A propane grill is the most convenient way to cook during the warmer months of the year.
It’s also one of the most flavorful.
Meats, vegetables, and other ingredients cooked over a grill will take on a smokey charred flavor that will delight your family and guests.
If you’ve just invested in a new propane grill, you’ll find that it will soon become your favorite cooking appliance.
Just like any quality appliance, you’ll want to keep your grill clean throughout the seasons.
A few simple tips will help you to keep grill surfaces protected from rust and deterioration.
Before You Begin
Safety must always come first when using an outdoor propane grill.
Be sure to familiarize yourself with all operating instructions found in your user manual.
When you’re ready to get cleaning, make sure that you first:
- Shut off the valve on your propane bottle. This will prevent the grill from firing up while you’re cleaning inside the firebox.
- Wait at least 30 minutes after using your grill before you start cleaning. The grill can be warm but never hot when you start.
With these simple steps, you’ll be ready to move on to the exterior and interior of the grill.
Start with the Outside When Cleaning Your Propane Grill
No matter what your grill is made from, it’s important to keep the exterior clean.
Stainless steel grills can last a lifetime but there’s a chance of surface rust if you let residue and debris build-up.
Never use abrasive cleaners or harsh chemicals when cleaning the outside of your grill.
Spray the body with a specialist grill cleaner and wipe it down with clean rags or paper towels.
Avoid flammable products.
The residue from these could ignite when your grill is in operation.
Be thorough with exterior cleaning. Grime and debris can collect around seams and edges.
If your grill is made from stainless steel, clean and polish it to a high sheen.
If your grill is painted in a black coating, it will be harder to detect residue.
Make sure you clean during full daylight or underneath a strong outdoor light.
Carefully inspect each panel after wiping down to be sure that there’s nothing left behind.
When you go over the grill with a final wipe down, use new paper towels or a clean rag to prevent spreading more cleaning product on the surface.
If you’ve ever cleaned your home oven, this process will feel familiar.
Attention to detail matters the most.
Cleaning the Cooking Grates and Heat Spreaders
The interior of the grill will collect most of the grease, food debris, and carbon deposits from the gas burners.
This is where you should focus most of your cleaning efforts.
- Begin by removing the cooking grates. Clean these with a wire brush to remove food particles and other buildups. If your grates are made from porcelain enamel, only use a brush that is stated to be safe for porcelain surfaces.
- If your cooking grates haven’t been cleaned for a few months, you may need to use kitchen detergent and clean water to remove the buildup. Make sure that all areas of the grates are fully clean, and pat the surfaces down before air-drying them in direct sunlight or somewhere warm.
- Cast iron grates will need to be seasoned after cleaning. Use a high smoke point cooking oil like vegetable oil or canola oil. Apply oil with a clean rag, paper towel, or basting brush. Dry the excess and set the grates aside.
- Heat spreaders and searing plates also need to be cleaned. Remove these according to the manufacturer’s instructions and use a soft steel brush and detergent if necessary. Follow the same drying process as the cooking grates, and season your spreaders if they’re made from cast iron.
With the cooking surface clean, you can move to the inside of the hood and the firebox.
Cleaning the Grill Interior
A wire brush and warm soapy water can be used to clean the interior of your grill.
The firebox and hood will collect soot, oil, and food particles.
Scrub or wipe the interior until all debris has been dislodged.
You can collect any loose debris with a spatula, scraper, or bunched up paper towels.
Wipe down all the surfaces and allow the grill to air dry in the sunlight. In addition to drying out the grill, the sun will naturally disinfect the surfaces.
Use water sparingly until it comes to rinsing.
Water that collects, especially in a coated steel grill, will eventually cause rust.
Try to get all surfaces as dry as possible using paper towels or a rag before you leave the grill to air dry.
The Best Grill Cleaning Products for Propane Grills
There are plenty of excellent products that can help you to keep your grill in perfect condition.
If you’ve just purchased your first grill, a cleaning kit can give you everything you need to get started with regular maintenance.
The following products have been highly reviewed by consumers and are suitable for all grill types.
- This Weber Grill Cleaning Kit is designed for all grill types, including stainless steel models. You’ll get everything you need for thorough cleaning in one pack.
- This combination BBQ-Aid Grill Brush and Scraper is the perfect accessory for propane and charcoal grills. It can be used on the firebox interior, cooking grates, and heat spreaders.
- This Citrusafe Grill Cleaning Spray is a great option for grates and grids. Its natural formulation helps break down food and debris, and it’s non-flammable and non-toxic. It’s also non-corrosive, making it great for cleaning grill exteriors.
- This Kona Grill Brush is a bristle-free option that is safe for porcelain enamel grills.
With a few simple products and our tips for cleaning a propane grill, you’ll find it easy to keep your favorite cooking appliance clean and ready to go throughout every season.