How To Put Out A Grease Fire
In most cases, it is the grill that is causing the fire, not your cooking skills or technique. Typically, gas grills will feature a removable drip pan underneath the burner. This is where any liquids that come out of the food during cooking will be caught. Whenever these pans remain neglected, they eventually fill up with flammable fats that can become fuel igniting a potential fire.
Here are the steps to take when attempting to put out a grease fire:
- First, you always need to be prepared for this hazardous situation. Keep your cell phone within reach at all times just in case you have to make an emergency call.
- Keep a fire extinguisher, baking soda, sand or kosher salt, and gloves within reach, as well.
- Turn off the grill’s burners if you cannot safely reach the knobs on your grill.
- Remove the food and smother the flames by throwing sand, kosher salt or baking soda atop it.
- Close the lid as well as any vents. This will starve the fire of much-needed oxygen.
- If the propane tank has become part of the fire, immediately leave the area. Call your local fire department as soon as possible.
- If the fire only intensifies while you are trying to put it out, leave the area and call the fire department.
- A fire extinguisher should be used only as a last resort. The use of the fire extinguisher will permanently ruin your grill.
One Last Tip: Never use water to put out a flare up or grease fire. Water will only exacerbate the situation by spreading the oil, which will increase the size of the fire. Use of water can also crack your grill’s porcelain-enamel finish.
How To Avoid A Grease Fire
Of course, the best way to deal with a grease fire or any sort of flare up is by avoiding this scenario in the first place. Here are a few tips on how to avoid any flare ups or fires:
- Regularly clean your grill, according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
- Grease can pool in the fire box area located near the burners. If safe to do so, turn off the gas and leave the lid open. This will allow some grease to burn off.
- Always cook with the lid down.
- Only oil the food, not the grates.
- If any flare up begins, move the food to a warming rack immediately with long-handled tongs.
- Re-place the food at the center of the grill to let fat burn off.
Due to the nature of chemistry and physics, grease fires cannot be extinguished with water. Oil floats on water, meaning the oil on the fire will also float on water. However, a good layer of baking soda has been proven to put out these flames. Removing the food before adding the baking soda is recommended. Use a generous amount of baking soda on the flames to ensure safety.
Kitchensafe is the most comprehensive solution for kitchen cooktop fire suppression with residential cooktops and hoods in a commercial or residential application. The Kitchensafe cooktop fire suppression system is designed for university campus housing, senior living properties, day care facilities, churches, break rooms, catering kitchens and apartment cooktops. Contact us today for a free quote!