If you live where it’s warm all year long, you won’t need to know how to winterize your grill. However, if you live where it’s starting to get pretty cold right about now, please continue reading because this post can mean the difference between having to buy a new grill every spring and having your old grill look and act like a new grill every spring! This post will save you some serious money, my friends. Take good care of your grill and your grill will take good care of you!
First of all, clean your grill thoroughly, and I don’t mean just the insides. Yes, the actual grates are probably the most important part, but if you don’t take care of ALL of your unit, you’ll be placing those grates on a bed of coals and hoping your burgers and steaks don’t slide off due to the imbalance.
Whether you’ve got a gas grill or a charcoal grill, heat it up one last time to loosen the “crud.” While it’s still warm in there, take a wire brush and CAREFULLY (wear a hot pad glove!) scrub off all the clinging crud. Follow this treatment with a sponge and some soapy water. Rinse thoroughly with the hose. THOROUGHLY. You need to use the hose and not just buckets of clear water because the water pressure of the hose helps remove the last traces of clinging crud.
If you feel you need to use abrasives on the grill itself, be careful not to remove the paint along with the built-up crud.
If you’ve got a gas grill, be sure the gas is shut off. Unfasten the burners and carefully slide the gas tubes off the lines and lift out the unit.
Coat the burners, grates, and all metal parts with cooking oil; this will help prevent moisture from touching the metal and is a rust deterrent. Wrap the burner units and/or grates in plastic bags to keep the bugs from nesting for the winter; this is a more common problem than you might think and is a common reason your first springtime grilling venture sometimes meets with a blockage. BUG EGGS. Wrap well so the bugs can’t take up a winter home in your grill.
If you’re storing your grill outside, be sure it’s well covered. If you’re bringing the grill inside, disconnect the tank. You don’t want a small leak to cause a big explosion.
Whatever you do, don’t leave your grill, whatever kind it may be, out in the winter snow and ice unprotected unless you want to deal with a pile of rust and animal nests in the spring.
Treat your grill well, and it will serve you for many years. Don’t treat your grill right, and you’ll be buying a new one every spring.