Whether you plan to use the barbecue grill on or near your patio or stow it away soon, you’d have to clean it thoroughly. This is crucial to keeping your grill efficient and well-maintained.
The cleaning process can be complicated for first-time grillers, given the device’s many parts and the appropriate care needed for them.
In this guide, we will tackle the cleaning equipment you need and how to carefully perform the cleaning step-by-step so you can cook juicy and delicious patties and barbecues once again!
So, without further ado, let’s start!
1) Gather the supplies
First, you need to gather all the tools and equipment for thoroughly cleaning the barbecue. Here are the ones that you need:
- Long-handled wire brush
- Wire bottle brush
- Five-gallon bucket
- Dish detergent
- White vinegar and baking soda paste
- Stainless steel cleaner
- Long rubber gloves
- Clean microfiber cloths
Tip: Don’t use cleaners consisting of strong chemicals as these can affect the flavor of the food you grill.
2) Burn the grill
You have to open the gas and flame up the grill. This singes out the food and grease residues from your previous cooking, but close the hood, and let it like that for half an hour.
Afterward, turn off the flame, disconnect and remove the propane tank. Take your wire brush and put it in a bucket filled with soap and warm water and clean out all the stuck deposits on the grill.
However, if you’re using a charcoal grill, follow these steps:
Turn over the charcoal briquettes so that the greasy sides face down, shut off the grill and wait for it to cool. Then, collect them in a metal case, scrub or brush off their dust and debris, and rinse them in clean water before returning them to the grill.
Tip: If you aren’t certain that the briquettes are cool and safe to the touch, dump them in a bucket of cold water.
3) Soak the grill and flavorizer bars
Detach the grate and flavorizer bars and soak them in the tub’s soapy warm water. Then wait for 30 minutes, which should lift the stains and dirt from these components.
While you’re waiting, get your toolbox and dismantle the barbecue grill of its parts, such as the burner knobs, grease trays, and burning racks and tubes (the latter by removing their screws at both ends). Doing this makes it a lot easier to clean the parts separately.
4) Vacuum the firebox
Having taken out the grill, flavorizer bars, and other parts, the firebox is now exposed and ready for cleaning.
For this, you’d need to use a vacuum—but if you have a wet-dry model, the better, to catch water and soap remains. Also, it’s better to have a different vacuum cleaner than the one used in your home.
Then, scrape off the sticky residues from inside the firebox by using a soapy sponge or putty knife. Also, place the bucket beneath the firebox to catch any dirt and debris from the cleaning.
Vacuum again any loose and grounded particles in the firebox and paving. And finally, using a garden hose, wash the firebox interior to make it spotless.
5) Scrub the grills clean
Thirty minutes or more should have elapsed. Now, you can take out the soaked grills from the bucket and scrub out their stubborn gunk completely clean.
If the sponge fails to remove them, you can apply to the grate your cleaning paste of baking soda and white vinegar, which should solve the problem.
Rinse the grate with clean water from the hose and dry them completely to prevent your cast-iron or porcelain grate from rusting.
6) Inspect the burners
Once done, you have to inspect the barbecue grill burners for blocked holes or corrosion. If left unused, spiders tend to live in or lay eggs in them, and so you would have to brush the part to be safe.
Use your wire brush to brush across the burning tubes including the fire-emitting holes. And use the bottle wire brush to clean the inside of the tubes so your grill will work better.
7) Wash and wipe the grill
Replace the bucket of dirty water with a clean one. Mix a drop of dish soap in it and use a soft sponge the clean the outside surfaces of the grill, including its knobs, cabinet, handles, and hood.
By the way, be careful not to use abrasive pads or scouring sponges to avoid scratching the barbecue grill.
After that, use a soft microfiber cloth to wipe the unit and help it to dry easily in the open.
8) Reassemble the parts
Finally, you have to put back the detached parts into the unit. Set in the burning tubes properly and ensure that their screws and cotter pins are fixed in place on each side.
Season your cast-iron grate by coating it with a bit of vegetable oil. This makes it non-stick, as well as makes it easier to clean the next time and prevents it from rusting.
Hook up the propane tank, close the hood, and let the grill burn for 15 minutes. This allows remaining food residues to melt and seasons the grating too.
Then, check if everything is working properly. And if is, congratulations, your barbecue grill is clean and ready for cooking so you can now enjoy your favorite grilled foods with friends and family on your patio or by the pool!