Own a gas grill? Then you'll want it to be working at peak capacity right now, as the weather is perfect for grilling. If you're not really sure how to take care of your grill, you're in the right place. This guide will show you how to clean and take care of your grill, so everything will go smoothly when you fire it up for dinner.
Gas Grills And Safety
If you maintain your gas grill, it will keep working perfectly for years to come. There'll be no worrying about it breaking down just when you want to start cooking some burgers al fresco, or having to buy a new grill when you least expect. It also helps improve the taste of your food, as you won't be cooking on top of old grease and burnt on food.
However, one of the most important reasons to maintain your grill is safety. As you have a gas grill, fires are a real concern. Maintaining your grill will help keep it safe to use, especially if you have children around. With proper cleaning and maintenance, you'll be safe to use that grill every time you fire it up.
Cleaning Your Grill
It's important that you clean your grill every time you use it. Now, that doesn't mean that you have to do a full deep clean every time you cook. After all, who has the time? You will, though, need to clean the grates off every time you cook, in order to make them nice and clean for next time you cook. Remember, you're placing food directly on those grates so you'll need to ensure they're cleaned after every use.
How often should you clean your grill? After ever use, you should certainly clean down the grates, ready for next time. As for a deep clean, that needs to be done roughly twice per grilling season. If you grill a lot, you will need to deep clean more often, but for the average griller twice a season is more than enough.
Protecting The Grill
When your grill is not in use, you want to ensure that you're protecting it. Always let it cool down fully before touching or moving it. If you can, store it somewhere indoors, such as in your garage. If you don't have anywhere indoors to keep the grill, buy a good fitting cover and place it over the grill once it has cooled down. This will keep the elements out and keep the grill in good condition.
Use The Right Cleaning Products
You'll need to pick the right cleaning products in order to keep your gas grill in the best condition. There are lots of products created just for grills, but look at them carefully before you buy. Some may actually damage your grill. They can damage the exterior finish, or the grates themselves depending on the type you have.
Usually, your best bet is just plain water and dish soap. This is strong enough to degrease and clean your grill, and yet won't cause any damage. If you rinse off your grill after using soap and water, it should be enough to clean it.
Cleaning The Grates
When you use your grill, you'll need to clean the grates off. After a session, you'll need to scrub them down with a good grill brush. There are different types of grill brush out there, that allow you to clean your grill properly. These are steel, brass, and nylon brushes. Brass and nylon are usually best for grates that could scratch, such as stainless steel. When selecting a brush, make sure you're picking the right one for your grill.
Once you're done scrubbing the grates, you'll need to clean off the brush itself. Usually, throwing them in the dishwasher is more than enough to accomplish this.
If you hate the idea of scrubbing the grates by hand, you can invest in a grill cleaning robot. These sit on your grates and have rotating brushes underneath, which will scrub as the robot moves around. These are something you can just set and forget, and so are perfect for clean up after meals.
Twice a season you'll need to clean off the grates more thoroughly, so you'll need to remove them and place them in a bucket of soapy water, and scrub them with a sponge. Once they're clean, dry them off and replace them in the grill.
Cleaning The Interior
You'll need to clean the interior of your grill during your deep cleaning sessions. This includes things like underneath the grates, the burners, the lid of your grill, and the drip pan.
For the drip pan, use a putty knife to scrape out any hardened grease, and then scrub with soapy water and rinse before putting it back in the grill. When cleaning the grill lid, look for any paint flakes or anything else clinging to the surface. Again, scrape them off with a putty knife before cleaning the lid off.
Take care with your burners as you clean them. Look for any blockages in the holes, as these will stop the burners working properly and can lead to uneven cooking. Use a toothpick to push out any food blocking the holes, before you clean them.
Oiling The Grates
The last step when cleaning your grill is to oil the grates. This improves flavor, and stops food sticking to the grates. To do this, you'll need an oil with a high smoke point, such as peanut oil. Fire up the grill and let it heat up for about 15 minutes. Turn it off, and then dip a paper towel into your oil. Using tongs, apply the oil to your grates.
Now, fire up the grill again for another 15 minutes, until the grates are black or brassy in color. They're now oiled and ready to go.
Now you now just how to maintain your grill and keep it in top condition. With this info, you can enjoy your grill year-round.