Sear Station 101: What It Is, How It Works & Why You Need It

by Joost Nusselder | Last Updated:  June 1, 2022

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What is a sear station and how does it work? This special feature available on some grills allows you to sear your food to perfection by using high heat to brown the surface of your meat and lock in the natural juices. It’s a great way to get restaurant-quality food at home.

In this article, I’ll explain how you can use a sear station to get the best results.

What is a sear station

The Sear Station: A Game-Changer for Your Barbecue

The Sear Station is a feature available on certain Weber grills that allows you to create a high-temperature zone on your grill, which is ideal for searing. It consists of three burners that are closer together than the other burners on the grill, which means that they can produce hotter temperatures comparatively quicker than usual.

How Does the Sear Station Function?

The Sear Station uses infrared technology to heat up the burners, which radiate heat instantly and allow you to caramelize and brown your foods with intense marks. This technology is more efficient than conventional tube burners, which consume more fuel and take longer to reach high temperatures.

What Are the Benefits of Using the Sear Station?

The Sear Station is a game-changer for your barbecue because it allows you to:

  • Cut down on cooking time: The Sear Station heats up much faster than other areas of the grill, which means that you can get your grates hot enough for searing in a fraction of the time it would take with a conventional grill.
  • Retain natural flavors: The intense heat of the Sear Station helps to seal in the natural juices and flavors of your foods, which means that they will taste better and be more tender.
  • Produce restaurant-quality dishes: The Sear Station allows you to produce restaurant-quality dishes with perfectly caramelized and browned surfaces that are full of flavor.
  • Build a high-temperature zone: The Sear Station creates a zone on your grill that can get hotter much faster than other areas, which means that you can sear your foods at a higher temperature than usual.
  • Speed up the cooking process: The Sear Station is a quick and efficient way to cook your foods, which means that you can spend less time grilling and more time enjoying your meal.

Unleashing the Magic: How a Sear Station Transforms Your Grill Game

When it comes to searing, the key is to get your grill grates as hot as possible. This is where the sear station comes in. By placing three burners closer together than the other burners on the grill, the sear station creates a zone that can reach much hotter temperatures much faster than other areas of the grill. Here’s how it works:

  • The sear station burners are typically infrared or ceramic, which means they emit heat through small holes or pools rather than through an open flame.
  • When ignited, these burners superheat the air around them, creating an orange glow that you’ll love witnessing.
  • This effect is what makes the sear station so effective at transferring heat to your steak, chicken, or other meats, creating those beautiful grill marks that we all crave.

The Power of the Zone

The sear station’s zone is hotter than other areas of the grill, which means you can get your grates up to searing temperature much faster than you would otherwise. Here’s how it works:

  • By placing your meat on the sear station, you’re taking advantage of the forced heat to superheat the surface of your meat, creating a delicious crust that locks in juices and flavor.
  • Because the sear station is so hot, you only need to leave your meat on it for a few minutes to achieve the desired effect.
  • Once you’ve seared your meat on the sear station, you can move it to a cooler part of the grill to finish cooking to your desired temperature.

Getting the Most Out of Your Sear Station

To get the most out of your sear station, here are a few tips:

  • Make sure your grill lid is open when using the sear station. This will prevent the heat from building up too much and causing your meat to overcook.
  • Preheat your sear station for at least 10 minutes before placing your meat on it. This will ensure that the grates are hot enough to create a good sear.
  • Don’t overcrowd your sear station. You want to give your meat plenty of room to cook evenly and get those beautiful grill marks.
  • Use tongs to flip your meat, rather than a fork. This will prevent the juices from escaping and  ensure that your meat stays moist and flavorful.

With these tips in mind, you’ll be able to unleash the magic of your sear station and take your grilling game to the next level.

Is a Sear Station Really Worth the Investment?

1. The Benefits of Using a Sear Station

If you’re someone who loves to grill meat, then you know that the perfect sear can make all the difference. A sear station is a great tool to have in your arsenal because it allows you to achieve that perfect sear without having to worry about overcooking your meat. Here are some of the benefits of using a sear station:

  • Searing your meat at a high temperature locks in the juices and creates a delicious crust on the outside.
  • A sear station is more efficient than using the main burners on your grill to sear because it heats up faster and gets hotter.
  • With a sear station, you can sear your meat quickly and then move it to a cooler part of the grill to finish cooking, ensuring that it’s cooked to perfection.

2. Do You Really Need a Sear Station?

While a sear station can be a great tool to have, it’s not necessarily a must-have for everyone. Here are some things to consider before investing in a sear station:

  • If you’re someone who only grills occasionally or doesn’t grill meat often, then a sear station may not be worth the investment.
  • If you have a grill with powerful burners that can get hot enough to sear your meat, then you may not need a sear station.
  • If you’re someone who prefers to cook your meat low and slow, then a sear station may not be necessary for you.

3. Making the Most of Your Sear Station

If you do decide to invest in a sear station, here are some tips for making the most of it:

  • Preheat your sear station for at least 10 minutes before using it to ensure that it’s hot enough.
  • Use a meat thermometer (here are the best for your smoker) to ensure that your meat is cooked to the desired temperature.
  • Don’t overcrowd your sear station. You want to give your meat enough space to sear properly.
  • Use tongs to flip your meat instead of a fork to avoid piercing it and letting the juices escape.

Which Weber Grills Have Sear Stations?

If you’re looking for a top-of-the-line grill with all the bells and whistles, the Weber Summit series is certainly worth considering. All of the Summit models come with a sear station, as well as a rotisserie burner (check out these gas models), fuel gauge, enclosed storage area, and a built-in thermometer. The Summit grills are pricier compared to other Weber models, but the features and diverse cooking experience certainly make up for it.

What About the Weber Liquid Propane and Natural Gas Grills?

Both the liquid propane and natural gas versions of the Weber Summit, Genesis II, and Spirit II series come with sear stations. The only difference is the fuel type you prefer to use.


So, that’s what a sear station is. It’s a special feature on some grills that allows you to sear your meat much faster and more efficiently than usual. It’s a great tool to have if you’re a fan of seared meats like steak and chicken. So, don’t be afraid to invest in a sear station if you’re looking to upgrade your grill. You won’t regret it!

Joost Nusselder, the founder of Lakeside Smokers is a content marketer, dad and loves trying out new food with BBQ Smoking (& Japanese food!) at the heart of his passion, and together with his team he's been creating in-depth blog articles since 2016 to help loyal readers with recipes and cooking tips.