Liquid Propane VS Natural Gas Grills: The Similarities, The Differences & Myths Dispelled

8 minute read | Grills

Everybody loves summertime for the warm weather, sunshine, fun holidays, and especially for the barbecue. There are dozens of ways to cook your BBQ favorites, but the best way is with a liquid propane or natural gas grill from AEI. These high-quality commercial bbq grills are designed and built using tried and true engineering that has made this type of cooking an American standard. But in addition to traditional design methodologies, every grill the AEI corporation carries is modular and easy to maintain with top-quality grill replacement parts available to help you keep your grill running strong for many years.

Our gas bbq grills are made to be powerful, functional, and sharp-looking. But most importantly, they are built to last with safety features you won't find anywhere else. The one question we get most is which type of grill is best, a liquid propane grill or a natural gas grill. Both fuel types are powerful, efficient, affordable, and lend themselves to useful features. But the fuel type that's best for you will depend on the peculiarities of your use case. So, let's take a look at the differences and similarities between natural gas and propane.

Liquid Propane VS Natural Gas Grill

The major difference between natural gas (NG) and liquid propane (LP) is the way the fuel is delivered. NG must be piped in through a line that your local utility company might be able to install if you don't have one already. LP comes in tanks that you can pick up at a local retailer or other LP providers. From these two differences come differences in portability, storage, and mounting. It also affects the way you clean and maintain your grill.

Possibly the most important difference between NG and LP is that NG may not be available in some parts of the country. So, before you choose an NG grill, make sure you have access to natural gas in your area.

But before we get into the remaining differences, let's dispel a few myths about natural gas and liquid propane as fuel for bbq grills.

Myths About NG & LP Gas BBQ Grill Fuel Types

Many people believe one fuel type is significantly cheaper than the other. Prices will vary slightly based on your location, but LP and NG come in at very similar price points.

Another myth is that one fuel type is far more efficient than the other. In reality, any difference in efficiency is negligible.

Some people claim that one fuel type is difficult to use and the other is easy. Opinions on this vary, but they are only opinions. Either fuel type can be used easily and safely.

Finally, there is the persistent myth that one fuel type or the other leaves a gas flavor in the meat. Once again, opinions vary. But objective taste tests have shown that neither fuel type leaves any discernible gas-like flavor behind. 

Now, let's get on to what really distinguishes these two types of grills.

Natural Gas BBQ Grill Features

NG grills are hooked up to a natural gas line piped in by your local utility company. If natural gas is unavailable in your area, you will need to go with a propane version. Because your natural gas valve is or will be stationary, your NG grill will need to be in a fixed position. Our recommendation is to take advantage of this by building the grill into a permanent position on your deck. This makes it straightforward to design and install your own outdoor grilling area with space for storing other tools and supplies so that you have everything within reach.

It is possible to put an NG grill on a portable mount, but you will be restrained by the natural gas line which must be attached. Some people prefer this for a small amount of mobility, but for safety and convenience reasons, we usually recommend a fixed and stationary mount for NG grills.

Your NG grill can be built into a dedicated grilling countertop, an outdoor grill island, or mounted to a space-saving grill pedestal. No matter which mounting option you choose, you'll be able to incorporate it into your patio set up for the optimal use of space. With a setup like this, you should utilize a grill cover from AEI. Simply place the weather-resistant cover over the top of it, and call it a day.

Liquid Propane BBQ Grill Features

BBQ grills that are powered by liquid propane have the advantage of nearly unlimited portability. These grills can be installed in a permanent position, but you will have fewer options for shelves and gear storage since the tank must be attached to the grill. The great advantage of LP grills is they can be mounted to a grill cart with wheels. This allows you to move the grill easily. A portable propane grill is a great option if you have a lot of activity around your home and expect to have to use your grill in different areas.

Propane grills are a good choice for year-round grilling since you can move them out into the yard when the weather is nice, and move them into a more sheltered area in inclement conditions. 

Attractive Features NG and LP Grills Have in Common

Both types of commercial bbq come with laser-etched instructions on the front of the control panel. This means that if you have never used such a device before, you can simply look at the instructions and get started. These laser-etched instructions will never fade. So if you put your grill away for the winter and break it out again next year, the handy instructions will still be there for you to read.

Finally, both grill types can come with the highly sought-after gas cut-off timer and theft-resistant knobs. This means, even if someone accidentally leaves the grill running, it will automatically shut off. This is an excellent safety feature for public areas such as in apartment complexes. The theft-resistant knobs mean vandals and thieves will have their work cut out for them if they attempt to deface or remove these external parts.

Best of all, AEI makes high-quality grill replacement parts available for order. These OEM parts are designed to be easy to install and uninstall, giving you the ability to maintain your own gas bbq, keep it running strong for many years, and be a true master of the grill.

Want more information? Have a question? Contact us today, and we will be happy to help!

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