How to Clean a BBQ Pit

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Barbecue pits and grills come in a variety of different shapes and sizes, from portable and easy to-use-sizes to larger models with gas controllers. No matter the size of your barbecue pit, however, keeping it clean will help to make it last longer and will actually make the food you cook in it taste better. Although cleaning your barbecue pit lightly after every use will save you from having to do major cleanup, you should thoroughly clean your barbecue pit two to three times each season

Things You'll Need

  • hand shovel
  • garbage bag
  • wet/dry vac
  • scraper
  • steel wool pads
  • barbecue grill brush
  • liquid grill cleaning fluid

Take off the lid of your barbecue pit, or lift it into the upright position if it is attached.

Lift the metal grill up and off of the pit and set it to the side.

Use a hand shovel to remove the old charcoal, ashes and dust from the inside of your barbecue pit. If your barbecue uses ceramic or stone coals instead, lift them out by hand and set them aside.

Plug in a wet/dry vacuum, and vacuum out the inside of the barbecue thoroughly.

Inspect your barbecue for rust. Use a steel wool pad to clean off old rust.

Spray the liquid grill cleaner onto the inside of your barbecue. There are a variety of different cleaners, so directions may vary from produce to product. Typically, though, spray the cleaner on the dirty areas, allow it to sit for about two minutes and then resume cleaning.

Use a hand scraper to remove gunk and buildup from the inside of the pit once the liquid grill cleaner has sat on it for a little while.

Use the wet-dry vac to suck out remaining residue.

Spray a coating of the grill cleaner onto the cooking grill itself. Once it has sat for several minutes, use the barbecue grill brush to clean it. Grill brushes usually have steel wool bristles and a razor-sharp scraper mounted on the end. Use the scraper to scrape off burnt chunks of old meat or fat and other debris. Use the bristles to do followup cleaning.

Replace charcoal or ceramic or brick coals and set the grill top back into place.

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