The Bottom Line
Once, long ago, the Char-Broil CB940 was a classic charcoal grill. There are models around today, and still being used that are decades old. Unfortunately, as the years have gone by the manufacturing quality of this once great grill has declined. This is a classic charcoal from the past. A large rectangular box with little vent control and an adjustable cooking grate.
While more than capable of doing most grilling tasks, technology has left this grill behind and declining quality control standards at Char-Broil has made it virtually obsolete.
- Large grilling surface
- Adjustable coal grate for temperature control
- Poor construction quality
- Awkward coal grate
- Leaks air through the front door and lid
- Cannot be shut down to preserve charcoal
- 540 square inches of cooking space
- Seasoned bare cast iron cooking grates
- Adjustment height firebox
- Vents on the hood for temperature control
- Removable ash tray
- Front fire access door
- Wooden side tables and lid handle
- Made in China by Char-Broil
Guide Review - Char-Broil CB940X Charcoal Grill
The old classic charcoal grill was a big, heavy metal box with cast iron construction and an adjustable coal grate for temperature control. Built to withstand intense heat, grills like this also withstood time and lasted for decades.
Char-Broil once made these kinds of charcoal grills.
Of course times change and to be completely honest, even the older versions of this grill had their problems. Today we expect a higher degree of temperature control that this grill simply can't provide. Grilling temperatures are maintained by the size of the fire and the distance between the food and the fire.
With this grill, the coal basket has to be lifted out and raise or lowered. Better grills have a crank or handle to make this adjustment so that heat proof gloves are not needed. Better grills are also closer to being air tight so that temperature can be regulated by air vents. This grill has two small vents in the lid. The gaps around the front access door as well as around the lid make air flow virtually impossible to control.
But these design issues are not really the problem here. Long ago the CB series charcoal grills were made to a higher degree of precision in Georgia. Now they are imported from China and the specifications for the parts seem to have become more like suggestions. The coal grate doesn't fit the body well so the charcoal can fall out of it easily. The ash catcher is smaller than the body, making clean up more of a problem, and the cast iron cooking grates (bare cast iron and requiring care) lack the weight and rigidity they need.
Ultimately, the CB940X is simply not worth the price. Char-Broil lists this model at $400USD, but it seems to sell for a very wide range of prices, but even on serious discount, this grill cannot stand up to better charcoal grills.