Char-Broil’s Performance line of gas grills are the company’s entry-level offerings and range in size from 2 to 6 burners.
The Char-Broil Classic 280 2-Burner offers a wide variety of features at a very good price.
Key Features of the Char-Broil Classic 280 2-Burner
The 280’s 2 burners produce 20,000 BTUs of heat.
280 square inches of primary cooking space results in enough cooking space for approximately 12 burgers.
The porcelain-coated grates are easy to clean. Additionally, the porcelain coating makes the grates more rust resistant.
The grill is lit by a piezo ignition system. This system uses friction to create a spark when the button is pressed.
The 12 x 13.5-inch side shelves provide extra space to prep and keep items handy. Additionally, a model is offered with an 8,000 BTU side burner.
The warranty is part specific and ranges from 1 to 5 years.
- Good value for the price
- Porcelain coated grates are easy to clean
- Firebox and lid are made of steel which is less resistant to rust than stainless steel
- There is no shelf to mount the propane tank; moving the grill requires picking up the tank separately
Char-Broil Classic 280 2-Burner Detailed Review
Design and Build Quality
The burners of the 280 are stainless steel and the grill uses a convective cooking system resulting in even heat and reduced flare-ups. The grates are thinner than the cast-iron ones found in more expensive grills. Cast-iron grates are generally better at retaining heat and creating grill marks on the meat.
The main grill surface has 2 burners producing 20,000 BTUs of heat. The side burner produces 8,000 BTUs and is useful for cooking side dishes and sauces.
Char-Broil’s warranty covers the burners for 5 years but only covers the firebox and lid for 2 years. All other parts are only covered for 1 year. Therefore, buyers should align their durability expectations accordingly.
The Char-Broil Classic 280 doesn’t come with a built-in thermometer, so we recommend picking up a good digital thermometer.
Ease of Assembly
Assembly of the 280 can be tedious and takes awhile.
None of the components come pre-assembled, so the 280 comes with many parts. In particular, people have found the lock nuts difficult to tighten, so having a socket wrench is helpful.
Ease of Use
The Classic 280 uses a piezo electronic ignition system.
The system works by using friction to create a single spark every time the button is pressed. The piezo system might not be as reliable electronic igniters found in more expensive grills. However, they are generally reliable and can be easily replaced should they fail.
The grill comes mounted on 2 wheels and 2 legs, making it easy to move around. The 280 does not have a shelf to mount the propane tank, so the tank has to be moved separately should you wish to move the grill.
The Classic 280 weighs 43 pounds.
Quality of the Cook
The grill grates of the Classic 280 2-Burner are steel rather than cast-iron and thus don’t distribute heat as evenly. Therefore, the grill is more prone to having varying temperatures across the surface.
While not the end of the world, it does result in having to shuffle the food around the grill as you cook.
Ease of Cleanup
The grill grates of the Classic 280 2-Burner are porcelain-coated, thus they are easier to wipe down after use.
The 280 does not have a removable grease trey/grease system. However, there is plenty of room around the burners, so cleaning up is not difficult.
The Char-Broil Classic 280 2-Burner is a simple grill for a reasonable price. If you’re looking for a bare-bones grill for a decent price, the 280 might be right for you.
How Does It Compare?
Char-Broil Performance TRU-Infrared 3 Burner
For those looking for a slightly larger grill that offers more features but is still affordable, we recommend taking a look at the Char-Broil Performance TRU-Infrared 3 Burner.
Check out our review here.