There seems to be a debate about the fuel that powers your barbecue. Some believe that Natural Gas is the only way to go, while others are purporters of propane. If you haven’t used both of these fuel types, then you need to know what you can expect from your gaseous fuel source of choice. Which is better? Natural Gas or Propane?
Properties of Propane
Propane is a byproduct of both the refining of oil, and the production of natural gas. It’s heavier than air and when released will pool in place and settle in lower areas. Propane is a non-toxic, tasteless, colorless, and odorless gas. Much like natural gas, mercaptan is added as a safety measure so that you can smell it if there is a leak. Propane burns hot at 2,500 BTU’s per cubic foot of gas used. Propane is portable, which means you can take it with you when you want to grill, whether on a camping trip or if you decide to rearrange where you placed your grill in the yard.
Properties of Natural Gas
Natural gas is also a non-toxic, odorless, tasteless fuel source. It is used to heat homes and power appliances. Natural gas is made of methane and other hydrocarbons, and is generally found with petroleum. Natural gas is clean burning and is a great fuel source for your natural gas grill. It produces 1,000 BTU’s per cubic foot of gas consumed, which means it technically doesn’t burn as hot as propane - however, because of the way a Napoleon Grill is built and engineered, it’s not about the heat of the gas being burned, but in how those BTU’s are utilized. Natural gas doesn’t need to be changed, and you won’t run out in the middle of a grilling session. Natural gas is 1/3 to 1/6th the cost of propane, though you will need a professional to install it, and may even need them to run the gas from the house if you don’t already have a line run.
Can I Use Propane in a Natural Gas Grill?
A question asked with surprising frequency is if you can use propane in a natural gas grill or if you can use natural gas in a propane grill. The answer is no, you cannot interchange gas types. Grills (especially ours) are specially designed to maximize the fuel. You will want to know which type you are interested in before making a purchase. If a grill is purchased and hooked up to the wrong fuel source you will experience poor performance.
Which is Better? Natural Gas or Propane?
Napoleon’s barbecues have been specifically engineered to make the best use of the fuel that they are built to use to achieve optimum burn and efficiency. The question – which is better - natural gas or propane - is completely based on your personal preference. There is no change in the flavor of the food you are grilling when using one gas or the other, and the way that Napoleon grills have been built, you will get the same quality of heat output either way. Both gases have their pro’s and con’s. My choice to go with a natural gas grill was based on the layout of my house. Our deck is just off the kitchen and it has no access to the back yard, there’s a gas line already run, and I really didn’t want to have to carry a propane tank up two flights of stairs. You may have easy access to your outdoor cooking area, like to move the grill from one side of the yard to the other, or take it with you when you go places – in the case of a Portable BBQ. So the better question is what type of fuel will work better for your lifestyle?
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