How To Clean Pellet Grill – The Easiest Way

Finding and purchasing the best pellet smoker is not an easy task since it involves a lot of time and investment. Thus, keeping a smoker clean and in good working order is as essential as preparing the BBQ itself. More specifically, with grilling season approaching soon, all BBQ enthusiasts need to know how to clean pellet grill for maximum efficiency.

Dust automatically builds up after continuous usage of the grill, and it also disrupts the functioning of air inlets to a great extent. Keeping the grill clean will prevent any dust buildup, so you won’t have to worry about that.  

Regular cleaning of the pellet smokers ensures efficient operation of the device throughout the grilling season besides enhancing useful life. In addition, it is crucial to achieve the best flavor and taste in accordance with our desired recipes.

Now let’s explore simple ways how to clean the pellet grills. 

Note: The cleaning tips also apply to vertical smokers and other related units when followed as directed.

How to Clean Pellet Grill?

How to Clean Pellet Grill

As a general rule of thumb, never forget to turn off the grill before you start cleaning. Cooking grates are the only parts that are cleaned when the grill is excessively hot. Other than that, never forget to disconnect the grill from the power source. This is equally important for maintaining the safety of your device and yourself. 

Following that, you will need to empty the hopper. If you fail to discard all the wooden pellets, they can expand and cause clogging, which would ultimately cause more problems. For that purpose, you can quickly vacate the hopper and store the pellets in any bucket or storage cabin.

Start Off With the Lid and Evacuate the Grill

Lids are one of the crucial components of any pellet grill. You should clean the lid thoroughly with the help of a knife and nylon brush. After cleaning the lid, proceed to the evacuation of the grill.

In this step, you will remove the interior components of the device one after the other. After removal, rub each component thoroughly with the help of a cleaning scrubber. 

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Cleaning the Grease Bucket and Drain Tube

After scrubbing, the first thing that you need to do is get straight to the grease bucket and get the job done there. For this purpose, you will remove the drip tray to get rid of any stuck grease at the bottom. 

If you want to avoid any hassle at this stage of the process, you can use any narrow liner for faster cleaning of the tube. As far as the grease bucket is concerned, you will need a good plastic scraper to make cleaning easier. Try to clean every bit of the bucket for maximum results 

However, there are certain things to consider after you finish cleaning up the grease bucket. If thrown carelessly, it may cause a fire. So you should delay disposing of it until it has cooled down. 

There will be little to no grease if you keep cleaning your device every couple of months. On the contrary, you’ll have to deal with a huge mess if you don’t perform any thorough cleaning for years. As a result, you’ll have more trouble cleaning the drip bucket.

Read Also: How To Smoke on a Charcoal Grill?

Proceed to Cooking Grates

Once you are done rinsing the grease bucket, the next step involves cleaning the grates. 

Companies offer a variety of grates with varying shapes and sizes. Cleaning the grates becomes easier if they break down into smaller pieces. In this case, you can wash them in any dishwater 

On the other hand, if the grates are not dishwater-safe, you will be scrubbing them with the help of a nylon brush for desired results. 

The following things are important to consider while you attempt to clean the cooking grates when they are cold (as most people prefer cleaning them by raising the temperature of the grill and cleaning subsequently):

  • If there is a massive grease buildup on the edges, you should buy a degreaser to get the job done for you. In case of grates that are not dishwater-safe, you can wash them in a large container such as a bathtub. As far as cleaning agents are concerned, any regular dishwasher soap/bar is sufficient for reliable results.
  • Some people mistakenly think stiff-haired metal brushes will clean the grates quickly. This is a flawed technique that can damage the functioning of the device. There is also a high risk of personal damage as one tries to hurry things along. That is why using the correct equipment also matters a lot when it comes to cleaning cooking grates.
  • In the case of non-dishwasher-safe grates, a nylon brush makes the ideal choice for scrubbing and getting rid of any buildup on the grates.

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Thermometer Time

The thermometer is one of the most underrated components of any grilling device. It directly affects nearly everything that happens during the BBQ adventure. 

For instance, it is responsible for determining the pellet consumption rate as it attempts to manage the temperature. It also impacts the overall success of your cooking pursuits due to the heat adjustments it makes during the process. That is why you should also pay attention to its cleaning.

You can utilize a paper towel for its cleanup. You can clean it in a matter of seconds.

Extensive Exterior Cleaning 

Once you have cleaned all the inside components, it’s time for the deep cleaning of the external side. It does not require any complex technique to clean the exterior of any grill. 

You only require a high-end cleaning agent, a soft cloth, and water to get the desired results within minutes. However, be careful with how you use the cleaning agent. More specifically, don’t let cleaning spray or soap enter the internal side of the grill as it might cause rust

Read Also: How To Clean an Electric Smoker?


After performing the external cleaning, it’s high time for you to reassemble the internal components of the grill. Try to follow the sequence following the shape and size of the grill. Restoring everything should be done carefully. You can get help from the instruction manual in case you are stuck somewhere during the process.

Once you put everything back in its original place, you are all set for the next BBQ cookout. 


Cleaning the pellet grill is not a challenging job once you follow the instructions of professionals in this regard. Anyone can clean their grills without involving any complexities. This thing will increase the efficiency of your device as well as its life expectancy.

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