Propane Gas Grilling Safety Tips

Propane gas grills are undoubtedly one of the most popular outdoor appliances used today. Gas grills are replacing charcoal grills in increasing numbers because of their ease of use without the clean-up involved with charcoal grills. LP Gas grills commonly use a portable propane bottle that can easily be re-filled or exchanged for continued enjoyment without the hassle of loading more charcoal and stirring up the ashes. Operating a grill safely will ensure that the food is prepared properly and the grill user is safe from harm.

In an effort to avoid any problems and to ensure a safe and enjoyable summer season, we offer the following   tips:

•    Half of all gas grill home structure fires begin on an exterior balcony or unenclosed porch.

•    Always use your grill outside in a well-ventilated area.  Never bring or store cylinders inside or in an enclosed space such as an enclosed porch or a shed.

•    Position the grill well away from siding, deck railings and out from under eaves and overhanging branches

•    Use flame-resistant pads underneath the grill.

•    Propane is a liquid hydrocarbon that vaporizes into a colorless, odorless, highly flammable gas. In properly maintained and operated systems, propane is completely safe. However, it can be dangerous if an uncontrolled release of propane occurs. In order to detect an uncontrolled release of propane, an odorant (usually ethyl mercaptan) is added to the propane

•    Do not allow children to tamper or play with the cylinder or grill.

•    Maintain a three foot safe area around the grill.

•    Do not wear loose fitting clothing while barbecuing.

•    Keep grill covered when not in use however, make sure the grill is turned off and cooled down before covering.

•    Do not smoke in or near propane cylinders.

•    Check the gas cylinder hose and connections for leaks before using it for the first time each season. A light soap and water solution applied to the hose and fittings will reveal escaping gas by releasing bubbles. If you determine that your grill has a gas leak either through the bubble test or if you smell gas and there is no flame, turn off the tank and contact a qualified propane contractor. If the leak persists with the tank off, leave the area and call the fire department immediately.

•    Never use matches or a lighter to check for leaks!!

•    Always use and store propane cylinders in an upright, vertical position, store tanks away from all potential sources of ignition.

•    Make sure the grill burner controls are turned off and keep the cylinder valve closed when not in use.

•    Use long handled grilling tools to give the chef plenty of clearance from the heat and flames while cooking.

•    Never leave the grill unattended while in use.

•    Periodically remove grease and fat that has built up in the trays below the grill as eventually it will ignite from the heat of the grill.

•    At the end of the season, after disconnecting the propane tank, cover the disconnected hose-end fittings and burner air intakes with small plastic bags or protective fitting caps to keep out dirt, moisture and insects

•    If you repaint your barbecue shell, choose a high heat, fire-resistant point. If you repaint your gas cylinder, use only white paint.  NEVER PAINT A TANK BLACK OR SIMILAR COLOR. IT IS ILLEGAL AND THE EXTRA HEAT ABSORBED BY THE TANK CAN CAUSE OVER-PRESSURIZATION.

•    If there is a significant and uncontrollable release of gas or a fire, call the fire department immediately and move all people and pets away from the area.

Happy Grilling!!!

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