Author Topic: Which Infrared to buy? Lowes or Home Depot version....  (Read 28046 times)

davewlob@gmail.com

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I would appreciate some input. We are going to buy a Charbroil Infrared but they are very different at Lowes vs. Home Depot. Lowes has the grill plate perforated and close to the grilling surface. Home Depot has a convex plate far below the grates. If you have experience with both I would appreciate input as to which to buy. The systems seem so different one must be better than another.... please help!

firefly

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Re: Which Infrared to buy? Lowes or Home Depot version....
« Reply #1 on: 07/05/12 16:35:31 »
Hi, I can't say that I have tried both but I bought the Lowe's type and I have used it once (last night) and I love it. Everything came out great and so I would assure you that you can't go wrong with the perforated Lowe's model.
In Cincinnati with my sweetie and my Tru Infared two burner grill. What more could one want than a couple of steaks, some sweet potatoes, and a cold 6 pack?

djm3801

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Re: Which Infrared to buy? Lowes or Home Depot version....
« Reply #2 on: 07/05/12 17:39:59 »
I have the Home Depot model - formerly the RED - with troughs under cast iron grates and it is wonderful. Old Lowes model was Quantum I think. SS grates. I went with the HD model.
Dan

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deestafford

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Re: Which Infrared to buy? Lowes or Home Depot version....
« Reply #3 on: 07/05/12 19:00:17 »
Davewlob,  Welcome.  You are going to really enjoy the benefits of IR cooking once you make the hard choice between the RED and the one at Lowe' which I think is now called the Commercial or something like that...used to be the Quantum which I have the five burner model. We all like what we have but I will tell you no matter which you get you will love what it does for you and the quality of your cooks will be the best in the neighborhood. By the way where do you live?  Dee
5 Burner Quantum
2 SRGs
1 TBE
1 MES
2 Bayou Fryers
This post may contain misspellings, grammatical errors, disorganized sentence structure, misquotes, and may lack a coherent theme.  These elements are natural to the process of writing, and will only add to the beauty of the post.

Tinnmel

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Re: Which Infrared to buy? Lowes or Home Depot version....
« Reply #4 on: 07/05/12 19:20:52 »
Char-Broil has made some name changes that make things downright confusing, but let me try to clear up the name game.  The infrared grill sold at Home Depot was originally called the Heat Wave, then changed to the Red, and is now called the Gourmet.  Basically the same grill with minor changes for each model year.  It is the one with the trough system.  The infrared grill sold at Lowe's was called the Quantum and is now called the Commercial Tru-Infrared (not to be confused with the straight Commercial which is not infrared: Lowe's sells both).  That is the one with the stainless steel grates with the emitter plate with the holes.  To make things more confusing, CB now sells infrared grills at a number of other places including Tru Value Hardware, Walmart, and Kroger...  The grills sold at some of those other places are similar to the Commercial Tru-Infrared stainless steel grates, but each is slightly different.  For example, one has a one piece grate/emitter rather that the Commercial Tru-Infrared's two piece, and one has porcelian coated cast iron grates attached to the peaks of the stainless steel emitter/grate.  You may find names such as Performance, Precision, or Professional.  Confused yet?  I am.  Getting past the minor differences, there are basically two infrared systems.  The trough emitter system and the stainless steel grate/emitter system.  The people who have the trough system will say get that one and the people with the stainless system will say get that.  This happens because both systems make great grills and their owners love them.  Long story finally wrapped up;  it doesn't matter which one you get as long as you get a Char-Broil infrared grill, you will be happy and put out some great food.

Now excuse me, but after this I'm worn out and need a nap.

LostArrow loves Lucy

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Re: Which Infrared to buy? Lowes or Home Depot version....
« Reply #5 on: 07/05/12 19:24:34 »
Everyone needs a medium size gas grill even if you are a charcoal fanatic!
Consumer report loves the 3 burner RED from home depot for even cooking at both high & low temps.
Weak point is porceloin troughs, they will eventually burn out in 2-5 year depending on usage.
After market SS troughs will last then till the wheel fall off.
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djm3801

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Re: Which Infrared to buy? Lowes or Home Depot version....
« Reply #6 on: 07/05/12 21:10:19 »
I think someone here mentioned.. and it is true.. I grill more with the Infra red RED I have than I ever did on my Broil Master (built like a tank and cost twice what my 4 burner Red did - in 2001!)  That had hot spots galore. My Red has troughs and no flare up. The meat is always juicy unless you really screw up bad.
Dan

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FlatSix911

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Re: Which Infrared to buy? Lowes or Home Depot version....
« Reply #7 on: 07/06/12 16:20:00 »
In this case a picture is worth a thousand words ...  :D


Bobo

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Re: Which Infrared to buy? Lowes or Home Depot version....
« Reply #8 on: 07/06/12 18:54:41 »
I think the advantage of the troughs on the Home Depot model is that you can actually drop some wood chips into the troughs to add a little smoke flavor and also if you want to use a rotisserie, you can remove the grates and now have plenty of room for large cuts of meat to rotate because of the deep troughs.
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chinookgirl

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Re: Which Infrared to buy? Lowes or Home Depot version....
« Reply #9 on: 07/07/12 03:03:57 »
I have been lurking around this site for a couple of months...and your post inspired me to register and come out of the perpetual forum closet.

With that said, I went back and forth for months...and that was after I figured out that I wanted an IR grill.  It was months before that just to talk myself into IR.  I won't go into the whole name things, cause a previous poster has it completely nailed.  When I searched this forum I found that there were a LOT of very happy Home Depot - Gourmet Tru Infrared users, but didn't find as many post about the Lowe's Commercial Tru Infrared.  So instead, we (hubby and I) became "those customers" we went to both Lowe's and HD about half a dozen times and asked a million questions that usually resulted in a sales person wanting to upsell us to a Weber.

Here is were we netted out and the reason's why.  I will preface this by saying a couple of things first: This is my first grill, in our first home with a small patio backyard, this won't be my last grill, I am an avid cooker not my hubby, we were on a budget (I hate that word) but with a new house its our reality, I cook every kind of meat, fish, vegi you can imagine.  Not someone that does rotisserie or smoking of meat (I will get a smoker for that later). 

Okay, here we go.  I bought the Lowe's Commercial Tru Infrared - 2 burner with a side burner (this is a new model and could not get on the Gourmet at HD at the time we purchased 3 weeks ago).

I wanted a Stainless Steel grill and not enamel coated cast iron/steel (that I think the HD model has) seasoning the SS did not concern me, but the enamel did from some reviews.  I like that the more I season the SS the better they perform and I knew that enamel wouldn't give me the same performance I was looking for from SS. I get why the trough/Infrared on the Gourmet/HD emitter plate is needed if you want to do rotisserie, but I knew I wasn't. What I didn't like about the trough is that I couldn't see how the heat temp would be even if the 1 burner was under the trough and only a Gourmet owner can speak to it. The emitter plate on the Commercial/Lowes version is right above the each burner (within a inch and half) and there have been absolutely no hot spots or temp issues.  My grill is crazy hot and leaves the most amazing grill marks that really ads to the finish taste, but I can control it if I need too. The SS grates also heat up very fast, nothing fall through because the plates are right under them.  I have used wood chunks, I just place them at the back of the grill, not fuss. Side note: the picture posted is a bit misleading for the Quantum/Commercial, each "knob/section" of the grill has it's own burner, so if you have a 3 burner, you would have 3 of those plates with its own burner.  The Gourmet, however only has one burner that runs from left to right at the under the trough but can be controlled by its knobs.

A couple of things, I find myself seasoning my SS before every use, a bit more time but I don't mind as I can see the benefits of the non-stick properties.  Also, my hubby went the extra step before we used the grill the first time and sanded down the back side of the grates and the emitter plates, they have some very sharp edges and you could really cut yourself. Lastly, I think this model does require a bit more cleaning (brushing with a metal brush) as the emitter plates catch so much (sauce, ash, etc), I have to believe that the trough design on the Gourmet allows for a bit more collection before you have to clean everything maybe every other time? I also like that each knob has its own thermometer and the Gourmet has a single one on the hood.  I have used my several times and it has been fairly accurate.

I have done every vegi that is in season right now and they are fantastic, spare ribs were tender  andjuicy, steaks like a steak house, chicken with and without bones perfect, fish and hamburgers...did I mention that I cook a lot?

Would I change my choice, NO, I really love the performance of the Commercial/Lowe's version.  I do regret that I didn't purchase a 3  or 4 burner every time that I use it. Mostly, cause I love using it so much, if you are only cooking meat for 2-3 people you will be fine, but if you add vegi's to that I find myself having to cook in batches and something ends up having to cool off while the other is finished.

I hope this helps...I know I feel like all my research didn't go to waste...maybe someone will benefit...

Okay...I need a nap too now...
« Last Edit: 07/07/12 03:15:26 by chinookgirl »
Grilling everything in sight!
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Bobo

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Re: Which Infrared to buy? Lowes or Home Depot version....
« Reply #10 on: 07/07/12 04:31:07 »
Chinookgirl - welcome to the cookout.  I can tell by your informative post that you will enjoy yourself here.  As far as what you asked about cleaning the trough version (RED), i usually just put my RED on the clean setting which is just the highest temp.  After a few minutes, it has burnt off everything and just left an ash residue which is easily brushed off later.  Every once in a while (not as often as I should, I'm sure) I dump out the troughs and scrape them down to get any debris out.  Thats about all the cleaning I ever do, except every once in a while I will wipe down the outside of my REDs with a mild soap, and rinse them off with a hose, but that is not very often, I have to admit.
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deestafford

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Re: Which Infrared to buy? Lowes or Home Depot version....
« Reply #11 on: 07/07/12 09:27:26 »
chinookgirl,  What a great and informative post!  Welcome and thank you for the effort.  As far as the size of the grill goes my position is to find the largest you can afford and then get the next size ;D.  You can never have too much grill space. The world of IR cooking is unbelieveable. You are going to want to expand your cooking arsenal as you gain more experience and want to branch out...and I can see you are right at that point now.  The next thing to get is the SRG which will give you the IR roasting capability while adding smoke flavor as well as an additional grill on which you can put wood chips for smoke flavor.  Then the bug will attack you again and you will want to round out your cookers with a smoker that has a "set and forget it" feature.  Then since you live in Southern CA where the weather will allow year round outdoor cooking you can just shut down your kitchen stove and oven cause you'll be doing everything outside.  Our main goal here is to help each other get better and I can see where you will be a big contrributor to that.  Once again welcome.  Dee
5 Burner Quantum
2 SRGs
1 TBE
1 MES
2 Bayou Fryers
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firefly

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Re: Which Infrared to buy? Lowes or Home Depot version....
« Reply #12 on: 07/07/12 13:45:39 »
Hi chinookgirl! I just got my Tru-Infrared Commerical 2 burner this past week and I love it. It was the Lowe's version. I do wish I had a bit more cooking surface but I don't want a bigger unit and the warming rack has done great things for me and the dinners I have made. Tonight it's rack of lamb with Uzbek marinade (very yum from scratch), baby artichokes, and baby carrots. The latter done in a basket I just got from Sam's Club which seems to be a Temple to Grilling.

I think you are going to love it here. It's quite a world, this grilling world. Cincinnati Magazine just came out with its July issue, guess what the topic was---Grilling! http://www.cincinnatimagazine.com/ I guess we are in the right place.
In Cincinnati with my sweetie and my Tru Infared two burner grill. What more could one want than a couple of steaks, some sweet potatoes, and a cold 6 pack?

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Re: Which Infrared to buy? Lowes or Home Depot version....
« Reply #13 on: 07/07/12 20:32:23 »
If it is called a Char-Broil TRU-Infrared grill it meets the same standards - even if it uses a different patented process. Retailers like their own exclusive names and systems too!  The third 'system' is the Professional models found at TRU-Value and other stores --- I have a new Professional IR 500 and the emitter is similar to the one in the SRG (as a reference point for some of you reading this) AND it also has porcelain coated cast iron grates atop.  I'm learning how to use it as many will agree with the notion that each grill (system) has its own kinda way about it and a body just needs to spend some time cooking on it to learn it.  Thus far I'm very happy with the results I'm getting. It does have the sloped hood style and that limits how I like to use the 'warming' rack because meat won't fit if I also put it in a disposable tray ...etc.



drog

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Re: Which Infrared to buy? Lowes or Home Depot version....
« Reply #14 on: 08/26/12 08:42:36 »
I know I'm late top the party and I don't have experience with the exact grills you are looking at, but I do have experience with the different technologies from owning both a Big Easy SRG (the grilling part is similar to the Quantum IR found at Lowes) and a Grill 2 Go Quickset (which is similar to the Red found at Home Depot).  I find the technology found in the Red produces a more authentic BBQ flavor.  The Quantum IR is still very good, but a little more like traditional gas grills in the flavor department.