Barbeque Maintenance Tips
How to Maintain your Barbeque Grill
Buying a barbeque can be cheap or it can be expensive. This all depends on what you are buying when you buy your barbeque. Your barbeque is a purchase similar to buying a conventional stove. With proper care you can expect your barbeque to provide you with years of faithful service. Similar to vehicle, a barbeque needs constant maintenance to be able to fulfill a long term commitment to you and your family. Standard maintenance would be a thorough checking of components, a check for gas leaks on gas barbeques, definitely a check of the support structure for the barbeque is vital, and you’ll want to check the body of the barbeque to spot rust outs or holes. The most important maintenance step of owning a barbeque is proper cleaning.
Cleaning a Grill
Cleaning the Grill
After the party is over and everything else is cleaned up is when you need to clean your grill. Variables beyond my desire to discuss will determine when you clean your grill; I just recommend you don’t wait more than 24 hours. In getting ready to clean your grill, if you use a gas barbeque, fire it up and let it burn for about twenty minutes. If you use a charcoal barbeque skip this step. While the gas barbeque is burning go to step one.
Step 1- Gather the tools and equipment necessary for cleaning.
When you bought your barbeque it may have come with some cleaning tools, if not there is no need to worry. The most common tools when cleaning a grill are:
- Wire brush
- Steel wool—the kind you use for tough stains. The SOS pads are the best.
- Dish soap
- Brass wire brush
- Cooking Oil
- Aluminum foil
- Baking soda
- Scraping tool like a putty knife.
Now that you have all the equipment needed you are ready to clean your grill, if it is a gas barbeque shut it off. Never clean a barbeque when it is on or burning—this is bad and could cause serious injuries and third degree burns.
Step 2- Brushing off the grill
Take your wire brushes and give the grill a good brushing. Brush the top first paying special attention to the sides, then turn over the grill and brush the other side. If there is food buildup, scrape it off with the putty knife or other scraping tool. If buildup from food is not cleaned off promptly, it can become extremely difficult to get off, short of a nuclear device. When all of the large chunks of burnt on food is scraped or brushed off you can move on to the third step.
Step 3 – Oil your grill
Why should you oil your barbeque? Why would you oil a car? To prevent rust build up and prevent sticky hinges is why you should oil your barbeque. The best thing to do, when your barbeque is cooled off to pre-grill temperature, is to spray a light coat of cooking oil onto the grill and lube your hinges. The cooking oil is the only type of oil you should use on a grill. You definitely don’t want the food you cook on your grill to taste like Pennzoil 10W 30 now do you? If you find a need to lube your hinges, which should be done weekly but no less than monthly, completely remove the grilling surfaces and spray the hinges with a light coat of WD-40. You’ll want to spray the hinges away from the body of the barbeque to reduce if not completely eliminate overspray from any surface that may come into contact with your food. Safety: Do not ever spray cooking oil on a grill that is hot or not completely cooled off. Cooking oil is flammable and could cause a flare up and personal injury to you or someone around you. Check out the Fire Departments safety of use messages here. All fire department standards of barbequing safety are parallel to each other.
Step 4 – Additional tips for getting your grill clean.
If you are having an especially hard time cleaning your grill and cooking racks, use some aluminum foil. Aluminum foil is an odd cleaning agent but it really works. All you need to do is gently rub the aluminum foil on the surface you wish to clean. The aluminum foil easily removes grime and gross buildup. Another thing you can use is baking soda. Baking soda is not necessarily a cleaning agent but more of a polishing agent. After your grill is clean, and before the oil is applied, lightly scrub the grill with baking soda to create the shine like when you bought the barbeque. Apply baking soda wherever you need to create a nice shine.
Sometimes the grill can be really gross, especially after barbequing chicken and other poultry type items. To solve the cleaning problems these meats provide is to use an SOS pad that already has soap in it or you could run some hot water with Dawn or other dish soap and wash the racks that way.
Step 5 - Prevention
Preventative maintenance is the best kind of maintenance there is. By preventing problems before they arise you will end up saving yourself more money overall. The most common destroyer of barbeques is a lack or disregard of cleaning importance. Proper care will protect your overall investment of the barbeque and provide you with years of faithful service.
Another killer of the barbeque is rust. My very first barbeque that I owned was a great asset to my family and me but I neglected to clean it properly. Not only that but I did not protect it from the elements and soon it was overrun with rust. I always left it outside with no cover on it and it only lasted for two barbequing seasons. Had I purchased a $50.00 barbeque cover I would have saved another $150.00 in the purchase of a new barbeque.
Take care of your barbeque and it will return to you years of great family time and time with friends. Thank you for reading.
© 2010 by Wesley Cox. All rights reserved. Copying without permission is illegal and will be prosecuted.