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RichardL

The No Flare Square / Flame Tamer / Even Heating

43 posts in this topic

 

 

While I've been VERY happy with my JA-5 burner, I've been searching for a better way to deal with flare ups and uneven heat distribution. The "flame tamers" in just about every grill don't seem to work well and don't distribute the heat from the burners evenly IMHO. I recently installed The No Flare Square (thenoflaresquare.com) ceramic tiles on my JA 5-burner. I had used a ceramic tile on a previous grill that worked fairly well, but was rather fragile and only lasted a season or two.

 

I discovered these online and decided to give 'em a try. BTW...They have a special running right now (Fall 07) that gets you a 4 pack of their seasonings and rubs for free with each box of tiles. We've tried 3 of the 4 so far and all have been terrific. I ordered from their website and received the order quickly via UPS.

 

I decided to run these on the grill for a while before posting and I'm happy to say that this is a great upgrade to my JA. I've been VERY pleased with how even the grill heats now, as the tiles spread the heat and mellow out any hot spots, since they create a single heated surface below the cooking grates. The tiles also hold a lot of heat, so I'm pretty sure I'm running at lower settings to maintain a given temp. I'm on NG, so saving a bit of gas will pay for these real fast at current gas rates. The tiles capture any stuff that falls through the grates, so nothing gets to the burners. It's simple to remove the grates and brush off anything that doesn't burn off. The manufacturer suggests flipping them occasionally.

 

The only real issue I've run into is that I can't see the burners with the tiles in place, so I have to "listen" for ignition when starting up the grill. Hasn't really slowed me down at all, but thought of taking the front row off and seeing if there's any difference in performance. I did have a pretty big flare up cooking a bunch of Italian sausages, but just moved them around a bit and let it burn off. Also noticed that some EVO marinade that dripped through burned off BELOW the tiles, with NONE of the flame coming through to the meat.

 

These tiles are "sturdy" and seem like they will last for a long time, but they are ceramic, so they can break if dropped. They are backed by a "life-time" warranty. Can't ask for more than that. I'm very pleased with this product and would recommend these if you want to improve your grill.

 

Project Cost: (2) boxes of tiles @ $28 + (2) grates @ $15 = $90 (Got the freebies with the tiles, so better value than this)

 

Here's how the install went...

 

Removed cooking grates and flame tamers. Good time to clean out the gunk and check the burners.

 

 

Removed the silly built-in smoker drawer. It's serves no purpose and creates a cool strip down the middle. Backed the opening that is left inside the firebox with a few layers of heavy duty foil to protect the gas manifold and valves from high heat. Still have to figure out how to attach the original front plate with the handle to cover the opening on the front of the grill. Just cosmetic.

 

 

Dropped the flame tamers back in place

 

 

Purchased a couple of stock grates from Lowes and cut to size for exact fit in grill with a hack saw. These were not the ideal grates, but best I could come up with on short notice. These are porcelain coated and flat bars. Would prefer stainless rod. Maybe later. The grates sit right on top of the flame tamers and fit front-to-back and side-to-side. Note that they don't have to be a dead-on perfect fit, as the tiles can hang over the edge a bit and the grates are sitting on the flame tamers.

 

 

 

Now the tiles go in. Starting in the back right corner it's EXACTLY 9 tiles across the back to the Sear Burner divider on this grill. I alternated the tiles 90 degress to break up the pattern. The slight angle on the tiles at the back is due to this grate having a larger diameter "tube" on one side. I chose to put this at the back. It could be at the front, either way, insignificant to performance...I think?.

 

 

Next, laid down a row to the front. EXACTLY 6 tiles to the front, so it's a 9x6 grid requiring 54 tiles (two boxes). These tiles work perfectly with the dimensions of my grill, like they were made for it. Filled out the rows to complete the grid. Note the blackened tiles are due to cooking some vegi's with a sweet vinaigrette dressing. The sugar carmelized on the tiles. No harm and GREAT vegi's.

 

 

The tiles fit flush to the edge of the divider between the sear burner and the rest of the burners so ALL the heat from the burners is going into the tiles, and thus available for cooking. Note that if you want to remove them to get to the burners, it's easy to lift off the front row and left row and lift out the grates with the tiles in place.

 

 

The tiles leave about 5/8" to the ledge for the cooking grates.

 

 

Cooking grids back in, completed install and ready to grill.

 

 

If anyone else has used these or orders them, please post your experience.

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While I've been VERY happy with my JA-5 burner, I've been searching for a better way to deal with flare ups and uneven heat distribution. The "flame tamers" in just about every grill don't seem to work well and don't distribute the heat from the buners evenly. I recently installed The No Flare Square (thenoflaresquare.com) ceramic tiles on my JA 5-burner. I had used a ceramic tile on a previous grill that worked fairly well, but was rather fragile and only lasted a season or two.

 

..... edited to remove repetition.... (Takeahike)

 

If anyone else has used these or orders them, please post your experience.

Richard:

 

Nice mod ... what was the cost of the tiles?

 

I have the LP version of your JA ... and really have not found a need to add to the flame tamers. I do have a "cool" spot between the burners, where the smokebox slides in, but I have learned to use that spot to my advantage. Otherwise, my JA 720-0165 has very even heat.

 

Thanks for posting the great "step-by-step" pictures!

 

BG in WV

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I really enjoyed going through the process with you. Thanks for taking the time to take the pics and to detail your post so well.

 

I had always admired the ceramic tiles of the top of the line bbqgalore grills.

 

This kit makes conversion easy. Let us know if you change your mind as to how well the tiles work out for you.

 

Shelly

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Richard:

 

Nice mod ... what was the cost of the tiles?

 

I have the LP version of your JA ... and really have not found a need to add to the flame tamers. I do have a "cool" spot between the burners, where the smokebox slides in, but I have learned to use that spot to my advantage. Otherwise, my JA 720-0165 has very even heat.

 

Thanks for posting the great "step-by-step" pictures!

 

BG in WV

 

BG -

 

Cost for the tiles was about $60 (2 boxes @ $28 + Shipping). The grates were about $15 each, so $90 total.

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RichardL,

 

Again, you are proving to be very innovative! Your photos and procedure presentation is very nice!

 

I've used these ceramic grids in the past. To be quite truthful, they didn't work out too well for my old grill. It was a NG grill, had grates with the little ceramic briquets, which were a disaster! Sears had those squares like yours, so I picked up a couple of boxes. They fit nicely, but were a pain to keep clean. Even though I kept flipping them, they eventually got all clogged up and dirty. Bear in mind this older grill (MHP - Modern Home Products) was not even close to the BTU output of today's grills, so I believe that was the problem - not enough heat to vaporize and burn off all the drippings (we used to cook lots of skinned chicken, sausage and 80% chopped meat burgers). They did reduce flareup slightly, but the reduced heat was the big PITA. Our cooking times were extended even more. This is one of the reasons I welcomed the SS flame tamers as is standard on most grills today. I have experienced a lot less flareup, and cleanup is much better today as most of the drippings are burned off. And........ I've learned to cook chicken with lower flames, rarely cook sausage, and sear my burgers first on my infrared unit.

 

I think these should be great on your grill, like I said, the higher btu output makes my old problems a non-issue for you. I remember a couple of years ago on these forums some experimentation with similar products to your ceramics, I can't remember the name, but I believe those utilizing them were very happy with them. We'll be watching your posts for updates as you gain more time with them, and hope they continue to perform up to your expectations. They certainly have that WOW factor!

 

Thanks again for taking the time to share your experiences with us!

 

Mike

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..........

Removed the silly built-in smoker drawer. It's serves no purpose and creates a cool strip down the middle. Backed the opening that is left inside the firebox with a few layers of heavy duty foil to protect the gas manifold and valves from high heat. Still have to figure out how to attach the original front plate with the handle to cover the opening on the front of the grill. Just cosmetic.

 

Here is a link to how I removed the smoker box and replace the removable smoker cover over the opening.

 

http://www.bbqsource-forums.com/invboard/i...ost&p=14447

Dropped the flame tamers back in place

 

I did the same mod this past spring, But I did not put the flame tamers back on. With both the flame tamers and ceramic tile, I believe it will take a little longer to heat the tiles up, but you will get fairly consistent temp. I was going to run a test both ways, but never got around to it. Just too busy, and have limited time on the weekend.

..........

If anyone else has used these or orders them, please post your experience.

 

Photo of the installation of my tiles

 

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RichardL,

 

Again, you are proving to be very innovative! Your photos and procedure presentation is very nice!

 

I've used these ceramic grids in the past. To be quite truthful, they didn't work out too well for my old grill. It was a NG grill, had grates with the little ceramic briquets, which were a disaster! Sears had those squares like yours, so I picked up a couple of boxes. They fit nicely, but were a pain to keep clean. Even though I kept flipping them, they eventually got all clogged up and dirty. Bear in mind this older grill (MHP - Modern Home Products) was not even close to the BTU output of today's grills, so I believe that was the problem - not enough heat to vaporize and burn off all the drippings (we used to cook lots of skinned chicken, sausage and 80% chopped meat burgers). They did reduce flareup slightly, but the reduced heat was the big PITA. Our cooking times were extended even more. This is one of the reasons I welcomed the SS flame tamers as is standard on most grills today. I have experienced a lot less flareup, and cleanup is much better today as most of the drippings are burned off. And........ I've learned to cook chicken with lower flames, rarely cook sausage, and sear my burgers first on my infrared unit.

 

I think these should be great on your grill, like I said, the higher btu output makes my old problems a non-issue for you. I remember a couple of years ago on these forums some experimentation with similar products to your ceramics, I can't remember the name, but I believe those utilizing them were very happy with them. We'll be watching your posts for updates as you gain more time with them, and hope they continue to perform up to your expectations. They certainly have that WOW factor!

 

Thanks again for taking the time to share your experiences with us!

 

Mike

 

Mike -

 

Thanks for your feedback. I'm actually adjusting my regulator down so I can hold manageable LOW temps for chicken and other slower foods. Grill has been running 450+ on lowest setting. I can easily run it up to 600+, but don't see the need with the sear burner, so I'm moving my temp range down a bit. I've already cooked on this set up for a few weeks and it's great....so far. We'll see how it goes over the long run. I'll post any "news".

 

- Richard

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Hike -

 

Thanks for the link...I had removed the front cover plate and couldn't figure out a simple way to attach it "blind". Was about to head to Lowe's for a "problem solving session". I'll go back and look at the other part per your photos and try that approach.

 

How did you handle the "rock" grate for the tiles without the flame tamers in place. Did you put it down on top of the burners or did you mod to hold below the cooking grate?

 

I'm coming up to 450 in about 15mins. I've been playing with my regulator (NG) to get to where I can hold 350 on low, so that's costing me a bit on my time to heat up, but gives better control for slower cooking over direct heat for chicken. Any thoughts about that? Should I be turning off a center two burners and running outside two to do "indirect heat" for this type of food?

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Hike -

 

Thanks for the link...I had removed the front cover plate and couldn't figure out a simple way to attach it "blind". Was about to head to Lowe's for a "problem solving session". I'll go back and look at the other part per your photos and try that approach.

I just cut the long spline that attaches the cover plate from the smoker box. then I reinserted the cover and bent the spline to the side. A simple solution.

How did you handle the "rock" grate for the tiles without the flame tamers in place. Did you put it down on top of the burners or did you mod to hold below the cooking grate?

neither, I went to HD and looked at all their cheap grates. found one about 18-1/2 long, and place three of them cross wise, See photo below

 

 

I'm coming up to 450 in about 15mins. I've been playing with my regulator (NG) to get to where I can hold 350 on low, so that's costing me a bit on my time to heat up, but gives better control for slower cooking over direct heat for chicken. Any thoughts about that? Should I be turning off a center two burners and running outside two to do "indirect heat" for this type of food?

If I light all my burners,(I have no IR burner) on high, I reach max temp between 10-15 minutes (750+). I adjust my grill where with two end burners on low, it will maintain a grill hood temp of about 250 degrees. This will give a warm rack temp of 220-225 degrees. I do my pulled pork or brisket on the warming rack with this set up, and leave it for 12 hrs. Look at post in beef or pork, and photo gallery for complete description.

 

I haven't measure my grate temp lately with my burners on low. but I do grill my chicken over the burners set at low. If it gets too hot, i just move them to a cooler part of the grill, (maybe a section where I didn't turn a burner on. When nearly done, I throw them on the warming rack to continue to cook while resting.

 

Correction to the above, I checked my photogallery, and the oven thermometer shows a grate temp of around 350 degrees. The dial is straight up, and another photo I have shows clearly the degree markings.

 

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Hello all,

 

I'm new to the group, but have been lurking for a while now. Lot's of great ideas out there, thanks to the community.

 

I was wondering if anyone else has tried these No Flare Squares with a Jenn Aire 720-061LP 3 burner. I had used a similar product on an old Charbroil years ago, and they had done wonders for that cheap grill. This was a bright white tile, with small (1-2mm) triangular holes in them. I've not been able to find them ever again. I had bought them at Home Depot. They look similar to the ceramic tiles on a sear burner. Does anyone know of these?

 

Secondly, I tried the mod described so well by Richard L. Nice pictues, it made it very easy to follow what you had done, and my grill looked great. However, it seems that I have now installed tiles from the space shuttle on my grill, since it looks like a steak can survive reentry.

 

Typically, this grill can get up to 550F in 10 minutes, but it had some cool spots I wanted to fix, since my previous experiment with tile had worked so well, maybe this would help here as well. Now, with the burners completely covered with the tiles, the hood thermometer never reads over 200F, although a thermometer on the grill itself reads in the 500F range. In fact, it seems hotter under the firebox (scary!!!). The igniter for my rotisiree burner melted.

 

I'm a bit nervous to try this again, so does anyone have a suggestion? How much airflow do the burners need? I'd rather keep my deck and house on the rare side, rather than well done.

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Hello all,

 

I'm new to the group, but have been lurking for a while now. Lot's of great ideas out there, thanks to the community.

 

I was wondering if anyone else has tried these No Flare Squares with a Jenn Aire 720-061LP 3 burner. I had used a similar product on an old Charbroil years ago, and they had done wonders for that cheap grill. This was a bright white tile, with small (1-2mm) triangular holes in them. I've not been able to find them ever again. I had bought them at Home Depot. They look similar to the ceramic tiles on a sear burner. Does anyone know of these?

 

Secondly, I tried the mod described so well by Richard L. Nice pictues, it made it very easy to follow what you had done, and my grill looked great. However, it seems that I have now installed tiles from the space shuttle on my grill, since it looks like a steak can survive reentry.

 

Typically, this grill can get up to 550F in 10 minutes, but it had some cool spots I wanted to fix, since my previous experiment with tile had worked so well, maybe this would help here as well. Now, with the burners completely covered with the tiles, the hood thermometer never reads over 200F, although a thermometer on the grill itself reads in the 500F range. In fact, it seems hotter under the firebox (scary!!!). The igniter for my rotisiree burner melted.

 

I'm a bit nervous to try this again, so does anyone have a suggestion? How much airflow do the burners need? I'd rather keep my deck and house on the rare side, rather than well done.

 

Hi Kyle!

 

Welcome to the forum.

 

I have not had any problems with my grill and the No Flare Square set up I described in this mod and I've been cranking out some "out of this world" (bad space shuttle tiles reference) ribeyes using my sear burner and then moving over to the "tiles" on medium heat (~450F) to finish...nice sear outside with PERFECT edge to edge M-Rare inside. (Ruth's Chris would be jealous!)

 

I'm on a 4-burner with a sear burner, so the heat handling ability of my grill may differ greatly from your 3-burner. Also, without the sear burner, you're at a disadvantage, so maybe you should uncover one burner completely and use that as your high-heat burner. Keep the tiles on over the other half of the grill for finishing steaks, cooking other lower temp foods.

 

Note that I only run my burners on "High" to bring the grill up to temp...then I back off to Medium typically. (My high-heat cooking is on the searing station) I'm holding the cooking grates at "grilling" temp for finishing steaks or even a bit lower for grilling chicken, fish, vegi's, etc. It's fun to talk about how high of a temp you can run the grill up to, but I don't get the need for 750F hood temps as that's way too hot to cook on IMHO. I only run mine up to "max heat" to cook off junk on the tiles and flash clean the grates. (See thread on the Grill Wizard brush - highly recommend it!!!)

I actually adjusted the regulator on my grill (Natural Gas) to lower the "Low" temp so I have better control over indirect and slower cooking foods. Getting high enough temps has never been a challenge.

 

My hood temps still come up, albeit it does take longer, but surface temps are higher and more consistent, as you have experienced. I'd like to test with a laser thermometer to "map" the cooking grate temps, but don't have access to one. Due to the amount of heat being "trapped" under the tiles (which helps eliminate the "cool spots") along with the "radiant" heat coming from the tiles back into the firebox, it's certainly possible that you are reaching melting temps for a component...and that is NOT good. I have thought about this with regard to the burners possibly warping due to the high heat, but it hasn't seemed to be a problem for me.

 

One idea to alleviate your concerns but maintain the tile surface would be to pull the back row off, leaving an air gap that would allow trapped heat to escape. Should address the "hood temp" issue as well. Again, without the sear burner, this set up may not work as well for you.

 

Hope this helped...and Happy Grilling!

 

- Richard

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Has anyone else tried these or a much cheaper version on ebay at:

 

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewI...em=380024996711

 

Yes, they are fagile, I use them to fill the gap after lining my grill with the no-flare tiles.

 

The holes are also too large.

 

Hike

 

here is a pic

 

 

 

Quite a few of them are broken, The pictures is when I first installed them.

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Yes, they are fagile, I use them to fill the gap after lining my grill with the no-flare tiles.

 

The holes are also too large.

 

Hike

 

here is a pic

 

 

 

Quite a few of them are broken, The pictures is when I first installed them.

 

Hike -

 

I'm pretty sure you should be able to "score" and break the No Flare Squares to get an exact fit instead of using the other tiles as filler.

 

- Richard

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for my JA-0337 4 burner how many boxes of No Flare would I need?

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