Best Pit Boss Gen 1 Pro Series Review
Pit Boss currently sells the widest range of vertical pellet smokers, and for many years Gen 1 Pro Series vertical smokers have been the most commonly available. Today there are Gen 2 Pro Series vertical pellet smokers with WiFi/SmokeIT integration and there is also a Platinum model the Brunswick. However, good reviews of those vertical smokers are a bit thin on the ground. Therefore, I thought I would include what I think is the best review of the Gen 1 Pro Series vertical smoker from Andrew, the Grill Sergeant.
The Grill Sergeants review of his one year old Gen 1 Pro Series vertical pellet smoker
The reasons I like Andrews review the best is that over the year of ownership he has clearly used the smoker quite a lot, and the review is also about how to clean/maintain the smoker. I wholeheartedly agree with Andrew as I discuss in my article on BBQ wood pellets, sifting pellets to removes small bits/fines is best practice and will help the unit run better and more efficiently.
Other than an initial auger blockage error which Andrew thinks may have been due to not initially sieving his pellets, he has found the smoker to be very reliable. When it comes to cooking areas, Pit Boss vertical pellet smokers for the money provide a lot of space. As I discuss in my article on the best vertical pellet smokers, if you already own a gas grill, a vertical pellet smoker may actually be a better choice over a horizontal pellet grill/smoker.
Pit Boss Vs Traeger: Which Pellet Grill Should You Buy
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So youve decided to invest in a wood pellet grill but still havent decided which brand to buy.
Traeger and Pit Boss make some of the most popular pellet grills on the market today.
If you ask around youll get plenty of opinions about which is better.
The problem is, people always end up defending the grill they bought and slamming the competition so its hard to get an objective opinion.
In this guide, we break down the differences between Traeger and Pit Boss and look at some of the top grills from each company to help you decide which pellet grill is right for you.
Not sold on Pit Boss or Traeger? Z Grills are a popular new brand that sell grills like the popular 700E which are a similar quality but at a lower price point. Check out our full Z Grills review.
Pit Boss Pellet Grill Reviews
This post may contain affiliate links.
when I started on my research for the Pit Boss pellet grill reviews I soon found out that they offer more pellet grills than I expected to find.
Not only sells Pit Boss on their own website but they have several lines of pellet grills that are only available at Lowes. Walmart and even the Tractor Supply Company.
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Pit Boss Sportsman 820 Wood Pellet Grill
The Sportsman 820 is one of the newest releases from Pit Boss and packs plenty of features at a budget-friendly price.
In our review, we pointed out the generous size for the price, with 829 square inches of cooking space split between a primary and a secondary grate.
Theres also the 21 lb hopper with a window to keep an eye on your pellet level, and an easy way to drain unused pellets at the end of a cook.
You can check out all the features and what we thought in more detail in our video review below.
The only real negatives with the Sportsman was the small searing zone, which is common with most slide and sear systems, and the rounded diverter plate, which we found affected our ability to collect drippings.
If you dont want the option to control your grill via an app, then the Sportsman is cheaper, holds more food and comes with better storage and prep areas than the Traeger.
Pit Boss Brand Overview
Pit Boss was founded in 1999 by the Thiessen family, and over time theyve earned a reputation for their products craftsmanship and durability.
As far as a product line goes, Id say that Pit Boss bread and butter is pellet grills but they offer a wider variety of grill types too.
You can find everything from kamado grills, flat top grills, to even specialty cookers like a vertical pellet smoker in the Pit Boss store. And on a per square inch of cooking space basis, they offer some of the most fair prices youll find too.
The one thing you can expect across all of their products is quality. No matter which type of grill Pit Boss creates, a solid track record of high quality products and great customer service follows them.
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Best Pit Boss Pellet Smoker Of 2021
Grilling is an essential part of summer. Everyone loves smoky flavored, tender meat cooked on a pellet smoker on weekends. When it comes to flawless grilling and smoking, no one can deny the significance of Pit Boss machines. Choosing the best Pit Boss pellet smoker, however, will require careful consideration of several factors.
Pit Boss stands out from the rest of its competitors. Everything from top-notch construction to dependable operational efficiency and versatility of options to reliable performance defines the companys smoker grills.
You have plenty of options to consider as the company offers a wide range of devices to meet the varying needs of customers. Large-sized pellet smokers are suitable for parties and bigger gatherings. On the other hand, you have multiple compact options to consider if you have a small family of up to 5 to 6 members.
Things To Consider Before You Make A Choice
Pit Boss is undoubtedly a major player in the market that is known for the durability and high-end construction of its device. Still, several details need to be emphasized before deciding on the Best Pit Boss smoker.
The following are the things that need attention before you select any Pit Boss pellet smoker:
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Pit Boss Vs Traeger Which Is The Best Pellet Grill
Price shouldnt always be the deciding factor when youre buying something new, but you do have to take it into account if youre weighing up one product over another. For example, if you were buying a $1,000 grill over a $500 grill and it had a range of technology that the cheaper option was lacking, does that automatically make it the better grill? I wouldnt say so.
However, when you consider that the two best grills Ive compared above have pretty much the same specifications, then price suddenly becomes more important why pay double the cost for something thats essentially the same?
Regardless, Pit Boss certainly seems to have the upper hand when it comes to more affordable wood pellet grills. Best pellet grill price winner: Pit Boss.
Pit Boss is ahead of Traeger in offering a much lengthier warranty, which is invaluable if youre buying something in the region of $500 $1,000. Best warranty winner: Pit Boss.
Once we get into technical specifications, there isnt a world of difference. Between the two models above, we see a difference in 2lbs of hopper capacity and a temperature that can reach 50 F higher both pluses for the Pit Boss model. However, if youre like me and you believe weight equals build quality the Traeger wins this one with 145 lbs vs Pit Boss 118 lbs. My winner here: Traeger.
WiFi & Smart Home
Pit Boss 700sc Wood Pellet Grill
Why youll love this:
This 700SC Wood Pellet Grill from Pit Boss is well worth the money.
Though it comes with the same 700 square inches of space, it also features a cabinet on the base that lets you store cooking equipment, extra ingredients and other supplies away from the heat. The cart also has a small bottle opener for added convenience.
A built-in flame broiler inside makes it easy to create burgers that taste like restaurant burgers. Caster wheels on the base glide smoothly but also come with locking mechanisms that keep the grill stable while you cook and use the wood pellet smoker.
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A To Z List Of Pellet Grill/smoker Brands
Back in 2007 when I first become aware of pellet grills and smokers the only brand I was really aware of was Traeger. Traeger is really where this whole concept of cooking with pellets started in the 1980s. It was a slow burner but since the 2010s is really when pellet grills and smokers started to get mainstream awareness, discussed alongside gas and charcoal grills. There are now over 30 pellet grill/smoker brands that Im aware of, and the link above goes to my A to Z list of brands article.
Now, you may already be aware of a few of the other brands such as Pit Boss, Camp Chef, Z Grills and Im sure you are aware of Weber, though you may not have known they have entered the pellet grill game. However, they are now many, many more brands to look into. Some may be what are commonly referred to as Traeger clones, but many others are offering their own unique designs and features.
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Best Pit Boss Table Top Review
One of the latest models in the Pit Boss range is their ultra-portable tabletop grill. Traeger has their own tabletop grill the Ranger, therefore this is a direct alternative from Pit Boss. Currently, this tabletop grill in Mahogany on the Pit Boss website is just $199 which is a pretty good deal compared to the Traeger which retails for at least $100 more, and the Pit Boss tabletop comes with a cover as well.
A notable difference between this Pit Boss table top pellet grill and the competition from Traeger is this table top has direct-flame access. Therefore, it will have the best searing performance of any table top pellet grill to date. To demonstrate that direct-flame ability Ive included the video below from the Grill Sergeant, Andrew Rog cooking some ribeye cap steaks and getting some very impressive results.
Flame cooked stakes on the very compact Pit Boss table top 150 PPS pellet grill/smoker
While the above video is not technically a review per say, it does a good job showing the capabilities of this small tabletop pellet grill. What I will note is that Andrew in his review states he was cooking the steaks on the grills maximum temperature setting of 500 degrees. However, in reality with the flame broiler open the surface temperature at the steaks would have been much higher. Pit Boss claim Open flame searing up to 1,000° F, but I think thats overly optimistic, though the surface temperature of the grill will likely be around 650-700 degrees.
Pit Boss Pb440d2 Wood Pellet Grill Vs Pit Boss Lexington 500 Wood Pellet Grill
If you are going to smoke and grill for longer durations, then the smaller hopper capacity of the Pit Boss PB440 Deluxe Wood Pellet Grill is going to be an inconvenience sooner or later.
The Pit Boss Lexington 500 Wood Pellet Grill, on the other hand, has a 540-square-inch cooking surface and a 15-pound hopper capacity for up to 17 hours of continuous smoking. It also comes with an internal meat probe to track doneness. Design-wise, you will be trading off the side shelf, which is handy for keeping things organized.
A good budget option.
If you are looking to get started on pellet grills, the Pit boss PB440D2 Mahogany Wood Pellet Grill is versatile and affordable for a beginner cook or small family. It eliminates the need to have a separate smoker and a grill.
- Product Name PB440 Deluxe Wood Pellet Grill
- Product Brand Pit Boss
- Product Dimensions 24.02 x 38.19 x 50 in.
- Color Mahogany
- Grilling Area 518 square inches
- Hopper Capacity 5 pounds
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Pit Boss Pro Series Vs Louisiana Grills Black Label Series
Pit Boss in particular but also Louisiana Grills offer a huge range of pellet grills/smokers. However, for Pit Boss their Pro Series and for Louisiana Grills their latest Black Label series are their most significant models in terms of customer demand, sitting in the middle of their respective product ranges. Therefore, for a comparison between these two brands the Gen 2 Pro Series and the Black Label Series are the most appropriate to compare.
The main models of the Pit Boss Gen 2 Pro Series are the 850 , the 1150 and the 1600 : Images PitBoss-Grills.com
For the Pit Boss Gen 2 Pro Series, the three most important models to know are the PRO SERIES II 850, the PRO SERIES II 1150 and the PRO SERIES ELITE 1600. There is a smaller PRO SERIES II 600, however as I discuss in my Pro Series Gen 1 vs Gen 2 article, I would personally ignore this model as its not fitted with the same PID/WiFi control panel as the other Pit Boss Gen 2 Pro Series models referenced above.
The Louisiana Grills Black Label Series includes the 800 , 1000 and the 1200 : Images Louisianagrills.com
- Louisiana Grills Black Label 1200: Main Cooking Grate = 758 sq.in
Temperature Control & Direct
Now both of these pellet grills are using basic time-based control panels, similar to the previous generation Traeger control panels. However, there is a difference between them in terms of their temperature range. The Z Grill 6002E has a temperature range of 180 450 degrees, whereas the Pit Boss 440D provides a range of 180 500 degrees. That additional 50 degrees would typically provide the Pit Boss with better grilling/searing performance over the Z Grill. However, in this instance, thats not the case as the Z Grill 6002E also actually provides direct-flame access which will likely get the cooking grate up to 650 degrees.
The 6002E is currently the only Z Grills model to feature direct-flame access: Image ZGrills.com
Now, most Pit Boss pellet grills also typically have direct-flame access, thats just not the case with the 440D. Oddly on the Z Grills side of things, the 6002E is their only pellet grill currently with direct-flame access. The larger Z Grills such as the 1000E discussed below dont come with direct flame access. Also, I should note, only a very small area in the centre of the cooking grate on the Z Grill actually benefits from direct-flame access. Hence, slap in a set of GrillGrates in the Pit Boss 440D and with its higher 500-degree temperature setting the grilling/searing performance between the two pellet grills is likely very comparable.
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Pit Boss 72820 Deluxe
The heavy, 16-gauge steel construct and copper-finished lid make this model one of the most luxurious pellet grills on our list. With 820 square inches of grilling space and a temperature range of 180 to 500 degrees, it could be an excellent fit for larger families. Theres even a built-in bottle opener, since we all know that grilling can be a social event as much as a cooking technique. The chimney has a cool L-shaped design, and the cart-style design features two wheels and an efficient grease bucket.
Like the 700FB and the Classic 700, the 72820 Deluxe features a flame broiler for searing and a dial-in digital control panel with an LED readout screen. This grill gives slow-cooked foods a delectable smoky flavor, and a built-in meat probe allows you to see when the ingredients have reached their desired temperature. While it isnt as effective at low temperatures as it is at grilling, it does get the job done eventually. Wed recommend this grill to anyone who needs a minimum of 800 square inches of grilling space, and who would appreciate the raft of cosmetic features that it offers.
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Pit Boss820 Deluxe Best Pellet Grill Review
Many people are the lookout for a pellet grill which can help them to cook their favorite foodstuffs in bulk. The griller we are speaking about now can assist you in doing exactly that. It can grill 42 burgers at a time.
As a result, when youre looking for pit boss pellet grill which allows you to prepare a significant quantity of food, it does not get any better than this. With the wheel-based design, it is easy for you to move it around wherever you go.
Additionally, there is also a shelf or a tray at the bottom which allows you to store condiments, utensils among other things. There is a side shelf as well which will enable you to prepare the ingredients quickly before putting them on the grilling surface.
Similar to most of the other pellet grills it also supports different cooking techniques. You can set the temperature precisely as per your requirement. The copper finish accentuates the visual appearance of the griller. The digital control board means that you can easily control the various functions including the cooking techniques which you use.
There is also a thermometer on top which can help you to monitor the temperature. The authentic wooden pellets impart a delicious smoky flavor to the food which you cook.
- Temperature control is not precise
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