How to Choose Grill Covers
So, you finally got the grill of your dreams. You’ve finished setting it up and you’ve already sampled the delicious results of your endeavors at outdoor cooking. Everything is perfect… except it isn’t. What’s going to protect your grill while it sits in your backyard? There’s more to maintaining your grill than just keeping it clean and, for some, seasoning it regularly. To make sure that your grill lasts a long time, you’ll need a grill cover.
What can a grill cover do for you?
- A cover will protect your grill from the elements such as direct sunlight, rain, and snow as well as salt and pool chemicals that can cause parts of your grill to rust.
- A cover will also protect your grill from animals. Yes, local wildlife can do damage to your grill. Birds can build nests in it or drop their poop on it. Some owners have talked about wasps and other vermin getting inside their grills.
- For expensive grills, having a cover will make it less attractive to thieves.
- A cover will also prevent pollen, dust, etc. from making the grill dirty, especially if you only use the grill once in a while.
The drawbacks to having a grill cover:
- You can’t put the cover on the grill until it cools down.
- The cover gathers rain when not used (left lying around)
- Some covers can trap moisture inside which promots rust and mold instead of preventing it.
- Cheap covers will not last long (a year or two at the most). Plastic and canvas covers have a tendency of rotting after a few years.
Features of a Grill Cover:
Some grill covers have straps and ties. These can make sure that the grill stays in place even in the windiest days or the heaviest storms. Straps and ties are also perfect for making sure that the cover is tightly wrapped around the grill to ensure that no animals can sneak under the covers and into the grill.
Another feature that some covers have is air vents. This particular feature makes sure that no moisture forms under the covers. Damp covers lead to rusty grills. In addition, air vents help keep the cover from ballooning up if the weather is windy.
Some grills come with pockets for storage where you can put away some of your grilling accessories. You can even opt to store your cleaning materials (used for the grill and the cover) in these pockets.
Grill covers can also feature inside lining that helps prevent wear and tear, enabling the covers to last a long time. However, some linings could be prone to mold (like fleece) while others are attractive to mice as nest materials.
This must have grilling accessories come in many shapes and sizes just like your grills. The main difference between them though is the material used to make the covers.
Polyester is the type of grill cover in the market today. It’s lightweight and durable, can easily withstand any kind of weather. As an added bonus, polyester is a material that dries quickly so you don’t need to worry about moisture or condensation forming inside the cover if you live in a humid climate. Usually, the fibers used in polyester grill covers are treated with chemicals in order to become resistant to sunlight and water.
Vinyl is another material used to make grill covers. While they’re much cheaper than polyester ones, these covers are also water proof. Unfortunately, they aren’t as durable as polyester as well as less resistant to heat. To get your money’s worth, you’ll need to purchase at least 12 gauge vinyl to get the quality and thickness needed to last a long time.
Canvas is another heavy duty material that is used in grill covers as well as tents and boat sails. With chemical treatment, canvas can become fire resistant as well as weatherproof. While these are durable, they’re not as long lasting as polyester unless they’re impregnated or laminated with PVC or polyurethane.
Tips on choosing a cover:
- You’ll need a cover that keeps moisture from getting in and makes sure that the moisture that’s inside get out.
- Don’t buy a cover if you’re going to place your grill in a heavily shaded area or the environment is pretty damp because the cover will more likely trap moisture than keep it off your grill.
- Make sure to let your grill and cover air dry if you experience damp or wet weather.
- While bigger seems better, it doesn’t always apply for grill covers. You’ll need a grill cover that fits just right to make sure that no open space remains for anything to get in (rain, snow, critters, etc.).
- Grill manufacturers such as Weber and Char-Broil sell covers for their grills but several companies that manufacture patio/outdoor equipment also offer covers that fit most of the grills from popular brands. You can also opt to buy a customized cover from some retailers.