Thanks to food debris, excess grease, and moisture, your grill can be the perfect breeding ground for mold if stored improperly. For you, though, it’s bad news.
Grilled food is some of the best you can taste and enjoy.
However, if you find white mold spots on multiple parts of your grill, you may want to clean it before you start cooking your next meal.
In this guide, I’ll share with you tricks I discovered when I learned how to clean mold off my grill. Read on to find out.
What Is Mold?
Mold is a type of fungi that has a multi-cellular structure. It thrives on moisture and grease, making covered and not-well-maintained equipment the perfect breeding ground for it.
The type of mold you will likely have on your outdoor equipment, including smokers and grills, is dangerous to humans. It produces mycotoxins that can make a person sick.
The first thing I discovered when learning how to clean mold off my grill is knowing what it looks like to identify it correctly.
Mold is usually white and fuzzy in appearance. Sometimes, dark green spots are also characterized as mold. They spread and reproduce quickly by releasing spores.
If not maintained adequately, all grills are susceptible to mold, whether they’re beginner grills or pro-level, top-of-the-line outdoor grills.
How to Remove Mold From Your Grill
You’ll need to clean your equipment thoroughly to make sure the grill mold is gone. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how you clean grill mold.
There’s no harm in exercising caution. Since Mold releases spores into the air, inhaling these can cause you to get sick.
For good measure, wear gloves and a face mask before cleaning your grill. Also, try to wear a long-sleeved shirt when you clean your grill.
When you have protection, you are unlikely to inhale spores and avoid direct contact with mold. This can help prevent an allergic reaction along with other health problems.
Burn Mold and Mold Spores
Can I burn mold off my grill?
Fire up your grill and raise the temperature to high heat – as high as it can go. Leave it running for 10 minutes. This helps burn and kill mold and its spores while still on your grill.
If you have a burner grill, turn it to the highest setting. Meanwhile, if you have a charcoal grill, you can add new briquettes to help raise the temperature.
After 10 minutes, let your grill cool completely.
Take Your Grill Apart
For easy cleaning, disassemble your grill’s main parts, including the grill grates and its accessories, after it has completely cooled down.
Doing this gives you easier access when cleaning different parts of your equipment.
Set each individual piece down, preferably on old newspapers.
Remove porous materials from your grill, too. If you have charcoal, briquettes, and lava rocks, take them out, gather and seal them into a plastic bag, and discard them properly.
This step is crucial if you have a gas or propane grill, as it ensures you won’t get grill cleaner into the burners.
Use a Grill Cleaner
Spray all parts of your grill with a grill cleaner. You can buy your grill cleaner at the store or make one with things at home.
You can either use a bleach solution, which is bleach diluted in water, or a mixture of baking soda and vinegar. Use a spray bottle to apply your solution to the grill parts easily
These two solutions can help kill mold on your grill. Vinegar is a natural disinfectant, while a bleach solution is known to kill germs, including grill mold.
Make sure every surface of your grill parts is covered. This includes the grill interior, grill surface, grill cover, and drip pan. Leave the cleaning agent on for 10 to 15 minutes.
Scrub Your Grill Grates and Other Accessories
Using a scrub brush, remove mold, excess charcoal, food residue, and grease on your unit. You can also use a grill scraper for the grill grates and flat cooking surfaces if you have a flat-top grill.
After removing mold and other residues stuck on your barbecue grill, wipe them with a paper towel or a clean cloth and rinse them in hot soapy water.
After rinsing your grill parts in water, remember to wipe them dry to avoid rusting.
Alternative: Power Wash Your Grill
If you want to remove the dirt and grime off your grill while cleaning mold off, you can opt to powerwash them.
When using this method, ensure that your pressure washer releases water at 1.3 GPM (gallons per minute) at 2,000 PSI.
If you have a gas or propane grill, disconnect it from the fuel source. If you have a charcoal grill, dispose of old charcoal, ceramic briquettes, or lava rocks before power washing.
After power washing, make sure to let your barbecue grill completely dry. You can help it dry using paper towels to avoid corrosion.
Reassemble Your Grill
Now that your grill is completely dry, reassemble it into good working condition.
Fire up Your Grill Again
Have your grill burn at high heat again. Doing so would burn off residual mold in your gas or charcoal grill and help dry out water to prevent rust and get rid of soap residue.
If you have a gas grill, turn the burner up to the highest setting. Add charcoal or ceramic briquettes for charcoal grills and let them go as hot as possible.
Frequently Asked Questions
How Do I Prevent Mold Growth on My Grill?
While knowing how to remove grill mold and mold spores is a good thing, always remember that preventing it is better than fixing the problem later.
Before you can find mold on your grill, know the proper maintenance of your equipment. To avoid having a moldy grill, you can try doing the following:
Clean Your Grill After Every Use
The top thing to remember for maintaining a grill or other kitchen equipment is to clean it after every use.
By cleaning your grill, you’re removing any food residue or grease that may make your grill susceptible to mold growth.
Deep Clean Your Grill Regularly
Apart from cleaning your grill after every use, you should also make it a point to do some thorough cleaning periodically if you want your grill to be mold-free.
This ensures you get all food residue and excess grease off your barbecue grill, especially off hard-to-reach areas.
Apart from preventing mold, it also prevents rust and helps your equipment last longer.
Use a Grill Cover to Protect it From the Elements
Moisture is something you will want to avoid if you want to prevent mold. To protect it from the elements, use a grill cover.
Do keep in mind that it’s only recommended for grills stored outdoors. You don’t have to use grill covers if you have a nice dry and covered area to keep your grill in.
Store Your Barbecue in a Dry and Covered Area
If you don’t want your grill not to grow mold, make sure to store it properly, preferably indoors. A garage would be a fantastic place to store your grill.
However, ensure the area you’re storing your grill in has no moist spot. A leaky roof can provide enough humidity and moisture for mold to grow.
Is It Safe to Cook on a Moldy Grill?
No. The mold that usually grows on a grill is unsafe, unlike the mold used in cheese-making.
When you cook on a moldy grill, the mold itself or the mold spores will come into contact with your food, contaminating it.
While mold dies in high temperatures, the FDA still doesn’t recommend leaving mold on food to cook away.
Grill mold releases chemicals known as mycotoxins that can give you a wide range of health problems. An allergic reaction is also common when you come into contact with mold.
Is Bleach Safe to Use in Cleaning Mold?
You can use a bleach solution or bleach diluted in water to clean the grill mold. However, ensure to rinse your grill parts properly and thoroughly to make cooking safe.
Enjoy Mold-Free Grilling Experience Year Round
If you find mold on your grill, the first thing you need to do is to clean it. While it may seem intimidating, removing mold and preventing it from returning is straightforward.
Hopefully, the tips I discovered by learning how to clean mold off my grill can help you, too. Try them out and see the difference.