How to clean a charcoal grill

How to Clean a Charcoal Grill: 2 Easy Methods

There is nothing better than the aroma of grilled meat during a warm weather day. However, the goodness comes at the cost of a dirty grill. The built-up grime and grease that results from well-roasted meat creates the need for proper cleaning to enhance the longevity and usefulness of the grill. Our guide on how to clean a charcoal grill provides two simple methods that are intended for shallow and deep cleaning.

Method 1: Shallow Cleaning

Shallow or light cleaning is essential for regular grill users. It eliminates dirt and excessive build up without messing up with the seasoning. It also cuts off some cleaning steps that are unnecessary when done every now and then.

Tools and Supplies

  • Grill brush/ Stiff wire brush/ a pumice stone grill cleaner
  • Warm soapy water
  • Sponge
  • Aluminum foil (Optional)
  • Microfiber cloth/ Paper towel
  • Canola/ Peanut oil/ vegetable oil

Instructions

How to clean a charcoal grill

Step 1: Use a bristle brush to remove buildup carbon and grease from the inside of your grill’s lid. Clean off the remaining dirt with warm soapy water and a sponge. Rinse and use a paper towel to dry off excess water.

Step 2: Use a bristle or stiff wire brush to scrub off built-up grease and grime from the grilling grate. Hold balled up aluminum foil with a tong and use it for the same purpose in the absence of a grill brush. A magic eraser is another substitute for scrubbing off tough greasy buildup.

Step 3: Use a microfiber cloth or paper towel to apply oil coating on the grate. The coating serves as a protector against rusting and ruined seasoning.

Step 4: Remove the grilling grate to access the charcoal grate (if your grill has one)

Step 5: Remove the charcoal grate or rails and get rid of charcoal residue

Step 6: Clear ash from the base of the grill and ash catcher. Use a putty knife or bristle brush to remove encrusted bits and from the base and discard all the dirt.

Step 7: Reassemble the grill and clean the outside with soapy water and a sponge. Use a microfiber cloth to wipe off excess water.

Step 8: Cover with a grill or weather resistant cover.

Method 2: How to Clean a Charcoal Grill (Deep-cleaning)

Once in a while, your grill will need a deep cleaning routine so that all the dirt that is left after regular light-cleaning can be removed.

Tools and Supplies

  • A pair of gloves
  • A bristle brush/ a stiff wire brush/ Magic eraser/ a pumice stone grill cleaner
  • Putty knife
  • Aluminum ball and a pair of tongs (optional)
  • Warm soapy water
  • Sponge
  • Glass Cleaner
  • Microfiber cloth/ paper towel
  • Canola/ Peanut oil/ vegetable oil
  • Spray bottle

Instructions

Step 1: Wear a pair of gloves to protect your nails from accumulating dirt and greasy residue in the process.

Step 2: Remove the lid and inspect the inside to check whether there is accumulated black substance. Use a putty knife or bristle brush to get remove the dirt.

Step 3: Clean the inside and outside of the lid with warm soapy water and rinse thoroughly with cold water. If you have a weber grill or something similar, use glass cleaner to enhance shine on the outside and use a microfiber cloth to wipe dry.

Step 4: Use a bristle brush, stiff wire brush or aluminum ball to remove buildup from the grilling grate. Remove the grate and clean it thoroughly with warm soapy water and a sponge. Use a magic eraser if there is tuff mess to be removed. Once done, rinse thoroughly and use a paper towel or microfiber cloth to wipe dry.

Step 5: Remove the charcoal grate and discard charcoal residue. Follow up by brushing off excess dirt.

Step 6: Clear ash from the base and remove the ash catcher to discard the ash that has accumulated there. Use a bristle brush to remove encrusted bits and clean out the rest of the dirt with warm soapy water and a sponge or non-abrasive cloth.

Step 7: Clean the outside of the grill with warm soapy water and a sponge. Use a microfiber cloth or paper towels to wipe dry

Step 8: Add enough oil in a spray bottle and spray the grates generously. Use a paper towel to redistribute the oil evenly will wiping out excess.

Step 9: Reassemble the grill and cover it with a grill cover.

Step 10: Store properly until the next use.

How to Maintain a Charcoal Grill

Although cleaning helps with maintenance, there are additional caring tips that facilitate the longevity of a charcoal grill.

Always brush off buildup grease and grime after every use. Brushing off sticky food substances after every use saves you time and effort. Do this before the grate cools off completely for best results. Alternatively, wait until you are ready to start cooking and allow the grates to heat up. Use a stainless steel brush to clean out the grime.

Be gentle when scrubbing parts of a grill that have protective porcelain-enamel coating. Use of abrasive cleaning cloths and excessive force can result to permanent damage.

Keep the grates oiled to prevent rusting. Additionally, oiling preserves seasoning.

Remove ashes from the base and ash catcher after every use.

Keep your grill under a protective cover to avoid overexposure to harsh weather.

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