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3 barbecues to avoid buying

Set yourself up for a summer of brilliant barbecues by avoiding these duds.

Barbeques to avoid sad face
Last updated: 08 December 2021

Need to know

  • Our experts test a range of BBQs to suit all needs and budgets in our kitchen labs, and have flagged three models you shouldn’t buy
  • When it comes to barbecues, you generally get what you pay for – so check our reviews before you buy
  • Taking good care of your barbecue will also help it last longer

If alfresco cooking is on your menu this summer, you'll need a great barbecue that won't let you down.

Whether you're looking for a mammoth four-burner beast to feed a crowd at your weekend parties, or a small, lightweight barbecue for easy weeknight grills, our expert testers have put a batch of the latest brands through their paces to help you buy the best.

Not all BBQs are created equal

Unsurprisingly, there are models that impress more than others. 

Our expert barbecue tester, Fiona Mair says: "Barbecues are one of those appliances that I find that you generally get what you pay for. 

"There are a range of different features that can contribute to a hefty price tag, and you may find that a bargain barbecue won't last as long as a pricier model. Look for a barbecue with a solid construction that uses quality materials, as they'll be out in the elements a lot."

Look for a barbecue with a solid construction that uses quality materials, as they'll be out in the elements a lot

CHOICE barbecue tester Fiona Mair

Whichever model you buy, how you look after it will play a part in how long it lasts you.

"Make sure your barbecue lasts as long as possible by looking after it properly, including cleaning it after every use and keeping it covered when not in use," says Fiona. See more on how to clean your barbecue.

Here are few barbecues that failed to impress our experts in areas such as cooking performance, ease of use, safety and general features. See more on how we test barbecues


George Foreman Easy To Clean Indoor/Outdoor BBQ Grill – GGR300AU

  • Price: $150
  • CHOICE Expert Rating: 42%
  • Cooking performance score: 39%
  • Ease of use score: 47%

Oh George, perhaps you should have stuck to boxing. Despite proclaiming in the product's very title that this model is easy to clean, our testers didn't agree, giving it a score of just 60% for ease of cleaning. It also performed poorly overall. The only good point our testers noted is that it's "easy to assemble". 

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Jumbuck 4 Burner Hooded Stardom BBQ with side burner

  • Price: $349
  • CHOICE Expert Rating: 60%
  • Cooking performance score: 69%
  • Ease of use score: 47%
good and bad points of jumbuck bbq mobile

This model is very cheap for a four-burner barbecue, and it shows in our test results. 

It performed "only OK" overall and had many issues with being difficult to use and clean. Our testers also identified some key safety issues such as handles, hood and side tables that become dangerously hot, and the tendency for flare-ups, which are difficult to control. 

Our detailed reviews spell out the good points and bad points for each barbecue we test. For this Jumbuck model, you can see the bad clearly outweighs the good!

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Sunbeam Kettle King HG6600B

  • Price: $249
  • CHOICE Expert Rating: 64%
  • Cooking performance score: 70%
  • Ease of use score: 54%

This electric barbecue scored "only OK" for cooking steak, which we think equates to a barbecue crime. 

Our testers noted that it's more like an electric frypan rather than a barbecue, and you'll obviously need to have access to a power outlet, which isn't always convenient for cooking outdoors or on a balcony. 

Pros were that it's easy to assemble and clean, and comes with comprehensive instructions. 

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We care about accuracy. See something that's not quite right in this article? Let us know or read more about fact-checking at CHOICE.