home-bbq-safety-tips

It’s a good time to start taking on board some home BBQ safety tips now that the weather is getting warmer. As you’ve probably considered firing up the barbecue (if you haven’t already!) After all, nothing says spring or summer like the smell of burgers, steaks, hot dogs and chopped veggies fresh off the grill – until something starts burning, that is.

While barbecue grills are an easy way to cook up large amounts of delicious food, they can also pose a serious fire hazard to your home and family. But don’t worry, there are some easy ways you can prevent injury and keep your home safe. Keep your property out of harm’s way the next time you smoke, sizzle or sauté outside by following a few simple BBQ safety tips from ServiceMaster Restore.

Practice Good Grilling Habits

Whatever kind of barbecue you use, there are a few simple things you can do to reduce your risk of fire or injury. Here are some basic grilling safety tips to follow:

  • Set your barbecue up a safe distance away from structures and overhangs, including your main building, shed, garage, trees and other potentially flammable objects.
  • Never use your grill inside, in a tent, or under an outdoor awning. Doing so can pose a serious fire hazard and potentially cause carbon monoxide poisoning if you’re using a gas barbecue.
  • Light any gas or charcoal BBQs using special long-length lighters or long matches to avoid getting burned. Keep all ignition sources out of the reach of children.
  • Never leave an actively burning BBQ unattended, and let the grill fully cool before you cover or store it.
  • Clean your barbecue thoroughly and often to reduce flammable build-up inside.

Be Aware of Proper Charcoal Barbecue Safety

Many people swear by the taste of food cooked on a classic charcoal barbecue. This popular way of cooking is fun, but it also poses unique fire risks of its own. Keep these important BBQ safety tips in mind if you own or use a charcoal barbecue:

  • Only add enough charcoal to cover the bottom of the barbecue. Don’t pile too much inside since it could cause ashes and sparks to become airborne, possibly catching nearby objects or even your home on fire.
  • Store extra charcoal in a secure place away from other potential fire hazards, and preferably in an airtight metal container.
  • Only use starter fluid specifically designed for charcoal. Apply it to cold coals only, and don’t add extra fluid once the BBQ is lit. Otherwise, the flames could get too high, resulting in possible burns or an uncontained fire.
  • Empty your used ashes only when they have fully cooled. Never store or dispose of them in a bin or leave them out on the decking. Even when cooled, ashes can still cause a fire. It’s best to dump them on garden soil or contain them in a metal receptacle for proper disposal.

Use your Gas BBQ Wisely

Gas barbecue grills are convenient and easy to use and require less refuelling than charcoal grills. But gas barbecues are also susceptible to fire risks, so it’s important to be aware of how to properly operate your gas BBQ. Remember these safety tips if you own a gas BBQ:

  • Open the lid before lighting the barbecue. This allows oxygen to escape and reduces the risk of fire or even explosion.
  • Check the gas line and tank fittings regularly for leaks. You can do this by brushing soapy water around these areas. If you see bubbles emerge, there could be a leak somewhere. Replace any damaged and/or leaking parts and make any other needed repairs before using the barbecue.
  • If you have spare gas cylinders, never store them under a stairway. Place them upright and outside, away from any structures to minimise fire risks.
  • Turn off your barbecue using the controls first, then close off the gas line at the tank. This helps to ensure any excess gas can escape safely.

If the worst should happen and you experience a fire during the warmer months, the professionals at ServiceMaster Restore are always available to help. We hope you never need to make that call but if you do, we’ll be available.

Find your nearest ServiceMaster Restore today or call 0845 762 6828 to see how we can help you recover.

Written by Tom Page, Digital Content Writer