You may be wondering whether outdoor kitchens need to be covered. And the answer is… not that simple. This blog post will discuss the pros and cons of covering an outdoor kitchen and some factors you need to consider. We will also provide tips on properly maintaining your outdoor kitchen.
Does An Outdoor Kitchen Need To Be Covered? Yes Or No?
Your outdoor kitchen appliances must be covered if you want them to last. When not, they are exposed to elements like sun, rain, snow, dirt, and pollen.
Direct exposure to these elements can cause some parts of appliances to rust and deteriorate over time.
What about your countertops and outdoor furniture? There is no straightforward answer because it depends on the material. Still, in most cases, your outdoor furniture will last much longer if covered. (More on that later.)
Why Do Outdoor Kitchens Need To Be Covered?
There are a few reasons why you might want to cover your outdoor kitchen:
- To extend the life of your appliances and furniture: As we mentioned before, protecting your outdoor kitchen will help to extend the life of your appliances and furniture.
- To keep your outdoor kitchen clean: Covering it will help keep it clean. Dirt, pollen, and other debris can quickly build up on surfaces that are not covered. Plus, bird droppings are no fun to clean up!
- To protect your family and guests from unfavorable weather: A covered outdoor kitchen with a roof will protect you from the sun, rain, or snow.
Ways To Cover Your Outdoor Kitchen Space & Appliances
There are many ways to cover your outdoor kitchen. For example, a pavilion or another shade structure can act as a cover for your entire kitchen space.
There are also removable covers that will protect your grills or other cooking appliances. You can find them for individual items like your grill, smoker, sink, and even outdoor furniture.
- Roof Structures: Patio covers, pavilions, and gazebos are great for covering your entire outdoor kitchen space. These provide protection from elements like the sun, rain, and snow.
- Stainless steel appliance covers: These temporary covers protect expensive appliances like your grill or smoker. We think they are indispensable if a roofed structure doesn’t cover your space.
- Outdoor furniture covers: These can help extend your outdoor furniture’s life. However, they are a pain to put on and take off, so we only recommend using them when necessary.
- Custom Outdoor Kitchen Covers: You can also have a custom cover made for your outdoor kitchen island. This type of cover protects your appliances, counters, sink, and other outdoor kitchen features all at once. Even if your outdoor kitchen is under a pavilion or another roofed structure, a custom cover can provide an extra layer of protection. Plus, you’ll keep everything cleaner for the next party. However, they’re not very convenient if you use your outdoor kitchen daily.
Tips For Maintaining Your Outdoor Kitchen
Learn How To Maintain And Protect Your Countertops
One of the best ways to keep your outdoor kitchen looking great is to know how to adequately maintain and protect your countertops.
For example, you must seal granite and marble countertops every few years. The sealer will protect them from staining and practically any type of damage.
Any natural stone surface, including countertops, floors, and walls, should be sealed occasionally to stay in immaculate condition.
You should also avoid using harsh chemicals or abrasive cleaners on your countertops. Your countertops may look spick and span after a round of bleach, but you will damage the stone over time.
It is also crucial to be careful of what you put on top. Some items can damage the counters, especially if they are hot. For example, putting a hot pan on your countertop can cause it to crack or lose color. It is always best to use a trivet or a hot pad.
Covering your countertops when they are not in use can also help. This is especially true if you have an uncovered outdoor kitchen with no roof. However, putting the covers on and removing them can be a pain. Sealing your outdoor countertops more frequently is a much easier way to protect them.
Keep Your Grill And Other Cooking Appliances Covered When Not In Use
If there’s one thing you should worry about covering, it’s your grill and other cooking appliances. Grills have many moving pieces and small openings where dirt, grease, and debris can build up. In addition, they are made of metal, making them susceptible to rust and other types of damage. You can find grill covers at most home improvement stores or online.
It is also a good idea to cover any other stainless steel appliances that you have outdoors, like smokers and fryers. If you have a sink, you can also find a cover for that.
Suppose your outdoor kitchen is covered by a roof. In that case, you don’t need to worry about covering your appliances, but it will help. It is always best to err on the side of caution when protecting your dream outdoor kitchen.
Clean Your Cooking Appliances Regularly
Your outdoor kitchen should be a place where you can enjoy cooking and entertaining. But, if your appliances are dirty, it will put a damper on the fun. Your guests should be able to focus on the good food and company, not the dirt and grime that’s covering your grill.
You should clean your gas grill after every use. This may seem like a hassle, but it will help prolong its lifespan. While the grill is still hot, turn off the gas and clean the grates using a stiff wire brush. Once done, mop the grates with a paper towel soaked in cooking oil.
Every month, you should deep clean the rest of the grill. First, take out the grates, heat reflectors, and burners. Then, clean them along with the empty cook box. You can use a soap and water solution, but it’s best to use a specially formulated cleaner for grills. Once clean, you can rinse it all off with a hose. Finally, dry everything with a clean towel and reinstall all the components.
And don’t forget to clean your other appliances, like your smoker or fryer.
An outdoor kitchen is an excellent addition to any home, but it requires some upkeep to stay in tip-top shape.
Covering your outdoor kitchen is essential but not the whole story when maintaining it. You must regularly clean your appliances and protect your countertops by sealing them frequently.
Be sure to check our blog for more tips on how to improve your home. Until then, happy grilling!
Ready to take the next step? If you want to turn your outdoor kitchen into a reality, contact Legacy Decks to get a free in-home estimate today!
Recommended read: 5 Essential Must-Haves For Your Outdoor Kitchen