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In many parts of the country, winter is in full swing and there are already several feet of snow on the ground. But, you may not be one to brave the elements and cook in the cold weather. Or, after this past year, you may be looking to do some traveling soon.
Either way, this means that you need to store your smoker or grill and keep it protected. After all, chances are you’ve spent some good money on your cooker and you don’t want it to get ruined by the elements.
So, if you are wondering how you store a grill for the winter (or even for long periods between cooks), we’ve put together the top things you need to know. Let’s take a look:
Moisture is a smoker or grill’s number one enemy when being stored for any length of time. Rust and corrosion can quickly build up and ruin your cooker if you don’t take measures to keep it protected.
So, your number one goal when it comes to storing your smoker or grill is to keep it dry both inside and out. (We’ll get into some specific ways to do that below.)
Keep in mind, stainless steel will resist rust better than other metals/compounds but isn’t 100% resistant.
Cleaning the smoker or grill is the most important first step for any type of cooker that will be stored away. It’s actually a good habit to get into between cooks even if you aren’t going to be storing your cooker away for a while.
When it comes to cleaning it before storing, there are some critical things to do:
Check out our blog post on how to properly clean your grill or smoker for more detailed information.
Source: Saber Grills
Cooking oil, like canola oil, is great at helping to repel any moisture that could build up in your smoker or grill. Use the oil to coat the grill grates, burners, and other metal parts to help prevent any rust or corrosion issues from moisture while your cooker is being stored.
This might be obvious, but ideally, the best place to store your smoker or grill is under a covered patio or in a garage. As mentioned above, the moisture from rain or snow can wreak havoc on your cooker’s sensitive metal parts, quickly causing rust and corrosion.
Direct sunlight can also have adverse effects on your cooker if it is not protected. The UV rays can quickly deteriorate the exterior finish or paint, leaving your smoker or grill’s metal more susceptible to moisture.
Storing your smoker or grill inside a garage is fine but keep in mind that when you are cooking, it should always be done outside in a well-ventilated area.
If you have invested in a smoker or grill, one of the best ways to protect it when it’s not being used is with a good quality cover. This is especially true if it is not possible to store your cooker under a covered area.
The hardy material of a quality cover will hold up for a long time and keep moisture out, protect from direct sunlight exposure, and help keep unwanted pests out. Avoid skimping out on protection by buying a cheap cover that will just end up tearing quickly.
Many of the top brands of cookers also make covers that are available for your specific model. Or, if you’ve spent the money on a custom smoker or grill, it’s a very smart investment to have a custom cover made as well.
If you don’t have an area to keep your smoker or grill sheltered and are expecting a good amount of snow, securing an additional tarp on it over the fitted cover is very helpful as well. This provides another layer of protection from moisture.
Source: Green Mountain Grills
As with any type of grill or smoker, it is important to take the necessary steps to protect your pellet grill. Because of the way these grills operate, especially with the electronically operated components, it is even more important to keep them protected from the elements and the fuel source (pellets) properly stored.
Here are a few things to keep in mind, specifically for a pellet grill, when it comes to storage:
Just like with pellet grills, there are some specific things to keep in mind when you want to store a propane smoker or grill properly. These include:
*You always want to store propane tanks outside to avoid any chance of a dangerous gas leak in an enclosed space.
Of course, every grill is different, but prepping your smoker or grill for storage is not an overly difficult task. As you can see, the more TLC you give your cooker when you go to store it away the longer it will last. By following the tips above and knowing how to winterize a smoker or grill, you can help keep your cooker protected and ensure it keeps performing optimally for you.
Your cooker will be all ready to go when you are ready to start cooking some delicious barbecue.
Have you recently prepped your cooker to be stored for the winter? Are you getting ready to winterize your grill? Let us know below. We want to hear from you!
Also, make sure to check out our YouTube channel for the latest tips, insider info, and BBQ news. “Subscribe” to our channel to see all the latest from BBQ Champs Academy!
3 dishes you will learn how to cook: