Flat top grills have been around for a long time, and the design has evolved to the point that it’s hard to find a model that doesn’t have some rust issues. The standard design of a flat top grill is very simple: an outer metal plate sits directly on top of a separate, inner steel plate. This arrangement creates an airtight seal between the two plates so smoke, grease, and odors can’t escape from the grill. The problem is that most flat top grills are made with cast iron instead of steel, which means they are extremely prone to rust. When you expose a flat top grill to moist air, rainwater, and salt air it is inevitable that the rusty metal will corrode and turn green or pink with oxidation. Many people choose to remove their rusty flat top grill rather than deal with all of this maintenance on a regular basis.
What Causes Flat Top Grills to Rust?
The problem with flat top grills is that they are not made of steel, so they rust easily. The rust will be more noticeable on the outer metal plate than on the inner steel plate because the inner steel plate is protected and never exposed to moist air or salt.
The most common cause of rust on a flat top grill is moisture in the form of rainwater, but it can also come from salt air due to proximity to the ocean. When you store a grill in your garage or shed, it’s just as easy for moisture to build up on the grill and cause rusting issues.
If you have an outdoor grill near a running water source such as a stream or pond, it’s almost guaranteed that your grill will start to rust if you don’t watch it closely. Another important thing to note is that other parts of your grill might be rusty too! For example, cookers are often made with cast iron for these reasons and because there are only two pieces of metal touching each other, they’re prone to corrosion much like flat top grills. That’s why many people choose to replace their rusty cookers with newer models when they find them at garage sales or through Craigslist ads.
How to Remove Rust from A Flat Top Grill
There is no easy way to remove rust from a flat top grill, but there are some steps that can help you keep it looking good. The first step is to clean the outer and inner surfaces of your grill. You can use a wire brush on the outside of the grill and a scouring pad on the inside.
To remove any rust from the insides, use steel wool or an emery board (fitted tightly into a block) and scrub away until all of the rust is gone.
Preventative Maintenance for Your Flat Top Grill
Luckily, there are a few easy things you can do to protect your grill from rusting. The first is to buy one without holes in the cooking grate. The second is to cover the grill with aluminum foil when it’s not in use. Aluminum foil will protect the outer metal plate from oxidizing while still allowing the heat and smoke to pass through the grill.
The last thing you should do is regularly clean the cooking grates using a wire brush or steel wool on a cloth. This will remove any rust and prevent it from accumulating further on your grill.
Tips for Preventing Rust on A New Grill
The best way to prevent rust on a new grill is to keep it dry. However, this is often easier said than done. When you get a new grill, you should immediately cover it with a winter cover or tarp so that no moisture can access the metal for the first few months of use.
When you are done cooking on your new grill, always remember to let it cool down before covering it up for storage. This prevents any rainwater from getting inside and landing on your warm metal surface.
How to Fix Rusted Flat Top Grills
First, remove the old paint from your flat top grill by taking off the paint with a wire brush. Next, scrub all of the rust and dirt off of the outer plate with steel wool or a wire brush. Next, take a high grit sandpaper and clean up all of the rust on the inner steel plate.
Finally, paint your new stainless steel flat top grill to help prevent future rusting. The most important thing to remember is that removing rust from flat top grills isn’t easy. The design is simple but it can be challenging to remove oxidation without damaging your grill’s structural integrity and look. But keep in mind that this shouldn’t be too difficult because you have already removed all of the old paint with a wire brush.