5 Steps to Cleaning a Rusty BBQ

I left my BBQ out all winter, uncovered – silly moo! It’s only a couple of years old, but is now an eye-sore in my lovely new garden.

rusty BBQ

I had occasion to restore a rusty fireplace I rescued from a building being torn down a couple of years ago, I thought the same technique might work on my BBQ.


Step 1: Remove Grease

The first step is to clean the barbecue with a standard kitchen/oven degreasing¬† product – I used a bit of Mr Muscle Oven Cleaner. Wear gloves for this and a clothes peg for you nose or a well ventilated area. It’s really important to clean well or the polish will be patchy.

grease spots

Grease spots on BBQ before cleaning.

Step 2: Apply Rust Remover

Paint rust remover on all rusty areas, just use a paint brush. I used Liberon Rust Remover, but I imagine there are similar products from different brands.


Step 3: Remove Rust

Once the rust remover is dry it will form a white coating – it looks a bit like mould. Then you use a wire brush to remove it all. Then repeat steps 2 and 3 until no more white appears.


Sorry, forgot to take a photo as I was working on it, but here is an example of the white mould the rust remover causes on the fireplace I restored.

It’s important to not be impatient and leave it plenty of time to dry (overnight for the last application) just to make sure it’s gone, or the white will bleed through the polish.

Once the white has stopped coming through, you apply a finial thin coat to help protect it against future rust.

Step 4: Apply Polish

I used Hot Spot Stove and Grate Polish to finish the barbecue. With a slightly damp soft cloth e.g. a duster work the polish in circles all over the barbecue. It will look streaky and a matt finish – don’t worry that’s normal.


Leave a drop of water in the polish tin to stop drying out when you are done, and then if needed, you’ll have some handy for next time.

Step 5: Buff

Leave the polish until it’s dry (or longer) and then using a dry, clean soft cloth buff the excess polish off which will leave you with a nice shiny looking barbecue.

Repeat steps 4 and 5 until you are happy with the finish.


If you give this a go, leave a comment to let me know how it worked for you.

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