The Bottom Line
Over the past couple of years, Char-Broil has been making a number of improvements to both the design and the capabilities of their products. I have always said that when needed, Char-Broil can be very innovative, and many of these changes are not only innovative but also a return to a more basic product that works better and lasts longer. This Char-Broil Signature gas grill runs around $400USD, yet is basic in function and design. While still loaded with lower quality stainless steel, it has a more solid feel and a bit better construction. Weighing in at around 120 pounds, Char-Broil has put the weight where it needs to be, in the firebox so that this grill can last a little longer. On the other hand, the heat output of this grill is low, though a few innovative features have been added to make the most of the heat that this grill can put out.
Heavier construction than previous models
Basic and simple which is perfect for the price
Powerful side burner
Low quality 430 stainless steel construction
Low powered grill
Low-quality stainless steel burners
- Three 6,000 BTU 400 series stainless steel tubular burners
- 425 square inches of primary cooking area for a total of 590 square inches of grilling space
- 24,000 BTU maximum output from the main burners
- 13,000 BTU standard side burner under a flush mounted cover
- 430 stainless steel and enameled steel construction
- Electric (AA-battery) igniter
- Stainless steel rod cooking grates
- Total product weight of 120 pounds
- Compatible with Char-Broil's "Dual Fuel" system (you buy the conversion kit ($50USD))
- Manufactured in China by Char-Broil exclusively for Lowes Home Improvement Stores
Guide Review - Char-Broil Signature 3-Burner #463348017
In this price range, I recommend avoiding gas grills that are loaded with features, or heavily covered in stainless steel. While I know that a $400USD gas grill can be an investment for many people, it should be simple, capable of doing some serious grilling, and not rely on a flashy exterior as a selling point. This Signature Series Gas Grill, Char-Broil has done that. This is a basic, 3-burner gas grill with a simple, yet powerful side burner, and nothing else. There is still a good deal of stainless steel, but most of the body is black enameled steel. The stainless is saved for where it should be, inside.
The biggest shortfall of this grill is it's limited heat output. The 24,000 BTU maximum output from the three main burners is low. It fact, it is rather surprisingly low for a grill of this size. The main reason that a company cuts the output of a grill is to help it last longer because the metals can't take the high heat for long periods of time. What Char-Broil has done here is lengthen the life span of the grill, but if it can't get hot enough, is it worth it?
To mitigate the low heat output, the firebox of this grill has been redesigned. Instead of the large air gap in the back of the grill that lets all the heat out, the lid of this model closes up better (though air still has to pass quickly through the grill to maintain combustion). The airflow is more convective in this model, in fact, Char-Broil refers to this series as the convection line (as opposed to their infrared line). Heat circulates through the interior of the grill, helping to hold in the heat. The only downside of this idea is that every time the grill is opened, the built up heat is released and it has to build again. Additionally, the hood of this grill has a heat deflecting insert to help reflect more of the heat back at the food.
So while this isn't the best grill on the market at this price range, it is a reasonable solution, particularly for the person that isn't expecting ridiculous cooking temperatures. The construction quality is good, though not fantastic and it is a competitive product in this price range. It is certainly worth considering.