By Scott Pearson, Director of Risk & Asset Developement, CHS Propane
The trees are starting to bud and people are leaving their jackets at home. This can only mean one thing: It’s grilling season!
Antsy to fire up your FAVORITE CHARBROILED RECIPE? While grilling season is all about having fun with loved ones outdoors, it’s important to take proper safety measures before your first cookout. Outdoor grills have become very popular, and propane grills, in particular, come with their own set of precautions. To start your season off right, brush up on some important propane grilling guidelines below.
Purchasing your cylinders
Check all propane cylinders for dents or scratches before purchasing. Indentations can indicate potential leaks.
While transporting cylinders in your car, be sure to keep them upright and secured in place. Cylinders rolling around in your trunk or backseat can result in propane leaking into your vehicle.
Note that most states have restrictions on how many cylinders can be transported by motor vehicle at once. It’s always a good idea to review local laws and restrictions with your local fire department.
Using your propane grill
Before you begin, take a few minutes to re-familiarize yourself with your grill’s manual. Double check the proper procedure for connecting a cylinder and for igniting your particular model.
Use your grill in an open area with good clearance above it. Remove any combustible materials that may be nearby.
Propane has an odor added to it that is similar to that of natural gas, so use your “sniffer” to detect signs of leaking.
Keep the lid of the grill open while lighting to avoid flash burns.
While operating the grill, maintain site lines and watch for any flare ups.
As a bonus safety precaution, have a water bottle nearby just in case any food or grease should catch fire.
Clean up and storage for next season
While packing up your grill, clean off any food residue or remaining grease to avoid any future flare ups or fires.
For long-term storage, keep cylinders upright, secure and out of reach for children.
Most states have fire codes for how many cylinders can be stored in one place. Your local fire department will have specific guidelines for your area.