Gas Grill Maintenance Tips

Whether you use your gas grill year-round or are just pulling it out of winter storage to get ready for summer cookouts, it’s important to take the time for regular maintenance and a few safety checks:

•  Before you start cleaning, disconnect and remove the gas/propane container.

•  Clean cooking grid. Wrap the grid in a layer of aluminum foil. Turn the grill on high for about 10 to 15 minutes. You should then be able to easily brush away baked on food. Another option is to soak your grill racks in soapy water for an hour or more.

•  If the cooking grid is rusty, throw it away and replace with a new one.

•  Change your lava rock once a season, or once it becomes saturated with drippings. This should help minimize “flare-ups.” You can also switch to using ceramic or porcelain briquettes, which are less porous and can be backed clean by turning them over and heating.

•  Open your propane tank valve only one turn. There is no advantage to having the valve open all the way, and one turn will allow you to turn it off quickly if there is a problem.

•  Wipe your gas supply hose down with ammonia and water. This will discourage squirrels or other critters from chewing and damaging the hose.

•  Cover the outside of the grill with a light coating of vegetable oil, applied with a paper towel while the grill is cool. This will minimize white spots and oxidation, and help protect your grill from the weather and other elements.

•  Inspect the burner and gas supply tubes for spider webs, grease build up or rust to make sure there is no blockage.

•  If the gas supply hose is worn or frayed, replace it with a new hose.

•  Check all gas supply lines with a mixture of one part water and one part soap detergent. With heat control knobs in the “off” position, turn on the gas supply. Apply the mixture to the connections. If bubbles appear, the connections aren’t properly sealed. Tighten connections, or replace hoses.