Weber One-Touch Silver Grill Review

Weber One-Touch Silver Grill Review

Overview
The Weber One-Touch Silver (22″ edition, Model No. 741001) is a decent value but our experience with the poor build quality and lack of customer support makes it clear that Weber is not the same company that it once was. This is a solid grill but a mediocre buy.

Setup
The Weber One-Touch Silver was a breeze to setup. I’ve set two of these up now and the second was in an emergency situation – the charcoal trap on my roommate’s cheap grill had rusted to the point where the bottom actually fell out of it.

Basically setting up the Weber One-Touch Silver boiled down to snapping a few parts into place, flipping it over, and putting the lid on. All in, setup was roughly 20 minutes from unpacking to cleanup. The instructions were clear and easy to follow.

This is where I ran into my first problem with the Weber. There is a bucket in the coal trap that detaches to allow for easy emptying. There is a set of rivets holding a heat shield onto the trap, and two of the rivets had failed, causing the heat shield to hang down as pictured. This didn’t affect the functionality of the grill so I shot off an e-mail to Weber so that they could send me a replacement part and more or less forgot about it.

Until recently, I knew Weber as a company that would always go above and beyond to stand by its product. At the time of this article, Weber has not responded to e-mails, letters, or calls regarding the broken part. While I could have simply brought the grill back to Lowe’s for an exchange or a refund, it was absolutely my expectation that Weber would be on top of the replacement.s

First Impressions
The materials for this grill are of the quality I expect from Weber. The gauge of the steel is appropriate for most home grilling applications. The steel grates are thick enough that I don’t expect to see them bend in any situation. The grill has blades that allow you to clear the ash from the bottom of the grill without significant effort. This is a nice feature in theory but it’s not a very efficient system to be honest. The handles are made of a quality plastic and designed like heat sinks to disperse the heat of the charcoal.

As I noted, we’ve set up two of these grills and the second disappointment I have with this model is its lack of stability. While it is more than stable enough to grill on safely, there is a lot of play side to side that I just don’t expect in any grill. I’ve had the privilege¬† of using custom grills that cost many thousands of dollars and I have certainly spent more than enough nights grilling on setups on the other end of the spectrum, and I’ve never used a grill that had as much horizontal play and wobble as this Weber.

It came together quickly, but this charcoal grill wasn't all I wanted it to be.

It came together quickly, but this charcoal grill wasn't all I wanted it to be.

First Use
I typically use a grill that has much less volume than the Weber One-Touch Silver so I had be sure to use the appropriate amount of charcoal. The menu was comprised of grilled chicken and sausage and the Weber performed exactly as expected. I really was pleased with the quality of the grates and appreciated the easy access to charcoal. The bottom vent is a great design and allowed me to fine tune the internal temperature – which was well-held – without any hassle.

This grill suffers from two design flaws that drove me completely insane. To be fair, I’m only dinging Weber here because I expect more from them.

  1. The lid handle needs a heat shield or to be spaced further from the lid. I’m not an industrial designer. I’m not an engineer. I am just a dude that hates grabbing things that are incredibly hot.
  2. The lid vent needs a more elegant design. Adjusting this mid-grilling is a recipe for a burned finger. The tab with which you must manipulate the vent is surprisingly small, inviting more burn opportunity.

Overall the first use was a success – the quality materials of the Weber outweighed the lack of build quality.

Summary
The quality materials that Weber uses do not make up for the shoddy manufacturing, but they do make it a little easier to deal with. The sub-$100 grill market is filled with alternates and from what I’ve seen, this space is Weber’s to lose. If you’re wanting to do better – look for a grill with similar stats that has a sturdier feel to it. This isn’t a bad purchase, but it didn’t leave me feeling like I had done nearly as well as I could have.