How to install gas grill lava rocks

Written by james clark
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Lava rocks are coarse, porous chunks of Igneous rocks made from molten lava that has cooled. They are used in a gas grill to absorb and reflect the heat from the propane burner. The rocks distribute heat evenly across the grill for uniform cooking. Without lava rocks, steaks on one side of the grill might turn out rare or even raw, while meat directly over the burners would be charred. Lava rocks should be replaced when they begin to crumble or have absorbed so much grease that they smell bad and cause flare-ups whenever the grill is used. Installing new lava rocks takes only a few minutes.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Gas grill
  • Bag of lava rocks

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  1. 1

    Raise the grill lid and remove the cooking grates.

  2. 2

    Remove the old lava rocks, bag them and discard.

  3. 3

    Lift the grate from the burners and use a dustpan and whisk broom to clean out debris and other burnt food from around and below the burners. This will prolong the life of the grill and prevent old food odours from being absorbed by the porous lava rock.

  4. 4

    Replace the grate over the burner and pour the new lava rocks from the bag onto the grate.

  5. 5

    Arrange the lava rocks so they are evenly distributed across the entire burner grate in a single layer, with the edges touching each other.

  6. 6

    Replace the cooking grates and ignite the grill, letting the new lava rocks heat for 10 minutes to burn off any dust or chemicals from the packaging.

Tips and warnings

  • Add only a single layer of lava rocks to the grill; do not stack the rocks.

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