Buying Quality to Save Money – The Grill
These past two weeks I’ve been playing musical chairs with our backyard grills. It culminated with a trip to the county dump where I discarded the grill loser. But this post is more about buying quality to save money.
I’m thinking that the traditional backyard grill may be one of those products. I’ve owned plenty of them. Father’s Day brought me by far the most expensive and presumably highest quality grill ever – a stainless steel and aluminum Weber gas grill. I think the extra cost will be worth it. Actually, I think this grill may be the last one I will ever buy. Let’s hope so.
I took my new grill to our Kentucky lake home, which I anticipate we will own longer than our present Tennessee home. The grill I had up there still functioned, but being a low end grill at six years of age, it was in a state of rapid decline.
The grill at our Tennessee home was 15 years old and no longer operational. It was a high quality natural gas grill when purchased in 1994. Recently it developed gas leaks that are safety problems. Since I had already replaced the burners once a few years ago and rust was starting to generally take over, I determined that the wisest course of action was to send that old grill to the grill graveyard. I brought the old bargain grill from the lake back to Tennessee in an attempt to squeeze another grilling season or two out of it.
My trip to the dump (actually a county “convenience center”) was interesting. The dumpster designated for metal trash had at least three other grills in it. In fact, I see grills scrapped almost every trip I take to the convenience center. I’ve never seen a stainless steel Weber grill in there. That’s a good sign.
Products like grills that are kept outdoors and operate at high temperatures are perfect candidates for the “buy quality” strategy. Durability of such products can closely correlate to the quality of materials used. Higher quality materials will last longer and of course will cost more. With a little extra attention paid to protection and maintenance, it is logical to believe that you will receive an excellent long term return on your larger initial investment.
There is one more component of the “buying quality” theory that some folks overlook. Spending a lot more to buy more quality makes the most sense for products that you use a lot. I grill almost every night when we are at the lake in good weather so the usage factor is there for spending more. As a counter-example, it would not make economic sense to buy a high end power tool that you are going to use once a year or less.
So that’s my “buy quality” story for backyard grills. What are yours?