Pros / It generates, distributes and retains heat effectively.
Cons / Assembling this grill takes a lot of time and patience.
Verdict / This grill is certainty worthy of consideration. Its stability and cooking capabilities are suitable for most, with a little extra aesthetic flare.
The Char-Griller Grillin’ Pro has a unique design we really like. The black, durable-steel dome with small twin smoke stacks gives this model an attractive industrial look. And since your grill becomes a visible extension of your home, we think many people will gravitate to the Grillin' Pro's interesting aesthetic.
The design also gives a sense of durability, steadiness and longevity. And for us, it delivered on the first two. It took two members of our lab crew more than two hours to put this grill together, which had several moments of frustration as the instructions aren’t totally clear. However, when it was completed, they remarked that the grill was one of the most solid and steady of group. We were able to move it around the testing area with greater ease than most of the other standing grills we tested. The sturdy wheels are heavy and plastic as opposed to the small casters on some other models. We never felt like it would tip over if someone was moving it.
As for longevity, we can’t determine how long this grill will last, but we did check user reviews for feedback about how long you can expect the grill to work. And while the reviews are generally positive, we saw more than a few complaints about how their models rusted relatively quickly, some in as little as three months. But that is anecdotal and should be taken with a grain of salt.
Probably a better indicator is its warranty period – five years for both the burner and parts. This is pretty good considering other warranties only last one to three years. In our experience, the longer the warranty, the longer you can expect something to work. And while a five-year warranty is better than most, our top pick, the Weber Spirit II, has a 10-year warranty for burner and parts.
Once you get past the design and on to the actual grilling, you won’t be disappointed, but it’s not going to be the topic of conversation the next day. It delivers a generally acceptable cooking experience, and it has good heat distribution and consistency. We measured the grill’s temperature at periodic intervals to see how well it stayed at an even temperature, and timed how long it takes to return to its previous temperature when the lid had been open for a minute. We felt the Weber Spirit II, Char-Broil Performance and Dyna-Glo all performed a bit better.
We noted some issues with flareups on this grill, especially with burgers. It took more than a few minutes experimenting with the burner settings to avoid the flames. Once that was accomplished, things went smoothly.
Of the grills we tested, the Grillin’ Pro has an above-average cooking area. You’ll be able to fit about nine frozen burger patties across its 438-square-inch grill plate, which is more than enough real estate to cook for a family dinner or small get-together. It also includes a 12,000 Btu side burner, which is very convenient for cooking vegetables or other meal components, so your food can all be ready to serve at the same time.
The biggest obstacle to using this grill is assembly. Be prepared to invest some time to make sure you get it right the first time. Outside of that, we found this grill to be a suitable choice for a backyard cooker. It’s sturdy, moves around easily, creates and retains heat well, and has a convenient side burner. However, aside from its homey design and stability, there’s nothing to recommend it above products like our top pick and best value choices.