That’s it, your patio is perfectly organized and all that remains is bringing out the pièce de résistance – the barbecue, of course! To get the most from your outdoor cooking season, tune-up and clean your good old BBQ. Give it a makeover to increase its effectiveness and ensure sage use.
Start by inspecting the burners. Check that their flames are transparent or slightly bluish. Yellow, which signals an inadequate oxygen supply, is a bad sign suggesting that the burners could be damaged, dirty or improperly adjusted. If dirt is the cause, clean the burners thoroughly by wiping them gently with a brush. Also clean the pipes between the gas valves and burners. Replace any parts with cracks or holes, as well as any corroded fittings or pipes. Test waterproofing by applying a soapy water solution on the joints and see if bubbles form when you turn on the gas.
Then, clean everything. Take off all removable parts and soak them in soapy water. Scour and rinse thoroughly. Next scrub the BBQ’s tank and make sure to remove cocoons and spider webs. Remember the fat drip tray. With a nylon brush, also scrub the grills to remove dirt and corrosion.
Purchase new lava stones yearly or new ceramic briquettes every three years.
Finally, make sure that there is no structure or wall behind your barbecue that might restrict its airflow. Also be sure it is standing solidly.
Ron Massad can be reached at www.ronaldmassad.com