Here’s why you need to be careful cleaning your grill this summer

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Summer days are upon us, meaning that between trips to the pool, you’re probably spending a good amount of time grilling on your back deck. So it’s a good time to give you a heads-up that, while you’re thinking about how to perfectly sear steaks, you should also be thinking about how best to clean your grill.

A recently published study revealed that nearly 1,700 Americans have ended up in the emergency room between 2002 and 2014 due to wire bristles left on grill grates. And that doesn’t include incidents that have gone unreported, or people who instead went to urgent care facilities.

The most common issue is that stray brass bristles are often left behind, ending up on the food, which in turn can cause some pretty unpleasant stomach and intestinal injuries if they happen to be swallowed.


So while that hard-bristled grate-cleaning brush seems like the perfect tool to use, you might be better off cleaning your grill sans bristles.

One way to effectively clean your grill is by using a grill block, which is similar to a pumice stone. Using a grill block allows you to clean the grates no matter what temperature they’re at, and is said to be a safe cleaning method for all types of grates.

Another option is to use a bristle-free coil-shaped brush. This eliminates the potential of wired bristles coming loose and sticking to your grill grates.

There are also liquid grill cleaners on the market. The cleaners come in either a foam or a spray and, when you use them with something like a Brillo pad, they should eliminate the need for that wired brush.

And when you’re cleaning your grill, no matter which products you use, it’s just as important that you make sure you’re using the proper technique, cleaning all of the necessary parts, disposing of grease properly, and doing everything you can to maintain your grill. It also never hurts to take a glance at the owner’s manual that came with your grill, as there are probably some tips on how to clean your specific model and type of grill.

barbecue photo
Flickr | slgckgc

Now that you know, get back to that grill and do me up some baby back ribs and corn on the cob. Happy grilling!