Ah, the classic summer barbecue. It’s something long-awaited by people all over the country here in rainy old England, and for lots of our customer’s it’s one of the major appeals of owning decking in the first place! Before you fire up that grill though, it’s worth taking a couple of precautions just to make sure nothing goes pear shaped once those flames are going.
How To Make Your Decking Safe
First off, we’d advise not putting the grill too close to the walls of your actual house, as you really won’t want columns of black smoke engulfing your windows and brickwork – take it from us! Obviously while cooking you should never leave it unattended, so always keep a close eye on it, and make sure to close the top and bottom vents when you’re done. Amongst other things, this deprives the flames of oxygen, which ensures there aren’t any worrying embers left alight.
And to answer one of the questions we’re asked most, your decking boards are unlikely to catch fire, all things considered. Yes they’re made of wood, but they’re dry boards as opposed to kindling, which means they won’t catch aflame without some serious conscious effort. (At Savoy Timber, we’d always advise against trying to set your decking on fire. Just to clarify.) A more likely scenario, however, is that your decking gets the brunt of a few flying sparks, which can potentially mark it. If you’re worried about this happening, you can always lay a mat down, or spray your deck with a light mist of water before you start cooking. This will neutralise the major damage of any flying sparks.
Protect Your Deck – And Yourself, Too!
As well as protecting your decking, it’s still worth taking those essential steps to keep yourself safe too. Beware of cooking in windy weather, as it can make sparks fly faster and further – at times towards you! Make sure that when you’re cooking you’ve tucked your barbecue or grill away from high-traffic areas across your decking. Basically, this means don’t put it in the way of a door – this minimises the risk of someone crashing into it, which can obviously have disastrous consequences.
Depending on whether you have hardwood or softwood decking, it might well be worth giving your decking a brief clean once your last guest has gone home. This can help cut down on the chance of grease spills and other stains settling onto your decking boards. Just a quick spruce will guarantee your deck looks spick and span, ready for your next summer garden party! (We’ve gone into detail on the best ways to clean your decking in this blog post.)
That’s all there is to it! Just a little bit of planning means that you can enjoy your skills on the grills without worrying about mark or damage to your decking boards. We’ve got plenty of decking accessories and other goodies in our stores in Preston, Blackpool and Wigan – why not pop in and see what’s available?