Now that we’re enjoying the sunshine and warm weather, it’s time to dust off your backyard grill and enjoy a tasty barbecue. It may be tempting to jump right into chef mode and start cooking that delicious grilled meal you’ve been craving all winter, but before you do, consider the following grilling safety tips to help you avoid any grilling mishaps.
While grilling outside is a popular summer activity, thousands of people are injured or damage their homes each year. Here are ten safety tips to keep you and your loved ones safe!
10 Tips for Safe Summer Barbecues
When Summer sets in, the first thing we plan on doing is fire up the grill. Grilling is a great way to spend your summer days and nights, from family cookouts to a casual grilled dinner. If you’re planning on a weekend in your backyard this summer, here are some barbecue safety tips to keep you safe throughout the season.
Place Grill in a Safe Location
When choosing a location for your barbecue, choose one level and at least ten feet away from the house, garage, or any other building on your land. Avoid placing your grill beneath an overhang, low-hanging trees, or anything else that might be harmed by fire or smoke.
Remember that grilling is an outside activity. Grilling should not be done in a garage or other enclosed location. This will cause a fire, but it will also flood your home with carbon monoxide. If you want to cook all year long, invest in an indoor barbeque explicitly designed for this purpose regardless of the weather.
Check for Gas Leaks
It’s critical to inspect your grill before utilizing it, especially if you keep it for months. Propane or natural gas can build up within a closed lid due to leaks in the gas pipes. So, before you start the fire, open the cover and inspect the gas lines for leakage. Turn on the gas and splash some soapy water on the hoses and connectors to check for leaks. Large bubbles indicate regions where connections are not tight enough or hoses with holes.
Clean your Grill Regularly.
Cleaning the barbecue is an unpleasant but essential chore. Grease and fat can accumulate on the grill plates and drip tray, resulting in severe flare-ups. Cleaning your grill regularly leads to better-tasting food that doesn’t adhere to the grates. Make it a practice to clean your grill after each usage.
Keep a Spray Bottle Handy.
Even if the grill is clean, occasional flare-ups may occur when fat and grease drop off the food while it cooks. It would help if you kept a spray bottle of water nearby to extinguish minor fires before they spread into larger ones and retain smoke at bay.
Always have the Grill Supervised.
Never leave a grill alone while cooking. The tremendous heat and open flames might pose a safety and fire risk if left unattended. Before cooking, make a plan and gather all the necessary ingredients. If you must go for whatever reason, have another adult keep watch.
Be Ready to Put out the Fire.
Fire spreads rapidly, so be prepared to deal with the situation if it arises. Keep baking soda on hand to extinguish grease fires and a fire extinguisher ready for other types of flames.
Create a Safety Zone
Create a kid/pet-free zone of at least three feet around the grill to keep your children and dogs safe. Each year, children under five account for approximately 39% of all contact-type burns. Teach your children to remain away from the grilling area and keep dogs tied up or indoors while you’re cooking. Remember that the grill will stay hot long after you’ve completed cooking.
Wear Appropriate Clothing
Wearing loose or dangling garments that might catch fire around the barbecue is not recommended. Wear clothing that will not touch the grill, and tie the apron strings across your back.
Shut Down Correctly
When you’re through cooking, make sure you properly turn off the grill. Before relocating your grill, be sure it is excellent. Also, you should turn off the burners and the fuel supply on gas barbecues. If you’re using a charcoal barbecue, immerse the coals in water first or wait until they’re freezing before dumping them into a metal container.
With more people grilling in their backyards this summer, it’s vital to remember these safety guidelines so you and your family may have a safe barbeque season.
However, these can be a bit perplexing, so we’ve included some ‘Dos and Don’ts’ for your convenience. Please follow through, and you’ll be OK!
Dos: These can keep you Stay Out of Any Unwanted Situation
A Safe Distance: Maintain a distance of at least 10 feet between your barbecue and home. Farther is superior. This includes any structures linked to your homes, such as carports, garages, and porches. Grills should also not be utilized beneath timber overhangs, as the fire might spread to the structure above. This is true for charcoal & gas barbecues.
Cleaning up the Mess more Frequently: Allowing oil and fat to accumulate on your barbecue provides additional fuel for a fire. Flare-ups are commonly caused by grease.
Omit Decorations/ Keep aloof: Remove any decorations from your grill. Hanging baskets, cushions, and umbrellas look nice and offer fuel for a fire. To make matters worse, today’s décor primarily comprises synthetic fabrics that burn quickly and hotly, making this suggestion much more critical.
Water Bottle Nearby: You should have a spray bottle of water nearby before it’s too late. If you experience a slight flare-up, you can spray it with water to rapidly settle it down. The added benefit is that water will not destroy your food, so supper will not be spoiled!
Fire Extinguishers are Required: Keep a fire extinguisher a few steps away from your barbecue. And understand how to use it. Don’t waste time tinkering with the extinguisher before dialing 911 if you’re unsure how to use it. According to firefighters, many fire deaths occur when people attempt to fight a fire on their own rather than asking for professional assistance and allowing the fire department to perform its job.
Don’ts: A more Careful Approach
An open Grill Lid to Initiate Fire: An excellent suggestion is that you should not turn on the gas if the grill lid is closed to start a fire. It causes gas to accumulate within your grill, and when you ignite it and open it, a fireball might erupt in your face.
More Focus on a Running Grill: If you leave a barbecue unattended, fires double in size every minute. Plan ahead of time so that all of your other meal preparation tasks are completed, and you can concentrate on grilling.
Don’t stuff too much Food on your Grill: This is especially true for fatty meats. The main reason for this suggestion is that if too much fat drips on the flames at once, it might generate a massive flare-up, potentially igniting adjacent objects.
Don’t think about Using a Grill Indoors: Many people believe that using a grill indoors, especially a small one is safe. However, this is not the correct course of action. Grills emit carbon monoxide, a deadly colorless and odorless gas, in addition to a fire threat. That gas must be vented into the fresh air, or it will kill you, your family, and your pets.
There are dangers in everything. The key to success is understanding the risks are and how to mitigate them. You should know a few things while cooking outside to ensure that nothing goes wrong while cooking.
If you are not careful, combining explosive fuels with food, hot metals, and big gatherings of people may be a formula for tragedy. Of all, outdoor cooking safety is about more than simply the fire. Keeping grills in good working order is critical for property owners, neighborhood associations, and city dwellers. To guarantee a safe and pleasurable grilling season, follow these measures.