Ensuring your barbecue is in good condition and ready to use safely will help you have a great summer. It’s also important to remember health and safety tips when using and storing your barbecue, but more about that further down.
There’s lots of good advice on the web on how to ensure that your barbecue is ready to use – try googling ‘get my barbecue ready for summer‘.
Important things to look out for:
- Remove all the grease, fat, and any remaining charcoal that built up last year so it can’t cause a fire.
- If you have a gas barbecue, check that the gas hose is still in good condition – no cracks or splits in the hose, and all connections are nice and tight.
- Check creepy crawlies haven’t set up home in any of the tubes or burners.
Do you know where you are going to use your barbecue?
Downwind of where you plan to eat is usually best. Always consider how your neighbours might be affected by the smoke and smell.
Ensure that the barbecue is well away from anything that might catch fire; fences, sheds, garden furniture, and things like that – and if your home has timber cladding, keep the barbecue at least a couple of metres away.
If you’re lucky enough to have a balcony, please don’t use a barbecue on it; it’s too risky and could cause a fire.
If you plan to use a disposable barbecue, please take great care; they can be particularly dangerous. Never use any barbecue (even disposable) indoors or in enclosed spaces – the fumes can kill you. If you use them outdoors, please choose a spot where the heat will not cause damage and there’s no risk of anything else catching fire.
- Keep an eye on the kids – they might not realise that the barbecue is hot enough to burn them – and you should be careful to keep hot food away from anywhere a child could tip it on themselves.
- Think carefully about where you store your charcoal or gas bottle. If you live in a block of flats, please don’t store gas or charcoal anywhere in the communal areas of your building. We advise you not to keep them in your home, particularly a gas bottle – the risk is too great. If you have a shed or well-ventilated external cupboard, that’s a great place to keep them. If not, somewhere outside, secure and away from prying eyes, with charcoal wrapped in a waterproof bag.
- Don’t use petrol, paraffin or any flammable liquids – firelighters are a much safer option.
- To be safe, keep pets indoors or at least out of the immediate vicinity of the barbecue.
Here’s hoping we all have a great summer and lots of safe barbecues.