Summer is just around the corner, and that means it’s time to fire up the grill and enjoy some delicious outdoor cooking. Before you start grilling those burgers and steaks, though, it’s important to make sure your grill is in top shape. Here are some essential summer grilling tips to get your grill ready for the season.

Tips When Getting the Grill Ready for Summer

Ensuring your grill is in top condition is key to achieving delicious and hassle-free cooking. Proper preparation will help you avoid unexpected issues and make your summertime grilling sessions more enjoyable. 

1. Clean the Grill Thoroughly

The first step when getting your grill ready for summer is, to clean it! A clean grill ensures better-tasting food, helps prevent flare-ups, and extends the life of your grill. 

Here’s what you need to do:

  • Remove the grates and soak them in warm, soapy water. 
  • Use a grill brush to scrub off any residue. Clean the burners and inside surfaces of the grill with a brush or sponge. 
  • Empty the ash catcher if you’re using a charcoal grill. 
  • Dispose of any leftover ashes safely. 
  • Wipe down the exterior of the grill with a damp cloth to remove dirt and grime.

2. Check for Leaks and Wear

It’s crucial to check for leaks and wear in every season, but especially when grilling in the summer as this is usually when the grill is used the most. Always inspect the gas lines and hoses for any cracks or leaks before each use. 

You can do this by applying a soap and water solution to the hoses and looking for bubbles when the gas is turned on. Check the burners for any clogs or damage. Clean them out with a brush if necessary. Ensure all connections are tight and secure.

3. Season the Grates

Seasoning the grates helps prevent food from sticking and enhances the flavor of your grilled dishes. After cleaning the grates, coat them with a thin layer of vegetable oil. Heat the grill to a high temperature for about 15 minutes to allow the oil to bake onto the grates. Repeat this process a couple of times for best results.

4. Stock Up on Supplies

Make sure you have all the necessary supplies on hand for a successful grilling season. Check your propane tank or charcoal supply and stock up as needed. Keep a variety of grilling tools handy, including tongs, spatulas, and a meat thermometer. Have aluminum foil, grill brushes, and fire starters within reach.

5. Test the Grill

Before hosting your first summer barbecue, it’s a good idea to do a test run. Light the grill and let it heat up to ensure it’s working properly. Check that the temperature controls are functioning correctly. Grill a small piece of food to make sure everything is in order.

6. Organize Your Grilling Area

Having an organized grilling area makes the cooking process smoother and more enjoyable. Set up a dedicated prep space with a table or cart near the grill. Keep your grilling tools, seasonings, and ingredients within easy reach. Make sure there’s plenty of space for serving and enjoying your meals.

Summer Grilling Tips

Now that your grill is ready, it’s time to focus on techniques that will elevate your summer grilling game. From maintaining your grill to using quality fuel, here’s how to make your outdoor cooking sessions more enjoyable.

7. Maintain a Clean Grill

Though you don’t always have to be quite as detailed as that first deep clean of the season, regularly cleaning your grill is still necessary. Cleaning helps maintain your grill’s performance and extends its lifespan. After each use, brush the grates and wipe down the surfaces. Deep clean your grill every few months to keep it in top condition.

8. Use Quality Fuel

Whether you use propane or charcoal, quality fuel makes a difference. High-quality propane provides a consistent heat source, while natural lump charcoal offers a cleaner burn and better flavor. Avoid using lighter fluid, which can leave a chemical taste on your food.

9. Preheat the Grill

Always preheat your grill before cooking. This ensures even cooking and helps prevent food from sticking to the grates. Preheat for about 10-15 minutes on high heat, then adjust the temperature as needed for your specific recipe.

10. Keep a Safe Distance

Safety should always be a priority. Set up your grill at least 10 feet away from any structures, including your house, garage, and trees. Always have a fire extinguisher or a bucket of sand nearby in case of emergencies.

BBQ Grilling Tips

Now that we’ve covered the basics of summer grilling, it’s time to get into some intermediate barbequing tips to create flavorful and perfectly cooked meals every time. 

11. Experiment with Marinades and Rubs

Enhance the flavor of your grilled dishes by experimenting with different marinades and rubs. Marinate your meats for a few hours or overnight to infuse them with delicious flavors. Dry rubs can add a tasty crust and extra seasoning to your food.

12. Temperature Control

Mastering temperature control is key to perfect grilling. Use a digital thermometer to monitor the internal temperature of your food. For consistent results, maintain a steady temperature inside the grill by adjusting the vents and adding charcoal or adjusting the burners as needed.

13. Indirect Heat

Using indirect heat allows for slower, more even cooking, which is perfect for larger cuts of meat. Place the coals on one side of the grill and the meat on the other, or turn off one side of the burners for gas grills. This method helps prevent burning and ensures tender, juicy results.

14. Resting the Meat

After grilling, let the meat rest for a few minutes before slicing. This allows the juices to redistribute throughout the meat, resulting in more flavorful and juicy bites. Cover the meat with foil to keep it warm while it rests.

Best Grills for Summer BBQs

For those ready to become bonafide professional summertime grillers, there’s only one step left to take: upgrade your equipment! Here are the most beloved grills for top-of-the-line dishes. 

Louisiana Grills Pellet

Louisiana Grills Pellet uses wood pellets for fuel, offering excellent temperature control and imparting a rich, smoky flavor to your food. They are versatile and perfect for slow-cooking, smoking meats, and grilling. The digital controls make setting and maintaining the desired temperature easy, ensuring consistent results every time.

Flat Top Grills

Flat top grills are ideal for cooking a variety of foods simultaneously, providing a large, even cooking surface perfect for summer gatherings. They are great for making breakfast foods, stir-fries, and even burgers. The even heat distribution allows for precise cooking, making it easier to manage multiple dishes at once.

Big Green Eggs

Big Green Eggs are versatile grills perfect for grilling, smoking, and baking, offering precise temperature control and superior heat retention. Their unique design allows for high-heat searing as well as low-and-slow cooking. The ceramic construction ensures even heat distribution and moisture retention, making it a favorite among barbecue enthusiasts.

Perfect Your Summertime Grilling with Greater Southern

By following these tips and choosing the right grill, you’ll be well-prepared for a summer full of delicious backyard BBQs. If you’re ready to upgrade your outdoor cooking experience, check out the grilling equipment from Greater Southern. We carry a variety of grills and cooking equipment that you’ll love using not just all summer but all year round, too!