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Lava Rock and Briquette Etiquette!

Courtesy Appliance Factory Parts

Should I choose rocks or briquettes in my grill?

The fundamental difference is lava rocks are a natural product, but they tend to be fragile so they need to be replaced every season or two (depending how much grilling you do). Briquettes, while more expensive, are a stable manufactured product that have a longer lifespan and can be turned over and reused.

Remove lava rocks and rock grate from grillLava rock and briquette maintenance:

  • Remove the rock and rock grate they rest on.
  • Lightly brush residue off with a wire brush.
  • An easy way to clean briquettes on an ongoing basis is to periodically turn them upside down and cook on the opposite side, which will gradually burn off and clean the underside of the rock.
  • Clean rocks with brush - turn briquettes over for self-cleaningReinstall the rocks, make sure they are distributed evenly across the Rock Grate surface. This will help the grill cook at an overall even temperature
  • Arrange uniformly shaped briquettes on grill as close as possibleWhen replacing uniformly shaped briquettes, arrange the rock to have a minimum amount of space between them.
    This will reduce the grease drippings directly onto the burner flame and help reduce flare-ups

What do I need to know about Lava rocks?

  • If your grill uses lava rocks, you should replace them every season or two
  • Lava rocks absorb grease over time and can cause flare ups if they become saturated
  • Make sure you buy a quality rock that won't fall through the rock grate opening
  • Purchasing a high quality briquette may be better value for money, it's important to know that briquettes do not normally need to be replaced as regularly as lava rocks do.

Flare Guards:

  • Flare guards can also work in place of briquettes. It's important to buy a high quality cast iron flare guard if you decide to take this route, as the cheap thin porcelain metal alternative will burn out quickly, and provide a hot and uncontrollable heat source.

About the Author:  Appliance Factory Parts is a one-stop shop for your grill needs.  They have parts for 12,000 BBQ models and 40,000 BBQ parts, including gas grill burners, grids, and grates

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