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Get expert advice on deciding whether to repair or replace a gas grill based on its condition, performance, and efficiency.

Every grilling enthusiast will have to answer this question at least once in their lifetime: Should you repair or replace a gas grill that’s not performing up to par?

It’s not a straightforward question to answer and will depend entirely on your personal preferences, budget, the age of your grill, and other factors.

There’s a lot to unpack, which is why we’re breaking it down in this guide!

As grill fans, we’ve been through this “repair or replace” dilemma before and are here to share a bit of wisdom we’ve learned along the way.

In this article, we’ll dive into how to know when your grill is due for repairs or if you should start shopping for a replacement, drawing from our own experiences to offer insights. We’ll also give you tips for finding replacement parts and buying a new grill should you need to. We’ll wrap it all up with some FAQs.

Whether you need to replace a broken part or replace your current grill with a new one, this guide will give you everything you need to know to get back to grilling.

Key Takeaways

  • Evaluate Cost vs. Benefit: Consider repairing if costs are manageable, but replace if repairs approach or exceed half the cost of a new grill, especially for older models lacking modern features.

  • Safety and Performance: Prioritize safety; replace grills that pose risks or have deteriorated performance that repairs won’t adequately address.

  • Assess the Grill’s Age and Usage: If the grill is significantly old or frequently needs repairs, investing in a new model might be more beneficial for efficiency, new features, and long-term enjoyment.

Fix It or Trash It – When to Replace a Gas Grill?

So, how do you know when your gas grill needs some TLC or is truly at the end of its life?

Deciding whether to repair your gas grill or replace it altogether can be a tough call. The choice often boils down to factors like cost, sentimental value, and the extent of the damage or wear.

One of the telltale signs that something is up with your grill, and it will either require repair or replacement, is that it’s simply not cooking food the same way it has in the past.

If your flames are sputtering or not reaching the heights they used to, you’ll need to narrow down the cause before deciding whether to repair the grill or scrap it entirely.

Before we really dig into it, here’s a quick checklist to help you make that decision:

Consider Repairing If:

  • The cost of repairs is significantly less than buying a new grill.
  • The issue is minor or cosmetic, such as a faulty igniter or worn-out grates.
  • The grill holds sentimental value or fits perfectly in your outdoor space.

Think About Replacing When:

  • Repair costs approach or exceed the price of a new grill.
  • The grill has structural damage or extensive rust that compromises safety.
  • It’s old and lacks features that newer models offer, affecting your grilling experience.

Ultimately, if fixing your grill doesn’t make financial or practical sense, it might be time to explore newer, more efficient models.

Next, we’ll break it down even further.

How to Know if It Is Time to Replace Your Gas Grill

Performance Issues | Rusty or Cracked Firebox | Gas Leaks | Buildup of Heavy Grease and Gunk | Structural Stability Issues | New Features and Abilities

Just like with your car or other major appliances, there’s never a black-and-white answer to when it’s time to replace your grill.

Many issues gas grills encounter are repairable, but sometimes, based on the age of your grill and the cost of the repair, it just makes more sense to replace it with a new model.

Gas grills on average have a life span of 5 to 15 years, depending on how well they have been maintained. This can vary by brand and usage of course. So while everyone’s experience may differ, grill age and mileage can play an important part in your decision.

This is where recognizing the signs of wear and tear comes into play. At some point, the cost and frequency of repairs become impractical. And signs like rust and corrosion in critical areas can compromise safety.

Here are a few grill issues that are typically a good sign that it’s time to send your grill out to pasture and go shopping for a new one.

Performance Issues

Older grills may use more gas and take longer to heat up due to metal warping over time causing gaps where heat can escape. Seals and welds can also break down.

This decrease in efficiency not only affects the cooking performance but also adds to the cost of using the grill in the long run.

When the grill has to work significantly harder to maintain the desired temperature, it may be time to go shopping for a new one.

The Firebox Is Either Rusty or Cracked

The firebox is where all of the heating and cooking action takes place on your grill.

If you see a bit of rust on yours, typically rubbing it down with a stainless steel brush should do the trick.

However, if your firebox has an excessive amount of rust or shows signs of cracking, it’s a safer bet to just replace the grill.

Due to its exposure to high heat, serious issues with your grill’s firebox will only get worse with time and become a major safety issue — it’s best to replace your grill now.

If notice rust starting to form in your firebox, we’ve got a guide that can help save your grill. Check out this article: How to Remove Rust From a Gas Grill

There Are Gas Leaks

Gas leaks are more than an annoying issue — they’re a serious danger. The risks associated with old connections and deteriorating gas lines are significant.

If you suspect you have a gas leak, perform a bubble test with a mix of warm water and dish soap. If you see small bubbles form, you’ve got a gas leak.

You can find more info on performing a gas leak test in our troubleshooting guide: How to Test Your Grill for a Gas Leak and Enjoy Safe Outdoor Grilling

In some cases, if the leak is on a gas hose, you can replace it. But if the leak is within a non-replaceable part of the grill itself, it’s time for a replacement.

There Is a Buildup of Heavy Grease and Gunk

Regular cleanings are important to keeping your grill working great and avoiding the fire hazard that comes with a build-up of grease and grime.

Your first step should be to thoroughly clean your grill, including taking removable parts out and letting them soak in soapy water to help dislodge some of the gunk.

Here is a helpful guide for cleaning and restoring your gas grill: How to Clean a Gas Grill – Tips to Revitalize Your BBQ

But if that doesn’t work, and your grill simply has too much grease and grime baked into it, it’s a smart move to start over with a new one (and be sure to keep up with cleaning!).

The Grill Has Structural Stability Issues

Over time, intense heat and outdoor elements can cause compromised grill stability due to wear and damage on your grill’s structure and increase the risk of the grill tipping over.

A gas grill with stability issues is not one you should keep using. If you see any cracks or fractures in your grill’s body, frame, or supports,  it’s time to go shopping for a replacement.

You Want New Features and Abilities

New models will likely offer improved fuel efficiency and will be made with better materials and a stronger build that will increase durability and longevity.

Sometimes, the only issue with your grill is that it doesn’t have the newest bells and whistles.

If your current grill doesn’t offer the latest enhanced features you’d like to use, such as infrared cooking, rotisserie attachments, side burners, LED lights, or a smoker box, it may be time for an upgrade.

If you’re encountering limitations with your current grill’s size, features, or performance, a new model may better suit your needs.

When to Repair Your Gas Grill vs Buy a New One

Many grill repairs are relatively easy and affordable to do on your own, making it totally worth it to put in a little elbow grease when needed instead of waiting for issues to build up.

But even with the best maintenance and regular repairs, there will come a day when your grill simply isn’t working anymore.

To determine if this is the case with your grill, compare the cost, effort, and time of the repairs you’d need to make against buying a new grill. If the replacement parts are too expensive or complicated to install, or your grill’s warranty no longer covers them, it’s likely time to buy a new grill.

Deciding between repairing your gas grill or purchasing a new one involves weighing several factors. Here’s how to determine a repair is your best course of action:

Opt for Repair When:

  • The grill requires minor fixes, such as replacing burners or ignition systems, which are cost-effective compared to buying a new grill.
  • It’s relatively new or has many years of potential use left with proper maintenance.
  • The issues are straightforward and don’t affect the grill’s overall performance or safety.
  • The cost of repairs is less than half the price of a new grill. (The price point is subjective).

In the long run, fixing your grill can extend its lifespan if repairs are minor and economically sensible. However, if the grill is consistently problematic or no longer meets your needs, investing in a new one might be the more practical choice.

How Long Do Gas Grills Last

The lifespan of a gas grill can vary widely depending on its build quality, materials, and how well it’s maintained. On average, a gas grill can last between 5 to 15 years.

Higher-end models constructed with premium materials and maintained diligently can last longer, while lower-quality grills might need replacement sooner.

Regular cleaning, proper storage, and timely repairs of worn-out parts can significantly extend a grill’s useful life.

How to Find the Right Replacement Parts for Gas Grills

Buying a new gas grill is a big investment, so we advocate repairing your grill with replacement parts whenever possible.

If you need to replace a broken part of your grill, like the grates, burners, or ignition, your first stop should be your grill’s owner manual or manufacturer’s website. Grill parts are manufactured according to the grill brand and model number, so it should be easy to identify which parts you need and buy them online.

If you know the dimensions of the part you need to replace, you can also head online to find low-cost parts that can fit a variety of grill models.

Follow these tips for locating the correct replacement parts:

  • Identify Your Grill Model:Check your grill’s manual or the manufacturer’s website using the model number, usually found on a sticker or plate on the grill.
  • Understand the Part Needed:Be clear about which part requires replacement—whether it’s burners, grates, igniters, or something else. Knowing the specific part will streamline your search.
  • Consult the Manufacturer:Many manufacturers sell replacement parts directly or recommend authorized retailers. This will help with compatibility and quality.
  • Check Specialty Grill Stores:Some stores specialize in grill parts and accessories. Their staff might offer valuable advice and alternatives if original parts are unavailable.
  • Online Marketplaces:Websites like Amazon, eBay, or specific grill parts sites can be excellent resources, offering a wide range of options. Make sure the part matches your grill model.
  • Consider Universal Parts:For common items like grill grates or burners, universal parts might fit your grill. Verify measurements and specifications so you get a good fit.
  • Warranty and Returns: Check if the part is covered under warranty and understand the return policy in case of compatibility issues.

Tips for Buying a New Gas Grill

If it is time to buy a new grill, there are a few things to keep in mind to make sure you’re making the best investment for your needs.

First, consider your budget. There is a wide range of grills out there, from budget options to high-end models — have a list of features you’d like to have and a budget you can stick to help guide your shopping process.

Maybe you want a grill equipped with LED lights for nighttime grilling or a warming rack so you can cook up huge meals without food getting cold. Consider your personal preferences and style when creating your list of features.

Armed with those features and budget, start shopping around. Visit your local hardware store, browse online sites, and take a look at types of grills you may not have considered before.

If you grill a lot, consider a commercial model for durability. If you like cooking while camping or tailgating, look at portable models you can take with you.

Another factor to consider when shopping for grills is their BTUs or British Thermal Units. This signifies how much heat energy a grill can produce in an hour and how fast you can cook your food. If you commonly grill for a huge crowd, a grill with higher BTUs will help get the job done quicker.

Still not sure how BTUs can affect a gas grill’s performance? We break it all down in simple-to-understand terms in our guide: What is a Good BTU When Choosing a Gas Grill?

Brand Name and Warranty

Once you’re familiarized with what’s out there, look for a brand that has a good reputation, a solid warranty, and great online reviews of its customer service and replacement parts. If you’re used to one brand of grill, do a bit of research to see what else is out there and compare your grill brand’s warranty and reviews to those of others you find.

On the topic of warranties, be sure to review these thoroughly before buying a grill. A good warranty will help you replace malfunctioning parts for years or even for the lifetime of your grill, so a robust warranty is worth the investment.

For more tips and tricks for buying a great grill, check out our gas grill buyers guide!

Repairing or Replacing a Gas Grill FAQs

Understanding when to repair or replace your gas grill can be tricky. If you still have questions, check out these FAQs for some additional insights.

How Often Should You Replace Your Gas Grill?

On average, gas grills last between 5 to 10 years. Regular cleaning and maintenance can extend this lifespan. Consider replacing when repairs become frequent or when newer models offer significant improvements in efficiency and features.

Should You Repair or Replace a Smaller, Cheaper Gas Grill?

You should replace a smaller, cheaper gas grill as it often makes financial sense to replace rather than repair, especially if repair costs exceed half the price of a new grill. However, minor, inexpensive fixes could justify repairs.

Should You Repair or Replace a More Expensive Grill?

You should try to repair more expensive grills when you can since the price of replacement parts likely will not come close to the investment you made in the grill itself. Given their initial cost, are usually worth repairing if the issue is fixable.

Is It Safe to Use an Old Gas Grill?

Using an old gas grill is safe if it’s well-maintained and regularly inspected for gas leaks, rust, or burner obstructions. If your gas grill is older than ten years old, it may be missing crucial safety features newer grills have — you should consider upgrading to a new grill.

Is It Worth It To Fix an Old Grill?

Fixing an old grill is worth it if repairs are economical—typically less than half the cost of a new one—and if the grill remains safe and reliable post-repair. Evaluate the potential for improved performance and safety.

When to Repair or Replace a Gas Grill: Final Thoughts

Deciding whether to repair or replace a gas grill depends on various factors, including the extent of the damage, the cost of repairs, the age of the grill, and your personal preferences.

If you’re on the fence about whether you should repair or replace your grill, give it a thorough assessment and weigh the costs of the repairs or replacement parts against what you originally paid for the grill and how much a new grill would cost.

While repairing is a cost-effective and viable option for minor issues or newer grills, older models with significant damage or nearing the end of their lifespan should be replaced.

Ultimately, your decision should come down to prioritizing the safety, functionality, and long-term value of your grill investment.

With those things in mind, you’ll be able to make a decision that is the best for not just your wallet but your entire outdoor cooking experience.

Cheers,

Emily

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DisclosureAt The Grilling Life, I am committed to researching and writing thoughtful, informative and editorially independent reviews of the best products for your outdoor cooking needs.  If you like what I do, you can support me through my chosen links, which earn me a commission.  This allows me to continue sharing with you my love for all things barbecue.  Your support is truly appreciated.

Emily Lord

I’m a Wisconsin-based freelance writer and home cook who loves hosting parties and expressing my love for my family and friends through homemade meals and baked goods.

I blame Iron Chef and Chopped for my competitiveness in the kitchen.

In my free time, I occasionally run marathons as an excuse to eat more good food.