Summer is almost here in West Tennessee! There’s nothing better than a plate full of tasty food in the warm sun. However, grills are a fire hazard. Grease buildup, low hanging trees and an open flame is a recipe for disaster. Before you BBQ for the first time this season, brush up on your grill maintenance knowledge.

All Grills

Grill Outside

Always grill outside, away from any structures. Gas and charcoal grills both give off carbon monoxide. Even small grills can create an extremely dangerous indoor environment. Once you’re outside, choose a completely open space free of decorations or overhanging plants.

Clean Between Uses

After you use your grill, take a few minutes to clean it. Brush down grates to remove leftover grease and food. Next, wipe down the exterior of your grill. Last but not least, put the lid on your grill when not in use.

Extinguish a Grease Fire

It’s common for grease to buildup on your grill. Grease is highly flammable. Keep banking soda or sand nearby your grill in case you experience a grease fire. Never put out this type of fire with water. You can also use a fire extinguisher to put out a grease fire. Look for extinguishers rated for Class B fires. These are the multi-purpose-dry chemical extinguisher or the dry chemical-carbon dioxide extinguisher.

Gas Grills

Before First Use

Your grill needs pre-use maintenance, especially after months of collecting dust. For gas grills, clean burners, grates and shields. You can do this by soaking them in a soapy solution. If stubborn won’t let go, turn your grill on high and close the lid for 10-20 minutes. This should burn off stuck on grease. Don’t forget to replace grease pan and reconnect your gas supply.

Check for Gas Leaks

Gas leaks aren’t always easy to notice. Perform a simple test to check. Start by mixing equal parts of water and dish soap. Coat your gas line and valve in the solution with a brush or spray bottle. Slowly turn on the gas. If you see bubbles, you have a gas leak. Don’t use your grill until you fix the leak.

Charcoal Grills

Charcoal grills are a little trickier than gas grills. Fire starters and coals easily start unintentional fires if not handled correctly.

  • After you use lighter fluid, secure the lid and store away from your grill.
  • Never put lighter fluid over a flame or hot coals. Use lighter fluid over cold, unlit coals.
  • Allow ashes to fully cool before getting rid of them.
  • Once ashes have cooled, dispose of them in a non-flammable container away from your home.
  • If you use a hot starter, let it cool after use.

We hope these BBQ safety tips help you enjoy a disaster-free summer. If you experience fire damage, contact us at 888-930-3351. ServiceMaster Professional Cleaning in West Tennessee is your local fire and water damage, restoration experts. We also provide a full suite of residential and commercial janitorial services. The sooner you call, the more damage we can prevent.