Instructables

Gas Grill Renovation

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My wife bought me an inexpensive gas grill for my birthday a few years ago, but I never got around to buying a cover for it. End result? Rust, and lots of it. For about a year now, I've been thinking that I ought to grind off that rust and refinish it, but never got around to it. Today, I finally did something.
 
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Step 1: Amass Gear

Picture of Amass Gear
The first thing you need to do is gather your gear. Some of what I gathered is optional, some is mandatory.

Mandatory:
Garden hose
Spray nozzle
Work gloves
Eye protection
Screwdrivers (size and type depend on your particular )
Pliers (you might be able to get away with sockets if your grill is less rusted than mine...)
Corded drill (Yes, you MUST have a corded drill to run the wire cup! Don't even think about trying it with the cordless!)
Degreaser (I used engine degreaser)
High-heat paint (Obtained from the local home center for about $4 per can. I used one.)
Wire cup
Tarp
Grill cover (You don't want to have to do this again next year!)
Not shown: Grill brush

Optional:
Hearing protection
Dust mask/Respirator
Cordless drill (I despise turning screws by hand!)
Palm sander
Extension cord
Sanding disks
Not shown: Shopvac

Step 3: Cleaning Rocks

Take out those things that you burn your burgers and chicken on and set them aside. Now you have access to those rock things--you may have lava rocks, but I've got high-tech ceramic faux-charcoal briquettes. And man, are they dirty! Give them a good scrub with your grill brush.

What? Go buy new ones? Are you nuts? There's plenty of life left in these!

Note to those with lava rocks: Don't try to scrub them, it'll only make you batty. Go buy new rocks. Or if you live in Hawaii or some other volcanic region go collect your own, but don't tell them I sent you. (To those who will inevitably bring up that collecting lava rocks is illegal in some locales, I say collect elsewhere.)
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yummyribs8 months ago
This makes me want to buy a gas grill just to let it rust out!
thematthatter11 months ago
do you watch "New Yankee Workshop" on PBS? your degrease disclaimer sounds very familiar.
digrat (author)  thematthatter11 months ago
You betcha! Norm is my hero!
Bosun Rick4 years ago
With the "new" style  'OPD' valves (for Overfill Protection Device) shutting off the gas valve is no longer a requirement. If nothing is attached, no gas flows.
While I don't necessarily recommend this practice, but did discover it by accident while checking to see if my tank was empty. The propane guy said it is a safety feature in the new valves.
rokeylounge4 years ago
You know, I can't count the number of times I've been told that fixing something to get it back in good condition will "nickel and dime you to death." Great work with staying away from death! LOL!

Honestly though, it looks like (as needed) a few new parts will go a long ways with the work you've already done.

I think I would add a high gloss finish, and as you've already talked about, new wood slats. Also, a new burner would probably be on my list, but you've already talked about that too.

Great work!
as long as we're talking safety you should be wearing closed toe boots, and long pants would be a good idea too.
jeanga14 years ago
Thats fabulous your grill.... well done... we live too  much with buy a new one and a throw away attitude....  its nice to see someone preserve what you have and to use all the tools you bought to do projects such as this.. well done you... its people like you that make this world a brighter place :-)
Cremaster6 years ago
Just buy a new one. That looks like a lot of work. Usually the burner is rusted out, the grates are rusted out, the burner gaskets are dried up and blown away, the ignitor is broken, and it is just not worth the work or $$$ to fix. If you do take on a project like this purchase a cast iron burner.
digrat (author)  Cremaster6 years ago
Part of the fun of this renovation is using the tools I have amassed to extend the life of another tool that I already own. It's the good feeling of knowing that I can do it. It's the satisfaction of working with my hands, making something (somewhat) new out of something old. Could I go out and buy a new one? Sure. But where's the fun in that?? But your comment about the cast iron burner is duly noted...I suspect it would last much longer than my cheap steel one.
roosmama digrat5 years ago
Hmm... I recall reading to use a brass burner as cast iron rusts... But I'd do more research before believing me. :-) (From my wife's account. :-D) Derek
Loved your project, I work at a store that sells grills. We take away customers old grills and usually trash them, so I have the opportunity to have a new grill each week but have never tried to restore one. I may have to try now. It's wonderful to see you putting some love into a grill that still has some life to it. When you are ready to replace old Brinkmann there try a Weber, and make sure it's a premium Example Weber 310EP (found at a specialty or hardware store). As previously stated by Ehmbee the Weber line is solid and the company stocks every part. They last a very long time. Or if you've got a few grand to blow check out Firemagic brand, it's the best brand of grills you'll ever find.
Again, loved your project I hope that the grill works for a very long time because of your efforts.
Rusty7775 years ago
had this bbq grill for 7 years bought it at wal mart for 69 dollars but the burner finialy gave way, is there any place to get a replacement burner.
home depot. they have every replacement part you could ever need for a grill.
salvadorel5 years ago
nice re-do, yes fixing with own hands most satisfying. replaced my weber grill slats with maple cutting boards, coated with mineral oil... nicer than new..will post soon.. i wonder about using cedar (western red of course) too soft, dents and dings easily..but, it is rot resistant.
mikeasaurus6 years ago
Is it just me, or is everything barbeque amazing?
digrat (author)  mikeasaurus6 years ago
The only thing even in the neighborhood of barbeque's coolness is cast iron cooking. :)
I hear that. Best thing about my new (-ly purchased used on Craigslist) grill is the side-burner, which allows me to combine the two. Woohoo!
Spectrace6 years ago
you can also go to a hardware store and pick up a nice shiny new burner to replace the old crusty rusty one. we did that with our grill a few years back, and it may need to be done again. Not sure how much it would cost though, my parents did it.
digrat (author)  Spectrace6 years ago
I checked online for a replacement burner and couldn't find one. Apparently, my Grill King Deluxe (model 810-3200-G) is long-since discontinued so I'm stuck with what I've got. If anyone else knows where I can find a replacement burner, I'd be much obliged if you'd provide a link...
Grill King Deluxe (model 810-3200-G)Heavy-duty gas grill is constructed of heavy-gauge steel hinged lid and welded body Features include 42 000 BTU stainless steel burner with dual controls push-button ignitor for easy lighting over 520 square inches of cooking surface to handle up to 75 lbs of food large wooden handle that stays cool to the touch two wooden side shelves for large platters and condiments temperature gauge metal storage rack for accessories and durable wheels for easy movement Propane tank not included Available in
$510.53
http://www.brinkmann.net/Docs/Pdf/810-3200-G.pdf
Although I don't see Grill King Deluxe listed, grillparts.com has never failed to have the parts I needed to replace, whether it be a burner, a cooking grid, ignitor or a drip vaporizer shield. Standard disclaimer applies: I don't work for grillparts, just a satisfied customer. BTW, burners are not universal replacement models like those available at orange home improvements stores.
many burners can be used on a wide range of grills... what you can do is take your burner to a place like home depot or lowes maybe, and ask if they have an equivalent replacement for yours. i think the replacement that we had gotten was made by black and decker, and our grill i believe is made by sunbeam
ehmbee6 years ago
Nice job-sure, you could have bought a new on as someone suggested, but as the price of grills go up, this method becomes more feasible. I recently did the same thing to my $600 Weber Genesis gas grill-they are built solid and Weber stocks parts for just about all of them. For a nice change, spray your lid with brake caliper paint on the outside-nice, bright colors are available (I used red) and the finish lasts for years, rather than grill black which needs to get done annually in most cases. You can also paint your Brinkmann emblem, then run a sanding disk over top-the low parts of the logo will keep the paint, and your emblem gets a nice "machined" look-really makes the last perfect detail in you renovation project. MB
nicko61136 years ago
well I got a kick out of all the safety material. and then you wear flip flops. aka slippers. depending on where you live.
rcg406 years ago
This inspired an untried suggestion Put Aluminum foil in the ceiling of the top. How to attach it? Does it save fuel? just an idea
digrat (author)  rcg406 years ago
I would imagine that adding the reflective foil, plus additional (insulating) air space between the foil and the inside of the lid would make the grill more efficient. Just how much more efficient? I would have no idea. As for how to attach it? A small dab of JB weld here and there?
rcg40 digrat6 years ago
I thought of it as a way to capture grease. The fact that it reflects heat is an added bonus. Drilling holes and putting in stove bolts to hold a few straighened hangars should be easy and then insert the foil behind the wires. Do this while the thing is cold. If you do it with the fire on, results may be disappointing :( just an idea
mcadwell6 years ago
Super easy way to clean grates: Remove grate(s), spray well with oven cleaner, put in yard trash bag, tie bag closed, leave overnight, take out next day, wash and rinse well with garden hose, put grates back in BBQ, smile.
digrat (author)  mcadwell6 years ago
I also read that you can clean the grates by placing heavy duty aluminum foil over them, then turning the burners on high for 30-60 minutes or until all the guck has been burned off.
digrat (author)  digrat6 years ago
On that note, I also read that you can clean the ceramic bricks by turning them over (top down) and turning on the burners for a few minutes. Don't try this with lava rocks, though--just buy new ones, since the guck gets down into the pores of the lava rocks.
haz6 years ago
Nice job! To save the grinding work, you could bring the castings and peices into a local sandblaster. I had to pay $15.00 when I did mine.(I would have paid $40) Are you going to sand the shelf boards to clean them or buy new? Way to go. Haz
digrat (author)  haz6 years ago
I have several cedar boards in my garage that I'll cut up into new slats... I'm not sure what I'm going to do about the handle, though.
Karyudo6 years ago
If your barbecue is old enough, it could be "righty loosey, lefty tighty" for the propane tank connection!
I think all propane fittings are lefty tighty.
digrat (author)  sled_head6 years ago
My fittings must be turned counterclockwise to remove them... But really, since they're hand-tightened anyway, it should be pretty easy to figure out which way is tighten and which way is loosen.
jongscx digrat6 years ago
I think the "new kind" (okay, as of 5 years ago, but they're relatively new) with the black twisty thing are CW-tighten, wheras the old kind that needed a wrench are CCW-tighten...
jdlink6 years ago
I have used phosphuric acid to remove rust before painting metal. Any thoughts on using that here?
Mr. Rig It6 years ago
Hey great job on the instructable and the grill. When is lunch? I only have one suggestion, and that is to sand and re-stain the handle and shelves. Keep up the good work!
digrat (author)  Mr. Rig It6 years ago
Thanks--those are a project for another day... :)
njtrout6 years ago
Remeber to TURN OFF the gas BEFORE disconnecting the supply hose!!!!
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