Best Ways of How to Prepare and Clean A BBQ Grill
Hosting a party is an exciting event that can be enjoyed by all. Delicious food is always the centerpiece of any gathering, and if you're planning to cook up some barbecue, it's important to have a clean grill. But, if you haven't used your grill for a while or you're renting an Airbnb or vacation rental, you may need to clean it first. Here are some tips on how to clean a BBQ grill, so you can ensure that your party is a smashing success, and your guests can enjoy great-tasting food.
How to Clean a BBQ Grill:
- Rubber Gloves
- Hot Water and Dawn Dishwashing Liquid
- Grill Brush or Grill Stone (depending on the type of grill grate you have)
- Cleaning Rags
- A 2" putty knife or bench scraper
- Pipe Cleaners (for gas grill owners)
Step 1: Preparation for Cleaning Your BBQ Grill:
Before diving into cleaning your grill, it's important to prepare your cleaning supplies and ensure your grill is in an area where soapy water won't damage or discolor what it's sitting on. Wear rubber gloves to protect your hands as it can get messy. Also, take a few pictures or a quick video of the interior and exterior of your grill using your phone. This will serve as a reference later when you need to remember the original condition of your grill.
Step 2: Safety First !!!
When dealing with gas grills, make sure that you turn off the propane tank valve and disconnect the supply hose from the tank. For natural gas grills, turn off the valve and disconnect the supply hose from the grill. Ensure that you only use cleaning chemicals that you would use on your dishes, as some industrial de-greasers are caustic and can make you sick when applied to food surfaces.
Step 3: Give It a Thorough Wipe Down
Start by wiping down the exterior and interior of your grill with hot soapy water. Use Dawn dishwashing liquid to remove any dust, grease, food residue, or other icky stuff that may have accumulated inside your grill. For gas grills, remember to remove the grease drip collection tray, underliner tray, ceramic briquettes or lava rock, and the V-shaped metal flame shields that go over the top of the gas grill burners. Scrub the grills and the rotating vent mechanisms for kettle grills.
If you see that the paint is beginning to peel inside your grill, now is the time to get out the Rutland Hi-Temp BBQ Paint to repaint the interior of the grill. Always follow the manufacturer's instructions on how best to do this for your grill.
Step 4: Grill Grate Cleaning
Most grills have either stainless steel grates or porcelain enamel-coated grates. You can use a stiff-bristled steel grill brush for the stainless grill grates. For enamel-coated grates, use a softer bristled copper or other types of material brush to avoid scraping off the enamel coating.
For Stainless Steel Grate Owners Only:
You can certainly use a special grill stone (normally made from natural pumice) that will do wonders for getting in between the grill grates to help get those hard to reach areas clean. These bricks are super easy to use, and can be reused many times. Note, do not use these on your enamel grates! Stainless grates and grill stones only please!
Step 5: Check for Uninvited Guests
Spiders love to make their homes inside gas burners and tubing. These spiders and their webs can not only block up gas tubes so that your grill doesn't heat evenly, but their webs can also catch fire underneath the grill, causing possible damage to the igniter or gas delivery hoses! Clean out any uninvited visitors or excess debris with a pipe cleaner.
The other uninvited guests that seem to want to frequent a BBQ party are bees, wasps, and yellow jackets. These little stingers especially love the aroma and flavor of meat and grease. Any food residue leftover in the grill will entice these pests to make their appearance, and sometimes even a build new hive inside your clean bbq grill.
Step 6: Re-assembly of a clean BBQ grill
After everything has been given a good wipe, scrape, or scrub... it's time to put things back together. Remember those pictures you took at the beginning of this little adventure? If you're a bit forgetful, you now can refer back to those as to what parts go where! This is also a great opportunity after reassembling everything to take some more for a before and after comparison of what a great job you did cleaning your BBQ grill. Don't forget to reattach your gas lines, and then check for leaks with some soapy water (refer to manufacturer's instructions).
Step 7: Fire it up!
After all of your hard work, there's just one final step to make sure that your grill is clean and food ready. Gas grill owners will want to fire the grill up and run it on high for at least 10-15 minutes. Charcoal or wood grill users, 8-10 briquettes or a small pile of kindling will do the trick. This last step is super important for a couple of reasons.
If you've inadvertently left any soap residue anywhere, it will burn off and not leave soapy flavors behind. More importantly, heating the interior of the BBQ grill will completely dry out any remaining moisture that may be left. Excess moisture inside the grill will lead to premature rusting of parts that can cause your grill to fail and to be potentially dangerous.
Once you're all done following these few simple steps, your grill will be all fresh and clean and ready for your big day. Whenever you're having a party, always remember to have a backup tank of propane, or an extra bag of charcoal or supply of wood or pellets on hand. There's nothing more disastrous than a quarter-cooked piece of meat, and a bunch of hungry people standing around waiting because the grill had an inadequate supply of fuel on hand.
Your grill is now clean and ready to go for when your AWG Private Chef arrives to prepare that mouth watering custom created BBQ menu for you & your guests.
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About the Author:
Certified Master Chef Sean Andrade is Executive Chef/Owner of AWG Private Chefs, named the #1 Private Chef company in California. Chef Sean has worked in the restaurant and hospitality industries worldwide for more than 25 years. His company AWG Private Chefs offers highly custom-tailored, private chef dining experiences, and event catering in over 30 countries around the globe.