Why Does the Regulator on My Kenmore Elite Gas Grill Freeze?


Regulators for gas grills can freeze from time to time, which can be frustrating if you want to grill but have to wait for the regulator to thaw. Even then, the regulator might freeze up again when you restart the grill the second time. Kenmore propane gas grills are susceptible to this freezing tendency.


  • Safety is the primary reason for a frozen regulator on a Kenmore gas grill. Most gas grills, including the Kenmore brand, have a safety shutoff that is designed to restrict the flow of propane if it is too great. A high amount of propane feeding through the regulator to the burners will tell the safety valve that your propane source is out of control and needs to be shut down. If the valve that you use to let the propane flow is open on full blast, this will cause the regulator to freeze due to the overabundance of propane backing up as it reaches the safety valve.


  • The reason for the frozen condensation on the outside of the propane grill regulator stems from the nature of propane gas itself. Propane is a gas that is usually colder than oxygen, especially in the spring and summer months when grilling is more prevalent for most people. It is not uncommon for propane tanks to have condensation form on the outside because of the difference in temperature. When propane moves from its liquid compressed form in the tank to its gaseous form in the hose and through the regulator, it becomes significantly colder. A large difference in temperature along with a large amount of gas in the regulator will cause condensation to build up on the regulator.


  • Propane regulators come in one of two forms. Those used in the home are different from those used with gas grills. Gas grills use bottle regulators or low-pressure regulators specifically designed for use with small appliances. Even though it may be tempting to switch to a less restrictive regulator, this is not a good idea. The same is true of the reverse. Regulators designed for use in the home are designed for different pressure levels than those in gas grills. Switching one for the other may prove to be dangerous.


  • Your propane regulator needs to be installed correctly to ensure maximum safety. Propane regulators that are not installed correctly can cause a serious safety hazard. In particular, the venting feature of the regulator needs to be installed in such a way that the vent faces down and away from any drippings that can cause debris to get inside and block it. Vent blockage can be dangerous and cause the grill user to be burned if the propane is not getting the proper level of mixture with oxygen.

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