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Old 04-13-2019, 04:43 AM   #1
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ISO Opinions on a New Weber Gas Grill

I'm considering replacing my 25 plus year old Weber gas grill. It's still functional, but it's the old design where the burners run side to side instead of front to back, making it a little more difficult to vary the temperature of the grill. It's a little smaller than the new 3 burner models (new ones are 3 inches wider and 2 inches deeper), and sometimes it's a bit too small when I want to grill meat and veggies. I'm looking for opinions on:

Number of burners. It's usually just the two of us, so three burners would almost always be adequate. However, I'm wondering if a four burner model would be more versatile in allowing greater variation in temperature across the grill (not to mention additional capacity when we entertain). With the three burner model it looks like it would still be hot with one burner shut down, but I'm wondering how it works in actual use. Any drawbacks to a four burner model? When I grill a spatchcocked chicken I do it over charcoal, as the flareups are a problem on my smaller gas grill. My thinking is that the four burner might make it easier to keep the chicken away from the flame.

Grate material. Weber offers a choice of stainless or porcelain coated cast iron. I've never used SS grates, and wonder how they compare. Also, Weber offers a three burner model with larger diameter SS rods, and I wonder if they offer any advantage.

Side burner. I've never felt the need for one, but wonder if it is one of those things that you find useful once you have them. It looks like you can't fit a larger pot or a wok on it. I have a propane burner, which I drag out when I want to use a large pot outside (like cooking mussels). It's difficult to maintain a low temperature on the big burner, though.

Sear station. We don't have steak very often, and generally don't cook larger pieces of meat. Is this a useful feature?

Between the durability of a Weber and my age, this will probably be the last grill I buy, and I want to get it right. Any comments would be appreciated.

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Old 04-13-2019, 05:53 AM   #2
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I may be the odd man out on this, but, I don't care for mine..maybe I just don't know what I'm doing but I find it a one trick pony..I still can't seem to get a high heat to sear my steaks. It is definitely well built, nice even heat, no problems there.. I've tried to place a wood chip box in there a few times and can't seem to find one that fits right..I don't know..I liked my old cheapie one better. I could modify it to do a few more things and didn't have to worry about damaging it...maybe I just need to approach things differently...
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Old 04-13-2019, 09:35 AM   #3
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If a smaller three burner grill will do the trick 99% of the time, don't buy a bigger one. If you need a bigger grill occasionally, you can probably make do.

I prefer stainless steel grates over cast iron. They're easier to clean and they don't rust. The porcelain coated ones start out great then the porcelain flakes off and the cast iron underneath rusts. The thicker SS grates are nice but not necessary.

I deal with flare ups by moving the food back and forth on the grill from side to side (burner to burner). I've done a spatchcocked chicken on a three burner grill.

Sounds like you don''t need a sear station.

I've never had a side burner and haven't really missed it but Kayelle loves hers.

Weber appears to have less hot burners than other brands. If you do a comparison, you'll see for yourself. Divide the BTU output by the square inches of grill surface to calculate BTUs per square inch. I'd bet Weber grills are among the lowest.

Good luck with the Weber.
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Old 04-13-2019, 11:06 AM   #4
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Weber gas grills are built like a tank and their customer service is A+.

I used to have a Kenmore 5-burner gas grill with large diameter SS grates. Never liked the grill itself but loved the grates. Very easy to clean and maintain. They were the best part of the grill...:LOL:
If I were to ever get another gas grill it'll definitely be a Weber with big fat SS grates.
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Old 04-13-2019, 12:00 PM   #5
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I have the Weber Genesis Silver B. No side burner. Side to side SS original burners as well. Three burners. Almost 30 years in action.
Original burners and controls. Have replaced grates three times and flavorizer bars three times.
I bought stainless grates and flavorizer bars last time. I have not used the new bars as the old ceramic coated are still okay.
The SS grate was a smart move for me and I'm certain the SS bars are also going to last much longer. The bars are the first thing to go.
I see this grill out living me. I plan to buy the burners and the controls and that should be good until I am long gone.
Now I keep it covered (original cover as well) and under cover.

I have no problem getting the grill very hot to sear. I light it, turn all the burners to high and wait until the thermometer pegs out.
I can sear steak, but its not close enough to the flame to lets say char peppers. But I can get good flare ups as needed.

I recommend Weber to anyone who wants a product that will last a very long time and give excellent service.
However, I do wonder how this product has fared over time. Are the new grills built like the old grills? Will they last as long? Are they still made in the USA? I'm not sure about any of those questions.

I am going to replace my Weber kettle grill as its almost 20 years old to. Handles loose and top bent a little from dropping it. I have a Smokey Joe I have only used a handful of times.
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Old 04-13-2019, 12:41 PM   #6
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I don't have a Webber, but I do have an opinion on the option of a side searing burner. It's by far my favorite part of my new gas grill. If you do any sousvide meats, it's a clean and efficient way of finishing to a beautiful sear. I'd never have another grill without one.
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Old 04-13-2019, 04:23 PM   #7
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First, go with a Genesis, not a Spirit model. The Spirit models are entry-level models made in somewhere in Asia. Genesis models are pricey, but higher quality and made in the USA.

I can identify with your old three burner issues. My 20-something year old Genesis has the three side-to-side burners, and it is very hard to set up zones.

If it were me, I'd go with the four burner, just to have that much more versatility with cooking zones. The grill will easily last 30 years, with proper care, so you may as well get the most grill you can get.

As for grill, my Genesis came with cast iron grates, which were a PITA to keep from rusting, no mater how diligent I was. I currently have the porcelain coated grates, and I am very pleased with them. The metal on mine is not cast iron -- it is steel with a porcelain coating. My dad has the same ones on his 20-something year old Genesis, and his are original to the grill.

I have no opinion on side burners. I have a stand-alone propane camp burner if I need it -- which I never seem to need.

Weber is the only brand I even consider. Period. I got my oldest Weber Kettle new back in 1995, and still have it. My Genesis is from around 2001. And, I can call Weber customer service and order virtually any part for my grills, and they have it in stock, and ship it immediately.
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Old 04-15-2019, 07:50 AM   #8
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+1 on all the high praise comments on Weber. I have a 3 burner, with a sear burner and a side burner. I also agree to go with the Genesis. Mine is 100% stainless and I would have nothing else. I can scrub the grates as hard as I want and use any tools I want without fear of harming the grates. I love the way they have the replaceable catch pan inside the bottom. when I clean my, I use a 2" putty knife and scrap it all down into the pan and I am done. I love my side burner. I use it all summer to reduce the heat in the house. I cook fish out there to lessen the smell. I boil my crab legs out there. I can my garden veggies on it. So many uses. I really like Weber as they make a shell that is awesome, it never wears out. you can also buy replacement parts very easy. I have mine piped directly into Natural Gas, so easy. I do know that the NG models are not as "hot" as the propane models. Just double check which jets are in to make sure you match your gas. Oh yeah and make sure you get a light if you grill in the winter it works great.
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Old 04-15-2019, 07:54 AM   #9
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TS - I forgot that I had posted this when I got my new Weber. My new Grill
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