Scrubbing a grill's grate.

The basics of cleaning an infrared grill are the same as for any grill, but take extra caution in cleaning the heating element and infrared surface.


Tips on Cleaning Infrared Grills

At least twice a year, an infrared grill should be inspected for wear, paying close attention to any damage to the heating element, the infrared plate and the grate. Worn parts should be replaced before using and can usually be ordered directly from the manufacturer. If you're not the DIY type, at least not when it comes to expensive, restaurant-grade grills, you may want to contact the grill's manufacturer to locate an authorized repair facility.

If your infrared grill is in working order, first clean the grill's gas or electric heating element by removing debris with a wire brush or steel wool and, in the case of gas elements, clearing out any obstructions to the burner's openings.

Next, if your infrared grill is equipped with a grate, apply some elbow grease. Remove the grate and, if it's made of metal, whisk a stiff wire brush over both sides to remove cooking debris. If the grate is cast iron or coated with porcelain, use a brush with soft nylon bristles to avoid etching the grate's surface [source: Consumer Reports]. To finish the job, turn up the heat.

"One of the best ways to clean your grill is to heat up the grill to as high a temperature as possible," said Wachtel -- doing so will burn off any remaining debris. Then, after the grill cools, you can use a grill brush to remove leftover particles.

Finally, concentrate on the infrared heating surface. Whether it's made of ceramic, metal or glass, it's best to gently brush off any ash or food particles, and then to use a gentle, nonabrasive chemical cleaner to break up stubborn deposits [source: Vaglica].

It's recommended that an infrared grill be thoroughly cleaned biannually, but some people like to do so more often, up to every time they use it. "I usually like to clean all my grills, both gas and infrared, once a season, but it is totally preference-based," said Wachtel.

With an infrared grill so clean that you could, well, eat off of it, the only thing left do is prepare a marinade, wash a few vegetables and don an apron. When you fire up an infrared grill, the rest will take care of itself in mere minutes.