While most people enjoy grilling outdoors, as the summer season heads towards fall we know it’s coming to an end, especially with winter just around the corner.
This means that temperatures are dropping and backyards are being buried in tree debris and eventually snow.
If you don’t intend to grill during the winter seasons, this is the right time to winterize your barbecue and keep it stored away for the winter months.
Storing your grill away when it’s out of seasons will ensure that it lasts much longer and you’ll be ready for grilling when warmer seasons come back.
You’ll need the following tools including cotton rags, firm wire brush, putty knife, degreaser, and heavy-duty cleaner, paper towels, and cooking oil.
How-to Guide to Prepare Your Gas Grill Ready for Winter
- Put off the Gas (Propane or Natural Gas) Tank
Before you begin anything within your grill, ensure that you put off the propane gas line and valves for natural gas.
- Separate the Cooking Areas
Gas grills usually have a few parts like grill surface and burner cover; however, specific ones come with more pieces.
- Clean the Grill
Remove the warming rack, heat plates, and cooking grates as you brush them using a wire brush. Wash the grill in warm soapy water, as you thoroughly rinse, and dry it.
Remove the burners and place them aside so you can scrap within the burner box to remove buildup. You should remove the grease cup and drip tray so you can clean them in warm soapy water, rinse and dry them as well.
Use a cotton rag to wipe down within the grill cabinet to remove the accumulated leaves, dirt, and food particles. Build up beneath the frill cabinet will capture moisture, thus increase its deterioration.
Clean the external surface of the grill as well using mild cleaning detergents. Once you’re done with the grill maintenance, use a mixture of water and vinegar to clean impurities on surfaces of the grill.
Use a cleaner made specifically for use on gas grills, especially for tougher spots and stains as you follow the manufacturer’s instructions.
- Use Oil to Coat the Grill
The winter seasons come with all precipitation forms, from hail, rain, sleet, to snow. All these forms of dampness can inflict destruction, including a properly covered and sealed grill in the form of corrosion and rust.
The ideal means of preventing corrosion and rust during winter is by coasting the inner parts of your grill using cooking oil. You’ll need to use a clean rap for dipping into cooking oil.
You can also use a cooking spray to coat the tubes, burners, grates and the hood interior. Use a light coat of oil and not too much that pools or drips.
- Cover the Grill
We highly recommend that you use an outdoor cover for your grill for maximum winter protection. Cover your grill using a moisture-resistant and high-quality material to safeguard and protect it from the external elements.
Grill covers come in three materials-Ultima, Elite, and Classic. However, each material has different benefits and features. You can also wrap the burner unit using a plastic bag or wrap to keep insects and spiders from nesting in the gas tubes.
This issue can cause one-alarm fire, uneven flames, and balky start the next time you try lighting up your grill.
If you live in a place that experiences a lot of snow and regular cold temperatures you’ll need to buy a robust grill cover. However, several cheaper alternatives become brittle quickly in the cold and crack once disturbed by a snow load or wind.
To prevent small intruders and leaks, you might need to tape around seams of the grill. Packing tape gives a great bond, which might become tricky removing during spring.
An alternative to this is using painter’s tape together with plastic wrap to make a simple-to-remove and reliable seal.
- Safety Techniques for Gas Grills
If you’ll be keeping your gas grill outdoors during the winter season, counter-check that the propane tank has been put off. Ensure you place a protective cover over the whole grill after cleaning it.
If you’re thinking about storing it indoors, don’t keep the gas tank inside, even into a storage shade or garage. This is because if the gas tank is kept in an enclosed area, a small gas leak could lead to a big explosion.
You could instead disconnect the tank and keep it outdoors away from furnace vents and dryer and play areas for children in an upright position.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can my gas grill use charcoal?
Your gas grill can use charcoal if it provides a charcoal accessory to prevent high heat from damaging it and ash. However, grill brands like American Muscle Grills can use charcoal since it comes with a charcoal tray.
This brand was manufactured to use several forms of fuel safely.
Can gas grills explode?
A gas grill can explode. However, a well-maintained propane tank and gas line that is well connected to its source of fuel and run as instructed by the manufacturer shouldn’t blow.
Ensure that you follow your manufacturer’s instructions for correct lighting steps and how to keep the lid open.
When should I clean my gas grill?
Cleaning your grill is one of the simple means of extending its life so it can serve you for more years to come. To know the ideal ways of caring for your grill, follow our guide on how to winterize a gas grill so it can keep cranking out tasty ribs.
How do I light a gas grill?
Different grills are lit using different ways. You need to consult the manufacturer’s manual to find out which ignition technique you grill model uses.
Always keep in mind that your grill can come with secondary ignition alternatives such as match-on-a-stick and flash tube.