Gas BBQs

The Basic Gas BBQ is a backyard classic.

Unlike Charcoal or wood fired equipment, Gas can be used in a Fire Ban.

Burners

These are a few things to look for in a Gas BBQ.

Get one with Grunt! The more grunt, the hotter it can get.

Most BBQs will talk about BTU (a unit of thermal output), you don’t have to understand this but the higher the number the more Grunt! Of course, that Grunt will not matter if the burners are too far from the food, have a look at that, in most BBQs the burners are 100mm (4 inches) below the grill.

Look at where the burners are and how many and think about getting low even heat (both outside burners on) and indirect heat (burners lit on one side and food on the other side).

Do you want a Flat Plate?

Where does it sit, and will it get hot enough?

Stainless Steel won’t rust but is a bugger to clean and does not heat evenly, you’ll need a grade with more Iron in it to transmit heat better.

BBQ Grill Bars

What are the grills like?  Some Stainless-Steel grill bars are hollow and don’t heat well. Porcelain coated bars are common, but the coating can chip and then they will rust under the coating.

A lot of cast Iron bars are thin and bad quality. Some are triangular so you use them point up for smoking and flat up for fat grill marks.

Will you replace the grates with an accessory like Grill Grates?

Rotisserie

Do you want a rotisserie?

How easy is it to install?

Will any generic rotisserie work or are you stuck with a “Brand Name” one? 

Is there a rear Infra-Red burner for the rotisserie? These are great because they will brown the meat without having a flame directly underneath the food and the risk of flare up.

What is it made of?

Is it stainless steel? Take a fridge magnet with you, high end stainless will not hold a magnet.

Is it made from pressed up coke cans?  Will it rust out or is it solid?

You can use either Briquettes or Lump Charcoal

How easy is it to clean?

It can look trendy as hello and nice and shiny but if the fat and drippings must take a convoluted path through the BBQ to get out, then it will be a pain to clean.

Often a simple full-size tray at the bottom is best, I just cover them with foil, tip in some no-name kitty litter and that’s it. Every couple of BBQs, replace the foil and Kitty Litter!

Where is the Gas inlet?

If it is on one end, then that end will be hotter.

Natural Gas V Bottle Gas

Bottle gas has more pressure and can burn hotter.

Natural Gas needs wider Jets and I recommend upgrading the supply line in your house to 20mm. Old, narrow pipes will not supply enough gas and you may not get total burn and unburnt gas is not good! 

Talk to a Gas fitter and have it connected properly.

Infra-Red Burners

These are the latest innovation; they have been around for a while but relatively new to BBQ

Think about Gas radiator heaters, they have flat ceramic elements that are heated by the burning gas, these then give off Infrared radiation.

Infrared does not heat the air, only the surfaces that it contacts.  The idea is to eliminate the hot convective heat of the air, it is inefficient, and some say will dry the food.

Infra-Red burners under the grill bars will be protected by a quartz crystal dome to stop gloop from the food clogging the burners.

I have a dedicated Infra-red Broiler like Steakhouses do and I love it!

Infra-red Broiler

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