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Gas Grill Repair & Maintenance

Gas Grill Burners

The burner is the heart of the barbecue and is subject to great abuse from corrosive food acids, high temperatures and moisture. Although it is common that burner replacement becomes necessary during the life of the grill, burner life can be greatly extended by periodic maintenance and cleaning. In addition, frequent use will actually extend burner longevity by burning away moisture and food acids.
See our page on grill burner inspection for more tips.

Burner Shape

Burners come in a variety of shapes, styles and materials and are described and referred to generally by their shape as viewed from the top. For example the most common, being the H-Burner which is shaped like the letter H, the oval burner which is oval shaped and the bar burner in the shape of a long thin bar. Burner shape or configuration effects the distribution of the flame and uniformity of the heat across the cooking surface. Because combustion air holes molded into the bottom of the castings follow the actual contour of the burner, replacement burners must be of the same shape and configuration as the original.

Burner Materials

Different materials are used in burner construction with some materials being more resistant to corrosion than others. All warranty periods below are as generally given by the grill manufacturers for the types of material listed. Individual warranties vary greatly among manufacturers and burner life is greatly dependent on usage, maintenance and environment.

Aluminized Steel

A galvanized type steel which is commonly used in lower end grills. Will sometimes carry a 3 year warranty.

Porcelain Coated Steel

A baked on porcelain enamel finished steel. Generally carry a 3 year warranty.

Stainless Steel

The most common material used and can be found in low end through upper end grills. There are different grades of stainless steel in addition to different gauges or thickness. Warranties range from 3 to 5 years.

Cast Iron

Solid molded cast iron. Usually carry longer warranties with some to 10 years. Cast iron is subject to drying and flaking and should be oiled and maintained to enjoy full life expectancy.

Cast Brass

Solid molded cast brass. The least common burner, only available on several distinct models of expensive grills. They carry the longest warranty with some to 15 years.


Wire brush the burner exterior to remove loose corrosion and excessive residue. Clean clogged gas holes with an opened paper clip. Check burner assembly for corrosion damage or any opening that would emit excess air. Replace corroded or damaged burners.

Burner Flame

New Burner

A new burner may give excessive yellow flame while burning off oils used in manufacturing. After breaking in a new burner and once the oil has burnt away, check the burner flame.


Grill hood must always be open when lighting. With the grill lid closed and the cooking surfaces in place, observe the burner's flame from below the grill bottom and looking through the air supply holes. A good flame would be blue with some yellow tip coming from the burner holes. There should not be an excessive gap between the flame and the burner. Some yellow tips on flames up to 1" in length are acceptable as long as no carbon or soot deposits appear.

Adjusting Flame

If flames are excessively yellow and irregular, the oil residue may not be completely burnt off, the venturi tubes may not be properly positioned over the orifice, or the venturi tube shutters may not be properly adjusted. To Adjust Shutters:
  1. Loosen screw to air shutter and close shutter
  2. Open slowly until flame is free of yellow - Do not open any farther than required
  3. Shut off gas and tighten adjustment screw
  4. Allow grill to cool before proceeding

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Please note: The information provided is not intended to take the place of the owners manual that was supplied with your grill. Specific safety, repair and maintenance information varies between grill models and brands. Always refer to your owners manual.