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Our Tips on cleaning your BBQ with ease

Everybody loves BBQ (even vegans, though their food choice, maybe a little different). While we all enjoy the eating process, and some of like the cooking portions, we almost universally detest clean-up. The modern portable bbq grill is often designed with special features that aid culinary hygiene. For example, many contemporary BBQ units have ash catchers and grease trays. Their functions are pretty straight-forward, and they’re easy to work with.

When they fill up, you just pull them out, empty them, clean them in dishwashing liquid, rinse in clean water, and wipe them with old rags. (Air drying may leave watermarks, or make them susceptible to rust.) For most drying jobs (from car waxing to mirrors and windows), microfibre is recommended. But its murder getting soot and grease stains out of it, so stick to (clean) rags. Also, ensure whatever you wash is perfectly dry before putting it away.

Heat things up

Ideally, you should do a quick clean every time you use the BBQ. After all the food is served, run the BBQ at its highest heat setting for five to ten minutes. This burns any leftover food into a dark unpalatable crisp, which is much easier to clean off. It kills germs too. With electric and gas BBQs, it’s mostly the food residue and grease that needs cleaning. With wood burners or a charcoal BBQ grill, you also have to remove any soot and ash.

Most people prefer to clean from the outside in, but that could leave to sooty, grimy stains on the outer surface and you may end up cleaning twice. So start by emptying your trays. Charcoal Webers have one-touch cleaning, where you just pull out the ash catcher and empty it. For any BBQ that uses logs, driftwood, pellets, or briquettes, remove the fuel grate then empty and disposal of the ash. If your BBQ needs ash to help relight it, keep some ash aside for re-filling.

Use warm water, dishwashing soap, and a soft rag or non-abrasive pad to clean the bottom of the BBQ. Rinse and dry. Now clean the grate and cooktops according to type. Cast iron grills can be scrubbed with a wire brush or crumpled foil held between tongs. After all the residue is scraped off, clean the grills using warm water, soap, and non-abrasive scouring pads.

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You can also use a specialty cleaner to get rid of stubborn grease stains. Be sure to clean all the knobs, buttons, and handles as well. They accumulate a lot of dirt from being touched with greasy, food-stained hands, and we rarely think of cleaning them. For a gas BBQ, clean the gas hoses as well, but be careful to use damp cloth, just to be sure you don’t mix water into the gas.

FYI, Weber has a line of wire brushes and food-grade cleaning fluids that can safely dissolve grease without contaminating food. Finally, clean the outside of the BBQ with the same mix of warm water, dishwashing soap, and non-abrasive scouring pads. Rinse, dry, then lift the lid and coat cooking surfaces with a thin film of vegetable oil. This prevents rust and keeps food from sticking at your next BBQ. But keep the grates covered, because that oil film does attract dust.

For tips on cleaning your BBQ, regardless of your fuel type, call Home Heat and BBQ today on 02 9838 1300.

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