Outdoor Grilling Safety Tips
Posted: 07/01/2008 1:27:20 PM
outdoor grilling, charcoal grills, gas grills, safety tips, grilling safety, grilling
As promised, here are more important tips to make your outdoor grilling experience safe!
- An outdoor grill is safe and reliable when it is used according to the manufacturers' instructions; however, it may pose a danger when care is not taken during its use or when it is used for a purpose for which it was not intended—like using it as a clothes dryer or as an alternate heat source when your furnace goes out.
- Do not use your outdoor grill in any enclosed space. This includes garages, storage buildings, barns, garden sheds, sun porches, and roof covered outdoor screened rooms.
- When in use, always keep outdoor grills away from the walls of buildings and from under low hanging tree branches.
- Grills should be positioned in an area that is level, such as a patio or designated lawn space, but they should never be used in similar areas that may be covered with a roof.
- Using grills on a deck or unenclosed porch is not recommended. If you insist on grilling on a deck or porch, a large piece of metal or a fireproof patio/deck protector should be placed under the unit. If the deck or porch is attached to a building, the grill must be positioned as far away from the walls of the building as possible, but again, grilling on a porch or deck is very risky.
- Rings or kettles designed for wood burning (onto which a cooking grate could be placed) should NEVER be used on a deck or porch, even if a deck protector is used.
- When using gas grills equipped with an automatic ignition, the burners should not be lit when the hood is closed. The build up of gas that can occur within the confines of the closed hood prior to igniting the burners may cause an explosion once the burners are lit.
- Inspect hoses, valves, and connections on gas grills to check for cracks and leaks. Apply soapy water to the hoses and connections to reveal any gas leaks. Replace the hoses if necessary—do not try to repair them. Duct tape is my best friend, but it’s not a cure all!
- If you store your gas grill in a garage or storage building during the winter months, disconnect the gas tank and store it outside of the structure.
- Outdoor grills should not be used during periods of high wind.
- When using a charcoal grill, NEVER add starter fluid to coals that are already hot. This can create a very dangerous situation—in other words, it can blow up!
- An outdoor grill should never be left unattended, and children and pets should always be kept away from the grilling area.
- Never use chemically treated wood, such as scraps of pressure treated lumber left over from an exterior building project, as fuel for a fire meant for grilling. The treated wood can give off toxic fumes.
- A fire extinguisher or water source should be readily available when you are grilling. (I always have the garden hose with attached sprayer handy—with the water on—in case of an emergency.)
Please be sure to follow the preceding common sense safety rules to ensure that your summertime outdoor grilling events are enjoyable and safe. We also invite you to check out our sister site, GrillingTips.com, for more great information on outdoor grilling.
Recipe Tips Blog Moderator
Great tips! I’m especially pleased that you included the one about pressure treated lumber. My neighbors were burning scraps of treated lumber in their fire pit and I told them it was a bad idea, but they did it anyway. I hope they see this blog.