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Genesis II E410 - Cleaning Question, and overall review at 13 months of ownership

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    Genesis II E410 - Cleaning Question, and overall review at 13 months of ownership

    Question

    First, let's start with my cleaning question.

    This is a topic that really NEVER came up in 18 years of use with my Genesis Silver A 2 burner grill, as it was black. Unfortunately, the Genesis II E-410 4 burner grill I got last year is in a light "smoke" color, and I am getting discoloration along the outside back of the lid, where all the smoke escapes, and along the right front edge of the lid, again on the outside, where I think the Grillgrates may have at one point caused it to be propped slightly open, to where a lot of grease and smoke escaped in that area. Basically, it looks like the brown "gunk" that likes to get baked onto pans in the kitchen sometimes. I am certain this is just baked on grease from the grease fog that exists on a smokey grill - and a good advertisement against buying a lighter colored grill!

    Do any of you think that I could use something like Barkeeper's friend to clean the porcelain enable surface of the hood of the grill, to remove this brownish gunk build up? I am thinking that might do the trick. I know various spray cleaners, including citrus based stuff I got from the Grillgrates folks a while back, doesn't make a dent in this stuff. I am also thinking it might help on the sides of the firebox, where grease and grime has run down and baked onto the sides, next to each side table. Again - less of an issue on a black grill with a black firebox.

    Ok, now to the review.

    REVIEW

    I purchased this grill on clearance for $399 in January 2019, as they were clearing out all the 2018 models of the Genesis II, and I had watched the price drop from $899 -> $699 -> 599 and finally $399. I almost got the E-610 6 burner for $100 more, but decided it was just TOO big. I immediately ordered a full replacement set of Grillgrates, so most cooking has been using the Grillgrates, although I keep the cast iron grates handily stored on the cart shelf, for use when I want them - like for cooking with a cast iron skillet.

    Searing Performance

    I was hesitant to buy this grill at first, based on the less than stellar searing performance that Max Good gave it in his review of the 3 burner Genesis II, but decided to take the gamble, and am glad that I did. I find that with the Grillgrates, I can have the grate temperature at 700 degrees after a 15 minute preheat, and for me - that is plenty hot enough for searing about anything. I cooked the first few meals using the stock porcelain cast iron grates, and had no issues with those, but believe that the Grillgrates, especially the flat side, increased the searing performance of the grill over the stock grates.

    Grill Size
    I find that this 4 burner grill is about the perfect size for cooking full meals. I can grill veggies at one end, and flip burgers or steaks at the other end, and often find myself with 3-4 different dishes cooking at once (steaks, corn, artichokes, potatoes), on different portions of the grate and even the warming rack. I've learned to stagger the times I add things to the grill, so that something that needs more time such as a hasselback potato, gets done at the same time as the other dishes. All in all, it was a great change from the 2 burner Genesis Silver A that I had been using. With the 2 burner Genesis, I had to cook in multiple batches, or fire up both the gas grill and my Performer 22" kettle to get dinner done. With the 4 burner Genesis II, its about double the space of the smaller grill, and you can just get it done!

    Fuel Use
    This grill does tend to burn through the propane a little faster than my old grill, but then, it has twice the number of burners and a lot more BTU's. I often preheat with all 4 burners, then turn off two and just cook at one end if only cooking for the wife and I. That works out just fine too, as long as I put a gap in the center of the Grillgrate panels to break thermal conductivity. I would say based on 13 months of use, that propane usage is average with other grills I have owned, which makes sense. BTU's are BTU's after all!

    Cleanup
    The grease management system of the Genesis II does a good job of funneling most of the grease into the catch pan, which I line with one of the Weber foil pans, to make for easy disposal. During high usage months such as the summer, I tend to break the grill down once a month, and hit the flavorizer bars and inside of the firebox with a paint scraper, as well as the slide out aluminum tray that funnels grease into the catch pan. I hit it with some dish soap, wipe it all down with a brush, hose it all off, then reassemble, light, and run it on high to dry things out before covering it back up. This is all as easy as it was with the old Genesis, and really no different. Certainly a better design than other brand gas grills I have used at other folks houses - I am talking stuff like Charbroil, etc.

    Construction and Assembly
    The lid of the newer Weber grills, including the Genesis II and Spirit II, appear to use a double walled construction for the lid. The older Genesis like my 2002 model used a much thicker gauge of metal for the lid, with a single layer. The older grill feels like significantly more solid metal in all areas of construction.

    Assembly of the old 2002 Genesis was during a time that Weber implemented what they called "Stop watch engineering". Assembly of any of their gas grills at that point in time took literally 10 minutes. You literally just put a couple of screws into a mostly assembled frame, and dropped the firebox onto it, and it was all done in 10 minutes or less. The firebox and guts of the grill were pretty much already pre-assembled at that point in time. I've assembled a Spirit E-330, a Spirit II E-310 and a Genesis II E-410 in the last 2 years. All of them had like 200 parts and took about 2 hours to put together, and were an overall nightmare of assembly. Not rocket science, but not fun either.

    I have to say that I don't like where Weber has gone with assembly and I feel the quality of the metal has gone down as well.

    Negatives
    There are two things I have found that I don't like with the Genesis II series. The rotisserie, and an annoying greasy messy flaw that I will get into.

    First, the rotisserie. I've seen photos of the rotisserie on most other brands of grill, and on the Summit, and even the older Genesis grills. The lower profile they have given to the lid of the Genesis II to make it more streamlined looking has decreased the overall height of the sides of the grill body and the lid. The rotisserie attaches so low that you MUST remove the grates to spin even a 5 pound chicken. And even with the grates removed, a 5 pound bird comes super close to the flavorizer bars over the burners, and in fact, unless you truss the chicken, the legs and wings WILL slap the flavorizer bars on every rotation. I tried to use a drip pan on the flavorizer bars with some veggies under a chicken, and there is no clearance unless you push all the veggies up to the edges of the pan, as the chicken pretty spins almost against the pan. You almost need to remove the flavorizer bars too, and set a drip pan across the two center burners, meaning you then cannot turn those burners on during the cook. Overall, the rotisserie is a big fail in my opinion, and I wish I had not bought it. I used it once, and found the issues so annoying that I have not tried again, and I got it last May. You will never fit a turkey on it, so its mostly good for a couple of chickens or maybe a pork loin.

    Second, the design of the new double walled lid of the Genesis II, and Sprit II that my son has, for some reason leads to grease condensation on the interior of the lid, and the condensate naturally runs down to the perimeter edges of the interior of the lid. The condensate tends to drip off the left and right sides of the lid, and either makes big greasy mess on the two stainless steel side tables, OR manages to fall through the gap between the side tables and the body, and end up making a black greasy line on my patio concrete out by the pool. Sometimes it drips off the front edge onto the stainless steel around the control knobs. Now that I am aware of the issue, I tend to keep a roll of paper towels with me when grilling, and I open the lid and wipe the bottom of the edge all the way around, after the pre-heat and at the end of the cook. I never ever ever saw this issue on the Genesis Silver A with its single walled lid, but have seen it on both my Genesis II and my son's Spirit II cookers. Major fail on Weber here. Maybe folks who don't cook as me won't see this issue as much, but it is really bad when I am flipping a lot of smash burgers for a party, where there is a LOT of greasy vapor to condense. I would say it was potentially due to the Grillgrates, but I saw evidence of this on my son's Spirit II E-310, and he doesn't have Grillgrates (yet).

    Conclusion
    Overall, I like the grill a lot, and do not regret the purchase. I do not recommend anyone purchase the rotisserie for the Genesis II though, leaving the main annoyance the greasy drips onto the inside edges of the side tables. Time will tell if this lasts as long as the 18 years of faithful service I've had from the previous Genesis, which I plan to pass off to my daughter when she gets married in May.
    Last edited by jfmorris; February 28, 2020, 01:01 PM.

    #2
    Great review. I'm still learning the gas system. It is a slow process but your advice whenever I have an issue is spot on. Thank you.

    Comment


      #3
      Excellent review. I have a small napoleon that i got on sale at walmart and its a really useful tool in the arsenal. Great for quick cooks after we get the kids from daycare and dont have the patience or time to fire up coals

      Comment


        #4
        jfmorris , nice review. To answer your question I would only say try it on a small area on the back. Also, contact Weber and ask them. Baked on grease may need time to dissolve with a cleaner. So something that is thick or foamy may work. Aerosol oven cleaner comes to mind.

        Comment


        • jfmorris
          jfmorris commented
          Editing a comment
          Unfortunately, I am 100% sure they will tell me to follow their FAQ on the subject, which tells you to spend $35 on their grill cleaning kit, which includes a spray bottle of "Exterior Grill Cleaner". I've tried the various cleaners I have around here, and they don't take it off, yet I can scrape it off with my fingernail. So maybe I just need a bucket of hot soapy water and some rags, and scrub harder... paper towels are not doing the trick.

        • ScottyC13
          ScottyC13 commented
          Editing a comment
          You could also try hot water to soften then a soft scrub to scrape it off. Heat souls help.

        #5
        Wow! I am impressed! I didn’t know so much could be written about a grill. Probably good that ya’ll don’t have me reviewin anything. Job well done jfmorris.

        Comment


          #6
          Barkeepers should work for cleaning, they make a spray and a paste cleanser. I'd start with soaking it down with the spray, let it soak for a while and go after it with a rag or maybe a white 3M scrubby pad. That usually works on my stainless skillets, but if things are really gunky the paste usually works.

          Comment

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