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BBQ Cleaning Techniques

BBQ Cleaning Techniques

Summertime means outside entertaining and meal times with grilling up some delicious food on the BBQ!

Having a clean surface to grill on always makes for better flavours, and we've put together some ideas for getting that accomplished.

First off - what are we cleaning off of the grill in the first place? Carbon!

The char that you get on your food that makes the burgers and steaks look so artfully good also gets onto the grill, the hood, grates, interior of the firebox, and even further. What looks great on a steak doesn't look so great on the BBQ, and getting that carbon cleaned off is important not just for appearance, but for health as well. The carbon usually has meat juices and fat sticking to it, creating the possibility of bacteria growth - not ideal for a cooking space! Excessive carbon build-up can cause issues with heating food evenly.

Regular wire brush/scouring clean after each use will make overall maintenance easy! Scrub carbon clean from the grill surface, and make sure to check for and remove any brush bristles that may remain after the clean. 

We recommend doing at least grate clean once a month. If you BBQ at least once a week, then you will want to do a thorough clean of all BBQ surfaces every second month.

End of season, do a final thorough clean of all surfaces before storing your BBQ for the winter.

Tools for cleaning the grill:

• long handled wire brush or other long handled wire scouring tool
• bottle cleaning brush
• putty knife for scraping the firebox
• pail for catching debris from underneath the BBQ as you clean
• pail or tub for soaking grates and flavour bars
• shop vac
• grease cutting dish soap with warm water
• long cuffed rubber gloves
• vinegar/baking soda mixed to a thick paste
• scouring sponges
• stainless steel cleaner for any stainless steel parts on your BBQ

Get ready to do a thorough clean by running your BBQ at full temperature with a closed hood for 30 minutes. Don't walk away, keep an eye on it! Then turn off the BBQ, and immediately after get some dish soap into the warm water, and dip your wire brush in it and scrub the grates. Then disconnect your propane tank and let the BBQ cool down. Once cool, remove the grate and flavourizer bars and soak them in the soapy water for at least half an hour.

Get your shop vac and vacuum out the interior of the BBQ. Put the debris pail underneath the BBQ (under the grease trap) and use the putty knife to scrape out the firebox. Rinse out the firebox once it is clean.

After the grates and panels are done soaking, pull them out and give them a good scrub. Use the vinegar/baking soda mix for scrubbing really stubborn carbon deposits. Rinse all surfaces clean, and thoroughly dry any cast-iron surfaces to help prevent rusting. Coat your cast-iron with oil to season them (just like a cast-iron fry pan!)

Inspect your burners for any corrosion or blockages, give them a clean with the wire brush, and use the bottle-cleaning brush to clear out the inside of each tube.

Get a fresh batch of warm water with dish soap for cleaning the outside of the BBQ, and finish with a nice rinse plus stainless steel cleaner for BBQs with stainless steel exteriors.

Once you have reassembled the BBQ, reconnect the propane tank and fire up the BBQ for 15 minutes to burn off any residue from the cleaning.

All info is sourced from a great article by Popular Mechanics that you can find here: 

Set yourself up for the best BBQing experience possible by doing regular cleaning. We have a great selection of cleaning products as well as BBQ scouring tools and brushes, cloths and more. Ask us when you visit the store what we think will work best as we show you the great selection of BBQ tools that we have in-stock! We are located at 12539 102 Avenue, Edmonton, AB, in the High Street boutique shopping district - part of the 124 Street community!