Angie's List: Tips on making sure your grill is safe to use

LEWISTON, ID - Memorial Day weekend typically kicks off the start of the grilling season.

If it's been awhile since you fired up your grill, a checkup may be in order. In today's Angie's List report, what you should check before heading outside with the burgers.

"A grill is just like any other appliance," said Angie's List Owner, Angie Hicks. "If you give it a lot of TLC it will last you a number of years. If you are in the market this year for a new grill make sure you assess exactly what you need in a grill.

"That grill is going on 20 years old and we are keeping it like new," said Homeowner, Deidre Pettinga.

"What can happen to burners is they can corrode over time," said Grill Repairman Aaron Nelson. "They are being heated up so much and cooled down that the burner can rust and corrode. Most burners can last five to eight years, but eventually they need replacement like a lot of parts on the grill."

"Don't forget to evaluate where you are going to put your grill when you do bring it home because it will be important when it comes to shopping because you want it to be in a safe and convenient place," said Hicks. "You want to know how much space you have so buy a grill that will fit appropriately. Also, do you have storage space for it in the winter? If you keep your grill inside during the winter, it will help it last longer."

"The grill cover protects the grill from weather, but more importantly, it protects things like valves and nuts and bolts that keep the grill together," Nelson said.

"We use our grill year round to do any kind of grilling," said Pettinga. "I even cook my Thanksgiving turkey on the Holland grill it leaves room inside for other things."

Gas grills should be serviced at least once a year; twice a year if you're a heavy grill user - cost can start around $75 and go up depending on the make and model.

Angie's List says give your grill a test run a week or two before the day of the big barbecue to make sure everything is in good working order.
That way, if it does need a new part or repair, you'll have it working in time for the big cookout.