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Tips for cleaning the grill grate


Kanoito
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Hey fellow spies!

I know a lot of pro smokers and BBQ-ers here, so wanted to ask for some advice.

I love to cook with my Weber Mastertouch charcoal grill, but I hate to do the cleaning afterwards.

What's your ritual for cleaning the grate? Do you do it right before your next grill? Do you clean it after it has cooled down?

Do you only use a metal brush to scrub off the charred food? Do you use soap and water and a brillo pad to scrub it completely clean?

After using 3 brillo pads, 6 pair of gloves and 2 hours of scrubbing, I finally got mine clean. But I just can't picture myself doing that every week during the summer.

A friend of mine said you don't need to clean it, cause the fire and high temps will sanitize the grate as well, but eating charred rests can't be healthy either.

So, I'm all ears! And thanks ahead!

 

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DO NOT use those metal brushes. The metal splinters can come out of the head, stick on the food and end up in your body cause absolute mayhem. I've heard of them piercing peoples throats. If you can get one, look for a nylon bristle BBQ brush. If you can't get one of those see if you can get a grill scraper. They come in wood or metal. Failing all that, a wadded up ball of aluminium (spelt correctly) works really, really well.

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So I use a metal brush to get the big stuff off by then I clean it again with a soaked washcloth. I prefer to do this when I’m done cooking so I don’t have to do it before I cook but I don’t always do that. If I don’t have anything big sticking to my grates I don’t do much at all to them.

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I genuinely envy the patience of charcoal grillers.

The food does taste better, I admit,

but they're much too slow for my patience and appetite.

I propane grill like a rank amateur,

but at least I get my food quickly!

 

 

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58 minutes ago, MattF said:

DO NOT use those metal brushes. The metal splinters can come out of the head, stick on the food and end up in your body cause absolute mayhem. I've heard of them piercing peoples throats. If you can get one, look for a nylon bristle BBQ brush. If you can't get one of those see if you can get a grill scraper. They come in wood or metal. Failing all that, a wadded up ball of aluminium (spelt correctly) works really, really well.

Thanks for the tip. I do have a nylon brush, which feels much softer and not as capable of getting rid of the sticky stuff and a metal scraper as well. But manageable.

So the remaining question is, when and how often? And using soap and water in addition to scraping or let the heat take care of the residue?

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49 minutes ago, tommc23 said:

So I use a metal brush to get the big stuff off by then I clean it again with a soaked washcloth. I prefer to do this when I’m done cooking so I don’t have to do it before I cook but I don’t always do that. If I don’t have anything big sticking to my grates I don’t do much at all to them.

I did try the scrape only version, but keep getting charred bits on my food if I don't use soap and water as well. So thought maybe there is a trick I didn't know of.

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:cobra-small: SpeedZone 9* w/ Aldila Rogue Silver 60 S
:callaway-small: X2 Hot 3 Deep 14.5* w/ Aldila Tour Green 75 S
:taylormade-small: JetSpeed 5W 19* w/ Matrix Velox T 69 S OR :adams-small: Super LS 3H 19* w/ Kuro Kage Black 80 S
:mizuno-small: JPX919 Forged 4-PW w/ Modus3 105 S
:titelist-small: Vokey SM7 50/08F, 54/14F & 58/08M w/ Modus3 115 Wedge
:EVNROLL: ER1 34" w/ SuperStroke Fatso 2.0
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So what I do is use the metal brush to get the big stuff off. When the grill is hot you use a washcloth that has just water on it and scrub it with tongs. That pulls everything off and makes for a clean grill

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45 minutes ago, tommc23 said:

So what I do is use the metal brush to get the big stuff off. When the grill is hot you use a washcloth that has just water on it and scrub it with tongs. That pulls everything off and makes for a clean grill

Sweet, I haven't tried this method yet. Perhaps it didn't help that I left the grill sitting for a whole week before cleaning it.

Thanks!

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:callaway-small: X2 Hot 3 Deep 14.5* w/ Aldila Tour Green 75 S
:taylormade-small: JetSpeed 5W 19* w/ Matrix Velox T 69 S OR :adams-small: Super LS 3H 19* w/ Kuro Kage Black 80 S
:mizuno-small: JPX919 Forged 4-PW w/ Modus3 105 S
:titelist-small: Vokey SM7 50/08F, 54/14F & 58/08M w/ Modus3 115 Wedge
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59 minutes ago, Kanoito said:

Sweet, I haven't tried this method yet. Perhaps it didn't help that I left the grill sitting for a whole week before cleaning it.

Thanks!

I do that sometimes and it works then also

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3 hours ago, Kanoito said:

So the remaining question is, when and how often?

If you want to be pedantic about it, when you've finished cooking that the grill is still hot. I'd wait about 20-30 minutes after I shut it down and then hit it.

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Get the grill really hot, spray with white vinegar, cut an onion in half, stab the onion with a grilling fork and scrub away. This is the best way I have found to clean my gas grill grates.

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1 hour ago, MattF said:

If you want to be pedantic about it, when you've finished cooking that the grill is still hot. I'd wait about 20-30 minutes after I shut it down and then hit it.

Sorry if that's how my message got through, not my intention.

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:cobra-small: SpeedZone 9* w/ Aldila Rogue Silver 60 S
:callaway-small: X2 Hot 3 Deep 14.5* w/ Aldila Tour Green 75 S
:taylormade-small: JetSpeed 5W 19* w/ Matrix Velox T 69 S OR :adams-small: Super LS 3H 19* w/ Kuro Kage Black 80 S
:mizuno-small: JPX919 Forged 4-PW w/ Modus3 105 S
:titelist-small: Vokey SM7 50/08F, 54/14F & 58/08M w/ Modus3 115 Wedge
:EVNROLL: ER1 34" w/ SuperStroke Fatso 2.0
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33 minutes ago, Wedgie said:

Get the grill really hot, spray with white vinegar, cut an onion in half, stab the onion with a grilling fork and scrub away. This is the best way I have found to clean my gas grill grates.

Thanks for the reminder. I had seen the onion trick somewhere but never tried it before.

I guess I've been doing it wrong this while time, waiting days before cleaning instead of doing it while it's still hot.

Appreciate the input, from all of you.

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:cobra-small: SpeedZone 9* w/ Aldila Rogue Silver 60 S
:callaway-small: X2 Hot 3 Deep 14.5* w/ Aldila Tour Green 75 S
:taylormade-small: JetSpeed 5W 19* w/ Matrix Velox T 69 S OR :adams-small: Super LS 3H 19* w/ Kuro Kage Black 80 S
:mizuno-small: JPX919 Forged 4-PW w/ Modus3 105 S
:titelist-small: Vokey SM7 50/08F, 54/14F & 58/08M w/ Modus3 115 Wedge
:EVNROLL: ER1 34" w/ SuperStroke Fatso 2.0
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My reviews: MLA Putter // Titleist SM7 // PING i500 // PuttOUT

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1 hour ago, Kanoito said:

Sorry if that's how my message got through, not my intention.

Not at all and my delivery was way off. I was talking generally, not about you in particular. Maybe I should have said picky or particular, not pedantic, so your apology should be me apologising to you.

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My wife likes to marinate everything that goes on the grill .. which does make the food tastier but yeah makes the grates waaaay messier.... After cooking I leave the burners (yep gas grill) on for, say, five or so minutes with the lid closed - lets the marinade and stuck-on food bits burn off. You "should" (quote-unquote) then scrape / brush / wipe (damp cloth; other things that work - the fatty side of a NY strip or a salt block) while the grates are hot but I'll admit to being lazy and letting it sit until the next morning - after cleaning I'll give a quick spray with Pam For Grills (or really any olive oil spray works) to coat it. 

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Be careful of olive oil on grates. It contains salt and over the long term can cause them to rust.

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Hybrid: :Sub70: 939X 3 Hybrid Project X Even Flow Riptide 6.0
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Balls::Snell: MTB-X or Black

Cart: :CaddyTek: CaddyLite ONE Ver. 8


God Bless America🇺🇸, God save the Queen🇬🇧, God defend New Zealand🇳🇿 and thank Christ for Australia🇦🇺!

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I buy good quality (as in no $1 store), HD, stiff, large bristle wire brushes used for general construction/metal working.  @MattFis spot on about safety issues with wire getting on cooked food... some awful stories out there about this.  But, if you use the larger wire commercial grade brushes, they not only make quick work of removing charcoal residue, they are much, much easier to inspect for after cleaning.  The small diameter wire on the cheapo grill brushes don't do a good job and typically start falling out.

I light the grill and let it burn whatever by-product is on the grate, then clean with the brush.  I'm talking burned as in mostly charcoal residue - stuff chips and fly's off. When done, I use a nylon brush to go over the entire grate and look very closely for any loose wires... which I use to find often with the cheap brushes and very rarely do with the HD ones.

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24 minutes ago, silver & black said:

My buddy puts his grill rack in the oven and uses the self clean mode. It works great.

I’m sure that would work well

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58 minutes ago, silver & black said:

My buddy puts his grill rack in the oven and uses the self clean mode. It works great.

 

34 minutes ago, tommc23 said:

I’m sure that would work well

My oven directions say to take out the racks when using the self-clean mode, so I don't know if I would use it.  The oven also has a steam-clean mode that I would try but my rack won't fit (22" round Grilla Grill wood pellet smoker/BBQ)

I use a stainless steel grill grate brush similar to this one...

https://www.amazon.com/GRILLART-Grill-Brush-Bristle-Free/dp/B07F731D86/ref=sr_1_3?crid=7HFD17QE5HC9&dchild=1&keywords=bbq+grill+brush+bristle+free&qid=1624410555&sprefix=bbq+grill+brush%2Caps%2C268&sr=8-3

This brush gets the hard chunky pieces off, then I rub the grate with cooking oil and the rough side of scouring sponge.

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