Supermarkets stocked with smoky-flavoured meats, and the smell of a grill at every corner are some of the signs that tell you summer is here.
Barbecue season is one of the best times of the year. More time is spent outdoors and let's face it, dinner off the barbecue simply tastes better.
Entertaining friends and family outdoors while enjoying juicy burgers, grilled halloumi, and succulent ribs is one of the greatest ways we can spend our days off during the spells of good weather.
However, the mess a big cookout can leave on your barbecue can definitely put a dampener on the mood. Nobody likes cleaning, and cleaning a grill after it's had a load of food on it comes in at the top level on the list of ''things we hate to do''.
However, there are some things you can do to make cleaning your grill easier and quicker.
Top tips on how to clean a barbecue grill
Preparation before the cooking is essential: Avid foodie, Adam Broetje says ''the best cleaning tip I know is actually more about preparation before cooking. I heat up the grill and then dip a paper towel into some vegetable oil. Using a pair of tongs, I wipe down the grates with the oil-soaked paper towel. This helps to keep your meats from sticking to the grill grates, which make clean-up easier.''
Get your grill shining with potatoes and car wax: BBQ cleaning guru, Samuel MiddletonÂ offers some unusual tips when it comes to cleaning the grill.
- The potato chips method for cleaning nasty BBQ shelves ' ''you will need a potato, vegetable, oil and a little bit of kosher salt [no, you won't be making chips]. Apply the oil on the shelves with a brush and sprinkle some salt where the food build up seems hard to get off. Slice the potato in two and scrub the shelves with its fleshy part. Rinse with hot water after and you're done.''
- Car wax method – ''if you've ever used wax on your car, you know its potential. Take that same car wax and apply it everywhere but the racks. Right after it has dried, wipe with a rag and you're ready. The beauty of this method is that wax has extra protective power and cleaning the mess next time will be a lot easier.''
Household cupboard staples make great cleaners: Cleaning expert at Domestic Cleaners, Lauren Haynes, reveals her top cleaning tip -which involves vinegar and water. ''Start by mixing equal parts of vinegar and water in a spray bottle,'' she says. ''Shake it well and spray the racks thoroughly on the top and bottom. Let it dry for 15 minutes [while you refill the bottle with vinegar only]. Then, spray the vinegar on a folded aluminium foil and scrub the interior of the grill. You can do the same with the exterior, but instead of using aluminium foil, use a normal cotton cloth.
''At the end, you will have a fresh and clean barbecue grill ready to prepare delicious food again. ''
Wire, sponge and wash method: This routine gets the grill back to a nice shiny finish. ''Use a wire brush and hot water to brush off anything that's got stuck to the grill,'' says Mark Cavill of Somerset Yurts.
''Use a metal scourer with washing up liquid and hot water to remove any burnt-on grease. Then, use a sponge with a combination of hot water and washing up liquid to give it a final clean. Rinse off with hot water.''
How often should I clean my grill?
You should clean your grill after every use.
If you clean your barbecue properly every time you use it, you'll be cooking on it for a long time.
Have you got some cleaning tips? Let us know in the comments!