Many people, for whatever reason, choose not to own a grill, but still love grilling food. Nowadays, if you live in an apartment or near a park, it is likely that you will have access to a community grill, and therefore if you choose to use the equipment provided, you should take care of it as if it were your own, because it is. Since you use it, therefore you share the responsibility to take care of it.

Many community grills are sadly neglected, so when grilling season starts, it is best to clean the equipment as best you can. This requires a lot of elbow grease and time, but you would not want to cook your food on a dirty surface, so take the time and effort required to clean it thoroughly. If you do, it is likely that other people who use the grill will also take the time and effort to clean it when they are through using it. If not, at least you will have less build up to clean the next time you use the grill!

Remember that lighter fluid is toxic, so do not use it to start charcoal. It is best to use natural charcoal, which you can find at most stores, and it costs no more than traditional charcoal. You can either build a fire or use an electric starter to start the charcoal. You just do not want to breathe fumes from lighter fluid, or have those fumes get into your food where you will eat them!

Grilled Shrimp
Credit: public domain

When using a community grill, remember that food placed directly on the grates will tend to stick to it and make cleaning the grill a chore, so save yourself some time and effort by using a thin layer of foil to line the grill. You will still get the grill marks, never fear!

And when you are finished, make sure that the fire is out, and the ashes are cold. Clean out the ashes and throw them away in the litter bin. Clean off the grate and leave it as you would want to find it the next time you use the equipment. And please throw away all your trash. (If you live in an area where there are bears, make sure that you take all food scraps with you, or you and your neighbours could be in big trouble!)

By following these steps, and taking your share of the responsibility for maintaining a community grill, you will discover that you will want to start grilling more often, and so will your neighbours. In addition, your neighbours will begin doing their share to maintain equipment, and your job will get a whole lot easier. So go out there and enjoy your community grill!

Grill Daddy Grill Cleaning Brush
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(price as of Nov 4, 2015)
A safe, simple, non-toxic way to clean any grill. Fill this device with water, heat up the grill, and watch the grill come clean with the power of steam!