Prepare Gas BBQ for the Summer Prepare Gas BBQ for the Summer

The summer season is the grilling season. You may not have stoked up the barbecue since Labor Day, so it’s time to get it ready for the cookouts to come.

Clean the Grate

Remove the racks. If they’re powder coated steel, clean them with dish soap and rinse them well. If they’re cast iron, don’t use any soap or cleanser. Clean the racks with a wire brush and hot water.

Clean the Body

You should have a lot of ash, as you’re not burning any charcoal, but there could be burned bits of food and a winter’s worth of dust and grime built up in and on the body of the grill. Clean this all out with soap and water and elbow grease.

Clean the Burners

Wire brush the burners and flush with water. Clean out the holes or slots in the burners with a wire from the brush, or a large pin or needle. So far, all of this has been rather obvious, but spider webs inside the burners are the number one cause of low burner flames. If you see a white blob or what appears to be a tiny cotton obstruction in the orifice, it's a spider web. Use a flashlight if needed, to peer down the tiny hole in the center of the orifice.

To remove a web from an orifice, use a pipe cleaner. Twirl it around and pull it out. Done correctly, the web will come out with it, or it will be loosened enough to blow out from the gas pressure.

Fill Your Tank

Get your gas tank filled, or exchange your empty for a full one. Make sure all your couplings and seals are working properly.

Scrape and Oil the Grates

The best way to clean the grates is with fire. Now that everything’s scrubbed and tuned up, put the grates back on and fire up the burners. Close the lid and let things heat up. Scrape the grates with a long handled grill brush. Grab a wad of paper towel with your tongs and dip it in vegetable oil. Rub the oil all over the hot grates, letting it coat and soak into the metal.

Now you’re ready to bring on the burgers and dogs.

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