Using a gas grill to indulge in one of America’s most favorite pastimes can make that activity convenient, safe, and enjoyable for everyone involved. Along with the proper use of the grill is the proper storing of your gas grill when it is no longer in use. This guide to the ABC’s of storing your grill will help protect the grill and insure that it is safely stored until it’s ready to use the next time.
The first step in storing your gas grill is to ensure that it is cleaned properly after it has been used. Clean the cooking grids with soapy water and a metal bristle brush to ensure that excess grease and food particles have been removed. Since many gas grills use briquettes, you should make sure that excess grease is removed from the briquettes. A good technique is to flip the greasy side down so that they come in contact with the burner. Start the flame and put it on high, then close the lid. Allow the flame to burn off the grease from the briquettes for about 15 minutes.
The next step is to clean the burner and tubes. These items can also be affected by grease and food drippings that may clog them and affect the igniter. Disconnect the gas source and make sure it is turned off, whether it is a Liquid Propane (LP) cylinder or if it is connected to a natural gas source. The use of a toothpick to clean the gas ports is recommended. The venturi tubes and other hoses can be cleaned with warm, soapy water.
The next step in storing your gas grill is to make sure the propane tank is not dented, leaking, bulging, or displaying rust or corrosion. If the tank displays any of these signs, take it and have it checked by LP supplier. The LP cylinder should be stored outside in a ventilated area. Do not ever store the LP cylinder indoors. Since the propane in the cylinder is heavier than area, if a leak occurs, the gas will sink down to ground level. A minor spark could cause and explosion or fire.
The next step in storing your gas grill is to check the grill itself for gas leaks, obstructions on the burner, the integrity of the grill assembly, and for any other signs of deterioration. If there are major scratches or chips to the paint on the grill housing, they can be touched up. Sand the affected area until the bare metal is reached. Then use a primer and paint that is designed for high-heat usage. Addressing these issues before the grill is stored, will ensure that your grill be ready for use when removed from storage.
The next step in storing your gas grill is to ensure that the place it will be stored is adequate for protecting the gas grill. If it is left outside, be sure to have the proper protective covering that is waterproof. Or place it where it will not be exposed to direct contact with the elements such as ice and snow. If you are going to store it indoors, make sure that the LP cylinder is detached and that the cylinder is stored outdoors. Another reason for ensuring the grill is properly cleaned before storing inside, is that it won’t attract bugs or rodents. Don’t store the LP tank near furnace and dryer vents, in the garage, basement, play areas, or other enclosed areas. Keeping it in a shaded area is also recommended. Another useful tip is to cover the gas line openings with a plastic bag. This will help keep insects, dust, and other things out during storage.
If you follow this ABCs list of how to store your gas grill, you will extend the life of your gas grill and have it to enjoy for many more barbecues and family outings.