Summer Grilling Fire Hazards and Tips to Avoid Them | SERVPRO® of Kingston/New Paltz
It’s important to be aware of what conditions can cause a grill fire—and how to prevent one—so you can stay safe while having summer fun in Ulster County.
Grill fires are not only dangerous to people and animals, they can cause serious damage to your deck and home. In fact, the National Fire Protection Association reports that grills were involved in over 10,000 home fires in a four-year span, with July being the most popular time for these incidents. May, June and August were all a close tie in those scary statistics.
What Causes Grill Fires?
While there is a fire risk anytime someone is cooking either indoors or out, because of the open flame and direct contact, grills pose a unique risk for flare-ups. Common causes of grill fires include:
*Leaving grills unattended
*Uncleaned grill grates
*Grilling near combustible materials- heat can really radiate, you’d be surprised how far!
*Burner tubes blocked due to debris or insects
*Overfilled grease pans
How to Prevent Grill Fires
The easiest way to avoid accumulating damage from a grill fire is by being familiar with and taking steps to prevent one from happening in the first place.
Here are a few ways you can care for your grill and prevent fires:
- It’s easy to forget they’re in there but you need to clean your drip pans frequently. Cleaning your grill helps prevent grease fires and flare-ups. Under the cooking grids and burners, every grill is equipped with a drip tray. When these trays become full and reach high temperatures, grease fires can occur. Check your pans or trays every time you use the grill to ensure they are not getting overfilled. If you let the grease cool, it’s easier to scrape off and then clean with soap and water.
- Coated, sauced, gristle-covered cooking grates need to be scraped down. These dried-on bits harbor bacteria that can affect the taste and outcome of your meal, but they can also cause dangerous fires. After preheating your grill, use a grill brush to scrape off grates—and scrape again after cooking. It is also advised to frequently give grates a scrub with soap and water while the grill is cool. There are lots of great choices of grill scrapers out there no matter what type you like, it’s an important tool to have on hand whenever you’re grilling!
- ALWAYS Keep safety supplies nearby. Baking soda quickly cuts off oxygen the fire needs. Keep baking soda and a fire extinguisher nearby each time you grill to smother any flames.
Tip: Never use water to put out a grease fire, as it can cause the flames to spread.
SERVPRO of Kingston/New Paltz is here to help, 24/7 for emergencies! N matter the type of fire damage, we’ll make it “Like it never even happened.”