Select Your Tools Carefully
Don't worry about what tongs or spatula you use. You should be more concerned about the tools you use to light the fire.
Lighter fluid: If you have a charcoal grill, and want a helping hand, use charcoal starter fluid. You can also use an electric charcoal starter, which doesn't use fire, says the National Fire Protection Agency.
Lighter: Always use a long, grill lighter to start your coals. Don't light a piece of paper or paper towel; both of these options make it easier for you to burn yourself.
Sometimes, the last thing you want to do is scrub down the grill or clean the trays after you eat dinner. While these should both be done eventually, there's only one thing you need to do right away: empty the coals.
"A pile of ash left in the grill can collect moisture, and ash plus moisture can equal a cement-like substance that can become your biggest challenge to cleaning your grill, if you can manage to clean it out at all," says Josh Bousel, the grilling correspondent for SeriousEats.com.
Before your next meal, clean the grate. When you light the grill, let the grate heat for 5 minutes and use a brush to scrub it down. You should also clean the outside on occasion to keep it shiny. Don't attack the inside with the same vigor, though.
"Like a good cast iron pan, grilling over and over seasons the inside of your grill. This seasoning is important as it aids with temperature control," says Bousel.
Empty the grease trays once a month if you use the grill often. Otherwise, just empty them when they fill up.
More: 9 Safe-Grilling Tips
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