Many people enjoy cooking outside in warmer weather. Unfortunately, this also means an increase in grilling accidents and fires. The National Fire Protection Association reported a yearly average of 10,200 house fires caused by grilling between 2013 and 2017. Any grill is dangerous when it’s not handled with proper care, so safety tips for grilling are essential.
Wear the Right Clothes for Grilling
Clothing can easily catch fire and some materials are more flammable than others. Avoid wearing long sleeves, scarves, or anything loose that may dangle close to the flames. Tie back long hair and apron strings before lighting the grill.
Place the Grill on Stable Ground
Check to make sure that there is no way for your grill to tip over by placing it on a flat surface, like a patio, deck, or porch with a splatter mat or grill pad beneath it to prevent staining.
Safety Tips for Grilling: Be Prepared
Be prepared with a plan in the event of an emergency. Keep a fire extinguisher nearby when cooking outside. You can even have a bucket of sand nearby to substitute. Also, stash some baking soda by your grill to put out any grease fires because you should never use water. It is always better to be safe than sorry when it comes to grill safety.
Always Grill Outside and Away from Buildings
Gas and charcoal grills are designed for outdoor use only. They can cause fires when used near low tree branches and when placed too close to structures. Set up the grill in an open space away from awnings, roofs, and any other overhead features.
Wait to Re-Light Flames
If the flame goes out, turn the gas completely off and wait ten minutes before attempting to re-light it. If you don’t follow this grilling safety tip, it can cause a flare-up.
Keep an Eye on the Grill When Using it
Don’t leave any type of grill unattended, especially with children or pets running around. Also, never move a hot grill. If you need to move it, wait at least one hour after turning off the gas or extinguishing the flames.
Check Gas Grills for Propane Leaks
Check your propane tank hose for leaks before you use the grill. After turning on the propane, apply a solution of water and soap to the hose and connector. If the soap bubbles, you have a leak. If you see bubbles or smell gas, do not use your grill until the leak has been fixed.
Safety Tips for Grilling with Starter Fluid
If you are working with a charcoal grill, only use charcoal starter instead of other flammable liquids to start a fire. Don’t spray starter fluid on a grill that’s already lit.
Cleaning the Grill is One of the Most Important Safety Tips for Grilling
Grease and fat accumulate on the grill and the tray beneath it. Clean this off after every use to prevent fires and other incidents. Wait until everything cools down first.
Keep these safety tips for grilling in mind as you and your family enjoy cooking out this summer.