Tips For Buying A BBQ In Mexico

by | Oct 2, 2019

Most people enjoy a perfect steak, fresh veggies, or set of ribs cooked on a grill. Therefore, it should come as no surprise that a lot of homes in Mexico have a barbecue or grill. The key to getting good value is buying one that will both fit your needs and last in our climate.

Unfortunately, we are seeing too many cheap and poorly made barbecues flooding the market in Mexico right now. Buy one of these, and you are most likely to end up replacing it after one season. The salt from the ocean air and the humidity of our summers can cause rust and corrosion. This could also result in the barbecue being a health and safety hazard for you, your family, or your guests/renters.

When buying a barbecue or grill for your home in Mexico, here are some tips to get you the best value for your pesos.

The first thing to consider is whether you want the traditional charcoal type or gas. If budget is a major factor, opt for a charcoal barbecue since they cost less than gas. Charcoal barbecues give your food a smoky flavor that you won’t get with a gas grill. The downside is that they take longer to get started, and you need to always keep a bag of charcoal bricks on hand.

Gas grills are available with either a propane tank or hose to connect to a gas line. Gas grills that are hooked up to a permanent gas line means you never have to worry about buying charcoal bricks or being out of propane halfway through cooking dinner. Make sure to confirm your building or development has a gas line option in place before you purchase this type. Gas grills offer the convenience to get grilling immediately instead of waiting for the charcoal bricks to heat up. They also provide a more consistent temperature and so are better than charcoal for grilling.

Although not as popular, electric grills are also available here. These are portable and flameless and a good option if you do not have a balcony or terrace.

When checking out barbecues, compare the number of BTUs each model offers. BTU stands for British Thermal Unit, and it is the measurement that tells you the maximum amount of heat that all burners will generate in one hour. The average homeowner will do well to get a barbecue with a BTU of about 100 per square inch of grilling space. Keep in mind that the higher the BTU of the grill, the more energy it requires. That means you will pay more for gas or electricity.

When purchasing a barbecue or grill for your home in Mexico, it is essential to find that lasts and fits your needs. Here are some more tips to get you the best value for your pesos.

When selecting the size of a barbecue, make sure that the grilling space will fit the type and quantity of food you usually prepare. Allow enough space for searing, slower cooking, finishing, and toasting. For reference, an average size grill is between 400 and 600 square inches and will enable you to cook for about eight people.

It is also critical to measure the space where it is going to be situated. Today’s plethora of options include side tables, and warming trays which you may find will not fit in your space after assembly. Before you buy any appliance or piece of furniture, always measure space allowance.

When it comes to construction, look for a barbecue made from stainless steel. These types of gas barbecues last the longest. Avoid anything made from aluminum or sheet metal. Those types tend to rust and will likely break down in just one season in our climate. How to know for sure what material was used to make the barbecue? Don’t necessarily trust the advertising on the box. If it shines, it probably isn’t stainless. Use a magnet to test. If the magnet sticks, the stainless steel is perhaps just a coating. Stainless steel is the most durable and low-maintenance material for barbecues.

Also, check what material was used to make the grates. Cast iron grates capture, retain and distribute heat better than other materials. Porcelain coating, although great for keeping food from sticking, can chip easily and rust. If you go for cast iron grates, remember they need regular oiling.

Once assembled, your barbecue needs to be sturdy. A great way to confirm you are buying a good quality barbecue is to give the demo model a “shake” test. If it wobbles or rattles, it’s probably not the one you should take home.

Regular maintenance is vital to ensure your barbecue lasts for a long time. Cover the grill when not using it and always clean the grates before and after each use. Remove any black build-up because that is what is carcinogenic. It also corrodes the grill. As a rule of thumb, remove and thoroughly clean the grates at the beginning and end of every season.

For a well-made gas barbecue in Mexico that ticks all the boxes, expect to invest about MXN 12,000.00 or more. In this price range, the brand and model I recommend is the Weber Q3200. Its a great intermediate model with fantastic performance and reliability. If you are in the Bay of Banderas area, you can order one from El Tio Sam who will deliver it at no extra charge. For a nominal fee, they will even assemble it and fill/deliver the tank of propane.

As always, check out the warranty on any item you purchase. Warranties can be for different periods depending on the part. Some models have up to 10- or 20-year warranties which will speak to the quality and value of your barbecue investment.

Are you looking for a barbecue for your home in Mexico? Contact me for more information at

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