The Lifesmart 2000B pellet grill is a part of our testing for the Best Pellet Grill of 2022 that we recently published on YouTube.
We took 5 wood pellet grills under $599 and put them head to head in over 20 categories to determine which wood pellet grill is the best buy at that price point. (While the price of the Lifesmart 2000B now exceeds that price threshold, when we began our testing it still fell in that window. What can we say? Inflation.)
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Today we’re taking a closer look at the Lifesmart 2000B pellet grill. Let’s start by walking through the specifications of this unit.
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Lifesmart 2000B Pellet Grill Specifications
Assembled Dimensions: W68″ x H53″ x D23.5″
Cooking Space: 1,736″ sq. total (648″ main grate, 544″x2 upper racks)
Cooking Height: 13″
Temperature Range of 180° to 500°F
Hopper Capacity: 30 lb hopper
The Lifesmart 2000B weighs 175 pounds and measures 68 inches wide by 53 inches high by 23.5 inches deep. It offers a whopping 2000 square inches of total cooking space when including the 2 upper racks.
The main grate provides 648 square inches of cooking space and when the upper racks are removed there’s 13 inches of height between the main grate and the lid. That means this pellet grill is enormous and can accommodate just about any cook you want to do, just short of a whole hog.
The pellet hopper is equally large, holding 30 pounds of pellets at a time. However, there is no pellet dump feature on this grill, so before you dump 30 pounds in the hopper, be sure you’re ok with that type since there’s no real way to swap them out.
Assembling the Lifesmart 2000B
When it came to assembly for this unit, we had friends of The Lab come and help us put this and the other units for the best pellet grill under $599 together, and my friend Randy helped me put together the Lifesmart grill.
We both felt that it was a pretty easy build. Altogether it took about 90 minutes from box to ready to fire up. We appreciated that the grill came with the hopper already attached and connected so that was a big time saver compared to some of the others we built that day.
Lifesmart 2000B Pellet Grill Build Quality
This grill is made of cold rolled steel, and I know I always want to know how thick the metal is on the grill that I’m thinking about purchasing. We took our digital caliper and measured the lid of the grill, and got a measurement of 2.42 millimeters for the metal thickness.
We also measured the body of the grill, and that came in at a thickness of 1.68 millimeters according to the caliper.
The 2000B has 4 wheels, and two are locking caster wheels that spin 360 degrees. The other two wheels are best described as “roller blade style” wheels that are locked in-line, so the movement comes from the caster side when positioning this grill.
The handle is located on the pellet hopper side, which is the same side as the locking casters, so this unit is easy to move around.
On our unit, the bottom shelf was slanted lower on the right than on the left when installed due to what looks like an error in drilling at the factory. I reached out to Lifesmart customer service via email, and found their support to be excellent. A couple of emails back and forth, and they helped determine that the error could be corrected by a new set of legs being shipped out.
Next we ran something called the paper test. It helps visualize how tightly the doors connect to the grill body so that smoke stays in the chamber instead of leaks out the door when cooking. The Lifesmart 2000B resisted the paper on the side of the door, so there’s a pretty decent seal there, but on the bottom of the door it allowed the paper in pretty easily. We haven’t had smoke pour out the door while cooking yet, but there is some that will sneak out during startup.
While we were running the tests on all 5 grills in our Under $599 lineup, we noticed that the Lifesmart 2000B was leaking grease out of the back and side of the grill. The inside was sealed with high temperature permatex, but it looks like a section was missed, and it lead to this leak. I was able to buy a tube of permatex on Amazon and patch it up without much trouble.
The grill grates are made of steel and are porcelain coated for easy cleanup. In comparison to other grills in this price range, the main grill grates are lighter than any others that we’ve come across.
Lifesmart 2000B Controller
The controller on the 2000B has a low end temperature setting of 180° Fahrenheight and a high setting of 500°. One of the standout features of this grill is that you can set the temperature in 5 degree increments, which has been uncommon at this price point. We’re beginning to see it more, but this much cooking space and 5 degree incremental control is hard to beat.
There’s 1 temperature probe included with the grill in the box, and a second can be added for additional functionality.
Whenever you have a new grill in your possession, I recommend running the biscuit test as the first thing you do with your new grill. You simply go to the local grocery store and buy a can of premade biscuit dough, turn the grill on to the temperature recommended on the package, usually 350° to 375°, let the grill come up to temperature and then simply place the biscuits directly on the grate. Set a timer according to the package directions, and when the timer goes off take a look at the biscuits. Check to see if the top of the biscuits are done and what the bottom of the biscuits look like, and you’ll understand quite a bit about how your cooker operates.
For the Lifesmart 2000B, the biscuits cooked the hottest on the left side of the grill, so that’s something to note when you place future food on the grill as to where your hotspots are.
Cooking Low and Slow
I wanted to know how efficient this grill was when burning pellets, so we ran the grill until it was empty, weighed out 4 pounds of pellets and loaded them into the hopper and primed the grill until the first pellet dropped into the burn cup. We turned the grill off and on, set it to 250 degrees and used the Thermoworks Signals thermometer to track the actual temperature in the center of the main cooking grate.
Here’s a graph of that cook, and you can see that the grill held 250° for 2 hours and 46 minutes on 4 pounds of pellets.
We checked the pellet hopper after the temperature dropped, and found quite a few pellets that didn’t feed and were held in place by friction. I’m sure it would have run another 30-45 minutes if those pellets had fed, but it’s worth noting that every grill in our testing group had pellets that didn’t auto feed as it got close to an empty hopper.
We also tracked the time it took the grill to go from a cold start to holding 250 degrees, and the Lifesmart 2000B reached 250 in 18 minutes and 35 seconds.
To test the cooking capability of this grill, we ran a low and slow pork butt at 250 degrees to see exactly how it cooked. We even shot that cook as a stand along recipe video.
This is what the pork looked like when it hit between 150-160 degrees internal, just before we wrapped the pork in foil to push through the stall.
Cooking Hot and Fast
We also wanted to see how this grill performed at a hot and fast cook, and spatchcock chicken is a family favorite. We cut out the backbone to lay the chicken flat, sprinkled on some rub and here’s what the chicken looked like when it temped at 160° in the breast. The meat was moist and juicy, and the family loved it.
No Grill Review would truly be complete without an actual grilling test, so we put the Lifesmart 2000B to work grilling some boneless skinless chicken thighs. I wanted to see how the factory grates would do putting grill marks on chicken, and I also wanted to test how the GrillGrate aluminum raised rail system would perform on this cooker. I set the grill to high, let it come up to temperature, and then sprayed the grates down with duck fat, placed a chicken thigh in the center of the grate and one on the grill grates, and set a timer for five minutes and closed the lid.
When the timer went off we flipped the chicken over to see how it went, and the GrillGrate system put some dark grill marks on the chicken thigh, well darker than the factory grates. If it’s sear marks that you’re after when it comes to grilling, this grill with the added GrillGrate system can put some mean grill marks on your protein.
After all of our cooking tests concluded, it was time to clean the grill.
We started with the grates, and I found that the grates moved around quite a bit when knocking off the debris with a grill brush. The grates aren’t locked in from side to side on the main level, so there’s a fair bit of play that goes on when you try to clean them.
There isn’t an ash clean out function on this grill, so every 3-4 cooks, it’s a good idea to get inside the cooking chamber, remove the grates and the diverter panel and sweep out the extra pellet ash that is sitting in the burn cup and on the bottom of the grill. This makes sure that your pellets can reach the ignitor rod for startup, and any additional ash won’t build up to cause problems over time.
The grease clean up is as easy as taking the grease bucket and dumping it out, or simply replacing an aluminum bucket liner to keep things clean.
The Lifesmart 2000B has a 1 year warranty from the manufacturer, and you can find more details on the manufacturer website.
What We Loved About the Lifesmart 2000B Pellet Grill and Smoker
- When removing the top 2 racks, the cooking height allows for just about anything we can think of to be cooked in this grill.
- When including all 3 racks, 1,736 square inches of cooking space can go a really long way.
- The temperature can be adjusted in 5° increments.
What We Didn’t Love About the Lifesmart 2000B Pellet Grill
- The welds in the cooking chamber were weak and we experienced significant grease leaking during our pork butt cook. This made a big mess on our patio.
- The cooking grates do not fit snuggly and wiggle around a lot when cleaning and even moving food around.
- There’s no pellet clean out system so you’re locked into finishing up the whole hopper of pellets before you can change the flavor.
If you’re someone who’s always cooking for a crowd, and you like to cook low and slow or hot and fast, then this is the grill for you. With 1,736 inches of cooking space for less than $1,000, there isn’t another pellet grill I’m aware of that offers so much capacity at such a low price.