Why Did My Grill Catch On Fire? Causes And Solutions

Grills are a common sight in the summertime, as people use them to cook up food outside. However, sometimes grills can catch on fire, leading to a dangerous situation. If your grill catches on fire, it’s important to know what to do to put it out safely.

In this article, we’ll discuss some of the common causes of grill fires and how to extinguish them. So if you’re wondering why your grill caught on fire, read on to find out!

My grill caught fire. What happened? Causes And Solutions

There are several potential causes of grill fires. Some of them are mentioned below:

1. Grease buildup on the grates:

When grease and other debris accumulate on the grates of your grill, it can cause a fire. The grease comes from the fat and juices of the food you’re grilling. When the meat starts heating up, the fat and juices drip melt and drip down onto the surface of the grates. 

On turning off the grill, the grease solidifies and becomes a hard layer on the surface of the grill. The next time you use the grill, this grease can liquify and vaporize and also be ignited by the flames, causing a grease fire. 

In case you are grilling excessive fatty meats, you might want to consider trimming some of the fat off so that there’s less dripping and less grease buildup on the grates.


The best way to avoid a grease fire is to keep your grill clean. Before each use, brush the grates with a wire brush to remove any grease or debris that has accumulated. You should also clean the drip pan under the grates to remove any built-up grease.

2. Gas leaks:

A gas leak is one of the most common causes of grill fires. Most of the time people don’t know that a small gas leak can cause a big fire. If your grill has a hole or crack, gas can escape and accumulate near the grill. This can ultimately lead to a fire because the gas is highly flammable.


Check your grill regularly for any holes or cracks. If you find any, repair them immediately. Whenever you break the connection between the gas tank and the grill (for instance, when you’re changing the cylinder), check for any leaks using a soapy water solution.

For this apply soapy water to all connections and if you see bubbles, it means there is a gas leak. Shut off the gas and do not use the grill until it is fixed by a professional. After that reperform the leak test.

3. Charcoal that’s not fully extinguished:

Charcoal that's not fully extinguished
Charcoal that’s not fully extinguished

Charcoal is often the fuel used in grills. If you don’t fully extinguish your charcoal after cooking, it can easily reignite the next time you use your grill because it’s still hot. It tends to catch fire very quickly, so it’s important to make sure that all the charcoal is out before you leave your grill unattended.


Charcoal must be doused with water and then stirred to ensure it is fully extinguished. You can also use a spray bottle to mist the area. Once you’re sure the charcoal is out, cover the grill so that no air can get in and reignite the coals.

4. Wind:

Blow embers or flames from the grill
Blow embers or flames from the grill

The wind is a very common cause of grill fires. It can easily blow embers or flames from the grill, onto nearby combustible materials such as trees, awnings, or even your house. While grilling, be sure to keep an eye on the wind direction and keep your grill away from any potential hazards


You should have a water hose or fire extinguisher nearby in case of an emergency. Also, be sure to keep your grill clean and free of any build-up that could potentially catch fire. In this way, you can avoid potential grill fires before they even start.

Some other common reasons for grill fires:

Wiring problems:

Grill wiring problems are one of the most common causes of grill fires. When you start grilling your food and if your grill has any faulty or frayed wires, it could easily catch on fire. The wiring connection of the grill is extremely delicate as your minor negligence could cause a major accident.

Regularly check your grill’s wiring and make sure that there are no frayed or loose wires. If you notice any problem with the wiring, immediately get it fixed by a professional.

Ash buildup:

If there is a lot of ash buildup on your grill, a fire could ignite. Ash can ignite when heated to a high enough temperature. Proper cleaning of the grill is necessary to prevent ash buildup. You should clean out the ash after each use.

Leaving the grill unattended:

Another potential factor in grill fires is the unattended use of the grill. A fire may start if the grill is left on and something flammable is close by. When your grill is lit, keep an eye on it. Make sure to turn it off before leaving if you must.

Not knowing how to properly use a grill:

Some other factor that might result in grill fires is improper grill use. That fire may start if you are unable to manage the heat or flames.  Be sure to read the instructions carefully before using a grill. If you’re not sure about something, ask someone who does know how to use it.

How to properly clean your grill so that grease and food particles don’t cause a fire?

Preheating your grill before cooking is important as it will help to melt any grease or food particles that may be on the grates. After that, it is also important to clean your grill regularly, both before and after cooking. When cleaning your grill you should follow these steps:

  1. Remove the grates: First, you will want to remove the grates from your grill so that you can properly clean them.
  2. Use grill brush: A grill brush is the best tool for cleaning your grill grates. Be sure to choose a brush with stiff bristles so that you can scrub away any stubborn grease or food particles.
  3. Wipe with paper a towel: Once you have scrubbed the grill grates with a brush, you can wipe them down with a paper towel. This will help to remove any smaller pieces of debris that may be stuck on the grates.
  4. Replace the grates: Your grill’s clean grates will need to be replaced. If you have a gas grill, be sure to clean the burner ports as well. You can do this by using a pipe cleaner or a small wire brush. It is important to clean your grill regularly to prevent grease and food particles from causing a fire. By following these simple steps, you can ensure that your grill is always clean and safe to use.

Some other tips for preventing grill fires include:-

  •             Never leave your grill unattended-Keep a fire extinguisher nearby
  •             Don’t use lighter fluid or other flammable liquids to start your grill.
  •             If a fire does occur, be sure to act quickly.
  •             Turn off the gas if you have a gas grill and cover the fire with a metal lid or baking sheet.
  •             You should also call 911 immediately.
  •             By following these simple tips, you can help prevent a grill fire from happening.

Final Verdict:

Grill fires can be very dangerous and it is important to be aware of the potential risks. There are several causes of grill fires, but the most common are grease and fat build-up, leaving the grill unattended, and wiring issues. 

To help prevent a grill fire from happening, you should always clean your grill before and after cooking, never leave your grill unattended, and make sure to turn off the gas if you have a gas grill. 

If a fire does occur, be sure to act quickly and call 911 immediately. By following these simple tips, you can help keep your grill safe and prevent a fire from happening.

In this guide, we have discussed causes and solutions for grill fires. We also described the method to clean the grill properly. So that grease and food particles don’t cause a fire. If you have any suggestions or tips to add, please let us know in the comments below.