No one likes being cooped up inside on a gorgeous summer afternoon. It’s no wonder, then, that families all over Georgia are firing up their grills. And there’s no better fuel than propane to cook your ribs, hot dogs or salmon filets.
According to the Hearth, Patio & Barbecue Association, 61 % of American grill owners use propane. It’s safe, easily transportable and clean-burning. A propane grill offers precise temperature control with fewer meat-charring flareups and no chemical taste.
There are lots of propane grills on the market today — what’s the best option for your family?
Here is a comprehensive breakdown of propane grills — the sizes, models, features and heating capacities — so you can make an informed choice.
As a rule, you should measure your cooking space in square inches and allow 72 sq. in. of primary cooking space per person. Primary cooking space only refers to the main cooking area, not side burners or warming stations.
Additionally, you’ll want to err on the side of more cooking space, as too little will mean you spend more time at the grill preparing a meal — so round up to the nearest hundred sq. in. when calculating.
Also, consider whether you expect to host large gatherings (or grill multiple foods for each person) since this will increase your grilling space needs.
|Number of People||Grill Size|
|1 to 3 people||A 360 sq. in. grill should suffice.|
|4 to 5 people||You’ll want a grill in the 400 sq. in. range.|
|6 to 7 people||You’ll want a grill in the 500 sq. in. range.|
|More than 7 people||You should get a grill with 600 sq. in. or larger.|
|Number of Burners||Your Choices|
|2 Burners||The minimum number you should consider. Suitable for grilling for 3–4 people.|
|3 to 4 Burners||The sweet spot for most home grillers. This allows for versatile heating combinations.|
|5 or More Burners||Best for people planning to regularly grill for large groups.|
Today’s propane grills come with features to ensure the perfect (and perfectly safe) cooking experience.
A British Thermal Unit, or Btu, measures energy output. Each Btu indicates the amount of thermal energy required to heat a pound of water one degree Fahrenheit. Propane appliances measure their heat-producing capacity in Btus.
So, how many Btus should a propane grill produce?
You should measure a grill’s heating capacity by Btus per square inch of cooking surface. To get to this number, divide the total Btus by the grilling area. For example:
28,000 Btu Grill / 360 sq. in. of primary cooking area = approximately 78 Btus per sq. in.
Btus per sq. in.
Most grills tend to fall in the range of 75 and 100 Btus per square inch. If the grill you’re considering is below this range, it will take longer to cook your food. If the Btu rating is 100 or higher, you might end up with some unintended well-done steaks.
Bigger isn’t better with Btus. An excessive rating will mean that your grill will burn fuel faster. It’s just as important to confirm that the grill’s structure is sound. A heavy-duty, well-fitted lid will seal in heat, and you’ll get more heat for your propane.
When deciding the optimal Btu rating for your grill, consider how you plan to use it.
|How You Plan to Use Your Grill||The Best Choice is|
|Do you plan to host a lot of barbecues with many guests?||A higher Btu model will help you cook lots of food faster.|
|Do you plan to use the grill for smaller family meals with many different recipes?||A lower Btu grill will allow you to customize fine-tune meals with variable cooking times.|
Whether you’re looking for something compact and portable or built-in with all the bells and whistles, there’s a propane grill for you.
As you can see, there’s a world of enjoyment to be had when you invest in a high-quality propane grill. Your local propane provider can provide you with tips on maintaining your grill and ensure you have adequate fuel for your summer cookout.
Watch a video on propane cylinder safety.
A grill is just one of the many propane-fired appliances that can improve your quality of life and raise the value of your property. Your Georgia propane dealer can help you find and install excellent products and qualify for discounts and rebates!