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Tested Products 4
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Considered Reviews 690

Best Natural Gas Grill 2018 - 4 Natural Gas Grills Reviews

As warmer weather is due to arrive soon, purchasing a new grill might be crossing your mind, but is it worth the investment? How do natural gas grills compare with other types of grills that are on the market?

Natural Gas Grill Leaderboard 2018

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Rating 6.3
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6.3
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Brand Weber Weber
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32 x 50 x 63 inches

32 x 50 x 63 inches

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Stainless Steel

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Just how much more environmentally friendly are they compared to their propane and charcoal counterparts? Read on to find out what makes a natural gas grill worthy of buying this year and which one might suit your needs the best.

What is a natural gas grill?

A natural gas grill is, perhaps a bit surprisingly, not all that different from a propane grill. In fact, they prepare food much in the same way, except for the number of additional benefits you can reap from utilizing natural gas. A natural gas grill uses fuels based on hydrocarbon to generate heat as opposed to charcoal or propane from a propane tank.

These days, a lot of gas grills offer up the option for using natural gas. Since studies have discovered that natural gas leaves a far smaller carbon footprint than other gas and even propane, natural gas is a popular selling point. Even patio heaters, fire pits, and smokers feature natural gas options.

Natural gas grills need to be connected to your house's gas line, and a hose must be attached to the burners on your grill in order for the grill's electric igniter to light the fuel.

How does a natural gas grill work?

A natural gas grill works by utilizing natural gas that is provided by gas tanks that can be attached to the grill. These tanks can easily be detached and are refillable. Should you want to make the switch to propane, all you need to do is remove the gas tank from the grill.

When the natural gas grill has a gas tank attached and is turned on, the gas is used to heat the food that is being prepared on the grill. The heat distributes evenly across the grill, giving the food you are preparing plenty of heat to cook it regardless of where it is placed on the grill.

You will notice that, when you are using a natural gas grill, there is not a lot of smoke being let out into the air, unlike what you will encounter with a charcoal grill. Also, natural gas grills come with a cover that is easy to fold down over the grill.

Advantages & Applications

Weber Natural Gas Grills With two wheels Compared to charcoal and propane grills, natural gas grills have quite a few advantages to their use. First and foremost, natural gas grills leave the smallest carbon footprint out of any type of grill and, therefore, and considered to be the most environmentally friendly type of grill out there.

Additionally, natural gas grills do an excellent job of evenly distributing heat across the surface of the grill. This ensures that food is evenly and thoroughly cooked. This eliminates the problem you get with charcoal grills, which do not evenly distribute heat across the surface of the grill.

Natural gas grills are also considerably easy to use and can be added to almost any patio or backyard setup. They come in a variety of different colors, sizes, and designs.

What types of natural gas grills are there?

As far as grills go in general, there are four main types of grills that you need to know about. The first type of grill you should be aware of is, of course, the gas grille (of which the natural gas grill is a sub-type). The gas grill is optimal for anyone who does not want to have to spend a ton of time preparing, cooking, and cleaning up their grill. Unfortunately, one of the few downsides to owning a gas grill is that the smoke boxes tend to size on the small side, so you might not find your taste buds getting inundated with that delicious smoky flavor.

Gas grills that range on the cheaper side of the market tend to have one or two burners and are crafted from aluminum. The higher-end grills can have anywhere between three and five burners and are typically made from high-quality stainless steel. They might also include an option for a side-burner, which is capable of heating up pots and pans. Their grilling surfaces can be crafted out of stainless steel bars or grates or iron grates. Price-wise, a natural gas grill can range from just a few hundred dollars up to about $1,000.

Charcoal grill alternative to Natural Gas GrillOf course, there are the other three types of grills. Charcoal grills are still made and sold, catering especially to those who enjoy getting the smoky smell and taste from their food. Charcoal grills still come as kettles but also have different size and style variations. A side firebox can be added to increase the smoky flavor in the food that you prepare, and the majority of these grills stick to the $100 through $250 range.

Electric grills are also manufactured and are a popular buy for city dwellers. These grills do not involve having any type of open flame and rely solely on their electric source to heat your food. Unfortunately, these grills do not produce any type of smoky flavor since they do not use flames to cook food. However, if you live in a location where you are required by law to not use charcoal or gas grills, an electric grill is your best option.

Last, but certainly not least, is the portable grill. This miniature version of a regular sized grill is easy to take camping, to a tailgate party, on a picnic, or anywhere that requires transportation. While you can only cook a few pieces of food on them at a time, these grills are lightweight and extremely easy to use. They are also quite affordable.

This is how a natural gas grill is tested

Testing Natural Gas GrillNatural gas grills are tested and rated based on a range of different criteria. Finding the best natural gas grill to fit your needs should involve looking for several key factors.

One of the first things you will want to pay attention to is how many burners the grill has. If you plan on having large gatherings and will need to cook a lot of food at once, you might want to find a natural gas grill that has three or four extra burners. Main burners alone can, on some of the top-of-the-line models, have over 40,000 BTUs (British Thermal Units). Extra burners will add even more BTUs onto the overall power of your natural gas grill.

You will also want to consider the type of material and build you want in your natural gas grill's flavorizing bars. You will find that quite a few models have flavorizing bars that are crafted from stainless steel. Stainless steel flavorizing bars tend to produce some of the most savory flavors. So, how do they work? As you are grilling your vegetables or meat products on the surface of the grill, the juice seeps onto the bars. The bars end up vaporizing this juice, causing it to steam. The steam makes its way back into the food, adding to the food's overall flavor.

Stainless steel bars are incredibly easy to clean but do need care in order to prevent rust from forming. Additionally, professionals like to test natural gas grills to see how easy it is to clean up grease from the entire grill and find that stainless steel models are optimal for getting rid of grease without a hassle.

What should I pay attention to when buying a natural gas grill?

When you go to buy your natural gas grill, there are a few major purchasing factors that you need to consider. As is the case with any financial investment you make, you likely want to get the most bang for your buck. You will want to make sure that you are getting a natural gas grill that has a sufficient amount of helpful accessories without trying to do absolutely everything. Some of the higher end grills will be multi-functional and include rotisseries and smokers. Carefully consider what you need your natural gas grill to do before you make the commitment to buy it.

Think about how much space you are going to need on the surface of your grill. Many people will want a good amount of space for grilling their food. If this is important to you, you should pay attention to how many square inches of total cooking space is available. Some of the bigger models will have somewhere around 800 square inches of grilling space, with the biggest ones bordering on 900 square inches of grilling space.

Of course, flavorizing bars are really one of the most important selling points with any grill. Stainless steel flavorizing bars are most worth the money since they are so easy to clean and will not rust like other types of metal. These bars can greatly enhance the taste of your food.

The leading 7 manufacturers of natural gas grills

  • 1. Weber
  • 2. Broil King
  • 3. Dyna-Glo
  • 4. Cuisinart
  • 5. Napoleon
  • 6. Blaze
  • 7. Lynx

Weber has been manufacturing grills since all the way back in 1893. This American-based manufacturer sells all types of grills and even hosts a day-long cooking school known as The Grill Academy, where students can learn a variety of barbecuing techniques from grilling masters.

Broil King is another American-based manufacturer. They sell a wide array of grills, including some of the most well-loved portable grills. Broil King also sells a number of built-in grills and other kitchen components.

Dyna-Glo is a company that is probably best known for its electric fireplaces and electric heaters. However, Dyna-Glo also manufactures some top-notch grills. Their grills represent some very cost effective alternatives to the hug name-brand grills and tend to work equally as well.

Cuisinart is known for producing a diverse array of cooking products, ranging from mixing bowls to rice cookers. Their grills are regarded as being cost effective and still pack in many of the features that consumers want in their grills.

Napoleon grills tend to be some of the highest rated grills, including their natural gas grills. Their Prestige and Prestige Pro models are consistently receiving rave reviews from consumers and professionals alike.

Blaze is one of the lesser known manufacturers out there, but their products are some of the most stunning top-of-the-line grills. Of course, many of these high-end grills are higher in price, but they have many added bonuses that make them worth their price tags.

Like Blaze, Lynx also manufactures a diverse array of high-quality, top-of-the-line grills. They sell built-ins and kitchen components in addition to their variety of outdoor grills.

Internet vs. retail trade: where do I buy my natural gas grill best?

Buying a natural gas grill in a brick and mortar store can be a good idea if you are not totally sure of what you want to get from your natural gas grill. At the very least, you should go to one or two of your local stores and check out their line-up of natural gas grills.

However, many times, you can find the best deals online. Most manufacturers have their products listed on their websites and will offer special incentives if you buy online. Shopping online and having your natural gas grill delivered directly to your doorstep also eliminates the hassle of trying to lug one home from the store. If you struggle with physical issues or do not have a vehicle that is fit for hauling a natural gas grill, then you might want to consider shopping online instead of buying from the store.

Interesting facts & advice

Two Men Using A Cuisinart Natural Gas GrillNatural gas grills are fascinating machines. They are packed with power yet manage to leave smaller carbon footprints than propane or charcoal grills. But did you know that other types of machinery also use natural gas? It can be used within the home to power your clothes dryer, furnace, air conditioning unit, or even your fireplace. Natural gas is also used by forklifts and trucking fleets!

Estimates show that about 72 percent of adults own grills. Of that number, about 62 percent have gas grills. Of course, many of them are fueled by liquid propane, but more people than ever before seem to be investing in natural gas grills in order to be more environmentally friendly.

Since natural gas is easily supplied through pipes that are connected to your home, and you can avoid the annoying trips to the gas store to refill your propane. Once you have natural gas hooked up to your home, you can use it in your appliances, including in your grill. Also, natural gas eliminates the possibility of running out of fuel while cooking on your grill, which can be pretty frustrating and embarrassing!

The United States is currently the largest producer of natural gas anywhere in the world. Right now, the United States has natural gas resources of somewhere around 2,817 trillion cubic feet (Tcf). There are also 324 Tcf of proved gas reserves according to the Energy Information Administration. In total, that gives us an estimated 3,141 Tcf in a total future supply of natural gas within the United States alone. In other words, that is more than enough to meet the current energy demand within the United States.

Safety, while always a concern, is less so when you opt to use natural gas in your household and outdoor appliances. In the last decade alone, the American Gas Association noted a 40 percent decline in the number of pipeline incidents that were reported by 2015, and those numbers are expected to continue to change in favor of safety. Since natural gas has a tendency to evaporate much more rapidly than other types of gas, it is also considered to be safer and much more efficient.

Studies have shown that natural gas grills tend to have longer lifespans than propane or charcoal grills since natural gas is cleaner and more efficient. Natural gas leaves less toxic compounds on your grill, so you won't see as much erosion from soot.

The history of the natural gas grill

Grilling, as archaeologists have discovered, goes all the way back to homonids (in other words, the Neanderthals who pre-dated homo sapiens). In Ancient China, people appear to have used methods for slow and low smoke roasting. In Spain and the Americas, barbacoa became wildly popular after Christopher Columbus landed on the continent. Both the settlers and Native Americans (especially the Arawak tribe and the Lucayans) benefited from the roasting of meat over an open fire. The barbacoa was actually a name for the wooden rack upon which food was grilled. Fires were often small, and it could take a day to roast and prepare fish or other types of meat that had been during a hunt.

Ancient outdoor grill demonstrating history of natural gas Grills

As colonial people began building their houses bigger and from stronger materials, they began refining the art of the wood burning stove. The wood burning stove served many purposes, from preparing food to providing heat in the home during harsh winter months. During the Revolutionary War, troops carried portable camp stoves so that they could more easily prepare their meals.

By 1897, an inventor named Ellsworth Zwoyer had gotten a patent for manufacturing the first charcoal briquet. However, the charcoal briquet did not really become popular until the 1920's when automobile designer Henry Ford began a collaboration with EB Kingsford and Thomas Edison. Together, they began making briquets from scraps in Ford's Detroit motor factory. Eventually, they established the town of Kingsford, Michigan, which served as their manufacturing headquarters.

As far as grills in general go, their original fuel source was charcoal. Charcoal has been around and in use for at least 5,000 years. It is currently unclear which ancient civilization was actually the first one to utilize charcoal, but scientists have discovered that charcoal was used in the process for embalming their mummies!

What is charcoal, though? You might be surprised to learn that it is actually wood that was generated by being heated to extremely high temperatures (about 1,000 degrees Fahrenheit or 538 degrees Celsius) without the presence of oxygen. By heating wood in a clay or steel box and cranking up the heat, the wood loses its water content. Think about the last time you built a bonfire. Which types of wood worked the best? Typically, the drier the wood is, the better it burns, which is why charcoal is heated in such a seemingly tedious process. Essentially, before a tree is cut down for use, it contains many volatile hydrocarbons within its numerous cells, but these hydrocarbons dissipate when they are heated.

Of course, gas and propane grills eliminate having to buy and use charcoal. Gas grills came into being during the middle of the 20th century. The Chicago Corporation (which is now known as LazyMan) began manufacturing gas grills for restaurants in the 1940's. By the 1950's, they were selling portable versions of these gas grills. Also, they had taken 20-pound propane cylinders commonly used by plumbers and adapted them for use on grills.

Soon, gas grills became far more popularly purchased than charcoal grills since they were so much easier to use. Not only did consumers find that gas grills were much easier to clean up after use, but they also noted that these grills could be far more quickly stopped and started.

Since their climb to popularity in the middle of the 20th century, grills have been adapted to work with natural gas in addition to propane. Both of these types of grills continue to be top sellers although charcoal grills are often the most affordable type of grill.

Figures, data and facts about the natural gas grill

Using a grill isn't exactly cheap. However, as far as natural gas grills go, natural gas is considered to be one of the more affordable sources of energy. There are lower cap-and-trade costs due to how cleanly natural gas burns, and since it is in such an abundant supply within the United States, its cost is steadily low, unlike gasoline prices, which are constantly fluctuating.

Natural gas actually emits 45 percent less carbon dioxide than when you burn coal and also emits far smaller amounts of mercury, nitrogen oxides, and sulfur dioxide. It also has the ability to produce hydrogen since natural gas has methane contained in it.

Studies are now showing that natural gas actually is the best at evenly distributing heat in a grill. Natural gas grills can reach temperatures over 20,000 degrees Celsius, providing some of the strongest heating capabilities you could possibly imagine in a grill. Natural gas also allows for quicker cooling rates, better cooking temperature control, and less cost to the homeowner for the amount of gas used to power a natural gas grill.

Use a natural gas grill correctly in eight steps

Are you new to grilling or are wondering what it takes to get your new natural gas grill up and running? As is the case with any new cooking accessory, you should consult your owner's manual before you attempt to use your natural gas grill.

✔ When you buy a natural gas grill, you need to make sure that you have a natural gas pipeline already extended to your outdoor area where you wish to place your natural gas grill.

✔ Before you even start your natural gas grill, give it a good scrub down. You will want to get into the habit of doing this before and after every use. Keeping your natural gas grill clean reduces the risk of decay over time and, of course, ensures the cleanliness of the food that you will be preparing on your natural gas grill.

✔ Start your natural gas grill by turning just one burner all the way up. Then, simply push the igniter button. If there is no igniter button, you will need to use a lighter wand or fireplace match (not a regular match, as they are too small and unsafe) to get your natural gas grill going.

✔ Proceed to turn on all of the other burners.

✔ Close your grill's lid and allow the burners to heat up for 15 to 20 minutes.

✔ Prepare and enjoy your food!

✔ When you are done, simply turn the burner knobs to the “off” position.

✔ After the grill has cooled down, clean the grill's grate thoroughly to ensure its longevity.

10 tips for care

  1. Always ensure that you clean your natural gas grill before and after each use. Not only does this keep the food you prepare free from soot and other debris, but it will help prevent corrosion and keep your grill working well for years to come.
  2. When you clean, use warm, soapy water, then towel dry your grill.
  3. Always make sure that you secure reattach your gas tubes and burners after you clean your natural gas grill. You do not want to start up your grill with a tube that has not been safely attached.
  4. Check your tank to make sure that it is rust-free. Corroded tanks will need to be properly recycled and not simply thrown out with your regular trash.
  5. At the start of each season, you will want to burn off any little bits of lingering grease. You will also want to do this before you store your grill away for the cooler seasons.
  6. When the grilling season ends, make sure you thoroughly clean the grill's grate, as any lingering debris could cause some damage while the grill is out of use.
  7. Stiff-wire grill brushes can do a very thorough job at cleaning your natural gas grill. After covering your grill's gas valves with aluminum foil, simply scrub down with warm soapy water and the stiff-wire grill brush. Towel dry your grill, then reattach the burners and gas tubes, making sure that they are secure before you store your grill away for the winter.
  8. If you plan on storing your grill outdoors during the off-season, make sure you cover it with a protective vinyl sheet. You should also keep any tank you have attached to your grill.
  9. If you plan on storing your grill indoors for the winter, tanks should be connected and stored outside. Keep the tank in a safe location, far away from furnace and dryer vents. Tanks should be stored upright in a shady spot.
  10. When storing your grill for the winter, make sure that you keep the gas line connections covered so that insects do not infiltrate your grill.

Useful accessories

If you are looking to buy a natural gas grill, you will want to set some money aside for a few helpful accessories. You will want to make sure you have a cover that lays properly over your entire grill. You might want to also consider adding features that will help you meet your needs, such as grilling rotisseries, baskets, thermometers, and high-quality outdoor cookware and cooking utensils. Most of these items can be purchased separately, but some grills will come with some of these accessories.

FAQ

Q: Can you use a propane tank on a natural gas grill?

Q: Can you use a propane tank on a natural gas grill?

A: You can purchase a conversion kit from your grill's manufacturer if you wish to convert your propane grill to natural gas. In fact, some propane grills will already come equipped with the necessary components to make the conversion. However, you should exercise caution regarding equipping a propane tank on a natural gas grill and seriously consider why you want to make that switch.

Q: How hot do natural gas grills get?

Q: How hot do natural gas grills get?

A: A natural gas grill, much like its propane counterpart, can reach 500 degrees Fahrenheit (or 260 Celsius) or even higher. This is why it is important to exercise caution when using any grill, as burns can be severe and extremely painful.

Q: How will I know if there is a gas leak?

Q: How will I know if there is a gas leak?

A: Natural gas leaks can occur in the home, and standard carbon monoxide detectors are not be able to detect them. If you are in your home and start to feel nauseated, fatigued, or experience irregular breathing patterns, evacuate your home and call in a professional to assess the leak. Do not attempt to use your appliances, including your natural gas grill, if you suspect that there is a leak.

Q: How long of a lifespan do natural gas grills have?

Q: How long of a lifespan do natural gas grills have?

A: If you purchase a mid-grade natural gas grille, you should expect it last you for at least ten years. Some of the higher-end natural gas grills being sold on the market today have projected lifetimes of at least two decades.

Q: Which features should I get that allow me to have full control over the heat on my natural gas grill?

Q: Which features should I get that allow me to have full control over the heat on my natural gas grill?

A: If you want to be able to exert the most control over the heating on your natural gas grill, you are going to want to make sure you get burners that have their own ignitions. Also, you will want to have infinite control valve settings available on your natural gas grill. These valves regulate indirect and direct heat and let you keep an eye on just how much heat your food is getting on the grill's surface.

Q: What are BTUs, and why should I pay attention to how many my natural gas grill has?

Q: What are BTUs, and why should I pay attention to how many my natural gas grill has?

A: A BTU is a British thermal unit, and it is a part of American customary units. BTUs are the amount of heat needed to elevate temperature by one pound of water by a single degree Fahrenheit. Natural gas grills tend to have high BTU numbers, but the larger the cookout you plan on having, the more power (and, therefore, more BTUs) you will likely want to get the job done.

Q: Does natural gas burn hotter than propane?

Q: Does natural gas burn hotter than propane?

A: Propane does actually burn faster than natural gas since it burns at a higher rate. However, since the valves that are used in natural gas grills allow more gas to enter in through the burner systems, natural gas does burn incredibly high and hot as well.

Q: Can I use a longer hose and move my natural gas grill further away from my house?

Q: Can I use a longer hose and move my natural gas grill further away from my house?

A: Yes, you can use a longer hose and move the grill further away. However, bear in mind that you will experience a little bit more line loss on the longer hose. The longest natural gas hose that manufacturers typically supply is 20′.

Q: How frequently might the average natural gas grill need to be serviced?

Q: How frequently might the average natural gas grill need to be serviced?

A: Your natural gas grill should be thoroughly checked over at least once every year. Regular cleanings can eliminate grease buildup, but you will also have to keep an eye on your burners and on the ignition, as those three components tend to pose the most common issues in terms of functionality.

Q: Is it worth it to spend the extra money on a high end natural gas grill?

Q: Is it worth it to spend the extra money on a high end natural gas grill?

A: This is entirely dependent upon your financial situation and what you really plan on doing with your natural gas grill. If you are going to use your natural gas grill every other day of the week during the warmer seasons, then you are going to need a grill than can withstand all the wear and tear. However, many of the higher end natural gas grills that are being sold have more mid-range models that, although the might not offer a few of the time accessories and add-ons, are equally as well-regarded and powerful.

Alternatives to the natural gas grill

Electric Grill alternative to Natural Gas GrillThere are, of course three distinct alternatives to buying and using a natural gas grill. If you are looking for a grill that has the utmost in heating power, your best bet is going to be a propane grill. They are still relatively efficient and somewhat cost effective. Propane grills can produce double the BTUs of most natural gas grills and are fairly easy to use and maintain. Of course, you get the best heat distribution from a natural gas grill, but propane grills also do a good job of distributing heat across the burners.

Electric grills are another option, especially if you do not want to deal with a gas or propane tank. Electric grills are typically the only option you have if you live in a rental unit or a condominium, where restrictions on grills are often pretty tight. Electric grills can cook meats and veggies pretty thoroughly, and you don't have to worry about gas leaks and tanks.

Then, of course, you have the tried and true charcoal grill. While you will not get the massive amounts of heat that you get from propane or gas grills, charcoal grills tend to give food that delectable smoky flavoring that consumers love. Charcoal grills tend to be the most affordable type of grill currently on the market, although they are subject to more wear and tear and might not last as long as a gas or propane grill.

Regardless of what you choose, there is a grill out there that will suit your needs. Each type of grill has different pros and cons, so what you buy should depend on what you plan on doing with your grill and how smoky you want your food to taste. It will also depend on your budget, although there are certainly budget friendly grills in each category that are worthy of testing out. You can ultimately get your money's worth by diligently maintaining your grill before, during, and after grilling season.

Further links and sources

http://www.aeicorporation.com/news/how-do-natural-gas-grills-work

https://www.thespruce.com/switching-to-natural-gas-for-your-grill-334920

https://www.angieslist.com/articles/how-convert-propane-grill-natural-gas.htm

https://home.howstuffworks.com/grill.htm

https://science.howstuffworks.com/mummy.htm

https://amazingribs.com/barbecue-history-and-culture/barbecue-history

https://www.moneycrashers.com/types-outdoor-barbecue-bbq-grills/

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/British_thermal_unit

https://www.bestgrillsguide.com/benefits-advantages-of-natural-gas/

https://www.homedepot.com/c/How_to_use_a_gas_grill

https://toxtown.nlm.nih.gov/text_version/chemicals.php?id=18

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