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Akorn: 4 Year Review

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I've had my Akorn for just over four years now, and thought I'd give quick review as to how it's holding up.




First some details.  I picked up this Akorn for $250 at Walmart in March of '15.  (It still had a clearance price tag on it from the previous fall/winter.) In the last four years I have lit the grill 270 times.   If I had to describe an average cook, it would be at about 400F for around 1 hour. (Sometimes I really get the heat cranking with the pizza stones or cast iron wok, though!)  During the first year I kept close track of charcoal consumption, and I was averaging 20-23 burns per bag of Royal Oak lump. That is efficient!


I live in Massachusetts and keep my Akorn stored on a covered porch. I don't have a cover for the Akorn, but it rarely gets wet where it is located. I store it with all vents closed and keep whatever charcoal is left from the last burn sitting in the fire bowl.  The ash bin only gets emptied out after each complete bag of lump is burned.


Durability:  It seems like every review of the Akorn questions its durability. Here are some pics showing what mine looks like after four years and almost 270 burns:




The enamel in the ash pan is still shining!  There is a little surface rust starting to show where the inner and outer shells are riveted together and on the very outside edge of the ash pan. 




The fire bowl has most of its original enamel intact.  There is a little rippling toward the bottom where the fire burns hottest, and light rust is visible where the standoffs are welded to the bowl. 




I gave the inside of the lid a once over with a brush and was surprised to find most of the carbon buildup turn to dust, revealing a shiny interior underneath!





The only rust that is starting to really show is on the bottom shelf that does occasionally collect snow and water.  At this point it's only surface rust, but if  I decide to eventually replace this part, it's only $13 from Chagriller!


Water really is the enemy of this grill!  Mine is holding up great so far, considering it's been outside for over four years.  I have two friends, however, who both have Akorns purchased about the same time as mine who are not so lucky.  In both cases, the grills spend much of their time exposed to the weather.  Even though covers are used, both are showing considerable rust at the connection between ash pan and body of the Akorn.


Overall I'm still very happy with this purchase, and look forward to at least another four years at this rate!




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I've had mine 5 years and mines just a little bit better shape wise than yours but I don't do any high temp cooks and drag inside from Novemberish through to April 1. Always covered when it's out too. Total agreement we will get our money's worth out of them. 


Moncton N.B. 


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I had my first one for 4 years. I stored it in a shed whenever I could but I grill year round so it was exposed to weather often. I grill in rain and snow. 

After 4 years the seals were failing and the ash bin rusted. I was able to find 2 new ones on clearance for 69.00 each. I built a table for one and have it under a grilling gazebo so hopefully iit will last longer


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Wow!   Nicely done.  My Akorn is about 7 years old now and getting long in the tooth.  It gets emptied of ash about three times a year, has never been disassembled for cleaning and other than tightening the shelf bracket screw recently, it has been a real champ for me.  Haven't seen one for sale around Southern Ontario for probably two years, so I am going to keep my eyes open for one when I head to Hilton Head in a few weeks.  


Edit - Just checked.  Been here since May 2012, so my Akorn is almost exactly 7 years old. I bought it about two weeks before joining formally.

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I have had mine for about 2 years now, and I am very satisfied.  I remember to cover it most of the time :-D  It stays out in the weather all year long. I put a gasket on the ash collector pan, and that helped a lot with temp control.  My lower shelf is showing a bit of rust on it, and I have some rust around the disk that holds the ash pan onto the body. I attribute that to the occasional water collection in the bottom from leaving it uncovered. My original cast iron grate is shot. I replaced it with a nifty stainless steel one I found on Amazon. I do a lot of high heat cooking, like pizzas and bread, so I probably contributed to the demise of my grate.


I got my Akorn, and my Akorn Junior on clearance at Walmart. I paid $227 total for BOTH of them.  So I figure that I already got my money's worth out of them, but they will likely last a few more years. My main beef with Akron is that is does not come with the heat deflector.


If I was was just breaking into the kamado world, I would buy the Akorn again.

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  • 2 months later...

I bought my first Akorn in September 2013. For 5.5 years, it was perfect. Then, I suddenly, in June 2019 the ash tray rusted out. This was stored outside in the full range of elements in rainy Seattle. 


I bought a second one and have modified it based on what the first taught me. Most important: seal around the perimeter ot the ash tray, to keep water from accumulating in the outer shell. So far, no water has accumulated there. 

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Nice review. Mine essentially looked like new at one and two years old outside and covered year round when I passed them onto friends. My Akorn Jr lives indoors unless we travel and it looks like new. They are fantastic grills.


Since the switch to ceramics, I remain shocked how much more charcoal they use, even though it is still not much in the scheme of things. 

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11 hours ago, gotzero said:

Since the switch to ceramics, I remain shocked how much more charcoal they use, even though it is still not much in the scheme of things. 


I used to track the amount of charcoal I burned, and my Kamado Joe went through double the amount that the Akorn needed for similar cooks.  The Akorn does a great job of keeping the heat inside the Kamado!

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