it. Cooking on a barbecue is so user-friendly that even someone who is a lost cause around a stove can create delicious grilled foods.

Anyone can toss a stack of burgers or steaks on the grill and all they have to do is make sure the meat isn’t undercooked or too well done (unless the person eating it wants it cooked that way).

Sure, an otherwise bad cook may have a limited repertoire of menu items, but they’re still cooking, right?

Naturally, grilling with high-quality meats and using condiments and spices will produce better results, but that’s fairly easy to do. And if someone isn’t into doing prep work like making their own burgers, there are many great buying options for pre-made burgers at butcher shops or high-quality frozen burger products in food stores.

After a while, any grilling newbie can spread their wings a little. There are an endless amount of burger recipes online worth trying that are well within the skill range of an amateur griller. A cooking novice can even produce tasty results with easy gourmet burger recipes for something like blue cheese burgers (not to be confused with blue cheeseburgers, which you probably shouldn’t eat).

black outdoor grill

Anyone can create delicious dishes on a grill with minimal effort, even if they have no cooking skills whatsoever.

Enjoy the benefits of grilling in the perfect outdoor kitchen

These are just some of the many benefits of grilling.

Is your outdoor cooking space doing all it can to allow you to savour the taste of outdoor grilling as much as you’d like?

Make a great investment in your home, health, and happiness by transforming your backyard into the perfect outdoor kitchen and living space.

Outeriors can handle your complete outdoor kitchen design and installation. We carry the highest-quality grills, countertops, cabinetry, appliances, and fire pits to give your family everything they need to enjoy your backyard more.

Get your project started by scheduling a free design consultation with us.

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Premium Grill Benefits: 5 Reasons to Go Upscale With Your Barbecue

Toronto premium grill benefits

With the right design, an outdoor kitchen and entertaining space can become a backyard oasis that expands a home’s living space.

If your goal is to create an outdoor cooking area that projects a stunning high-end look, a premium grill is a must-have.

Creating a luxury outdoor kitchen and using a cheap grill makes as much sense as wearing a pair of Crocs with a tuxedo or parking luxury cars in a rundown garage. The entire aesthetic is just plain wrong.

A premium grill does cost more, but as that familiar expression goes, “you get what you pay for”.

Here’s a more original and thoughtful way to justify spending more to get more with a grill, using the words of a writer from the 1800s: “The bitterness of poor quality lingers long after the sweetness of low price is forgotten.”

What premium grill benefits should buyers be aware of when they’re putting together an outdoor kitchen design? It all comes down to looks, functionality, and durability.

5 premium grill benefits

Many people think that a premium grill is one of those larger, fancier, more expensive barbecue models they’ve admired on display at their local big-box store.

While these types of barbecues are an undeniable step up from the inexpensive, low-quality models that can found elsewhere in a store’s grill department, they’re actually just barely scratching the surface of what is truly “premium”.

Any discussion about high-end grills involves premium brands such as DCS, Kalamazoo, Lynx, Komodo Kamado, Coyote, and Alfresco being part of the conversation.

A natural gas or propane grill is the foundation of an outdoor cooking space. Choosing the right grill model can be the make-or-break difference between being merely content with your outdoor kitchen or the area being one of your favourite home spaces.

And it’s a premium grill that is found in the finest outdoor kitchens.

These five premium grill benefits explain why it’s worth going upscale when buying your primary outdoor cooking appliance.

1. Premium grills are built to last

DCS premium grill

Even with proper care and maintenance, cheap grills are notorious for rusting after a short amount of time.

Either you or someone you know has had that frustrating experience where a relatively new barbecue is found to be showing signs of rust, despite the fact a grill cover was always used.

If any grill is kept outside, using a good cover certainly helps to prolong its life. A grill used in Canada is still going to have to contend with extreme temperature shifts and moisture that collects underneath its cover, however.

That’s one of many reasons the quality of a grill’s construction materials is so important.

Cheap grills keep costs down by cutting corners on virtually all aspects of the manufacturing process, starting with the construction materials.

Budget grills rust quickly because the metals they use (including steel, iron, and aluminum) are typically low-grade and sourced overseas. They are often made from thin steels and inferior cast aluminum, which doesn’t offer much durability.

Superior grill materials are essential

One of the biggest premium grill benefits is that they last much longer than cheap grills because metals of superior quality are used in the manufacturing process. Cheap steel manufactured in many countries, for example, includes a lot of recycled materials and can’t compare in quality to most North American-made steels.

Premium grills from manufacturers like Coyote and Alfresco are commonly made with 304 stainless steel (also known as 18/8 stainless steel in the commercial cookware industry). This thicker, higher quality steel provides excellent corrosion resistance and more grill durability.

Starter switches on cheap grills are notorious for how quickly they stop working. With a premium grill, you get better hardware and components that last longer and are more dependable. Lynx grills, for example, use high-performance ceramic and brass burners that won’t need replacing after only a few years.

The design and construction of a premium grill also pay more attention to important details like how the grill is welded. Cheap grills have poor designs with seams and gaps that let heat escape and cause a mess with leaking grease.

2. A premium grill looks and feels nicer

A major incentive in taking on any home upgrade project is to make your living space look its best and be something you can’t wait to show off to visitors.

As the focal point of an outdoor cooking space, the grill is going to get its fair share of attention. You don’t want a low-end grill to detract from the high-end aesthetic of an outdoor kitchen that includes cabinetry, countertops, and additional appliances.

Even a grilling novice will immediately recognize the higher level of quality that a premium outdoor cooking appliance displays, compared to a cheap grill.

Those higher quality materials, heavy-duty construction, and the meticulously crafted design result in a sleek, finely-tuned outdoor cooking appliance.

Special aesthetic touches like integrated illumination via backlit designer knobs and high-intensity halogen lighting inside the premium grill cover not only enhance the look of the appliance, they also have practical applications. 

The “touch test” is another of the premium grill benefits that shouldn’t be overlooked. A luxury grill just feels nicer to the touch and provides a more satisfying tactile experience.

Superior grill quality becomes evident in the small details like having knobs that turn smoothly and consistently, or doors and drawers that open and close easily. And one of the real tests of a grill’s quality is whether or not these parts still work perfectly after a few years of use.

Keep in mind that another benefit of buying a premium grill is that they come with better warranties than cheap grills.

3. You get a better, safer cooking experience

open DCS grill with chicken on rotisserie

Our summers in Canada are all too short. Who wants to waste the limited amount of outdoor enjoyment time the summer offers dealing with an undependable, frustrating-to-use grill?

Premium grills provide a more consistent level of functionality and dependability, which translates into a better outdoor cooking experience.

Standard features on premium grills like long-lasting ignition switches that always work and spring-assisted lids that easily open and close are the kinds of smaller user-friendly details that you’ll appreciate after years of using cheap grills.

Grills with better designs and high-quality metals do a better job of retaining heat and distributing the heat more evenly, which results in more reliable cooking performance.

A higher-quality grill is safer to use, too. In addition to the aforementioned lighting features, they include, premium grills also use advanced heating systems that allow you to use different temperatures across the cooking area. This not only gives you more flexibility when grilling different types of food, but it also minimizes the occurrence of dangerous flame flare-ups.

Having a grill with a reliable ignition switch naturally makes the appliance safer to use as well. You won’t need to go through the nerve-wracking experience of standing over a grill to light it with a match or stick lighter because that darn starter switch stopped working!

And let’s not forget the convenient smart features included in some models of premium grills, which simplifies the grilling process even more. Find out more about this premium grill benefit a little further on in this post.

4. You can customize a premium grill

Another reason a premium grill is a must-have for an outdoor cooking space is you’ll want to take advantage of the ability to customize it for your kitchen design.

Luxury outdoor kitchens typically don’t have standalone grills – they incorporate the grill right into the kitchen’s countertop and cabinet design.

This built-in design creates a clean, seamless look and allows the kitchen to be set up for an optimal level of convenience and work efficiency for the chef(s) when preparing and cooking meals.

Even a big-box store’s best grills tend to only come in one or two sizes. Premium grills offer many more size options and allow you to customize extras like the sizes of warming drawers and side burners.

Additional outdoor kitchen appliance options that expand the cooking space’s versatility include products like refrigerators, flat-top grills, pizza ovens, and beverage centres.

You can ensure the kitchen’s aesthetic remains consistent by choosing outdoor kitchen appliances and accessories with finishes and styles that complement each other and your grill.

5. Smart grills = easier outdoor cooking

MyChef iconSmart technology has made its way into many of the appliances we use, from refrigerators with touchscreens that allow you to order groceries to dishwashers that can send a message to your smartphone telling you when the wash cycle is done.

Grills are another home appliance that have convenient smart features available. You won’t find them on grill models that can be picked up at the local big-box store for a few hundred dollars, however.

It’s only the high-end barbecues that integrate this state-of-the-art technology into their designs, such as the Lynx Professional Smart Series of grills.

Use MyChef for smarter grilling

These grills use Lynx’s innovative MyChef technology. Check out a few of the impressive things this intelligent tech can do when you’re grilling:

  • voice or smart device-activated commands can start the cooking process and adjust temperatures
  • sensors in the smart grill keep cooking temperatures at the perfect level
  • the grill is connected to an online database with hundreds of recipes and instructs you on how to get the best grilling results
  • updates to the grill’s learning module are made based on the user’s input and cooking habits
  • a smartphone or tablet app monitors temperatures and cooking times and sends you an alert when the food needs to be flipped or is done

You’ll love what a premium grill offers

Have these premium grill benefits convinced you that they’re worth the investment?

Enjoying a superior outdoor cooking experience starts with your grill, so don’t settle for anything less than one of the top premium grill brands.

Outeriors only works with the finest grill manufacturers, including Lynx, Alfresco, Coyote, and DCS.

Schedule a free design consultation with us to look at your premium grill options for your outdoor kitchen project.

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