How To Clean Cast Iron BBQ Grill

Summer’s fast approaching, and if you’re looking to host a party or summer get-together in your backyard, whether to celebrate or to just have a good time, a BBQ party is the way to go.

Barbecuing is a fun activity to have with associates, friends, and family. There aren’t many things more pleasant than the aroma of meat on an outdoor grill. The smoky, mouth-watering, and heart-warming smell of sizzling barbecue in the air is part of a long-standing Canadian tradition.

You may have already mapped out the perfect cookout in your head, but actualizing your plans can be tricky without the right equipment and supplies on hand. To get your barbecue party off to a good start, visit Dickson BBQ for all your needs, as we provide quality products from reputed brands that’ll make for a memorable outdoor grilling session.

But before anything, it is best to check that your equipment is primed and ready for the big occasion. If your cast iron grill is still harbouring remnants from your previous barbecue session, you’ll need to make sure to clean your equipment thoroughly before grilling to preserve its effectiveness.

Let go over the best methods on how to clean cast iron BBQ grill, as we cover why its essential as well as the key steps towards proper cleaning.

Why You Should Clean Your Cast Iron BBQ Grill

After every grilling activity, carbon deposits are formed in the corners of your grill surface, such as the firebox interior, grates, burner tubes, and hood.

Apart from being unpleasant to the eyes, these carbon deposits might potentially attract bacteria and other pathogens to your grill’s surface.

Also, the accumulation of grease and sugary sauces can upset the performance of your grill, causing it to heat unevenly and operate at a lower temperature. In fact, without proper cleaning, continued usage can lead to the failure of your gas-burner tubes.

To make your grill’s cleaning process easier before a new grilling session, rinse the equipment properly after every use. Doing this regularly and without fail will lengthen the lifespan of your cast iron grill while ensuring that its performance remains efficient and effective.

Equipment for Cleaning a Cast Iron BBQ Grill

When looking up methods on how to clean a cast iron BBQ grill, you will find numerous cleaning tools and agent suggestions to wipe down your cast iron grill. However, many of these kits aren’t suitable for a cast iron grill, and they can negatively affect the grill’s performance in the long run.

Additionally, it's best to avoid the usage of harsh chemicals to cleanse your barbecuing equipment, as they can leave a lasting effect and add an unpleasant edge to the taste of your food. For the best results, the following are the best items to use when cleaning your grill:

  • Warm water
  • Stain remover
  • Baking soda
  • Elbow grease
  • Cleaning wipes
  • Wire brushes
  • Wire bottle brush
  • Stainless steel cleaner
  • Scouring sponges
  • Long-cuffed rubber gloves
  • Cleaning blocks

If you want to get the most effective grill cleaning products, head over to Dickson BBQ’s cleaning and maintenance catalog to select quality items to make your grill completely spotless.

Processes Involved in Cleaning a Cast Iron BBQ Grill

Heat up the surfaces

This is the first step on how to clean a cast iron BBQ grill. It involves turning up the gas grill, closing the hood, and allowing the temperature to increase to its highest point. Allow for about 30 minutes to allow the heat to char any grease or remnant on the grill surface.

Afterwards, use something like a stainless mesh scrubber brush immersed in warm, soapy water to wipe down every carbon deposit from the grates. Then, switch off the gas by taking away the propane tank. Then leave the grill for a moment to cool off totally.

If you use charcoal grills, dispose of the old coals, and use a knife to remove any charcoal dust attached to the grill surface.

Soak in water

After allowing it to cool, the next step on how to clean BBQ grill cast iron is to completely submerge the grill grate and flavourizer bars in warm, soapy water for no less than 30 minutes.


You can remove the detachable components of the cast iron grill, such as the warming racks, grease trays, and burner-control knobs. Doing so will also ensure that the next few steps can be performed more easily.

Clean the firebox

After separating the flavourizer bars and grill gates, the firebox’s interiors are exposed and ready to be cleaned. To wash the firebox, you should place a bucket below it, underneath the opening of the grease tray. The bucket is expected to collect soapy water and remnants cleared out.

Remove any caked-on greasy matter inside the firebox and use a wet or dry vacuum to get rid of any remaining remnants in the firebox. Once your firebox has been properly cleaned off, use a garden hose to rinse it out and remove any remaining debris.

Scrub thoroughly

Next, remove the soaked grates, bars, and panels and scrub thoroughly using a wire brush. Combining baking soda and white vinegar should make it easy to wipe caked-on debris clean. Then, pour water and rinse all surfaces to clean them. 

Remember to allow your cast-iron grates to dry completely to prevent rusting. Also, check for chips on the porcelain grates carefully, as they can cause rust buildup as well. Finally, examine your burners to check for any signs of corrosion or debris buildup corrosion around the flame holes. 

If you do find buildup, use a wire brush to scrub the surface of the holes. Apply a wire bottle brush to clean the burner tubes’ interiors and remove debris.

Wash clean and finish up

This is the final step on how to clean a cast iron BBQ grill; use clean water, soap, and a sponge to wipe down the exteriors of the grill. 

Avoid metal or coarse sponges and steel wool, as they can scratch the finishing surface of your cast iron grill. Then, make use of microfiber towels to dry the surface.

For the final touches, use a stainless-steel cleaning agent to spray down the grill surface and leave it there for five to ten minutes, and clean with a neat, dry cloth.

As soon as the grill is spotless and dry, reassemble all the components removed earlier and cleanse the grates with a light coating of vegetable oil. Fire up the grill again for 15 minutes to burn off any cleaning remains and help the oil penetrate and bind to the cast iron surfaces.


It is imperative to wipe down your grill before the new barbecue season to ensure it’s dirt-free and maintains an optimal performance level. Note that the steps outlined in this article can also help with how to clean a rusty cast iron BBQ grill, as several of these steps can also be effective in rust removal.

With these steps, you can always be ready for your next barbeque session all throughout the summer.