If you haven't used your griddle for a couple months, there are a couple items you should check over to make sure your first cook of the season goes smoothly. Whether you had put your griddle away for winter, or it had been in storage awaiting your next outdoor adventure, these easy steps will get you back to griddling like a pro.
First, you will want to check your propane connections. This includes both your propane tank and your regulator in case either was damaged while in storage.
To make sure that they are ready for griddling, perform a leak test. To perform a leak test, brush a mild 90/10 water-to-soap solution around all joints and connections on both your propane tank and regulator. Then, with your griddle's burner knobs in the "off" position, open your propane tank. If there are any growing bubbles, you have a propane leak, and will want to check your connections. If the leak can't be resolved, discontinue using the item that is leaking and get a replacement. For more information, please see this article.
Before cooking, you will want to clean your burner tubes. While in storage, it's not uncommon for bugs and spiders to crawl inside your burner tubes and create blockages. You can clean your burner tubes by removing them and using a bottle brush or compressed air can. For more information on how to clean your burner tubes, please see here: https://blackstoneproducts.zohodesk.com/portal/en/kb/articles/my-flames-are-burning-yellow-14-2-2022
When you reinstall your burner tubes, make sure that the valve nozzle is inserted inside the burner tube.
While your griddle top isn't installed, it's a good idea to ensure that your ignition system is still functioning correctly. Ignite your griddle, and make sure that the flame extends down the full length of your burner tube. If it doesn't, there might be something still blocking it, so try cleaning it again.
If your griddle won't ignite, you might need a fresh igniter battery (for any griddle units that have a push button ignition system) or to readjust your igniter wires. For more information on how to troubleshoot your ignition system, please see here: https://blackstoneproducts.zohodesk.com/portal/en/kb/articles/my-griddle-won-t-light-14-2-2022
If your griddle top hasn't been used recently, it is going to need cleaned and conditioned to get it ready for your first cook.
First, make sure that your griddle top doesn't have any rust on it. Rust is caused when the steel in your griddle top is able to interact with oxygen and water. This can happen when water gets into where a griddle is stored, or when there is a flaw in the griddle seasoning. If your griddle has rust, it can be safely removed. For more information, please see here: https://blackstoneproducts.zohodesk.com/portal/en/kb/articles/my-griddle-top-is-rusting
Next, you'll want to clean off any dust or debris that may have collected on the griddle top while it was in storage. Clean off any dust or debris with a damp cloth or paper towel. If needed, you can heat your griddle up and use a cooking oil and a scraper to pull any deep dirt or debris out of the cooking surface. Finish with water and a paper towel, drying the griddle surface out so your griddle is ready to be conditioned.
Conditioning your griddle top will help reactivate your seasoning to keep your griddle nonstick and rust-resistant. We recommend using the Blackstone Griddle Seasoning and Cast Iron Conditioner, but any food-grade oil will work. Spread a thin layer of oil over the griddle surface, covering the inner edges as well, and heat up your griddle on high. Once the oil stops smoking, turn the griddle off, finish with another light layer of oil (that you won't bake in), and you're good to go.
To protect your griddle's powder coat, you're going to want to remove any dirt, oil, or dust that has built up on the griddle body. When your griddle is fully cooled, use a mild detergent and cloth rag to clean off the base of your griddle, including the legs.
You can use our Blackstone Griddle Degreaser Cleaner to remove any oil or grease left over from the last cooking season. It is specifically formulated to be gentle on your powder coat.
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