How to keep your barbecue clean so it’s always ready for your next party

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 A barbecue is the perfect way to enjoy a summer evening – don’t let your smoky, unclean grill drive your friends and family off the deck and into the house.

Follow Goldstar Cleaning Services’ tips on keeping your grill clean so that it’s always ready for your next party.

1. Get the right cleaning tools – and use them

It’s easier to clean off the grill while it’s still hot, and before all the little bits of meat have burned and dried on it, potentially causing foul odours next time you grill.

In mountain towns like Fernie, Sparwood and Elkford the smell of food on barbecues can attract bears into your neighbourhood, so it’s particularly important to get them clean.

The most effective cleaning tool is simply a stiff wire brush to clean down the grill each time you use it. A long-handled brush will make it easier to get into all the nooks and crannies without risking burning yourself. Replace it every year to stop the wire bristles getting blunt and bent out of shape, making it less effective at cleaning.


2. Steam clean

If you forgot to brush down the grill after your last barbecue, or if you’re only just getting into the habit of cleaning it, chances are your grate has some pretty heavy-duty burned-on food waste that may even be causing foul odours or smoke.

To loosen off the debris, take a scrunched-up newspaper, soak it in water and put it on the grill over a low flame for around 20 minutes, with the lid closed.

Keep a close eye on it to make sure it doesn’t stay on so long that all the water evaporates.

This will loosen off all the burned-on food, allowing you to clean it as above.


3. Oven cleaner

A chemical oven cleaner can also be used to loosen food scraps.

Take off the cold grate and lay it on some sheets of newspaper, then spray with the oven cleaner, making sure to stand upwind so you don’t breath in the fumes, and use gloves to prevent skin irritation.

Leave for 5-10 minutes and then use a wire brush to clean.


4. Inside the barbecue

If you use lava rocks or ceramic stones, take them out and soak in a bucket of water with a squirt of dish soap to loosen off any grease drips or food scraps.

Use an all purpose kitchen cleaner and wipe the bottom of the grill clean, being careful with any gas outlets.

Replace rocks or stones after cleaning them with a scouring sponge if necessary.


5. Protect your grill from the elements

Extend your barbecue’s shelf-life by keeping it covered with a heavy-duty, shaped cover that will keep it protected from all the elements.

Choose the grill’s location so it isn’t under any drips or snow slides from the roof. This will also make the head chef’s life a lot nicer!

If you don’t use your barbecue in winter, move it into a garage or shed.