on June 6, 2010
I saw this grill at Walmart for $295 and, even though im single and live alone, i felt the need to buy the largest grill in the store. The first thing you notice about this grill is IT IS HUGE!. You could easily have a bbq for a large group of people with this grill, so if your on a budget and like to entertain in the summer, this is definitely the way to go. After getting the box home and opening it up you will stare at the parts and say to yourself "what did i get myself in to". I think i could have had it assembled for free but i wanted it right then and there. Actually it only took me 1.5 hours to put the whole thing together, so assembly is not that bad. Considering though that i am a mechanical engineer i would hope i could put a grill together... Once assembled, i grabbed a few porkchops and threw them on. If you have never used an infrared searing burner before, YOU NEED TO. This grill easily produced the juiciest pork chops i have ever made. I have used full infrared grills before but i suggest the separate infrared burner over the full infrared grill, because you have more latitude to grill at varying temps, vs a full infrared grill which will be ridiculously hot all the time. So far i have grilled pork chops, ribs, sirloin steaks, chicken corn and even perogies on this grill and everytime my food was done perfectly and evenly. I was very impressed for a 295 dollar grill. All of the components of the grill seem to be very solid and well made, the stainless tube burners are cheap to replace which is a plus. The downfall of the grill is the ignitor. It seems very solid so i doubt it will break quickly like most cheap grills, however the negative is that it only ignites one burner in the middle so to use the searing burner you have to light one burner at a time untill you get to it. There is a rail along the back which seems to be used for directing the flame across the back so you can light any burner off of it, but it doesn't really work that way. Although this is fairly minor and is only annoying the first couple uses. The other thing is that, if this grill is like other cheap grills, it will probably rust out, even if you keep it covered. Although i expect that this grill will last at least 3 or 4 seasons, which is worth the money in my opinion, especially at this price point.
So in conclusion, if you are looking for a grill on a budget, buy this right now before its out of stock. I noticed the walmart by me already removed most of the grills from display and its the beginning of JUNE!!. It cooks great, has a searing burner, 7 burners total, can cook for a crowd and is very solidly constructed. I guarantee you will get tons of compliments when your family, friends, and neighbors lay their eyes on it. They will be jealous.
on June 8, 2012
This grill is amazing for the price! Huge huge surface area and looks awesome sitting on our new deck. The sear burner works pretty well and the side burner is good for simple pots. The key here is the massive surface area of the grill which can cook up a lot and the top wire warming rack has a lipped back side so it doesn't drop things like other grills. For the price you cannot beat the surface area. Here are a few tips from my initial uses of it and to address most people's complaints:
1. For ANY grill you buy that is stored outside, it is very simple. Probably 23 hours a day you do not use the grill (assuming you grill every day). If you do not want key components to rust TAKE THEM OUT and store them inside! This includes the heat tents and the grill grates. Like anything in life, if you take a few extra minutes of your time and take care of something, it will take care of you.
2. Same thing with the igniter. Remove the battery from the starter (these corrode with moisture and cause wear) when not in use. The igniter button unscrews in 2 seconds pull the battery out and screw the cap back on.
3. Installation is actually very straight forward - instructions are very clear and it took 2 hours with my 12 year old helping me. Use a cordless drill with an extended philips bit and you will save yourself a lot of time - this is the only tool I used. About 20 minutes was just unpacking and laying all the parts out.
3. The box delivered is HUGE and heavy. When you order from Amazon they require you to set a delivery time and someone must be there to sign for it. We had it delivered on our driveway and it came on top of a wooden pallet. Rather than move the box, we opened it up and just pulled all the parts out. The fire box is the heaviest and bulkiest part of the grill so you need two people to move it. No question about it you need a helping hand. There are parts inside the fire box so open the lid and take them all out before moving it.
4. Be careful using a box cutter on the various boxes while opening them. One of the parts I opened scratched the surface of a black side panel - but that was carelessness on my part and not that big of a deal.
5. According to the thermometer the grill only seems to get to about 250-300 degrees which is actually not all that bad as I prefer to slow cook my food. This allows a longer threshold before cutting over from just right to overdone. I did figure out why the grill does not get that hot. If you look on the back there is a very large vent on the back side on top of the fire box as well as below where the grease catch pan is. You definitely need these vents, BUT IMO they are way too large. If you put your hand there, it is actually hotter than the grill surface itself. I will see if I can borrow a digital thermometer to do some tests to compare. I may try to screw some stainless sheet panels to reduce the size of the vent (again you still need this vent) but it would probably help retain some of the heat in the firebox. I am debating this as I prefer a slow cook on my food but will update the review if I end up doing this. I have a smoker as well so am used to slow cooking.
6. I agree with one poster who said spare Char Broil parts of expensive. My old Char Broil is 7 years old and to replace the guts would have been $245 total. No point in doing that.
7. The 68" Mr. Bar-B-Q black grill cover is a perfect fit and you can also put it on shortly after using it due to its heat resistance (note I wait until it cools anyway).
8. One thing I really like is the back side of the grill cooking grates. There is a nice tight wall so if you are moving food around it cannot slip out the back of the grill.
9. The back surface area definitely gets hotter but once you get some nice juices flowing from your food and you get drip flares on the heat tents, things heat up pretty fast. I like that effect as it can help singe the food a little (similar to the sear burner).
10. As with all grills, lightly coat the surface grates with vegetable oil before putting food on and you will have less of a mess to scrub off because of the non-stick.
11. Once done cooking turn the grill off - but while the grates are still hot - CLEAN THEM! It is easier to get the grease and food scraped off while still hot and not caked on rather than having to mess around with it next time you fire it up. Again, a little TLC goes a long way.
12. Note the stainless steel on the fire box (outside) had packaging marks on it (not scratches rather oily type markings). A little stainless cleaner (ie Bar Keeper's Friend) cleaned it right up.
All in all I am very impressed with this grill for the price. I did a lot of research and you won't find anything out there to compare it to. If any issues arise, I will post updates...likewise if I modify those massive heat vents and escapes around the grill, I will update as well.
on May 21, 2010
***UPDATE.... over year later...rust, rust, rust! I bought great cover yet all heat tents badly rusted, $9.99 x 5 to replace, worst is the grease tray rusted a hole straight through but I only noticed after the whole thing fell out from under the grill while I was cooking. $29.99 to replace...
Great buy and find! I had been looking to buy a Brinkmann 5 burner at Walmart for 390.00 when I looked up high on a stock shelf in the garden area and seen this 6 burner for 290.00. There was not one placed on the floor for display so I called my husband and asked him to look into the model number listed on the box. We found limited info online on them, they just were released in Jan 2010. So it was a shot in dark not even seeing the grill displayed, we called countless Walmarts) no one had any assembled on display. Also, Walmart does not even show online they sell this Char-Broil) So after debating on the cheaper bigger version we decided to buy it. When we returned to Walmart to buy this grill we were told we also get a free 50.00 gift card and free assembly. SO all and all it was 240.00 for a 6 burner with side sear. OK now its time to get it home and fire it up.
It's a MONSTER, huge cooking area. Got it up to 400-500 easy, the sear was my first time use with steaks, unbelievable!!
The Steaks had perfect sear marks and crispy in all the rights spots, they were better then going out to my fav. chop house here in Chicago. I have been cooking on it at least three times a week. I do not see any problems with this grill so far but I am sure it will only have a life of a year or two. For the money it is an awesome find. I love it!!
on June 3, 2015
I purchased this grill in 2013 and experienced the so called "spider" alert. What actually happens is gas builds within the ignition of the grill and melts the burner resulting in gas flames shooting out of that ignition. This is a very dangerous problem that Char-Broil will only compensate by sending replacement parts for what was burned in the incident. Anyone else who has experienced this problem please feel free to contact me. Fortunately, Meijer replaced the grill with the same model after they reviewed my complaint. The following year, at another family cookout, I experienced the same dangerous situation. I do not recommend this Char Broil model to anyone. It is very dangerous and not backed by Char Broil should you encounter this same experience. I have attached pictures and have documentation.
on September 18, 2012
Of the hundreds of reviews I've read over the years for different products, this is the first one I've written. I want to warn future consumers about this product. We received this grill for our wedding gift 3 months ago. We have had nothing but problems. First the center igniter did not work, which is what lights 5 of the 6 burners. Nothing like having to light your brand new, shiny grill with a lighter. I described the problem to Charbroil, and they sent a new ignition module. I knew this wouldn't fix the problem because the other two igniters worked fine. Once I received the wrong part, I checked wiring and found the center lead was pinched between two metal panels, assembled from the factory. I was able to repair wire and use some heat shrink to protect it.
There is a large opening in the back for... ventilation? Who would design an OUTDOOR burner meant for cooking food with a gaping hole in the back of the lid!? I can't believe how much heat I'm losing. It barely heats up to 350 degrees when it's 80 degrees outside. The whole reason I wanted a new grill was so I could use it in the winter!!! Also, the heat is DEFINITELY warmer towards the back of the grill.
Most recently, while moving the grill out of garage, one of the wheels broke off and the top half came separated from lower portion. Luckily one screw held it from crashing to the ground. I work in building trades and use tools every day. There's no doubt that the screws were tight. Only four (4), 1/2" long screws hold the grill head to the cart. When I tried to re-install wheel, I found the PLASTIC socket was cracked. I checked the other wheels and found, although not as bad, all sockets were cracked and wheels were coming loose. It seems the wheels are under-sized for movement on cement considering this grill weighs over 150 lbs. and is very top heavy. We contacted Charbroil about the continued problems with their product. The best they can suggest is to return it to the original company, which is Amazon. We've been waiting for a reply for almost a month now!
What a disappointment...
on July 20, 2014
this an INTERESTING grill to use and is really not all-that-fun if you are into indirect-cooking of ribs & chicken. the factory design includes a gaping rear-hole that makes it hard to keep the grill over 275 degrees without putting all burners on full-blast. to change the thermodynamics of this grill, I purchased an HVAC Stack Duct at LOWES: model GLV0096 - 3.25" x 10" x 36" for $6.35! You have to get this piece and cut the main elbow at 2.5" and bend it into a sail-boat sail so you can still properly use the upper grill-rack. I secured it with three 1" drywall nails that keep it firmly pressed onto the body of the grill, without actually drilling into any part of the grill.
I took the remaining 7.5" section and used it to make a lava-rock tray which helps a bit. Although the manual recommends against lava rocks, the opening to the drip-tray is so open and far below the burners, a lava-rock tray is a must to help you maintain any useful temperature for cooking. I've had no flair-ups as the drip-tray with lava-rocks sits so far below the burners that it is highly unlikely (unless you are cooking a fat-greasy whole Pig). with this added piece, I'm able to preheat the grill to 700-degreees, then use the igniter burner and one additional burner to maintain 450-degrees set on LOW! Yes, this does work, but still I have to add 20-30 minutes of additional cooks time to my indirect-cooked foods as the circulation is spotty underneath the closed-lid..the barcode number for the Stack Duct part I used is: 0 63467 65056 4 from LOWES
on March 13, 2012
UPDATE: I left my earlier, very favorable review below, just to be fair. Now after owning for over a year, I have some other info.
1. Starting with the most important, yesterday burner #5 (5th from right) began self destructing. Basically the flame began heating the plastic knob that controls it, it melted and fell off. I investigated and could find no anomalies which could account for this. I am pretty sure it's a spider that has crawled into the gas duct there, died, and is disturbing proper gas flow, causing excessive flame to back up at the knob area. I recall reading about this in the manual. However, this is a pretty lame way to discover this - it shouldn't just self-destruct. And honestly, just warning someone that your product "stupidly" has no solution for what is very nearly a dangerous situation is irresponsible. Furthermore, I can see no easy way to remove dead spider. I've owned a few gas BBQs, always kept outside, always had spiders around them, never had this problem. I am sure there are relatively inexpensive ways to deal with this from a manufacturing point of view and still keep this unit in a reasonable price point but evidently it just wasn't thought through.
2. This heats very unevenly and not all that well. There are huge dead zones (as in, most of the grill except the rear/left corner) and for whatever reason, the output, overall, just seems really weak. If you're like me, and you like to blow-torch your steak so that it looks like, you know - it's been BBQd, this is not the grill for you. If, for example, you have a steak that has zero fat around it (fat which will drip and ignite/excite more flame, etc) then you will get a "brown" steak which is very unappealing. You'd do just as good a job in a toaster oven.
The "sear" burner - doesn't seem to sear. It just doesn't and I think the issue with all this is the proximity of the flame to the grill itself - it's too far (I guess). For hamburgers and what not, it works ok, but if you want them all to look "BBQd" you will have to move them around or use very fatty beef that will ensure volcanic flames.
It's an ok grill for chicken and dogs, burgers, etc (chicken, because it takes a while anyways, hamburger because of fat drips, and dogs don't require as much heat as other food items) - but not so great for steak i guess is how i'd put it.
3. There is a massive air outlet at the back. I didn't notice it till i got the grill all set up but at the back of the grill is a 5 inch tall air gap that runs length of grill. I thought I'd assmebled it wrong when i saw it. Never seen anything like this - it's pretty obviously way too big. you could reach into the back of the BBQ, with the lid closed, and just take food out if you wanted. it's ridiculous. If you have just one or two burners going with grill shut, the BBQ does not heat efficiently because all the heat just flows out the back. Again, never seen anything like this. I believe they based this vent size on what is necessary to properly ventilate the unit with ALL burners going full tilt. If so there should be some way to reduce it's size, such as movable shield. It's not a deal breaker but it causes you to use a lot more gas/flame/etc than you might normally and in some cases, makes it really hard if not impossible to do things that require steady air temps but not a large, direct heat source (like, veggies, etc). I find it very hard to cook certain things because of this air vent letting out all the hot air.
4. I give it full marks for the grill surface. It seems pretty good, no chips or wear indications yet (good ole cast iron with porcelain).
So, other than the grill surface, it just goes back to the old saying, you get what you pay for. I simply can't afford a better BBQ but you'd sincerely be better off with an old school charcoal deal here. If you're going to go gas, get a better unit - this one kinda blows.
NOTE: I also bought Char-Broil cover for it, #2185562 "65 inch Artisan Coastal Blue Cover" but it did not fit well. This is a 67 inch grill and i guess those extra 2 inches were enough. It bunches up at the top and hangs about 10 inches off the ground. It sorta works, and the tragic part is that this cover is really really nice looking but it looks stupid on this grill. really sad - ordinarily wouldn't care but my grill is on my front porch so looks actually do matter. Oh well. Live and learn, if they make a 67 inch cover - snap it up because they are really nice.
Assembly was easy and I am usually sub par on this. Recommend small electric screwdriver - only tool i needed. Took about an hour - most of that was getting out of box! I did it in my living room and it was easy to roll out the door. HOT TIP: One stupid thing, they should tell you that that the box is the sort of box with a sleeve and it very easily slips apart making it much easier. you do not have to shred the box (at all). i didn't realize this, and since most of the parts are actually inside the BBQ, and, I couldn't get the lid open because of the box and i didn't want to shred the box, i stupidly lifted up with too much force and bent a side wall (easily bent back, no perm damage). anyways, i soon after realized my lack of observation skills when my wife gently lifted side of box and it came apart with a breeze. The box is fairly heavy so you might want 2 people to move it inside at first but i was able to "crab walk" it in using the HD straps around the box.
My last grill had "stainless grills" which i later learned were basically stainless tubes wrapped around dog poop and they fell apart. anyhow, i love this grill, havn't used much but if i run into any problem i will update.
I give it 5 stars now because the price, vs what I see, is remarkable. No doubt it will not last 20 years but i'd be awfully surprised if doesn't last at least 10. If you don't have the money to drop $800+ on a better unit that will definitely last 20 years then this is for you.
on October 4, 2010
I was unhappy at first, but very happy now. Char Broil Service Department was outstanding in working out the problems with the new grill. (Now, don't judge Char Broil grill problems with me as common, because I am one of those people that seems to always choose the slowest line at all the stores, no matter how short the line appears.)
My 12-year old Char Broil grill finally played out and I replaced it with this new Char Broil grill. When I first received the new grill and installed it, I was disappointed with the quality compared with my old one. The new one was made in China. One of the sheet metal screws #8-32x3/8" broke during step # 7 of the installation. I had to drill it out, plus drill the other holes a little larger to prevent braking or stripping any more sheet metal screws. One end of the Towel Bar female fitting had a spur in the thread and would not allow the 1/4-20x1/2" screw to go in all the way. Char Broil sent me a new one to fix this problem. When I first fired up the grill, it would heat up to 275F and drop down to 225F. I reset the regulator according to instructions and Customer Service and changed tanks without any improvements. Char Broil send a new Hose Valve Regulator Assembly via Fed-X. It was fairly easy to replace, and it took care of the problem.
I would recommend purchasing a Grill Surface Thermometer at the store for under $5.00. The Thermometer on my Char Broil grill is more of an oven thermometer and reads about 150F to 200F lower than at the grill surface. The Searing burner works out great! Now, I would recommend purchase of this Char Broil grill.
on December 8, 2012
Would not get hot... I called customer service no help. They had me do a lot of work and change parts etc. The grill was terrible did not work wasted my time and propane. Have to return it.
on April 21, 2011
Awesome product. Love the searing burner off to the right side. Nice storage space underneath for tank and accessories. Made of heavy duty material, one of CharBroil's best grills made in 2010.
Easy to assemble, although the sheet metal screws they give you stink. Be careful not to strip them.