Failure to properly prepare your outdoor kitchen for winter could mean having to fork over a lot of money to fix damages caused by winter elements. Pipes can burst, electrical components can break, and surfaces (like stone) can crack or chip. We put together a checklist for outdoor kitchen owners to use in order to make sure that they don’t forget an important step in winterizing their outdoor kitchen.
- Shut off the water. Hopefully, when you had it installed, your outdoor kitchen builders provided an indoor shut-off valve so you wouldn’t have to run the risk of it freezing.
- Drain water from the pipes. This includes your sinks, icemakers, fridges, and kegs. Compressed carbon dioxide is best.
- Cut the power. Either unplug any electrical appliances are disable the power at the circuit breaker.
- Clean everything. Leaving behind food crumbs and spills can attract animals.
- Cabinets (inside and outside)
- Counter tops
- Grill (make sure you de-grease the grates and clean under the hood)
- Refrigerator (make sure this isn’t any moisture left behind)
- Keg (also make sure no moisture is left)
- Polish, seal, and protect. Stainless steel surfaces need to be polished. Any stone surfaces need to be sealed to protect against leaf stains, cracking, or chipping.
- Cover. Covering electrical appliances, like your fridge or keg, can actually create problems if you don’t use the right kind of material. Moisture can become trapped under the hood if the material doesn’t allow it to escape, which can damage electrical parts. Synthetic materials are best for breathability and durability.
Other items to check:
- Make sure you turn off the gas line to your grill.
- Remove the faucets to your sinks and store them inside.
- Cover your sinks to keep out debris, such as leaves, which can cause staining.