What’s the secret to successful grilling? It all starts with a clean grill and the right tools. With the May long weekend approaching, now is the perfect time to give your barbecue a little TLC, and take a quick inventory of your grilling tools. (We’ve picked out eight essentials to take you into grill season feeling like a pro.) Let’s get started:
How to clean a gas grill
1. Take out those grimy grates.
Remove the cooking grates and scrub them clean in very hot, soapy water. Rinse and dry.
2. Do a clean sweep.
Disconnect the gas line and remove any hardware from the firebox (briquettes, heat shield). Sweep out debris.
3. Check for a clear connection.
Pull out the burner. Clean the venturi tubes (which attach the burner to the gas controls) with a pipe cleaner or spider brush.
4. Light it up.
Replace the burner, reattach the gas and light the barbecue to make sure everything is reconnected properly.
5. Complete reassembly, heat it up, then wipe it down.
Turn off the barbecue. Replace the heat shield, briquettes and cooking grates. Heat barbecue on high for five to 10 minutes. Turn off and wipe grates with a clean rag dipped in canola oil.
Use charcoal? Here’s all you need to do:
1. Empty out last year’s ash.
2. Scrub the grate clean of lingering grime and dirt.
Our 8 essential tools for grilling success:Check out the rest of the gallery
Originally published May 2016. Updated May 2017.