When cold weather strikes, there are two choices for your propane grill. You can either properly store it until spring, or you can brave the weather and continue to use it for winter grilling. Whatever your plans are for the grill this winter, there are steps you should take for either proper storage or cold-weather use.

Storing your grill for winter

Correctly storing your grill is important. It keeps your grill in good working condition for years of use and ensures that you will be ready to go next spring. Here are some quick storage tips if you’re not planning to use your grill this winter.

  • Thoroughly clean your grill after its last use of the season. You should always brush off leftover food scraps and grease, but it is especially important to soak and scrub removable burners and clean out all debris before storing your grill.
  • Prevent rust by coating burners and other metal parts with a cooking oil to repel moisture.
  • If you’re storing your grill outside, keep the propane tank connected and shut it off. Be sure to protect the grill with a cover.
  • If you’re storing your grill inside, remove the propane tank and store it upright and outside of the house, garage or other building.
  • If you choose to remove the propane tank, tape a plastic bag over the grill’s gas line opening to keep spiders and insects from nesting in the gas line.

Grilling through the winter

If you can’t imagine going months without grilling, there is no reason you can’t grill happily all year long. But winter grilling is not as simple as braving the elements and throwing a few burgers on. Here are some basics to get you started and keep you safe.

  • Clean out the snow around your grilling space to help efficiently preheat the grill and prevent slippery conditions.
  • Let the grill warm up for a few minutes longer than usual. With colder temperatures, it takes more time to heat the air in and around the grill.
  • Avoid windy conditions, and use a grilling space near a windbreak of some kind.
  • Keep the lid closed as much as possible. Every time you open the grill, cold air rushes into the cooking space and it will need to reheat once the lid is closed again.
  • Dress for the weather, but avoid clothes that hang, such as scarfs or fabrics that are easily ignited.

Whether you’re putting the grill away for the season or gearing up for some winter cookouts, always use caution when handling propane. It is a good idea to check for gas leaks before you put a grill into storage, and always check for leaks before you fire up the grill.  To keep your grill and any other propane appliances running all year long, contact your local propane dealer and arrange a delivery schedule that meets your needs.

Photo courtesy of Flickr user.