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Reviewed by: Eddie. Updated for 2021

Z-Grills Review

Doing a Z Grills review was not an easy thing to do. The information was scattered and even their own website was not very helpful.
When I clicked on the live chat button the person was very helpful but not able to help me a lot.

While trying to find out more information about them and to add the Zgrills to my pellet grill review page, when I started on these Z-grills reviews, I stumbled upon an article on bbqdryrubs.com that found that these pellet grills are about a straight clone of the Traeger pellet grills.

Although someone emailed me that they are more like the Grilla grills. If all of this is true then it explains the low prices for the z grills pellet smokers. They take out the middle man and start selling the same pellet smokers under their own name on the American market.

Many of the Z-grills reviews I read describe the same pros and cons as I found in my Traeger reviews that even makes me believe even more that this fact is right.

Where To Buy Z Grills

There are several places where you can buy Z-grills. However, I recommend two places that give in my opinion the best prices.

Not all models are available and shipping might take some time so this is not my first choice.

All models are available of course, sometimes I see a model being sold out here.

I had several good looks at both over a period of time and the Z-grills website usually has more deals and discounts.

Read the rest of the Z Grills Reviews

There are a few models available and it took me a while to find out the differences.
Basically, they have the Zgrills 450, 550, 600, and 700 square inches models, but feel free to correct me if I am wrong.

There is an option to get the Z-grills assembled for an additional fee. I personally thought the price was a little steep for that.

How Z Grills Work

The way Z Grills are designed and work are not much different than most other brands. This is basically how to use a z grill. It works by burning wood pellets and in that way creates heat and a wood smoke flavor to your meat.

These pellets are stored in a hopper and this is located at the side of the grill. There is a mechanical auger that feeds the pellets in the firebox where they are ignited by a rod.

The Pros of this are that you can fill the hopper, set your temperature, and go on with your day.

A picture might explain it better than I do probably.

z grills interior and how it works

The word pellet grill is in my opinion, not an accurate description. I look at them as a smoker. The reason is that they can maintain the temperature over a long period of time. However, most pellet grills are not good at getting hot enough to sear meat.

Z-Grills Models and features

It is time to have a look at all the different Z-Grills models in this z grill pellet grill review and how to compare them to each other and the models of other brands. I will also give a link here to their website where to find them at an affordable price.


Z-grills 450A

z grills 450-A
  • 450 Square inches grill area
  • 15 lbs hopper
  • Fold-able shelf
  • Bronze colored

Better Grills Rating: 4.4

I was not able to find a lot of people who talked about their experience with the Zgrills ZPG 450A model but the ones I found gave it an average of 4.3 stars.

My little higher rating in this very limited Z-grill 450-A review is based on the fact that there were a few complaints about packaging and that has nothing to do with the quality of this pellet smoker.

I found some complaints about temperature swings like with any other review I did, but it seems that the newly updated controller is doing a lot better in controlling temperature swings.

Z-Grills 450-B

The new 2021 450-B model is an upgrade from the 450-A and it came with some nice new features.

  • PID controller
  • Hopper Cleanout
  • Pellet View window


Z-Grills 550-B

  • 538 sq inches
  • 10 lb hopper
  • Fold-able shelf
  • Black color

Better Grills Rating: 4.4

From as far I could find doing this very short Z-grills 550B review is that it basically is a little larger version of the 450A model.

It is also not bronze but black.

Here are tips from someone who have used the 550B for a while

Here is a review from one of the readers.

“For those that want a Z grill 550b review: I have the 550b. Good smoker if a little small. Can do a large brisket but can’t fit much else at the same time. Sixteen-hour cook requires two hopper refills. Temperature, once the desires temp is reached, varies by about plus or minus five degrees: very acceptable.”

The metal slide to guide grease to the bucket should really be angled a bit more to be more effective. End of season cleaning requires some scrubbing as a result.

Great entry level smoker. Will do anything you ask of it: my only real wish is that the pellet hopper were large enough to handle a really long cook without a refill. I tend to put a brisket on around 11 pm. By 7 am or so it’s usually about ready for wrapping…and the hopper is just about empty.

Z- Grills 7002

Z-Grills 7002

What I found doing this z grills reviews is that this Zgrills 7002 pellet grill is that it is a popular model and people specifically look for what they call the z grills pro 7002.

I found the following features for this particular 7002 model.

  • total 19.2×26 inch
  • total rack 700 inch
  • 20 lb hopper
  • stainless steel
  • upgraded controller
  • no storage

Better Grills Rating: 4.7

Z-grills 7002E

z grills 7002e

What I found doing this z grill reviews is that the 7002E is a popular model and people specifically look for the Z grill ZPG 7002E review.

  • Available in Black, Silver, Silver/Black, Bronze/Black
  • Total 19.2×26 inch
  • Total rack 700 inch
  • 20 lb hopper
  • storage with doors under the grill

Better Grills Rating: 4.3

This is a Z-grill that received a little higher ratings and is available in 5 different colors.
It looks like this is one of the most sold model z grills since I could find a lot more information about it.

What I noticed was the low number of bad ratings compared to many other pellet grill reviews I did.

The assembly seems to be very easy and all you have to attach are the legs and the chimney and I read that it takes about 20 minutes to do that.

Z-Grills 700D

Z grill 700D

What I found doing this z grills pellet grill review is that it is a popular model and people specifically look for the Z grill 700D.

This z grills 700d review shows that this one comes with the upgraded 2018 model controller and this should take care of the complaints about temperature swings in the older model.

  • Available in Black, Silver, Silver/Black, Bronze/Black
  • Total 19.2×26 inch
  • Total rack 700 inch
  • 20 lb hopper
  • stainless steel

Better Grills Rating: 4.5

Z Grills 1000 Series

There is a whole new 1000 series Z Grills and to introduce them the Z-Grills company made some nice deals.

The models are:

  • 1000c
  • 10002E
  • 1000E
  • 10002b
  • 1000D

You can have a look at all these new Z pellet grills at this link. New 1000 series Z-Grills

I probably will do a Z-grills review of these series in the near future since the Z-Grills, in general, are becoming very popular.

Material of the Z-grills grates

The grates are made of stainless steel with an enamel coating. If that is the same, or can be compared to the ceramic coating I like so much I still have to find out.

Features of the Z-grills

Depending on the model there are some differences but here are some of the main features.

  • Digital controller
  • Type of used metal
  • Hopper size between 10 and 20 Lbs
  • Grill grates

Customer Reviews of the Z Grills

Assembly takes about an hour for the more complicated models. All parts are fairly easy to figure out and where to put them. If you ever get lost, the manual is well-written and will help you out with the pictures and descriptions.

I like the nice heavy-duty wheels make it very easy to move around.
The temperature settings are easy to use and as soon as reached, it stays pretty steady although there are complaints about that also like in most pellet grill reviews I did.

There are people who replaced their controller with a PID controller that works a lot better they mentioned.

Overall I found that most people are very happy with their Z- Grill.

The customer service got some mixed ratings. From great and helpful to terrible and not helpful at all. I read that someone thinks it is in China and that is why it is not good.

My personal experience with their customer service is fairly good, but the person I talked to was not very knowledgeable.

Pros & Cons

The pros and cons we found are not just for one model, but an average of all the models we looked at. each of the z grills pellet smoker reviews models might have slightly different pros and cons

These grills might get a review on a separate page and then we go into the nitty-gritty details.

green-pro's-button

Pros:

  • Very affordable
  • Nice Quality
  • Easy to move with large wheels
  • Steady temperature
  • 3-year warranty
red-con's-button

Cons:

  • No pellet removal option
  • Temperature not stable
  • Few complaints about arriving damaged

Q: Which is better Pit Boss or Z grills?

Z grills reviews – My Opinion

After doing this Z- Grills reviews and comparing it to the Traeger (and some other brands like Grilla grills), because the claim was that they are a Traeger clone I can only say that many pros and cons are the same and even the average customer star ratings of comparable models are almost the same.

The complaints in the lower ratings about temperature fluctuations are not much different from any other pellet smoker I reviewed. I think that with the new upgraded controller (Just like Traeger?) there will be a lot fewer complaints.

Overall I think that these Z grills perform pretty well. There are many who call the design excellent and praise the solid construction.

One thing I found that was coming back several times that these grills are not doing too well in searing. It simply does not get hot enough for that.

With temperature fluctuations of around 10 degrees, it might not come close to the Rec Tec’s but they are also in a different price range.

Overall the Z-grill pellet smokers are highly recommended and are comparable, but more affordable than many other brands.

With more brands jumping on the bandwagon of pellet smokers it is important to look at a manufacturer with experience and I believe that the Z-grills are a good choice since they have produced the Traeger brand and maybe some others also,

Recommended

I always suggest buying a high-quality grill cover and I recommend moving it into your shed or garage after use.
This is something that I recommend for every pellet grill since, in my opinion, water and pellet grills do not get along too well.

Use a quality extension cord is also my tip.

You can find all Z-grill models here

I will probably do a Z grills review for each of the models on its own page and give you a lot more details and comparisons to help you find all the differences.

Overall I think it is safe to say that the Z-grills are fairly good and comparable to other brands in this price range.

Like any pellet grill, the Z-Grills have pros and cons and you have to weigh all of them to decide if this is the pellet smoker you would purchase.

FAQ about Z-grills

I have been contacted a few times after writing these Z grills reviews, with questions about the Z-grills and I found some online that I will try to answer here in the frequently asked questions about Z grills.

I have found several questions people have about the Z-grills and have done a lot of reading in my attempt to answer them.

Where are Z- grills made?

Although I answered this already at the beginning of this article here is the answer. Z-grills are made in China. They are almost an exact clone of the Traeger or Grilla grills. This also answers the question if Z-grills are made in the USA.

How accurate is the thermostat in Z-Grills?

Z grills temperature problems? Here is what I found out. Since the Z-grill basically has the same electronic parts as many other pellet grills, you can expect the same accuracy as for instance a Traeger.

Z- grills, just like most pellet grills can have temperature problems. There are upgrades and z grill modifications available to a higher-class thermostat. You can read more in my post about the Traeger controller replacement here.

How do Z- grills compare to Traeger.

This one is hard to answer. Traeger and Z-grills were made by the same company in the past. However, Traeger is now manufactured in a different plant.

This means, in my opinion, that they should be better compared to the Grilla grill. What I have read is that they both do pretty well. Traeger just has more brand awareness.

Can you use wood instead of pellet with Z-grills

No, you can not use wood instead of pellets with your Z-grill pellet smoker. The reason is that the auger is designed for pellets that are uniform in size. Wood chunks are not all the same size.

Z-grills replacement parts availability.

Z-grill spare or replacement parts can be ordered on several websites, including the Z-grill website. Especially now they are becoming popular because of the affordable price.

If you have any experience with these pellet grills band like to add something to this Z-Grill review, please share it in the comments.

My update: I did these Z-grills reviews a while ago and can only say that there are becoming more popular and more people starting to like the brand.

I have been following the Z-gills company for a while and it seems they are developing the way I thought they would do. If I would do a z grills customer service reviews I personally have the experience that they answered me pretty fast and with the answers I needed.

They are bringing more and more new models on the market and are becoming a serious competitor for brands like Traeger. You can have a look at the Z-grill 2021 models here and see what they have come up with.

Sometimes it is hard for them to keep up with the demand and some models are sold out quick,

Eddie van Aken

Eddie van Aken has run his own full-service restaurant for many years. Before that, he worked as a grill and buffet cook in some of the mainstream restaurants. With his experience using professional kitchen equipment, he is able to write expert reviews. You can read more about Eddie van Aken here.

22 thoughts on “Z Grills Review”

  1. Valyn D Grieve

    Recieved my 7002F2 and the box was in great shape. Opened box and started pulling out the pieces. First the barrel had a dent in the back, along with a dent in the stainless door and all support pieces had to be straightened out as they were bent also. They came from the factory this way. Assembly was tedious and took a while to complete. Finished with grille and plugged it in. Nothing, no digital readout at all. Went through all the trouble shooting and found that all was good including fuse. Still nothing. Looked up inside to all of the connectors and it looked good with the exception of the two hot leads that were 3 inches to short to even be connected. I made new extensions to plug connectors into one another and plugged it in. To my surprise when I plugged it in, it actually worked. I noticed a sticker on the pellet door that the unit had passed and was OK. No way was this tested as the hot leads were not even connected. Unit is a little flimsy as I have always had a Traeger and thought that this unit was comparable to Tragers from other reviews. It has been fired up and it does work. Have not used it for cooking yet. Sure hope it does an adequate job. Not pleased with all the imperfections and quality control. Keeping my fingers crossed that it passes the test for cooking

  2. Your review of the Z Grill 7002 needs some work. There is a lot of information on the web and their own site. The description for this model has a stainless, black, and bronze lid. Select the correct model when describing. Nowhere have I found that assembly takes only 20 minutes. You give the 7002 a 4.7 and the 7002E a 4.3. They are identical except for the lid. Not sure why the lid would cost .4 points. Arriving damaged is more of a shipper issue than a manufacturer. It makes no sense for a mfg to purposefully ship a damaged product. You state as a Pro – steady temperature, then further down that is an issue. All in all this is not a REAL review, just a collection of other’s input and not all that accurate when you pick and choose.

    1. Don,
      You are correct and I am in the process of rewriting it.
      I am working on a review of each model on its own page.

      I did the initial review in 2018 and there was not much information available.
      Since that time this brand has become pretty popular.
      Thank you for pointing out some of the errors.
      Eddie

  3. Reviews grill based on info found online but had never even laid eyes on the thing.

    This is not a review. This is worthless.

    For those that want a review: I have the 550b. Good smoker if a little small. Can do a large brisket but can’t fit much else at the same time. Sixteen hour cook requires two hopper refills. Temperature, once desires temp is reached, varies by about plus or minus five degrees: very acceptable.

    The metal slide to guide grease to the bucket should really be angled a bit more to be more effective. End of season cleaning requires some scrubbing as a result.

    Great entry level smoker. Will do anything you ask of it: my only real wish is that the pellet hopper were large enough to handle a really long cook without refill. I tend to put a brisket on around 11 pm. By 7 am or so it’s usually about ready for wrapping…and the hopper is just about empty.

  4. Z Grill 450A
    The hopper is not funnel shaped for propper and efficient pellet feed. We have had the hopper full or below the guard. Either way the pellets pile up on the sides creating their own funnel and soon emptying feed thru hopper and extinguishing the pit. Once it is out, there is no relighting. This pit requires we check it every 30 minutes and push pellets over the hopper feed. An unattended brisket or the such is not possible. Customer service told me to put a pan on top of pellets as a weight. “Easy Peasy” she said. 🤨☹️ I want my pit to work as intended.

    1. Ginger,
      Sorry to hear that. This is the first time I hear this complaint.
      I agree with you that you should not have to watch a pellet grill.
      That is one of the main reasons to use one.
      I see what I can come up with to help you.
      Eddie

  5. I bought a Taeger pellet grill bout 15 years ago. I upgraded to a digital temp regulator soon after and have been very happy with it. About 4 years ago I retired and sold it and bought a Traeger Tailgater. Fits great in RVs. Had it 4 years and now had a temp regulator problem. I called them and they sent me a replacement at no charge. Wow, was not expecting that. Quick shipping time. I installed it and didn’t work right. Of course I am thinking, oh no, I liked it a lot. So I called them and and talked with someone else in customer service. They said that what I had was a model that was no longer made. The new model Tailgater is a completely different smoker. But they replaced it with a new Scout free of charge. (same os mine, newer model) Again, after 4 years, they replaced it because they no longer had a temp controller for my smoker. So after 15 years, and 2 smokers, I have had several interactions with Traeger Customer service, I am still extremely happy with Traeger. I have also sold 14 of my friends on Traeger over time. I am now also looking for a new bigger smoker. After reading this review, I am going to buy another Traeger. Great review, helped me a lot.

  6. I ordered a grill on 5/25/20 and have not been able to get any response. Left messages, emails all to no avail. I guess i to will have to file a dispute thru Paypal.

    1. Glenn,
      I found a way to contact Z-grills and here is their response.

      “Hey Eddie,
      Thanks for your feedback.
      I have forwarded it to our customer service team. They will get back and solve problem soon.
      Thanks again,
      Best,
      Serena”

      Let me know if or when they contacted you and if the problem is solved.

      Eddie

  7. As a more recent update for anyone considering, I’d advise against buying from them. I got mine in this past weekend and while it seems to be well-built, it did not start from the moment I got it assembled. The exhaust fan and temperature works, but the auger and actual heating mechanism did not.

    Sometimes things get damaged in shipping. I get it. But when I tried to contact customer service…nothing. I’ve emailed and called and have gotten no response. About the only thing I can do now is dispute the charge with PayPal since they won’t return my emails or calls.

    Since I’ve started communicating this problem on their advertisements on Facebook and Amazon, I’ve found dozens of people who had the same experience recently. Maybe they were good before but their electronics are having more and more issues and if that’s your issue, they won’t even respond.

    1. Brandon,
      Sorry to hear about your bad experience. I have contacted Z gills and they are not able to find your order and asked me to send them your email so they can contact you.
      Let me know if that is okay with you.
      Eddie

  8. I bought a ZPG 7002E and I used the grill 3 or 4 times worked well. I was going to grill last night the grill would not start is the grill a war weather grill like my other two smokers.

    1. I have the Z450 and love it. It was a Christmas present. I have used it quite a bit. I haven’t had any cold weather problems, I live in Michigan. The coldest was probably upper 20s. I’ve tried a lot of things and have more to try. Love the flavor it gives every day food, meat loaf, etc.

    2. Zgrills are are really a closer clone to Grilla Grillz than to Treager. But they used to be the company that manufactured all of Treagers grills for many years. Treager changed to a different factory. Both still made in China.

    3. Kevin,
      Thanks for sharing this. It is hard to keep up with all these things.
      This information mihght help buyers to safe some money.

      Hapyy grilling and stay safe!

      Eddie

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