How To Convert A Gas Grill In 7 Simple Steps
Can you convert a propane grill to household gas? This is a common question on the internet, often posted by people who run out of barbecue gas in the middle of cooking during a backyard party. Albeit propane is a popular fuel option for grilling, many BBQ enthusiasts are turning to natural gas because it comes at a consumer-friendly price.
Replacing propane tanks is quite a hassle but once you connect a line of the natural gas to your BBQ grill, you will hardly run out of gas midway through searing a meat. However, you cannot simply hook liquid propane to a line of natural gas. You must convert it first to be compatible with natural gas. Note that propane burns at a hotter rate than natural gas.
So, the valves and openings are created to allow a lower flow of gas than in a natural gas grill. Before you make these changes, you want to be sure of the right conversion steps. It is not a hard process. Keep reading.
A step-by-step guide to converting propane gas grill
You will need a liquid propane conversion kit to complete the process. Check the rating label on the grill to have a better idea of which kit you should buy. If possible, get one from the same manufacturer of your grill. Do not buy a natural gas conversion kit as it won’t work properly.
Step 1: Preparations
First, your grill must be designed for dual fuel and should run off the natural gas. You must be sure that it is possible to make the switch. You can find this out from a sticker. Some propane grills don’t use natural gas so you might want to check the user manual. Then, turn off the natural gas to your home before you begin the conversion process.
Step 2: Dismantling the grill
Before you pull apart the grill components, ensure that it hasn’t been used for the last three hours. A hot system can burn you. Also, ensure that the propane tank is tightly closed before removing the tank, the hose, and regulator. Disassemble the burner and the grates too so you can access easily the tube burners.
Take off the carry-over tubes and hitch pins. To remove the orifices, start unscrewing from the valve ends using an orifice removal tool. Insert the tool into the orifices and twist. Removing the orifices is extremely important because you need to switch them with those that are designed for natural gas.
Step 3: Knobs replacement
Propane grill knobs cannot work on the natural gas grill. In the conversion kit, you will find new knobs to install. They ensure that the correct amount of natural gas is utilized for a brightly burning barbecue. After pulling out the old knobs, use a head screwdriver to unscrew the backing and replace with the new knobs.
Step 4: Replacing other parts
Replace the other components just the way they were installed initially. To put the burner tubes into the burner holes, make sure that their portholes face upwards. Engage properly the tube burner to the valve and secure the tubes into their right position with the hitch pins you had removed previously.
Step 5: Connecting to natural gas
From your natural gas supply valve, run a hose to the right manifold connection. Make sure that the gas line is safely anchored to the backyard grill. Keep the line short to minimize the amount of gas needed to run your grill and consequently the cost. After securing the hose, install a shut off valve on the gas line.
Step 6: Check for leakage
Before you start using your grill, make sure that the threading on the connection is completely tight. Use a wrench to tighten it. In case of a gas smell, turn off your BBQ grill and wait a few minutes to tighten the threading completely. No leaks should be present in the gas line especially the point of contact between the line and the barbecue.
To be 100% certain, turn on the gas line and apply soap over the hose seams and other connections. If you see any bubbles, know that there is a leakage. You will be required to seal again the connectors until everything is tight.
Step 7: Double-check and start grilling
Carry out a final test to your new gas grill and see if everything is okay. You must be confident that not a single step has been missed. Congratulations! You have learned how to convert a gas grill. No more running out of gas while smoking a meat!
If you don’t connect properly a propane grill to natural gas, you will have very small flames so your grill will not produce sufficient heat. To be on the safe side, change the orifices, the regulator, and the attachment hose.