BBQ safety & best advice
There is no question that barbecues make the best meals ever and cooking with them outdoors is one of life’s great pleasures!
However, as is the case with any equipment using gas or open flames, safety is paramount. So, how do you use a BBQ safely? Well, if you’ve recently purchased a gas BBQ or you’re thinking about doing so, we recommend reading over this BBQ safety checklist. Whether you have a portable BBQ or a 4-burner gas BBQ, barbecue safety should always be top-of-mind.
Don’t leave your BBQ fired up but unattended
Let’s start with one of the most salient pieces of BBQ safety advice we can offer.
If your BBQ is working or it’s still hot from having cooked up a feast, never leave it unattended. The fact that it is outdoors is reason enough to maintain surveillance, as you never know what might happen. Strong winds might blow it over, scattering hot debris. Animals might decide to make a covert move for some quick stolen takeaway. The kids may have found their way outside for some children’s garden games…
We haven’t even scratched the surface. However, needless to say, there are plenty of scenarios, variables and risks. Avoid putting any of them to the test and turn off the gas if you have to leave the vicinity, even just for half a minute.
Keep gas cylinders ventilated and well away from naked flames
When it comes to gas BBQ safety, this is one of the most important rules, and it is black and white. Never leave a gas cylinder exposed to potential dangers. For example, protect it from any chance of contact with flames from the BBQ, diners smoking, and ambient candles placed in the garden. You get the picture!
Look after your gas cylinder like the most VIP guest at the party. Aim for a fully enclosed, dark, ventilated area. When it comes to Sahara gas BBQs, we have integrated gas storage spaces for all our 2, 3, and 4-burner gas BBQs.
Can you store a gas bottle under the BBQ?
Provided it is a safe, purpose-built space (as is the case with Sahara BBQs), then you can store a gas bottle under your BBQ. We cannot downplay the importance of gas barbecue safety. If you’re in the market to buy, then make sure you purchase from a trusted brand like Sahara!
Keep combustible material well away from your BBQ
This is a big one for BBQ health and safety. Flammable or combustible items should never be located anywhere near your working barbecue. Radiating heat can wreak havoc even with the lid down, and flammable materials need very little encouragement.
This advice assumes, of course, that we all know what materials are combustible. However, you might be surprised by how many contenders can fall into this list. From your innocent-looking umbrella or kids’ pyjamas to spare petrol for the lawnmower or paraffin, all these items could, quite literally, go up in flames unless BBQ fire safety is top-of-mind.
Maintain distance between your BBQ and other garden objects
This is another of our top BBQ fire safety tips. What do we mean by ‘other garden objects’? Anything from your timber shed to an overhanging tree or bushy shrubs. All of these have the potential to light up like a tinderbox. Be mindful that these objects can still be a fair distance from your BBQ and yet pose problems. Why? Because wind carries embers – quickly and over significant distances.
Whilst we’re talking about positioning, maintain your BBQ on level ground, so there is less chance of it tipping over or becoming unbalanced.
Disconnect BBQ in the event of fire (if safe to do so)
When it comes to barbecue safety tips, the number one priority is to protect any humans or animals around the BBQ. In the event of a fire, call the fire department immediately. If possible, disconnect and remove the gas cylinder but only if it is safe to do so. Ensure everyone evacuates the area.
Be aware of carbon monoxide
You might have turned off your gas BBQ, but that doesn’t mean it has stopped producing carbon monoxide. BBQs can release CO2 fumes for some time after being turned off. If the BBQ stays outside, it’s no risk to you or your family. If, however, you move it inside for safe storage, it could become a problem. Not only that, but they can stay quite hot for quite a long time, all the more reason to keep them outside!
Remember – BBQs are bliss!
This BBQ safety checklist does not intend to deter you from loving BBQ life. On the contrary! It is, however, important to be a responsible BBQ owner and go into this with eyes wide open. At the end of the day, an oven, stove or even a humble toaster is not without danger. It’s all about being smart, proactive and careful. That way, you can have your BBQ and, err, eat its contents, too!
Contact us about BBQ safety
If you have any questions about Sahara BBQs or BBQ safety in the UK, please reach out. We’d be delighted to hear from you!