It would be incredibly amazing to add an outdoor kitchen in your compound as it does brighten your home and gives you enough space to accommodate guests. There is nothing more incredible than spending your evenings socializing and cooking with kids, friends, and family members in your outdoor kitchen. After investing time to create such a space, you should protect your shining centerpiece from the cold and windy winter.
Prepare your outdoor kitchen for the winter:
- Drain the water from the pipes
- Winterize Your Refrigerator
- Transfer Your Kitchen to the Winter Layout
- Winterize the Barbecue / Grill
- Take Care of The Furniture
You do have to winterize your outdoor kitchen by performing a thorough maintenance procedure and ensuring all the appliances, sinks, and the furniture in that area are protected. If your area experiences heavy winter, ensure your kitchen can withstand that season so that you will have a place to relax and hang out again during the spring. It is the right way to avoid having expensive invoices from the plumber and reduce cases of busted or cracked pipes.
So, which tactics should you take to protect your kitchen during the winter season?
- 1 Drain the water from the pipes
- 2 Winterize Your Refrigerator
- 3 Transfer Your Kitchen to the Winter Layout
- 4 Winterize The Barbecue / Grill
- 5 Take Care of The Furniture
- 6 Safety Precautions to Remember
- 7 FAQs
- 8 Final remarks
Drain the water from the pipes
When the temperature starts dropping, your most significant issue is always trying to remove the water from your outdoor kitchen and the pipes early. Your pipes bursting could be a significant problem, so shut down and drain your pipes just before the winter season begins. Broken pipes can lead to flooding, increasing plumbing bills, and making the kitchen unusable. The local plumbers can help you winterize your pipes, but there are a few ways to do so, including:
- Turn the mains off: Shut the water supply leading to your outdoor kitchen pipes before the first snow hits.
- Drain the lines: Drain the lines and ensure that you also remove the water supply pipes linked to your icemakers, sinks, and fridges. Use a compressor or compressed carbon dioxide to clear the water from those areas.
If you have frost-free faucets, it will be pretty easy to winterize your outdoor kitchen since these designs are meant to ensure the water in the pipes does not freeze. However, these items do require a few maintenance procedures to ensure they perform well throughout the season. Again, such faucets do not need an insulation cover since the water does not freeze. Nevertheless, drain and shut off the taps when they are not in use.
Winterize Your Refrigerator
Winterizing your outdoor refrigerator helps prevent mildew and mold growth, keeping the refrigerator's interiors excellent. There are essential steps you should take to keep your outdoor Fridge in good condition over winter.
– Empty the Fridge
Remove all the foods and drinks from the Fridge, and the freezer should be disconnected from electricity. Put all the cords in a bag and wrap them with a piece of cloth before storing them.
– Clean the Fridge
Clean your refrigerator using water, soap, and sterile rags. White vinegar is an ideal cleaning item to disinfect it so that it stays in the right state during the months your Fridge will not be in use.
– Leave it open
Leave the Fridge to dry as a way of avoiding mold growth. Leave the Fridge slightly open, and place a baking soda box in the refrigerator as it helps combat odors before keeping your outdoor Fridge away until the spring season.
Transfer Your Kitchen to the Winter Layout
Your winter duration does not have to be boring, and you still have an opportunity to have barbecues and entertain guests from your outdoor kitchen. After you have removed the furniture and appliances that can not cope with the cold, you can slightly change the layout such that you can use the kitchen for the time where the day temperature is still nice. If you have the resources, you can also make your kitchen more winterproof.
– Radiant Heat:
If there is no budget plan when preparing your outdoor kitchen for winter, adding radiant heat could make a difference in this area. The heat keeps the outdoor kitchen dry, snow-free, and makes the space usable throughout the season. You can also add heat lamps and fire pits to keep your guests warm while in that area.
– Shelter The Space:
Your contractor will help you find suitable solutions to shelter your outdoor kitchen during winter, based on how heavy the snow is in that region. However, it is recommended that you choose a full roof instead of awnings and pergolas if you want to use your kitchen throughout the season.
– Pick the Ideal Materials:
Powder-coated stainless steel is not only durable but also stylish, letting you have a perfect place to entertain your guests. The powder-coating gives you different finishing and color choices and protects the steel from direct exposure to winter storms.
Winterize The Barbecue / Grill
If you do not want to do any winter grilling, preparing your grill for the season is crucial to keep your go-to-appliance in excellent condition during winter. It helps you avoid mold and rust on your expensive grilling appliances. Firing up the barbecue grill for about 15 minutes makes it easy to clean and burn the leftovers. Clean the inside of your grill after it cools down using a wire brush and soapy water; then rinse it, and let the appliance dry.
That should also apply to the outer part of your grill and if the exterior is metallic, use a dry cloth to buff it and give your grill a shine. Please search for a grill cover so that it is well-protected when not in use. It is the only way to ensure your barbecue grill will not be replaced after a year or two. Get a generic cover or look at what your barbecue manufacturer has to offer for your model. A durable grill cover protects your grill from harsh weather, against rodents and protects the grill from moisture, which causes different parts to rust. Once the grill is clean, store it in a dry place. There are several ways to clean the commonly used types of grills:
- Gas Grill: Disconnect the cooking grids, burners, and propane tank before storage. If you choose to keep it indoors, leave the propane tank outside since the temperature drop does not affect propane, and it is not safe to have it in the house.
- Charcoal Model: Store it in a dry place once you have cleaned and dried it.
- Electric Model: Ensure there are no electric wires connected. Use a cover with hooks or ropes as they help you secure your model and protect it throughout the season.
Take Care of The Furniture
Outdoor furniture is made to withstand harsh climatic conditions, but you should maintain these items regularly.
- Metallic and Wooden Furniture: Paint the metallic furniture with rust-resistant paint, and the wood ones should be sealed and stained regularly.
- Cushions: Keep the cushions in a waterproof box during winter. However, if you want to use the pillows during winter, ensure the covers purchased can keep your cushions dry and clean when entertaining guests.
- Cabinets: Winterizing your outdoor kitchen cabinets is dependent on the materials they are made of, so, for the stainless-steel cabinets, coating them with a layer of fresh stainless-steel polish helps. The wooden cabinets should also be oiled to protect them from moisture, hence keeping them functional for a long time. It should also be the right time to remove all the food from the cabinets and take them to your indoor kitchen.
Safety Precautions to Remember
Even though you will occasionally use your outdoor kitchen, there are still a few precautionary measures:
- Turn the water supply off: Turn off your water supply in the outdoor kitchen and drain any water from the pipes to avoid expansion that causes your pipes to crack.
- Disconnect: Disconnect appliances that use water like icemakers, refrigerators, and dishwashers.
- Drain: Drain and keep all the equipment clean and grease-free to avoid rust.
- Cover: Overall, cover your kitchen appliances but ensure there is enough ventilation so that there is no moisture trapped in these appliances, leading to rust.
- Store appliances: Ensure most of your electronic appliances are unplugged and stored in a dry place.
– When Should You Winterize Your Outdoor Kitchen?
Take time during fall to prepare the kitchen before the winter hits. You will have enough time to disconnect electric cables and pipes and cover all the outdoor kitchen items with winterproof covers.
– How Do You Winterize Your Sinks?
Shut off your water valve and water pump before draining all the taps and valves. Use air compressors to remove the excess water from the pipes. If you have hot water in the tank, leave the drain valves open and run until the tank is empty. Without water flowing in your outdoor kitchen sinks and its pipes, it will be ready for use when the temperature is favorable since no damages will occur within that period.
An outdoor kitchen adds beauty to your home, giving you ample space to hang out with friends and family members. That is why it pays to keep this space well-maintained, especially when the weather is unconducive. Follow all the guidelines discussed above if you want your kitchen to serve you well during spring and avoid expensive repairs. Take time to keep the space in excellent condition before the winter season starts. Fall is the right time to start cleaning and preparing the fireplace and other outdoor kitchen areas. Always give your outdoor kitchen the end of season maintenance needed so that it will be ready for the next grilling period.