Buying a new pellet grill is easy in comparison to keeping it clean and in working order.
Keeping your pellet grill in working order requires proper cleaning and maintenance.
Most of us don’t like extra work, so when you’re looking for a new pellet grill, you might be wondering which pellet grill is the easiest to clean and maintain?
Don’t worry. I got you covered.
What Is The Easiest Pellet Grill To Clean?
Before we get into the cleaning ritual, I wanted to know which pellet grill would require the least amount of time to clean and maintain.
In my search, I found some factors that determine the ease of cleaning a pellet grill.
The first is how easy can you assemble and disassemble the pellet grill?
If you can remove the parts and components you need to clean and put them back in easily, then cleaning also becomes very easy.
One time-saver I found is that having an ash collector tray helps to quickly remove the ash between each cook.
Our Pick For The Easiest Pellet Grill To Clean: Pit Boss
In my opinion, is the Pitboss Sportsman 820SP Wood Pellet Grill is super easy to clean.
In fact, all Pit boss pellet grills are very maintenance-friendly, have great instructions and features that make it easy for beginners and experienced quickly clean their grills.
This model makes cleaning more manageable with its removable rack and a clean-out located at the back of the hopper.
This helps simplify the task of removing ash & left-over pellets.
Okay, so now that you know I like the Pitboss Sportsman!
How Do You Clean A Pellet Grill Step-by-Step
If you’re like me? You grill every weekend.
All this cooking leads to grease and oil deposits on the grill racks.
And while I clean my pellet grill after every use, I didn’t know if I was doing it the right way or, if there were a few hacks I wasn’t aware of.
Investing so much in my pellet grill and having it break down, just because I didn’t clean it correctly kept me up at night.
While researching ideas and ways to clean a pellet grill, I found some easy and super effective ways.
I wanted to share that with you and explain the proper process and steps you should take to clean the pellet grill.
The process of cleaning your pellet grill depends on the model or brand of pellet grill you have.
However, almost all the pellet grills have similar working parts, with slight design changes.
I will be guiding you through a general process for cleaning your pellet grill.
Step #1: Turn Off The Power & Cool Down
Before starting the cleaning process, unplug the pellet grill from the power source and let it cool down.
Cleaning a hot grill may lead to burns from touching hot surfaces.
Apart from the grill racks, all other pellet grill components must be cold before you wash them.
Step #2: Empty The Hopper
Most pellet grills will have a knob to release the pellets and catch them in a bucket or scoop out the pellets manually.
You should also remove the ash from the bottom and the fire pot and clean the hopper and auger system during this step.
Step #3: Clean The Grills
Next, you’ll want to remove the grill racks and clean them by wiping off the grease and food residue by using soapy water.
Step #4: Clean Everything Else
Once you’re done with racks, clean all other components, and let them dry for a while before putting them back together.
If you’ve never cleaned a pellet grill before, some of the above steps might need a bit more clarity.
Below you can find a bit more information on some of the steps noted above.
How Do You Clean Ashes From The Hopper & Fire Pot?
Once the grill is cooled down, remove the grills and drip bucket to reach the bottom of your pellet grill.
You can then use a shop vacuum to suck out all the ash from the bottom of the pellet grill, hopper, auger, and firepot.
If needed, you can also use a shop vac to suck out any left-over pellets.
Once the ash and left-over pellets are gone use a damp cloth to wipe off any excess dirt.
Some pellet grills come with an ash collector, which simplifies the process of removing ash from your pellet grill.
How Do You Deep Clean A Pellet Grill?
Deep cleaning your pellet grill is something you only need to do once in a while.
To do this, you’ll need to keep in mind that you need to clean both the interior and exterior of the pellet grill.
Step #1: Exterior Cleaning
This is the easy part.
- Let the pellet grill cool completely before starting with the process.
- Empty the hopper of any remaining pellets to avoid contact with water.
- Spray a cleaner on the pellet grill’s exterior and let it sit for a while to break down all the dust and grease.
- Wipe off with a damp cloth in a circular motion for the painted surface and a similar direction as grain for a stainless steel body.
- Repeat the process if you are not happy with the results.
Step #2: Interior Cleaning
Cleaning the pellet grill’s interior is the tricky part because you’ll need to clean several different parts of the grill.
- Start by removing the pellets and emptying the ash.
- Remove the grill rack, and take out the grease drip tray.
- Clean the grease off the grill rack by soaking it in a mixture of vinegar and water for 30 minutes.
- Use hot soapy water and a cloth to gently scrub away the grime deposited on the interior of the pellet grill.
- Repeat the process until it is spotless, then wipe it off with a fresh cloth.
- Thorough cleaning of the grease drain pipe, smoke exhaust, and chimney are equally essential as neglect can lead to blockage.
- Scrape the inside of the drainpipe, smoke vent, and chimney and wipe off with a cloth.
- Let your pellet grill dry for 24 hours before reassembling it, and make sure it is completely dry before turning it on.
Note: You can use the burn-off method to clean the grills by setting the pellet grill’s temperature to maximum and let it run for 20 minutes. The high temperatures will burn off all the food residue and grease stuck to the grill rack.
Video: How To Clean A Pellet Grill In Under 15 Minutes!
Here is a great video from GreenhornBBQbeer where they walk you through the entire process in under 15 minutes. It’s worth a watch.
Frequently Asked Questions
Are Pellet Grills Hard To Clean?
I wouldn’t say pellet grills are hard to clean, but it’s not a piece of cake.
The process of cleaning your pellet grill is simple but involves cleaning several different components, which makes the cleaning process time-consuming.
A quick clean after every use helps keep your pellet grill clean and in top working condition without taking much of your time.
But if you let it sit there with all the grease and dirt, it won’t be easy to clean when you finally decide to do it.
Also, always follow manufacturers’ recommendations for cleaning and maintenance frequency.
Improper use can lead to your pellet grill exploding or catching fire.
Are Traeger Grills Easy To Clean?
Traeger grills have a reputation of being difficult to clean, s0 follow the procedure mentioned earlier.
The Traeger company recommends cleaning your pellet grill every 3-5 cooks or after a single lengthy cook.
However, as mentioned above, I find that the Pit Boss Pellet Grills have certain features that make cleaning your pellet grill a little easier.
If you are interested in seeing why I like Pit Boss over Traeger then check out our post where we compare these two top brands. Traeger vs Pit Boss Pellet Grills.
When Should I Clean My Pellet Grill?
Based on my experience with cleaning pellet grills, I would suggest a quick clean after every use and a thorough cleaning every 3-5 cooks works fine.
Thorough cleaning after every five cooks of the hopper, auger, and fire pit of ash and wood pellets, keeps the machinery running better.
Cleaning the grease drip system and lining it with aluminum foil saves a lot of time in the next cleaning.
Every once in a while, clean the smoke exhaust and grease drain pipe, collecting an insane amount of grease and smoke buildup over time.
Can A Pellet Grill Get Wet?
Pellet grills operate on electricity, so combining water and electric power is never a good idea.
Getting a pellet grill wet is not safe as it could damage the motor or other electronic features your pellet grill might have.
Some components of a pellet grill, like a grill rack, drip bucket, require washing once in a while, but you would need to remove them from the main machine before doing that.
But for components like the fire pot, auger, and hopper, it is not safe to clean them with water.
At most, you can use a damp cloth to wipe them, but no running water.
If you’re looking for a pellet grill that’s easy to clean, I recommend the Pit Boss Pellet Grill brand.
Follow the steps outlined above, and you’ll have a pellet grill that remains clean and runs for a long time without any issues.