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The Best Way to Clean a Stainless Steel Grill for Years of Family BBQs

With the weather getting nicer and Summer right around the corner, it’s time to break out the grill! Between Memorial Day Weekend and Labor Day of last year, your grill probably got a lot of use! So it’s time to get cleaning your stainless steel grill and give it a good scrubbing to be ready for your next barbecue. Keeping up on your grill’s maintenance can have it lasting many years for lots of family meals.

So, before you start grilling up a storm, it’s essential to ensure that your grill is clean and in top shape. The good news is that cleaning a stainless steel gas grill is simpler than you might think.

Keep your grill clean and ready for family bbqs.

Why Clean Your Grill?

There are several benefits to keeping on top of cleaning your grill:

  • Improved taste of the food you cook
  • Better health for your family
  • The prolonged life of your grill
  • Lower maintenance costs

Neglecting to keep your grill clean for an extended period of time will result in the buildup of food particles that lead to bacteria and can attract insects. In addition, the leftover food residue on the grill will degrade the taste of the next thing you cook on it.

Keeping your stainless steel grill grates clean will improve the flavor of your foods.

Helpful Supplies for Cleaning a Stainless Steel Grill

  • Grill brush
  • A Mild Liquid Dish Detergent
  • Baking Soda
  • Vinegar
  • Microfiber cloths
  • Bucket

How to Clean a Stainless Steel Grill

Stainless steel requires proper care to keep its sleek and shiny finish.
Stainless steel is a resilient material that can withstand intense heat and weather conditions, but it requires proper care to keep its sleek and shiny finish. Regular maintenance will extend the life of a stainless steel grill. Here are some tips to preserve the stainless steel finish on your grill:

  • Avoid using abrasive cleaners or steel wool sponges as they can scratch the surface of your grill.
  • After each bbq, do a quick wipe-down. Distilled white vinegar is excellent to use on stainless steel. It will remove any fingerprints, food residue, or grease marks left behind during cooking. White vinegar will also disinfect stainless steel surfaces.
  • For your stainless steel grill to shine, it needs to be polished. You can use many expensive or inexpensive stainless steel polishes, but I love lemon oil. You only need a few drops. Just apply it to a soft cloth and wipe and it will give your grill back its beautiful luster.
  • You may also opt to apply a stainless steel protector to add a layer of protection against corrosion and discoloration.
  • Use a grill cover when the grill is not in use to protect it from dust, debris, and harsh weather conditions.

A Step-by-Step Guide to Cleaning Your Grill

A Step-by-Step Guide to Cleaning Your Grill

1. Preparing the Grill

Before cleaning the grill, make sure to disconnect the propane tank for gas grills, or remove the charcoal for charcoal grills. Wear work gloves, take precautionary measures, and let the grill cool down.

2. Brushing the Grates

Using a grill brush, scrape off any food debris or burnt-on residue from the grates. Make sure to get both the tops and bottoms of the grates. Take care not to scratch the stainless grill grates while scrubbing.

3. Soaking the Grates

Make a solution of hot water and dish soap and submerge the grates in it for about an hour. After an hour, take them out and give them a good rinse with clean water.

4. Removing Stubborn Stains

Create a paste with baking soda and warm water and apply it to any remaining stains on the grates. Let the baking soda paste sit for 10-15 minutes before scrubbing gently with a sponge.

5. Cleaning the Burners

Remove the burners, and clean them thoroughly using a wire brush to remove any debris or residue.

6. Wiping Down the Grill

Using a microfiber cloth, wipe down the interior and exterior of the grill, including the grill lid, base, and side tables.

7. Polishing the Grill

To polish the stainless steel, combine equal parts warm water and vinegar in a spray bottle, spray it on the grill, and wipe it down with a microfiber cloth.

Deep Cleaning Your Grill

If your stainless steel grill hasn’t been cleaned in a while, it might need more than a wipe-down. It may have a little rust on the surface or dirt and grime from being exposed to the elements. To properly clean your grill without scratching the finish, be selective in what you use to clean it.

Bon Ami is a natural cleansing agent that can remove stubborn stains. It can even remove rust stains on stainless steel. The trick to using it is to go with the grain of the metal to avoid scratch marks. Remember to rinse well when using Bon Ami, as it is a powder cleanser that can leave a residue.

Cleaning the Stainless Steel Grill Grates

Keep your grill grates clean!
The stainless steel grates on your grill are the most crucial part to keep clean because they come in direct contact with your food. Here are some tips to clean your stainless steel grates:

  • Preheat your grill to high heat for about 15 minutes to loosen the food particles on the grates.
  • Scrub the grates. A grill brush can remove debris from the grates, however, using a wire brush can be dangerous. There have been cases where people have ingested pieces of wire that dislodge from the wire grill brush. A safer alternative to a stainless steel grill brush would be a wooden scraper. I recommend using a wood bbq scraping tool like The Great Scrape.
  • Create a paste using baking soda and water and apply it to any remaining stubborn stains on the grates. Let the paste sit for 10-15 minutes before scrubbing gently with a sponge.
  • Wipe the grates with a damp cloth or some paper towels to remove any excess debris or food particles.
  • Apply a non-stick grill spray or vegetable oil to the grates to prevent food from sticking during cooking.

Safety Guidelines

When cleaning your grill, it is essential to prioritize safety.

First, make sure to disconnect the propane tank from the grill before cleaning. This not only keeps the grill stationary but also eliminates the chance of any propane leaks.

Always wait for the gill to cool before attempting to clean it. And wear gloves to protect your hands when cleaning the grill.

Remember to never leave a propane tank inside your car, especially in extreme heat, as it can lead to a disaster. Additionally, only store propane tanks outside and away from heat sources and direct sunlight. Following these safety tips will help keep you and your grill safe, regardless of gas type or the size of your grill.

Wrapping Up

Cleaning a stainless steel BBQ grill is easy if you follow the necessary steps and use the right cleaning products. Remember to always protect the stainless steel finish on your grill, clean the grill grates thoroughly, and use the proper tools and supplies. With consistent cleaning, you can extend the lifespan of your grill while also improving the taste of your food. Happy grilling!

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