Consumer Reports generally likes Brinkmann gas grills. Several models are on the magazine's recommended list. But the magazine's recent tests found a potential safety problem with a small Brinkmann model sold at The Home Depot, Albertson's and Hy-Vee stores.
The $130 Brinkmann 2-Burner Patio Gas Grill (model 810-6230-S) failed one of the magazine's routine safety tests, so the editors have labeled it a "don't buy safety risk."
The test involves dropping the lid to see if the flames continue to burn. If they go out and the gas is still on, it could build up inside the grill and reignite with serious consequences. The Patio Grill passed the test on the high-heat setting, but the flames on one of the two burners occasionally went out on low heat.
"You can't predict how that unburned gas might reignite," said Jim Nanni, associate director of appliances at Consumer Reports. "If that gas ignites unexpectedly, the flash could burn someone or cause some other sort of hazardous situation."
Consumer Reports says the safety risk is low and the magazine does not know of any reported injuries. Even so, no grill should have this flaw, Nanni told NBC News. And none of the other 136 grills tested did.
The editors shared their findings with Brinkmann. The company said the Patio Grill meets industry safety standards and does not pose a risk. Even so, the company told Consumer Reports it made design improvements to prevent any burner from going out and the change has been made at the factory for future production.
Consumer Reports advises anyone who owns this Brinkmann model to only use it on high heat and contact the company at 800-527-0717 for a replacement part that should correct the problem.
-- Herb Weisbaum