Weber Summit S-470 Gas Grill – 2015

by | May 6, 2015

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Within the Weber Company, the Summit line of grills is considered to be the highest quality available. Speaking specifically, the Summit S-and E-470 are also thought to be the top-of-the-line in the Summit family. The big difference between these two grills, the “E Models” are built with porcelain enamel coated steel on the double cart doors and hood. “S Models” are mostly 430 grade stainless steel on the hood and doors. These exceptions noted, the models are identical in both pricing and features offered.

Both units offer a body that is sturdy with small vents in the hood so that the grill provides more even heat than grills with higher BTUs. Grease drip pans on these Summit models are easier to access from the front, which is an improvement over grills that are accessed through the back. All Summit grills have stainless steel “Flavorizer” bars designed specifically by Weber. These stainless steel rods are 3/8 inch cooking grates with a double layer of steel for extra protection and insulation. The inverted V shaped “Flavorizer” bars cover and protect the burners as vaporized drips create flavor.

Summit grill models are an attractive addition to the backyard, cook amazingly and have great features that are efficient and easy to use. Piezo-electric “Snap-Jet” ignitions, also designed by Weber, are activated by each individual control knob on the four main burners, at 12,000 BTU each and a 12,000 BTU side burner.

Additional features found on these Summit grills allow for more versatility in cooking styles than are often found with an outdoor gas grill. The following cooking setups are examples of a few options available with the E- or S-470 grills.

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Indirect cooking can be simplified by turning off one side of burners and leaving one side on. Another versatile cooking method uses the left and right main burners on high, while leaving the middle two burners off, producing a roasting temperature of about 320 degrees in the grill’s center. Sizzling salmon fillets at 500 degrees can be achieved by putting all four main burners on the low setting.

In order to take advantage of these versatile cooking options, an accurate digital thermometer is required. It has been previously noted on Weber grills, the dial thermometer included with the grills does not give an accurate reading on the grates where cooking is done. When accuracy is needed for temperature features, it is crucial to have good digital read-out.

These gas grills have battery operated “Grill Out Handle Lights” that can be turned off and on manually, or attached to the lid handle in order to switch on when the grill hood is opened. These lights are not bright enough to see the food in total darkness. However, this heat resistant, water proof device is a great accessory after dark for brightening the grill surface only. More intense light might be more useful for checking if the meal is done.

The Summit E- and S-470 grills have lighted control knobs, and a sear station that uses 10,600 BTU, for additional quality cooking. This combined with the four burners, gets the grill hot enough to do the job. A rear mounted rotisserie system that uses an electric outlet is also included for even more flexibility. The rotisserie has a Tuck-Away feature that drops the motor down into a side shelf to be hidden away when not in use, for appearance and convenience.

Fuel used by these grills can be either liquid propane (sold separately) or Natural Gas, including the necessary 10-foot flexible hose attachment. The Natural Gas unit requires that gas is accessible to the deck or patio where the grill is used. The LP model requires a 20-pound tank, which is sold separately. A useful feature on the Summit LP grill is an LED fuel gauge. At the push of a button the weight of the Liquid Propane tank displays remaining fuel levels in increments of five. A warning is not displayed when fuel levels are running out, however, it is easy to see when gas is getting low. The tank LED is battery powered.

What Users Say (Reviews)

A large majority of the reviews of both the Summit E-470 and S-470 gas grills awarded five out of five possible stars. On Amazon, for example, of seventy-five reviews combined, fifty-one of these reviews gave the grills the highest possible ratings of five, and another thirteen users awarded four stars to these grills. This indicates that 85% of the reviewers heavily praised the use of either grill.

A large majority of the reviews of both the Summit E-470 and S-470 gas grills awarded five out of five possible stars. On Amazon, for example, of seventy-five reviews combined, fifty-one of these reviews gave the grills the highest possible ratings of five, and another thirteen users awarded four stars to these grills. This indicates that 85% of the reviewers heavily praised the use of either grill.

Turkey, fish, chicken and ribs can be smoked successfully, however, wood should be soaked for a minimum of one hour prior to placing the meat on the equipment, and be sure the burners are on the medium temperature. If the burners are too hot, the wood could start a fire. The Summit 470 also includes a smoker box that goes front to back along the right side of the grill. Small wood chips are recommended over large chips and should be replaced with new chips after thirty to forty minutes. Wood soakers are available for additional purchase, that work well with these gas grills, however, for best results, if you really want to smoke a quality meal, it is recommended that a smoker appliance be bought separate from the grill.

Specifically, grilling enthusiasts enjoy trying different food types and checking out the various ways the grill offers for cooking a variety of food. They specifically commented that the grill was easy to assemble right out of the box. Of course, Summit grills are known for their great design. In most purchases, buyers were looking for quality construction in a size that fit their BBQ grilling space.

A large majority of the reviews of both the Summit E-470 and S-470 gas grills awarded five out of five possible stars. On Amazon, for example, of seventy-five reviews combined, fifty-one of these reviews gave the grills the highest possible ratings of five, and another thirteen users awarded four stars to these grills. This indicates that 85% of the reviewers heavily praised the use of either grill.

On the other end of the rating scale, using these same seventy-five reviews, only eight total ratings were divided between three one star and five two stars reviews. Again on the Amazon website, where most reviews are found, a total of three users gave the S-grill three stars, while the E-grill received no three-star reviews. The total reviews calculated on the S-670 gave a 4.3 rating out of a possible five points; with the E-670 receiving 4.5 out of a possible five points.

Most of the high ratings in reviews were given for the great design, easy assembly, easy to use, and easy to clean up. Even heat throughout the grill surfaces, make a final product that is cooked as close to perfection as possible on an outdoor gas grill.

According to most reviews, the Summit E and S 470 gas grills best uses are for searing and indirect cooking for either small or large gatherings. The primary cooking area measures 468 square inches with a warming rack area of 112 square inches. This gives the outdoor chef a total cooking area of 580 square inches, considered a good size for larger groups.

More good reviews were generally given to Weber’s 24/7 customer service and a limited warranty, if anything does go wrong. The company is committed to maintaining their reputation for convenient and reliable assistance when needed.

In an observation that is not really complaint of the 470 grills, it is noted by a handful of users that they prefer the taste of charcoal-cooked food over gas grilled. This is more a personal choice and not so much to do with the quality of the Summit grills but it does appear in reviews as a negative comment.

Most users recommend the purchase of a good grill cover, if the grill will be stored year-round outdoors, which is most common. The cooking surface and hood portion of the Summit 470 grill are water proof, but the interior of the grill cart can get drenched, filling up and spilling out over the grease tray. The grease drip trays are likely to mix with rain-water if left uncovered, which can make a mess of the grill and the deck. There have been a few critical remarks regarding rust after only a few years, likely also due to weather exposure. When spending the amount required in purchasing a quality grill such as the S- or E-670 grill, it is advised to protect the product as much as possible for a simple additional cost of a cover.

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