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Are DCS Grills Worth The Money?

If you’re looking for a high-end grill with a great US pedigree, then you’ll love this review of the DCS Grills brand.

DCS Grills are the gold standard of American grills, and all US purchasers get a 2-year manufacturer’s warranty. Although the DCS Grills factory is now in Mexico, their first-ever model was handmade in a garage at Surf City in Huntington Beach, California.

Let’s dive down into these ultra-cool grills from every angle so you can make an informed decision if you choose to buy one. We’ll give you some places to buy one, plus the maker’s details so you can get more information on these grills from them too.

Where Are DCS Grills Made? (Are They Made in The USA?)

The first DCS grill was made in a garage in Surf City, in California’s Huntington Beach. This was back in 1989, and this original grill has developed into a must-have, high-end outdoor appliance, found in yards across the States. The main DCS factory is in Mexico.

The DCS grill still carries that Surf City vibe with it. The pleasure of cooking fresh food outdoors with your friends and family – just perfect.

Who Makes DCS Grills? (Will They Stand Behind Their Products?)

DCS Grills were originally made by Dynamic Cooking Systems. New Zealand kitchen appliance company Fisher & Paykel aligned with DCS in 2004. They became part of the global Haier Group in 2012.

DCS has often been held up as the gold standard for outdoor grills, so none of these three big name brands will want standards to slip. All US purchasers get a 2-year manufacturer’s warranty.

What Products Are in The DCS Grills Collection?

DCS offers a variety of outdoor grills. You can choose from freestanding grills and built-in models, which are designed for your outdoor kitchen. There are grills with or without rotisseries, and some come with side burners, creating a complete cooking unit for your yard.

The freestanding models come with some serious storage, including bottle racks and optional chilled drawers. Series 9 offers a smoker tray for slow-cooked, smokey meats and fish. 

High-end features across the range include DCS’s patented Grease Management System™, direct burner ignition and a Smart Beam™ grill light for cooking at night. The grills are made from quality 304 grade stainless steel, and all appliances are powered by gas.

What Size Are DCS Grills?

The largest grill size is 48”, but that doesn’t include the cart, side burners and optional extras. The built-in S series and Liberty models are 30” grills, which is still pretty generous for your second, outdoor kitchen. Weight-wise – well, they’re pretty hefty, so you’ll be glad that the carts come with wheels.

Do DCS Grills Come With a Warranty?

When you buy a DCS grill in the USA, you get a 2-year manufacturer’s warranty for parts and labor.

According to their website, “DCS Grills come with an exceptional lifetime warranty on: Stainless Steel Grill Burners, Stainless Steel Grill Cover, Burner Box, Cooking Grates and Grill Racks. A five year warranty applies to: Radiant Trays, Radiant Tray Side Rails and the Drip Pan. Two years full coverage warranty applies for parts and labor on the entire product.”

So, DCS are definitely prepared to stand by their product, which is good news for you, the consumer.

Find out more about warranties from DCS’s website.

Do DCS Grills Also Make Accessories?

You can get various accessories for your DCS grill, with both practical and fun items on offer. If you are installing a built-in DCS grill, DCS make an insulated jacket that slots into the enclosure, ready to take the appliance.

If you have gone for the cart option, create a larger preparation area with shelves that fit onto the cart. You can also add a smart-looking chopping board to this.

It’s not practical to wheel your beautiful grill under cover after each use, so invest in a purpose-made cover from DCS. They have heavy-duty covers for all their current models.

Finally, if you’re buying a gift for a grill-lover, there are DCS aprons and tool sets. The aprons are especially handy, made from super-tough fabric and with enormous pockets to store your grilling essentials.

What Do The Reviews Say About These Grills?

A DCS grill has long been held up as a must-have item for the discerning outdoor chef. Designed for professional-level grilling, and with a whole host of pleasing features from ceramic radiant technology to intuitive lighting (Series 9). But do today’s consumers agree that a DCS grill is the gold standard?

We actually struggled to find customer reviews for DCS grills, which is surprising for such a big and aspirational name. Amazon reviews are mixed, with some customers absolutely loving everything about their grill, and others complaining about rust on non-stainless steel components, temperamental rotisseries, and flaring.

This divided attitude is summed up in the overall Amazon rating score for the DCS BGB36-BQAR-N 36” grill: 2.5 out of 5. However, most reviewers agreed that they are a great-looking appliance.

How Much Do DCS Grills Cost?

The DCS Grill range is aimed at the higher end of the outdoor living market. The mighty Series 9 Evolution 48” cart grill retails at around $10,000. If you want a more modest model, you can pick up a new Series 7 Liberty built-in grill for $2,000 (but you will have the added expense and effort of fitting it into an outdoor kitchen, and you’ll also need to purchase the liner).

These are not cheap grills, so need to be treated as real long-term purchases. Make sure that the grill has all the features that you want before you commit. If you’re a keen outdoor chef, your grill is just as important as your indoor oven, so this might seem like the right investment to you.

How To Use My DCS Grill

Gas grills really are easy to use, and you’ll soon be cooking like a pro. We can take you through the general principles of using an outdoor grill (season the grates with oil before the first use, burn off any residues before you cook and so on), but because DCS grills have so many features, you’d really need to check with your instruction manual before you start cooking.

For instance, your DCS lets you slow-cook meat, and you have the option of smoking this with some models. Or, you can sear the meat or fish on a super-hot grill. How about cooking your chicken on the rotisserie? You can even use it as an oven to bake dishes and bread.

Because you can regulate the temperature so easily, you can braise meat on a DCS. Sear it, then turn the temperature right down for a long, slow cook. Thanksgiving dinner cooked outdoors, anyone? 

The Series 9 also has an instant ignite charcoal option. The charcoal tray slots above the gas burners for a quick and simple charcoal BBQ effect. You also have the option of adding gas rings to create a complete outdoor cooker.

Cooking BBQ with DCS Grills

Are DCS Grills Easy To Maintain?

DCS grills are pretty straightforward to look after, which is great news for the busy outdoor chef. Keep on top of splashes and spillages, and wipe it down after each use (when it cools). Maybe once or twice a year, give the grates a thorough clean. Here’s how:

  • Brush the grates with a stiff brush (this is easier when the grill is warm, but not too hot to touch)
  • You may need soapy water and a brush to get rid of more stubborn remnants
  • Rinse, so the grill won’t smell of soap
  • Wipe it down with a damp cloth then dry it with a dry cloth. Repeat if the dry cloth comes away still dirty. 
  • Season the grates with a spritz of oil. This keeps it well-conditioned and helps to prevent rust

If anything breaks, remember that warranty! Also, it’s really easy to get hold of most spare parts for DCS appliances.

How Do I Store My DCS Grill?

We wouldn’t recommend leaving such a high-end grill outdoors over the winter. If you know you’re not going to be using it for a while, prepare to winterize it in a garage, shed, or other outbuilding.

Firstly, give it a good clean to remove any grease: you don’t want mold developing over the winter, plus crumbs will attract all sorts of critters. Clean it as we’ve outlined above, then make sure it’s 100% dry. Put a heavy-duty cover over it and secure it well. Check in on it occasionally over winter, to make sure nobody’s moved in…

If you haven’t space in an outbuilding, cover the grill with a robust, well-fitting cover, and put it in the most sheltered spot you can find. The propane tanks can be stored outdoors, even in extremely cold weather.

If you have a built-in grill, that has to remain outdoors. But how do you winterize an outdoor kitchen? First, safely disconnect the gas line. Then, clean and dry your grill, as before.

Does it need covering? A cover over the counter tops and grill will give some protection; however, if moisture gets trapped under the cover, it can end up causing more damage. 

Summary: Where Can I Buy a DCS Grill?

As a big name brand, there are plenty of places you can buy a DCS grill. Do a local search on Google to find the outdoor stores near you that stock their range. DCS list stockists by area on their website, and you can do a zip code search.

Online, Amazon has some DCS equipment, although their range varies. BBQ Guys has a great selection, and the website has some knowledgeable buying advice for each model.

Mark H.

Homeowner and property investor Mark H. aspires to bring you the very best outdoor living content, based on his years of experience managing outside spaces. Read more >