Z Grills vs Pit Boss – Pellet Grill Comparison


If you are looking to upgrade your grilling equipment, you will want to make sure that you take the time to choose the best grill that meets your specific needs and will last you many years of use. Z grills vs Pit Boss grills are two of the most popular grill brands available today, but which one is best?

While each brand has its own pros and cons, some features will make one grilling system stand out more than the other.

The comparisons below will help you to evaluate both of these brands and figure out which one will work best for your needs to ensure that you do not make an uninformed decision that could potentially result in disappointment later on down the road. 

Z Grills Overview

Z Grills was only known by the company they made grills for until 2017 when they raised money on crowdfunding and started making their own. Z Grills produces an assortment of grilling tools and accessories for their customers.

Z Grills want to make a quality pellet grill experience accessible for the average person. This means a focus on quality over frills. There are not many bells and whistles, but the grills do a good job cooking great meals.

They have an online community of nearly 5000 members. There are also two large fan-run groups with over 5000 followers.

Customers are overwhelmingly positive towards Z Grills. This just goes to show that many people don’t want to take the time to write a good review. I have seen that Z Grills provides very good customer service once you buy from them.

Z Grill Overview Lineup

The Z Grills are well-made, high-grade grills. Here’s a quick summary of each series:

1. Basic Series

Basic Series grills have the capacity of 460 or 560 square inches of total rack space and are cheaper than the other ranges. Basic series grills may offer minimal features, but unique features such as side lower shelves and a new PID controller will be on the new models for 2021.

2. 600 Series Grill

There are six grills in the 600 series lineup at the time of writing, and four new ones were made in 2021. The grills in this article have 572 or 573 square inches of total cooking surface area each, and they are called the 600 series because they rounded up to the nearest 50.

These models produce higher quality, provide a more efficient cooking process, and are available in larger sizes.

3. 700 Series

This grouping encompasses eight grills, four of which are enclosed, two on open legs without a bottom shelf, and two on open legs with a bottom shelf. Together they have approximately 700 square inches of total cooking surface area. These grills cost more because they offer more.

They have a larger grill surface, bigger hoppers, and most models come with integrated meat probes.

4. 1000 Series

This four-grill series offers 1,000 square inches. One version comes with a closed cart in two colors. The other version has an open cart for more rugged adventures. These are the larger Z Grills models that come with three cooking grates. They all have the same thermostats and auger.

How Do Z Grills Work?

Z Grills provides a comparable quality of wood pellets to brands like Pit Boss and Traeger. Heat and smoke are generated by burning these pellets to flavor food.

Watch this video to understand how Z grills work:

The wood pellets are stored in a hopper on the side of the grill, which is then fed into a firebox by a rod. To use the machine to create coffee, you need to load up your coffee hopper and set the temperature between 140°F and 195°F. Once you’ve set these options, all you need to do is wait for it to finish brewing.

These pellet grills are really just smokers or ovens since they can maintain consistent temperatures all day. Pellet grills are great for people who are unable to use traditional methods of cooking.

Related: Best Pellets for Smoking

Pit Boss Overview

Dan Thiessen and his sons Jeff and Jordan founded Pit Boss Grills in Phoenix, Arizona. This was a subsidiary of the existing business Dansons, Inc., and set up in 1999. Pit Boss grills are of higher quality at an affordable price, meaning you can cook a better BBQ.

They also create community by offering exclusive recipes for cooking and hosting a barbecue. They offer these on their website.

How Does Pit Boss Work?

Since I’ve had my Pit Boss grill for a few years, I’ve learned how to handle it correctly. Here is the video to help you learn how to use your Pit Boss grill.

Let’s fast go over the parts of this pellet grill.

1. Ignitor

Ignitor is a button that lights up your pellets. It’s nice because it gives you an indication of when your grill is hot and ready to cook. You can also push it down to turn off your grill, which is very convenient if you want to keep cooking without stopping or if you are using a charcoal grill.

You can even set it up for smoking with wood chips.

2. Induction Fan

This is a fan on top of your grill that blows air down and around your meat. It helps keep it moist and flavorful. You can turn it off if you want to use only charcoal or wood chips for smoking. The fan also has an on position, which you can use when you are cooking with charcoal or wood chips so that smoke will be blown onto your food, giving it extra flavor.

3. Auger

Auger feeds your pellets into your pellet hopper. The auger is an electric motor, and it works by pushing pellets through a tube to deliver them to your grill. You can control how fast or slow it goes by adjusting a knob on top of your grill.

It’s important to keep your auger clean so that it will work correctly.

If you don’t do so, you could end up with excess ash in your food.

4. Fire Pot

This is where your pellets burn. You can adjust a knob on top of your grill to control how hot it burns. It is important to keep your fire pot clean, as ash buildup in it can affect how well your pellets burn. If you don’t do so, you could end up with excess ash in your food.

5. Hopper

This is where you store your pellets. It’s pretty straightforward, but you will want to keep it clean so that there isn’t too much ash buildup. You can also adjust a knob on top of your grill to control how fast or slow your pellets are fed into your fire pot.

A faster feed means more heat and less smoke; a slower feed means less heat and more smoke. You can also use an auger if you prefer to feed them in manually.

Difference Between Z Grills and Pit Boss

Both Z grills and Pit Boss have a lot of similarities but there are also some differences. Here is a breakdown of each grill to show you their main difference so that you can make an informed decision on which one is right for you.


Though these two brands are not top of the line, they both have solid construction. They are made with heavy-duty materials and will be able to stand up to years of use. While they may not be as high quality as some other brands, you can expect them to last for several years without needing any major repairs or parts replacements. 

The Z Grills offers a variety of material options and powder-coated designs for your smoker. It’s great to have the choice and durability of stainless steel where it is needed, but you can also opt for cheaper smokers with fewer features if you are on a budget.

Pit Boss does offer choices of materials for the body and grill, but their steel is thicker and heavier than what Z Grills offer. Pit Boss’s steel is more heavy-duty than the other product. Although both products are strong and sturdy, the Pit Boss’s steel is stronger.

As far as grates are concerned, steel grates are both rust-resistant and easy to clean. They are not as durable as stainless steel, but they do provide a reasonable alternative. In general, both of these brands offer solid construction.

Temperature Range

The Z Grill can go between 180°F and 450°F with 25°F increments of temperature. With this, you can make a variety of dishes including roasting, grilling, and smoking low and slow.

There’s a lot of variety depending on which model you choose. Some models can heat up to 500°F, while others may only reach 180°F. 

The pit boss offers temperature ranges of between 180°F and 5000°F. It also has an external probe that allows you to monitor your meat without opening your grill or smoker. This is very convenient when smoking because it lets you know when your meat is done without risking overcooking it or burning it due to opening and closing it too often.

Overall, Pit Boss’s temperature range is higher than Z Grills. So, you can use it to cook a wider variety of foods and recipes. You can cook everything from steaks to vegetables on both of these products, but you will have more options with Pit Boss.

Temperature Control

Good heat distribution is essential for cooking food with an automated pellet smoker. It will prevent one piece of food from being ready before the rest, and help to maintain your desired cooking temperature consistently.

Z Grills has made their temperature control system significantly more accurate. On any 2021 model Z Grills you purchase, the temperature will be only about 5°F away from what you set it at.

On the other hand, the fluctuations in Pit Boss are much larger. They do not employ PID controllers and a lot of the time, people get discrepancies in temperature up to 20°F.

Cooking Space

The Z Grills range of grills can hold up to 1000 square inches of area for grilling. It’s unlikely that you won’t find a smoker in this range satisfying your needs, with most choosing the 700 Series model. With this amount of space, it becomes perfect for when inviting guests or smoking leftovers

Pit Boss boasts more grill sizes to choose from. There are varieties of cooking space options that can accommodate the size of your family — from 250 square inches to 2,000 square inches.

Overall, Pit Boss brag more models and size variety than Z Grills. However, Z Grills offer the ideal size for most people. The larger cooking space is great for hosting parties or if you want to smoke a lot of meat at once. If you’re just starting out, then you’ll probably be fine with one of their smaller models that are less expensive.


For a hassle-free experience, Z Grills customers enjoy a 3-year warranty and have a return policy for a 30-day guarantee. The company is confident that its product is great and better than the industry average.

But, Pit Boss is even ahead of the game with five-year warranties on their pellet smokers. Overall, both Z Grills and Pit Boss offer great warranties for customers to enjoy. The main difference is that Pit Boss offers longer warranty periods than Z Grills does. If you’re looking for a long-term investment, then it’s worth paying extra for a product that will last a long time.

Extra Features

Pit Boss and Z Grills are companies who focus on quality rather than trying to be the top. They both offer simple products with a focus on providing great customer service.

A lot of Z Grills smokers come with 2 sensors, so you can know when the meat is done without opening the lid. They come with accurate readings on the internal temperature of the meat.

Pit Boss’ has a single meat probe and probe port. It lacks a cover that can be used as an external temperature gauge, but it’s still very convenient to use. The main thing you need to know is that your food is cooking at a safe temperature before opening it up.

Z Grills vs Pit Boss Comparison Table

FeaturesZ Grills ZPG-7002E Wood Pellet GrillPit Boss PB0820SP Wood Pellet Grill
Temperature Range180°F - 450°F180°F - 500°F
Hopper Capacity20 pounds21 pounds
Total Cooking Area694 square inches849 square inches
Cooking GridsPorcelain Coated Cast IronPorcelain Coated Cast Iron
Warranty3 years5 years

Frequently Asked Questions

Are Z Grills Reliable?

Yes, Z Grills are very reliable and convenient. However, some factors can affect how reliable they will be for you. It is important to consider what type of smoker you have and how often you use it before purchasing a new grill. 

How Long Do Z Grills Last?

The durability of Z Grills can vary depending on how well you take care of them. You will want to avoid storing your grill outside and make sure that you follow any manufacturer’s instructions regarding proper storage and maintenance.

How Do I Get More Smoke From My Z Grill?

There are a few different things you can do to get more smoke from your Z Grill. First, consider using wood chips or pellets when you grill instead of lump charcoal. This will give you a more aromatic and flavorful smoke that enhances your food as it cooks.

You should avoid filling your grill up too much with meat. If there is not enough room for smoke to circulate around all of your food, then you won’t be able to get any smoky flavor in it. Finally, make sure that there is plenty of airflow in and out of your grill by leaving all vents open while cooking on high heat.

Can Z Grills Get Wet?

No, Z Grills should never get wet. Water and electricity do not mix well together, so you will want to make sure that your grill is completely dry before you use it again. If water does come into contact with your grill, then you will need to unplug it immediately and let it dry out for a few days before using it again.

Is Pit Boss a Good Grill?

Yes, Pit Boss Grills are a great option for anyone who needs to grill regularly. They have been around for years and are very popular in many markets across the globe.

Can You Use a Pit Boss Without Pellets?

No, these grills employ all-natural pelletized wood for fuel. Pellets are loaded into a hopper and fed into a firebox where they ignite to produce smoke. The heat is then regulated by an adjustable dampening system that also provides a consistent temperature throughout your cooking session.

It’s just like barbecuing with charcoal or propane.


In a nutshell, Z Grills and Pit Boss Grills are both top-of-the-line products. They’re made of quality materials and have solid customer support. If you’re looking for a grill that will last you many years, we highly recommend purchasing one of these two brands.

Bobby Johnson

When he's not writing about barbecue, you can find Bobby smoking meat for friends and family. He's been a backyard pitmaster for roughly half his life, and has worked with nearly every cut of meat. Not everyone has a hands-on guide to teach them BBQ, but that's what Bobby hopes to do with Electric Smoker HQ. He wants to help people create amazing food that they can be proud of.