At 6’2” tall and around 250 pounds, I’m a big dude. So 2-person tents often feel uncomfortably cramped for me. The first thing that stands out about the Tufly SL 2+ is its spaciousness: At 88 inches wide and 105 inches long, it’s got ample room for two people in the center and gear (or dog) in the vestibules. It offers tons of interior storage, including 6 mesh pockets, 2 media pockets, and gear loft loops. With a trail weight of just 4 lbs 3oz., the super-light 3-season tent uses DAC tent poles, whose Green Anodizing process is safer for the environment and reduces waste water considerably. But the tent’s coolest feature is that it was designed by the women of Big Agnes, and a portion of every sale is donated to SheJumps, a non-profit working to encourage more ladies of all ages to participate in outdoor activities!
A few months after Mary and I started dating, when I began taking my dog to her house, I bought her a Roomba to help keep her floors hair-free. The Grillbot works in a similar fashion for cleaning grills, keeping them squeaky clean without all the elbow grease. It’s super simple to use: Push the button 3 times for 30 minutes of cleaning, and the built-in timer does the rest. A smart computer brain regulates speed and direction, while three electric motors and replaceable wire brushes do the dirty work. The only thing you have to do is remember to recharge it while you’re grilling!
Motorola’s Talkabout T260 radios are handy for communicating when you’re exploring the wilderness and out of cell phone range. They offer 2-way communications up to a 25-mile range, NOAA weather channels and alerts, and a hands-free iVOX feature. Midland’s ER310 is a must-have for emergencies, keeping you informed in case of severe weather (or worse). It’s sustainably powered, using solar energy, hand crank, or rechargeable battery. Its features include an incredibly bright LED flashlight, an SOS morse code flashlight beacon, and ultrasonic dog whistle for alerting search and rescue teams in emergency situations.
Smell that? With Summer time just around the corner, it is time to get that grill cleaned-up and ready to go. Having a clean grill is not only important for sanitary reasons but it also helps cook food consistently and reduce those “supernova” flare ups. (GIVEAWAY INFO AT END OF REVIEW)
The world already has robots designed to handle those chores that we hate to do such as vacuum, mop, clean gutters and swimming pools. Now there is another robot to add to that list.
Grillbot is the unique robot created specifically to take the burden off you to clean the grill yourself so you can focus on what matters most – THE FOOD!
Our Nerds put Grillbot to the test. Our NerdGrill had not been cleaned in nearly 2 months so we were anxious to see how the Grillbot performed. This picture is of our nasty grill prior to running Grillbot.
Prior to the test starting, we fully charged the Grillbot, heated the grill to a temperature between 100 F (37.7 C) – 250 F (121.1 C). Luckily the Grillbot has an internal alarm that will sound in case the grill gets too hot.
There are 3 cleaning durations to select from on the built-in LCD screen (10, 20, or 30 minutes). Our Nerds followed the instructions provided in the Grillbot box which recommends for first time use, to set the timer for 30 minutes. With the timer set and Grillbot doing its thing, our Nerds had time to play a few games of Cornhole and relax with some brews.
DING – Time is up. Let’s see this grill.
When we opened the grill, we removed Grillbot and started our assessment. Overall, the Grillbot did a great job getting our grill cleaned and ready for some burgers. Some of the grime deep between the grill grates still remained; however, we weren’t able to reach the deep stuff even with using the old school wire brush. We removed one of the grates so you could see all of the nasty junk Grillbot removed.
The Grillbot is an automatic grill cleaning robot that makes cleaning your grill a little more convenient. It’ll take care of most of the work and allows you to spend your time doing other things around your home while your Barbecue Grills get a cleaning.
Prime grilling season will be here before you know it and if you love to grill but don’t really love to clean, the unattended operation can be an attractive feature. The Grillbot uses 3 independent and motorized rolling brushes to scrub your grill clean without you there. Three timed settings of 10/20/30 min cycles are available by pressing the button 1/2/3 times. An LCD gives you a visual indicator of what time setting you’ve chosen.
Grillbot measures 8.35 x 3.27 x 8.66 inches and weighs 3.6lbs. Similar to the size of an iRobot vacuum cleaner. Power is supplied from a 7.4V Lithium-ion rechargeable 1000-1400 mAh battery. Initially you should charge the battery a minimum of 4 hours and will take approx 8 hours to fully charge. The battery is gauged to last up to 8 years but an additional battery can be purchased at $24.95 from Grillbot.
In the box you’ll find the Grillbot, battery pack, charging wall adapter and 3 brass brushes already fitted onto the Grillbot.
Brass, Stainless Steel and Nylon replacement brushes are available depending on what type of grill surface your barbecue has.
The Brass brushes that come with the Grillbot are best for the majority of grills out there as it isn’t too hard or too soft. They work well for stainless steel or porcelain coated grill surfaces.
The Stainless steel brushes work well for cast iron or expanded steel grills that need a little more scrubbing power but are strong enough to withstand the extra stronger brushes.
The Nylon brushes are softer for more delicate surfaces. It’ll take a little longer to clean but it also won’t scratch your grill grates and will last a bit longer than the Brass and Stainless brushes.
How to use the Grillbot
First and foremost, allow your grill to cool down. If you don’t the Grillbot will stop working and yell at you with a 15 second alarm. You don’t want to throw this puppy onto a hot grill. You can use this on a traditional home gas or propane grill or your charcoal barbecue.
Press once, twice or thrice for 10/20/30 min cycle and place the Grillbot onto the level grill surface. A 5 second delay gives you time to close the barbecue lid and let it go, it’s that simple. It will even put itself to sleep after 60 seconds of no activity.
Always be careful of the brush tips when handling the Grillbot or changing brushes. The brushes are also top-shelf dishwasher safe for easier maintenance. Removing the brushes requires you to push the button on the end and slide the brush off being careful not to puncture your finger or hand with the brush tips.
How does it perform?
Ever slam the lid on your barbecue by accident? A Grill is an echo chamber as it is and when you place the Grillbot for a run, it will be clanking around in your grill with a expectedly unpleasant sound. It’s able to at some point in the bouncing around get to the corners of your grill. You’ll still want to hand clean the crevices of the grates as the Grillbot won’t get it completely 100%. It does not damage the grill or itself during the cleaning process.
Our test grill is on a Weber Genesis 330 a very popular and typical grill size for many homes. The Genesis barbecue grill comes with a dual side cook area that measures roughly 40×16″ or about 637 sq inches of grill surface to clean. The cooking grates are made of cast-iron but are porcelain-enameled so it’s important to be aware of that when cleaning the grill.
Depending on your grate finish/material you may need to change which brush type you use but the default pre-installed Brass brushes are compatible for the majority of grill grates.
After a 30 min cycle, the brass brushes seemed to do a decent job of cleaning off the burnt materials. Since we haven’t used the grill in a month or so, I decided it might be best to heat her up a little and let it cool down to remove any excess moisture that might be there. If you have a lot of sticky barbecue sauce still left over you may want to heat up the grill a little so you don’t end up with sauce on your Grillbot brushes.
The Grillbot will work best on round charcoal style barbecue’s and does a decent job of getting the bulk of the grit and grime off the grates. It’s not anything a little elbow grease couldn’t and doesn’t normally do but if you hate cleaning the grill that much and can deal with the noise the Grillbot produces, it’s not a bad gadget to have around. You’ll need to sneak in there and do the corners of the grating and maybe flip the grating upside down and run it again to pick up all the burnt on drip on the underside if you want to go that far.
The Grillbot Automatic Grill cleaning robot is a convenient time-saving way to automatically brush off your grill so decrease your pre-grilling and post-grilling cleaning rituals. The Grillbot bundle includes everything you need including a hard resin plastic carry case along with 3-sets of brushes and the Grillbot unit. If you or someone you know is big on barbecuing the Grillbot makes a cool gadget gift for the holidays.
Grillbot Automatic Grill Cleaner bundle $159.90 (includes Grillbot, Hard Carry Case, 3x Brass Brushes) Brass/Stainless Steel/Nylon Replacement brushes $14.95 for set of 3 3-year warranty
There is nothing like that first Grilled Steak of Spring! For those who can't grill -year-round, the anticipation of the First Grill-out has men and women anxiously watching the weather with tongs in hand.
Don't be disappointed with a plate of marinated flanks in your hand when you open the grill to find a raccoon family has moved in during the winter months. Take a few minutes to check out the grill and clean it before the first BBQ of the season. Here are some tips to get it done right.
Here are some more references for you if you need more advanced directions:
Grillbot does the cleaning so you can enjoy the cooking.
I grew up in a grill using family. When the weather was nice we would spend a lot of time on the patio while my dad grilled up hamburgers, steaks, chicken…pretty much anything that you could grill. I remember watching him scrub the grill grates clean before each use and thought what a dirty job that was to do. It was even dirtier when it was my turn to take over as grillmaster in my own home. As much as I love grilling, I hate cleaning the grill even more. No matter how I’ve tried to go about doing it, it always seems to make a huge mess and I just don’t feel like going through the trouble every time I want to grill out. Fortunately, there are others who feel the same way I do and they happened to create Grillbot, an automated grill cleaning robot.
Grillbot is a fully automated robot that cleans your grill at the push of a button. It is designed to use with any style grill and Grillbot even provides different options for brushes. It comes with brass brushes pre-installed but stainless steel and nylon brushes are available as well. The bot is powered by a rechargeable battery and a CPU that controls its movement, speed, and direction of brushes. There is a small LCD display that shows the cleaning time and battery level. The default timer is set for 10 minutes, but you can add time in 10-minute increments up to 30 minutes total. The brushes rotate and move around your grill to scrub off the grease and grime left by your food. The brushes are designed to be removable so that you can replace them when they’ve worn down. They are also washable. You simply remove them and place them in your dishwasher.
When I was first introduced to this little robot, I really didn’t think it would do a good job. I thought it was ‘kitschy’ and that it would just touch the surface of the grill. I was quickly proven wrong when we did a quick demo on our personal grill (see the video above). We have a medium sized infrared grill that has non-stick grates to it. At the end of last season, we did not clean it off before covering the grill for the winter. Needless to say, there was plenty for the Grillbot to clean. We set the Grillbot on the grill and started a 10-minute cleaning cycle. Since we were testing the device, we did open the lid of the grill a couple of times to see its progress and I have to admit that it does a really good job of cleaning the grates. I did notice that there was still some muck left in between the grates, but I would expect longer cleaning cycles might knock some of that off. I would also recommend that you carefully clean your grill between uses so that the dirt doesn’t build up as it did on ours.
Grillbot is really a great device and I’m really glad that I’ve gotten the chance to use it. I love the idea that there is a tiny robot doing the dirty work for me so that I can enjoy the fun of grilling again. As easy as the Grillbot is to use, there are a few tips that I want to pass along.
Be sure to fully charging your Grillbot before its first use. The manual states it can take up to 8 hours to complete so don’t expect to use it out of the box.
Clean your brushes between uses. Since they snap off and can be cleaned in the dishwasher, there is no reason not to drop them in the next load.
Look after your brushes. Grillbot recommends replacing the brushes once a season or after 100 uses. That said, if you notice that the bristles are starting to break away, you should replace them immediately.
Close the cover to your grill when you are running Grillbot. Even though some grills have a lip on them, Grillbot could still hop off the edge and cause damage or even injury. Remember, those spinning brushes are sharp and can hurt!
You can use the Grillbot on a warm grill, but not a hot one. It’s suggested that the easiest time to clean a nonstick grill is when the surface is still slightly warm. This is ok, but make sure that it’s lower than 250º or your Grillbot could get damaged. Grillbot is equipped with sensors that will alert you when it’s too hot for operation.
I have been really impressed with Grillbot. It makes the most of my time and is an efficient assistant on the grill. At $130, this robot is a really strong investment if you like to grill. Grillbot comes in four colors – black, red, orange, and blue. The standard package only includes the Grillbot and its charger, but you can order extra brushes or even bundle the Grillbot with a case through Grillbot’s website.
Grillbotis a proud sponsor of the LUXURY TECHNOLOGY SHOWand is looking forward to meeting with the Press, Buyers and Industry Executives at this event which showcases the most cutting edge and innovative products in the world. WE CAN'T WAIT TO MEET YOU!
A bit of fresh air, some crocuses popping up and what else is there to think about other than firing up your barbeque grill? Before you do, we tried some amazing products that are must haves for grilling.
Get it clean. Ditch the scrub brush for the GrillBot automatic grill cleaning robot. This rechargeable, set it and forget it grill cleaner will have you grilling even more frequently than ever. Press a the button, set the cleaning time, close the lid and move on to prep your dinner. Come back to a clean grill that’s ready to light. How you ask? The grillbot is driven by a sophisticated CPU chip that controls the movement, speed, and direction of the brushes.
The GrillBot also has replaceable wire brushes so instead of having to replace the whole unit, simply order new brushes. The lithium ion battery can also be replaced.
Make prep work easy. With so many marinades to choose from, it can be easier to pick one up that take the time to make one from scratch. But how do you know if they’re actually any good? Word of mouth is a really great way, so we’re going to recommend the Moore’s line of BBQ and wing sauces. I used the Zesty Garden Herb Marinade and Original marinades on some chicken first, which for me is a great way to truly test the flavor profile of a marinade. My family loves herb marinades, but this one by is by far the best one I have ever tried – including homemade. The original was a simple blend with a kick of soy.
But you know how fickle spring is, and we were itching to have more of the original marinade, so instead of grilling, we tossed some sliced pork in the marinade and sauteed it. Adding some veggies and a bit more marinade we had a quick dinner that had everyone looking for seconds.