As someone who loves grilling year-round, I often get asked whether it’s safe to fire up my smoker in the garage, especially when the weather is bad outside.
It’s a great question because who wants to avoid the convenience of grilling right alongside their tools and toys?
However, some important factors must be considered before parking your grill in the garage and getting your barbecue on indoors.
In this article, I’ll draw from my experience grilling in different environments and explain what you need to know about safely and effectively operating your grill inside a garage.
I’ll cover proper setup, ventilation, safety tips, and ideal grill types to enjoy smoky ribs or burgers, rain or shine!
Stick with me to learn the do’s and don’ts of garage grilling so you can master the perfect brisket without filling your house with smoke. Let’s get fired up!
Is It Safe To Keep A Propane Grill In The Garage?
As a grilling enthusiast, I’m often asked if keeping a propane grill in the garage poses any risks. You can safely store your gas grill in the garage during the off-season or when not in use. Here are some best practices to follow:
- Disconnect the tank – Always detach the propane tank from the grill when storing. Tanks should always be connected to grills in storage. Shut off tank valves as well.
- Store tanks properly – Propane tanks must be kept upright and not in direct contact with the ground. Place on a flat surface in a well-ventilated area away from heat sources or open flames. Never store tanks indoors.
- Check for leaks – Before storing, spray a leak detection solution on tank valves and connections to ensure no propane is escaping. Perform this check each time you reconnect the tank.
- Cover the grill – Use a heavy-duty grill cover designed for outdoor use. This protects the grill from dust and debris that can clog burners.
- Place away from flammables – Position the stored grill away from any flammable liquids, vapors or materials. Leave adequate space around it.
- Install safety devices – Consider installing propane leak detectors and vent fans in the garage for added precaution.
By disconnecting the tank, checking for leaks, and following proper storage protocols, your propane grill can safely be kept in the garage between uses. Always put safety first when dealing with gas appliances.
Where Is The Best Place To Put A Propane Grill In My Garage?
As a grilling enthusiast who stores my propane grill in the garage during winter, I’ve learned the ideal placement to keep it safe yet easily accessible.
The best location is along the back or side wall of the garage. Choose a spot at least 18 inches from any wall or material.
This prevents heat damage when grilling. Avoid placing it under cabinets or shelves, as heat and smoke can discolor or damage items above.
It’s also best to keep the grill close to the main garage door opening, as this area is often drafty and may draw smoke into the house.
Instead, position it in a stable area away from high-traffic zones where it’s unlikely to be bumped or moved around frequently.
Of course, keep it far away from flammable liquids, vapors or materials as an extra precaution.
Lastly, ensure adequate ventilation and that the location allows the grill lid to open fully without obstruction.
Proper placement in the garage allows you to conveniently grill delicious food rain or shine while safely storing your propane grill when not in use.
Best Safety Practices For Grilling In The Garage
Grilling in the garage offers shelter from the weather but also comes with safety considerations. Here are the top tips I’ve learned to grill safely in a garage:
- Ensure proper ventilation – Open the garage and side doors to provide airflow. Use fans to exhaust smoke.
- Clear area around the grill – Remove vehicles, chemicals, flammables and debris from around the grill. Leave 3-feet clearance.
- Check for leaks – Spray leak detector solution on propane tank valves/connections and check for bubbles before use.
- Position away from house – Place the grill near the front of the garage opening, not under interior walls.
- Use heavy-duty extension cord – If using an electric grill, plug it into a properly rated outdoor extension cord. Avoid tripping hazards.
- Keep children and pets away – Supervise children and restrict pets from being near the active grill.
- Place the grill on a hard, flat surface – For stability and to protect against grease stains. Use a mat underneath.
- Check hoses – Ensure propane hoses are not crimped, cracked or frayed.
- Keep a fire extinguisher nearby – Have proper fire safety equipment, just in case.
Following essential ventilation, leakage, stability, and clearance guidelines will allow you to grill delicious food in your garage during inclement weather safely.
What Are The Risks To Grilling In Your Garage?
While grilling in the garage allows you to escape bad weather, there are unique hazards to be aware of with this practice. As an avid griller, I recommend considering these risks before firing up your barbecue in the garage.
Grills produce heat and flame, quickly igniting flammable materials commonly found in garages, like chemicals, paints, cleaners and cardboard boxes. Grease dripping from the grill can also collect and cause flare-ups. Having a smoldering fire spread quickly is a real danger.
Storing and using propane tanks in a confined garage raises the hazard of gas leaks. Slow leaks are not easily detected and can accumulate, leading to potential explosions.
Carbon Monoxide Poisoning
The fumes from charcoal and gas grills produce carbon monoxide, which is odorless and toxic. The enclosed garage space traps these dangerous fumes, causing carbon monoxide poisoning risks if ventilation is poor.
The smoke created while grilling coats surfaces in soot and can permeate interior walls in the garage. Long-term smoke exposure damages paint, tools, and stored items.
The enclosed garage space raises the chances of accidentally bumping into or touching hot grill cooking surfaces. This can cause severe burns for you or passersby.
While the convenience factor is high, the potential fire, gas leak, smoke, and burn hazards amplify in a garage setting. Taking strict precautions and following safety protocols is essential to grill safely in your garage and reduce these risks.
Is It Safe To Store A Grill In The Garage?
As a grilling enthusiast, I’m often asked if keeping a grill in the garage poses any risks. The answer is that gas and charcoal grills can be safely stored in a garage with the proper precautions.
For propane grills, the key is completely disconnecting the gas tank and storing it properly outdoors when not in use.
Tanks should never be left attached to a stored grill. Shut off tank valves and check for leaks before reconnecting.
Cover grills to prevent debris buildup and place away from flammables. Remove ashes for charcoal grills and ensure coals are fully extinguished before storing.
A garage is often too enclosed to smoke meat with charcoal safely. However, an empty grill can be stored there once it cools.
The garage should have adequate ventilation to prevent gas or smoke buildup. Avoid very humid areas.
While garage storage carries some risks, mainly with gas grills, following basic safety protocols minimizes the hazards so you can conveniently store unused grills close at hand. Always exercise caution when dealing with open flames.
This article gave you a good overview of how to safely and effectively fire up your grill in the garage.
While grilling indoors takes extra planning and precautions, it opens up your barbecue possibilities year-round.
Now that you know how to set up your grill correctly, ventilate the space, follow safety protocols, and choose appropriate grill types, you can enjoy smoked ribs and burgers rain or shine!
Just be smart, take the necessary fire precautions, and grill on. Thanks for reading – and as always, I welcome your comments and questions below.
Now get outside – or inside your garage – and start grilling something delicious!
Propane tanks should never be stored indoors, including in a garage. Propane gas is highly flammable; leaks can occur from valves or connections. If leaked propane accumulates in an enclosed space, it poses a major explosion risk from a small spark or open flame cooking. Additionally, indoor areas often exceed safe grill temperature limits for propane tanks. For these safety reasons, propane tanks must always be stored externally or in specially designed outdoor lockers.
A fixed propane gas line allows convenient, permanent fuel access for grilling. Professional installation involves running buried gas piping from an exterior tank to the grill location while following codes. For garages, piping often goes beneath the slab. The proper tank size is installed outside and connected to the piping. Certified technicians perform the complete installation and test for leaks before use.