While outdoor kitchens are designed to withstand the elements, there’s still some maintenance tasks homeowners should know to properly maintain that area. Let’s go over those needs so you can easily check them off:
Shut off water lines.
If you have any water lines connecting your outdoor kitchen to indoor plumbing, they should be turned off and winterize before the temperature dip below freezing. Once the temps reach freezing, any water left in the pipes could cause them to burst.
Clean out the fridge and cabinets.
Once you’ve decided to turn off your fridge for the season, you should also do some quick cleaning tasks. Wipe down the inside with some mild soap and water so you won’t have any caked-on food residue. Since outdoor fridges are designed to withstand the elements, the exterior shouldn’t need much more than a wipe down with a wet cloth.
Clean the grill.
This will most likely be the most maintenance you have to do before winter. Grills typically get a lot of use during the summer, but the most cleaning they get is on the grill grates. Doing a thorough clean before winter, however, will help it last longer and cook well next season. Use a degreaser to get rid of grease build-up and use a metal grill brush to scrub the grates. You should then remove the grates and clean underneath. If you haven’t seasoned them lately, then season the grates as well for best performance. Finally, turn off the gas line if you aren’t planning to use it in the winter.
If you’re not already in the habit, outdoor surfaces like counters and sinks should be wiped down after every meal. Food residue can attract animals that you don’t want around your outdoor living areas. Once those are clean, cover the counters and sink. This helps prevent wear, stains, or other damage. If you want to go the extra step, you can apply a finish to stainless steel cabinets or oil to wood surfaces.
If you have seating in your kitchen, you might want to cover or store the furniture for the winter. It’s always a good idea to protect your furniture from extreme weather, so if you’re not using them during the cold season you might as well put them away.
We hope this checklist helps you get the most out of your outdoor kitchen. If you’re interested in learning more about the benefits and cost of improving your landscaping, give Outdoor Innovations a call to learn more.