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Published On
May 26, 2023

How to Prep Your BBQ Grill for Memorial Day

Written By
Osi Egwuogu

On Memorial Day, we remember the brave men and women who have served our country to the end. Simultaneously, it’s also the day Americans celebrate the unofficial start of summer with outdoor barbecues. Before you learn how to prep your BBQ grill for Memorial Day, don’t forget the moment of remembrance by 3 pm that day. You can also fly your flag half-staff until noon to show respect to the fallen.

If your Memorial Day plans include a barbeque, you must prep your grill in advance to avoid a dirty grill or any other issues on the big day. We will help you with grill cleaning and maintenance tips to ensure your BBQ preparation goes as seamlessly as possible.

Related: 6 Important Tips For Cleaning Outdoor Living Spaces


cleaning the grill

You must clean your grill regularly because grilling leads to the formation of carbon deposits on every surface. Grease and sugary sauces can stick to those deposits and harbor disease-causing bacteria. Not to mention the possible unsightly appearance of your grill.

You must be armed with the right tools to get your grill cleaned up and ready. The tools you need to clean your grill are;

  1. A wire brush
  2. Rubber gloves
  3. Grease-cutting dish soap
  4. A thick paste of cleaning vinegar and baking soda
  5. Stainless steel cleaner
  6. Warm water
  7. Microfiber rag
  8. A bowl of vegetable oil


prepping the grill

There are a few key steps that you need to follow whenever you have to prep your bbq grill.

STEP 1: Inspect for damage

After not using your grill for a while, inspect it for any damage. Make sure that no parts are broken, bent, or rusty. Check that the lid closes properly and the wheels are in good condition. And while cleaning your grill, repair or replace the affected part if you notice any damage, corrosion, or rusting.

STEP 2: Heat the grate

Turn on your grill and heat it at a high temperature for about 7-10 minutes. This is to singe off and loosen up any gunk that might be stubbornly stuck on. This makes it easier to scrub away the grease and grime. Ensure you let the grill cool down before you continue the cleaning process.

STEP 3: Disassemble the grill and deep clean

Disassembling the grill makes it a lot easier to get in there and give it a good clean. First off, disconnect and take out the propane tank for safety. The grill grates and bars should also be removed and submerged in warm soapy water for a good soak. Also, take out any detachable pieces.

After thirty minutes, remove the grates and panels and scrub them with the wire brush. Also, clear out and scrub the ash catcher, firebox, grease pan, lid, and the insides of the grill. Check for and clean out any clogs. If your grill doesn’t have spider guards, use a wire to clean out the burner tubes. 

After scrubbing, clean all the parts with dish soap and a cotton rag. Use the vinegar and baking soda paste for any stubborn grime. The paste also helps remove stains and gives your grill a good shine. Don’t forget to scrub your grill's exterior with grease-cutting dish soap and a soft cotton rag. Don’t use any abrasive material on the surface of your grill to prevent scratches. 

Once everything is clean, rinse, and dry them thoroughly to prevent rusting.

STEP 4: Detailing and reassembly 

For finishing touches, wipe the exterior of your grill with a stainless steel cleaner and a microfiber rag. This will make sure it looks shiny. When you finally have everything in order, it is time to reassemble your grill.

Once everything is reattached and in place, wipe down your grill grates with a light coating of vegetable oil. Then fire up your grill for about 15 minutes. This will burn off any cleaning residue, season your grill, and make your grates semi-non-stick so that foods don’t stick to them easily.

STEP 5: Make sure you have enough propane or charcoal

You don’t want to be that person that has to stop mid-grill while their BBQ party is still ongoing. Check to make sure you have more than enough propane, pellets, or charcoal for your gas, pellet, or charcoal grill, as the case may be. You don’t want anything to ruin your day.


delicious grill cooking

To enjoy your Memorial Day BBQ and the rest of the BBQ season, here are a few tips for a successful grilling experience.

#1: Season the grill for better flavor

Seasoning your grill keeps rust at bay and significantly affects the flavor of the food. It’s really easy and straightforward. Coat the grates evenly with vegetable, canola, or peanut oil, then turn on to medium heat for about 15 minutes. Once the oil burns off or starts to smoke, you are good to go.

#2: Proper storage and maintenance after use

Good grill maintenance and storage are critical to a successful BBQ experience. Things like grease and carbon buildup can cause the grill to heat unevenly, not reach full operating temperature, or even make the gas burner tubes fail. With proper maintenance, however, your grill will work seamlessly and give you a perfectly cooked meal every time.

#3: Enhancing grill performance with accessories 

Most grill accessories are affordable, so make sure to upgrade when necessary. You can never overemphasize the importance of great tongs, grill brushes, spatulas, and spray bottles. 


Being at the top of your grill maintenance game definitely has a lot of benefits. Below are six reasons you should prioritize cleaning and maintaining your grill.

  1. Prolongs the lifespan of your grill: Everyone wants their grill to last for a long time, but it won’t last at all if you don’t stay on point with cleaning and maintenance. Maintaining your grill prevents corrosion, rust, and food buildup that could impede its function and shorten its lifespan. You don’t want to change your grill every few years now, do you?
  2. Ensures food safety: Nobody wants their guests to get sick after eating at their home. However, if you leave your grill to get dirty, harmful germs and bacteria will accumulate, infect your food, and cause illness. Carcinogenic residue can also accumulate on your grill over time. Cleaning your grill can help get rid of them.
  3. Prevents corrosion and future costly repairs: When neglected, grease and grime can corrode parts of your grill. Some other parts could get damaged as well. On the other hand, maintaining your grill keeps costly repairs at bay.
  4. Enjoy more delicious food: When you grill, food particles, BBQ sauce, and grease get stuck to the grill grates. A dirty grill grate leaves a weird flavor that taints your meal. Cleaning your grill regularly ensures that your food is clean and delicious.
  5. Safe cooking environment: A poorly maintained grill is a safety hazard. Excess grease on the grates could lead to a flare-up, and a corroded or rusty ash catcher could lead to a fire incident if any ash falls on the grass. Holes in your grill could also cause sparks to fly out, leading to a fire. 
  6. Aesthetic appeal: You would agree that a clean and well-maintained grill is more appealing to the eye than one that is not. Also note that the longer you leave your grill dirty, the harder it is to clean it. So, as they say, make hay while the sun shines.


It is essential that you start early to begin prepping your grill for your Memorial Day BBQ so you don’t get caught up in a race against time. Prep your grill before each use and give it a deep clean after every 3-5 uses. Also, remember to take care of your grill throughout the summer season. 

And most importantly, have a fantastic Memorial Day!

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