The barbecue cover is a polyester sheet designed to protect the BBQ from the outside elements. It will typically be both water and UV resistant, and may be either a simple sheet which fits over the BBQ range, or a cover which is closed using buttons. A heavy-duty polyester cover which fits neatly around the BBQ is one of the best ways of defending your outdoor grill from the elements.
Barbecue covers can also be purchased which protect the barbecue from insects and mildew - this is important if you don’t intend to use the BBQ for long periods. The barbecue cover can be bought for much less than the cost of a new griddle or cooking cover, and is well worth the investment.
In order to get the best from the BBQ cover, it is necessary to be prepared to fix it should it become damaged. Barbecue cover repairs should be part of the armour of a keen BBQ chef.
Fixing the Cover
Exposed to the elements as they are, barbecue covers are in danger of becoming severely damaged by wind, rain, or animals. A heavy storm can easily cause one side of the cover to tear, particularly where there is a weakness (button-up covers will tear along that seam, for example). Supplies can also be found in camping shops, as a similar tarpaulin repair kit will work for both tents and barbecue covers.
The first thing needed is a plastic repair kit – these can be purchased at any tarp supplier, and usually come with grommets (small metal circles and disks), which are then attached to the tear. Essentially, repairing the cover will involve sewing a small piece of plastic into the tarpaulin, much like a trousers patch. Those with 10 thumbs might consider asking a wife or girlfriend to make the repairs, or simply find an expert who can manage the barbecue cover repair without harming the polyester further; but more modern supplies also have available ‘Plastic weld’ kits, which heat the plastic and bond the holes together. These may be more difficult for the amateur to use, but those feeling unconfident about stitching on a new piece of plastic may prefer the heated-system.
Prevention is better than repair, and one way to keep the barbecue cover from becoming damaged is to use bungee rope to keep it tied to the ground – the rope is more flexible than run-of-the-mill rope, preventing tearing at the join. Another way to prevent damage to the cover is to allow the barbecue to cool before putting on the cover – allowing it to cool completely ensures that there is no heat transference to the polyester sheet.
Polyester sheeting, like the rest of the BBQ, will need to be cared for, cleaned regularly, and sometimes inspected for damage – a small hole is much easier to repair than a large rip. Fanatics may also wish to consider oils and other liquids which can be rubbed onto the barbecue cover to prevent wear and damage.