When something is brand new, we all take extra care to make sure that it stays looking nice for as long as possible. It’s no different when we get a brand new grill or decide to create a custom outdoor kitchen of our own.
We will meticulously watch every little drop of fat render down into the grease grate , stack each drink neatly in our outdoor mini fridge, and make sure that our grill is cleaned after each use.
But as time goes on, we will inevitably lose our same level of care and attention to detail for our once BRAND NEW grill. That’s when the questions will start to arise, and always at the most inopportune time. Like when your head has finally hit the pillow after a long night of grilling for example.
Have you ever found yourself laying in bed after a day of grilling and these questions popped up in your head?
Did I screw the cap on that 2-liter tight enough before laying it on its side in the fridge?
Did I remember to clean the grease grate?
Did I make sure that the sink is completely turned off?
Did I leave my propane tank valve open?
Here’s the deal: your outdoor island will get some battle scars somewhere down the line, and we’re here to let you know that it’s okay! Grilling, smoking, entertaining guests, and the clean up after is all a messy process and CAN be a time consuming one as well. The issue is no one talks about the maintenance and what the best practices are to increase the lifespan of your grill and outdoor kitchen components. Until now!
Now let’s go down the list from the basics through more advanced levels of getting those beer can circles off your stainless steel grill top!
Your first major tip of the day – Covers, Covers, Covers. Does the brand you purchased have covers that are specific to their products? If so, get them! And don’t cheap out on a knock off brand. Vinyl is the preferred material you want to look for. They are waterproof and tend to hold up better in the heat. A little expensive yes, but they really preserve the life of the stainless steel. If you didn’t know you can get covers for most things including side burners, sinks, drop in coolers, and more. (Check out all the covers here!)
Second tip of the day – Get the right type of cleaner. What we mean by this is make sure your cleaner is food safe and has natural based ingredients. The last thing we want is people to spray their inside of their grills and refrigerators with chemicals that could be harmful. We sell an amazing cleaner made from Cactus Enzymes that is safe and cleans the toughest grease stains!
Know why and how you clean! – If you have a built in Pellet smoker you’ll want to vacuum out the ash pot every 3-4 cooks. This helps with the functionality of the pellet smoker as well. During the monsoon seasons or if you live by a shoreline you’ll want to clean the grill more often. If water blends with the old food particles/residue it creates acidity that can damage stainless steel and also can build up bacteria faster. By the shoreline there is more salt in the air which can damage any Stainless Steel, especially if it is not full 304, so make sure to also wipe down the hood! If you have ceramic briquettes you will want to keep the lid open, turn the plates upside down, and turn your grill on high to burn off any access grease. This is recommended every few cooks as well.
Bonus Tip: Did you know if you have porcelain grates you should only use brass bristle brushes? The Stainless Steel type can be too rough and scrap off the porcelain.
Overall Tune-Ups by the Pros – We always recommend you have a professional come out at least once a year to give your outdoor kitchen the love and attention it needs. Since they’re more familiar with gas lines, installation, and refurbishing, they are more qualified to check those gas lines, inside the island, and all the inner workings. They flush out all the burners in the grills and check the piping on all faucets. Trust us, its worth the extra few dollars to get this done.
If you’re local in the valley and want a great recommendation for this call our man Mike “The BBQ Guy” at (480) 271-5379. He does amazing work!
Have fun and hopefully these tips will keep you grilling for many more years!