Have you ever been in that situation where your garage simply just isn’t big enough to hold a full-sized grill and you have to make the decision whether or not to leave your Traeger inside or outside?
The worst part of the ordeal is that winter is coming (no pun intended) and you’re not sure whether or not your Traeger will fare well against the cold elements.
In this article, we’re going to explain whether or not it’s a good idea to leave your Traeger outside during the winter and what additional steps you need to take in order to protect it.
Can you leave a Traeger outside in the winter?
Generally, it is not recommended to leave your Traeger outside in the cold. Traeger grills shouldn’t be left outside in the winter if it can be helped, because they will freeze as soon as it’s cold enough outside to do so.
In fact, Traeger grills are built to be weather-resistant, but the pellets are not.
The Traeger can fail to hold the required temperature if left in a cold environment. When you leave your Traeger outside during the winter season, make sure it has enough space and that the wood pellets don’t rot or catch bacteria.
And if you try to use your Traeger grill during the winter season with your Traeger left outside, you’re going to find it much more difficult to get your grill to get to the right temperature.
It’s always recommended that if you can put your Traeger grill inside your garage or under a patio cover, then it’s best to do so.
How to keep a Traeger protected outside in the winter?
Traeger grills are expensive, so protecting them is important. Here are some tips you can follow to help keep your grill looking great, even if you store it outside in winter.
- Clean your grill thoroughly before you put it away. You need to make sure you remove all food residue, all grease, and all old ashes that might be present in the grill. You want to ensure it is as clean as possible.
- Diatomaceous earth in the hopper can deter bugs and other pests from trying to make their winter home in your grill.
- Move your grill to a covered place, or cover it with a grill cover. This is going to keep water and snow from making direct contact with the metal of the grill and potentially causing rust.
- Make sure it is disconnected from power and the power cord is tucked up where it is not going to get wet.
How to store a Traeger in the winter?
Keep the lid closed
When storing away your Traeger grill, it goes without saying that you should always keep the grill lid closed. This will prevent debris and dust from the environment from getting into your cooking pit.
Keeping your grill lid closed won’t fully protect you from the outside elements, but if it’s raining or snowing, it can very well prevent any rust that may occur on your grill.
Plus, the lid acts as part of the weather-resistant feature, and it covers up the inside of your grill from any water damage or dirt and dust.
Shovel away any snow in your Traeger’s path
The key to storing a Traeger in the winter is keeping clear paths and cover. Make sure you shovel away any snow in your Traeger’s path before starting, or else it will melt into water and create a mess.
Make sure the grill is clean
Start off by making sure your Traeger grill is clean. This will make it much easier when you start using it after the winter or during the winter. If, for example, the winter becomes too cold and you decide to fire up the grill, you’ll have a hard time trying to get rid of the ice and dirt that formed and hardened on your grill.
Since you might not be using your Traeger grill anytime soon, it’s important that you clean the insides to make sure nothing starts growing inside. Clean all food remnants out of the grill and scrub the grates with a new drip pan liner after each use. This will help reduce bacteria build-up and make cleaning easier overall.
A natural degreaser and cleaner is the best option for cleaning up after grilling. Something like vinegar or lemon juice should do the trick. Be sure to remove spent pellet residue from the bottom of the grill every time you use it to avoid buildup on cooking surfaces that could be dangerous down the road. You can remove the grate, drip pan, and support arch to get at your Traeger during the winter. You can also use a utility vacuum for the job!
You don’t want to spend any more time outside in the cold than you have to just because you forgot to clean the grill. The cold will actually make it physically harder to clean anyway. So, this is an important step to make your life much easier.
Keep it under a cover
Don’t leave the grill exposed to wet weather, especially if it’s outside. If water gets into the electrical components, it can cause a short circuit and damage your grill, which keeps it looking brand new.
This will help protect it from the rain, snow, and sun, which can all cause rusting or other damage.
If you have a garage with enough space, then I recommend you put it inside. Store your Traeger when not in use to prevent insects or rodents.
If you have a grill that is not fully stainless steel, it’s important to keep it under a cover. This will help protect it from the elements and keep it in good condition for longer.
During the winter, a cover can be especially helpful in keeping your grill dry. It can also help protect your grill from snow and ice.
Some pellet grills feature stainless steel lids and internal components. Over time, even these metals will rust from the paint getting scratched or from water or humid air contacting the steel.
You only really need a cover when it’s not in use. If you’re storing your grill during the off-season, make sure to find a fitted cover that is specific to your model.
The Traeger model is just one example of many pellet grill models with covers available on Amazon. There are also custom covers available for many brands of pellet grills.
Unplug the grill power supply
When storing your Traeger grill for an extended period of time, it is important to unplug the power cord from the outlet. This will help to protect your grill from any potential electrical damage that may occur while it is not in use. Additionally, by disconnecting the power cord, you can help conserve energy and lower your electric bill.
Seal up the hopper
When storing your grill for the winter, always empty out the hopper and keep the cover closed. If a cover is not desired or available, make sure that the hopper is empty and kept shut. This will help to keep moisture and pests out of your grill.
There’s also a recommendation on using diatomaceous earth inside the hopper. These are little packets of powder that actually suck out the humidity and liquid from the environment. This can potentially prevent insects and rodents from making their home inside your Traeger hopper for the winter season.
What are the benefits of keeping a Traeger outside in the winter?
You want to get the most out of your pellet grill, and keeping it outside in the winter is going to do just that.
- This makes it possible to use it outside during the colder months.
- It helps save space in the garage and other storage areas.
- It can be protected, so leaving it outside during the winter is not going to damage the grill and is going to take some stress off of storing it.
Is there any disadvantage to keeping a Traeger outside in the winter?
Though you can leave it outside, there are some drawbacks to leaving your Traeger outside during the winter
- It does increase the chances that the grill may get damaged or that there may be rust.
- Not properly putting it away can cause damage and can make it possible for your Traeger to stop working.
- Leaving it in very cold conditions does have the potential to make the metal brittle.
What could happen if I don’t protect my Traeger during the winter?
Leaving your Traeger outside during the winter does come with some risks.
First, if you do not cover it or you do not protect it, you can get water spots, damage, rust, you can get metal that becomes brittle, the plastic components can become damaged, and the grill itself can start to break down.
As with any grill, there are parts that are not made of metal that can become very damaged if they get wet or if they are exposed to extreme cold.
What are the most popular Traeger models that can hold up against the winter?
There are a few different models that do well in the winter when they are kept outside. They are as follows:
- Traeger Ironwood 885
- Traeger Pro 780
- Traeger Tailgater 20
The main benefit of these three models is that they are not super fancy. They do not have a ton of extras on the outside that can become damaged if they are left out. These are also smaller than some other models, so they are a bit easier to cover up and store during the winter months than some of the larger models might be.
What are the most popular Traeger accessories to protect it against the winter?
There are a ton of great accessories that can make it easy to protect your Traeger.
The first is the custom grill cover. They make a grill cover that fits every model, and you can choose the cover that is going to fit your grill snugly.
They also sell cleaning products to help get your grill super clean so that it can be put away for winter.
You can also get bucket lids and filler kits and more to help keep your grill safe and protected during the winter months.
Taking the time to protect your Traeger Grill is going to help you protect that investment longer.
Are Traeger grills waterproof?
Yes, Traeger grills are waterproof. In fact, the company even offers covers that will protect your grill from rain, dust, or dirt. However, even if you have a covered area, it’s important to be aware that high winds can cause debris to enter the grill and ruin it.
The Traeger covers are available on Amazon.com, and they come in different sizes to fit all of the company’s models.
What you need to worry about are the wood pellets. Make sure your wood pellets don’t get too wet. If they do, it could damage your grill. Fortunately, your wood pellets got a little wet thanks to the humidity or a little bit of rain. You can still use them. However, a lot of these wood pellets will expand and get stuck inside your hopper.
So purchase a cover that’s both protective and waterproof!
Can you leave your BBQ pellets outside in the winter?
Many people may be wondering if they can leave their BBQ pellets outside in the winter. The answer is yes, but I do highly recommend that you try and avoid leaving your wood pellets outside in the cold. But if it’s something you can’t avoid, there are a few things you need to keep in mind.
You may want to consider buying some thermal insulation material, like a big snow blanket. This will help keep the pellets warm and prevent them from freezing.
So overall, keep them covered up, try to keep them away from water, and try to shuffle any snow that is close by. Your goal is to try to keep your pellets as dry as possible without them sticking to each other. I also recommend putting them high off the ground as well.
Will a Traeger get rusty if left out in the winter?
No, a Traeger will not get rusty if left out in the winter. The materials that are used to make a Traeger are usually weather-resistant, according to the company. However, with enough time, the environment can naturally break down almost any type of metal and cause rust, especially on the body itself.
It is important to keep the grill clean, dry, and lightly greased for protection from rusting. You should also cover the grill during the summer to protect it from UV rays and keep unwanted guests like rodents and bugs off of it. A patio cover is a great way to protect your grill while still allowing you to use it year-round!
How cold is too cold for Traeger?
Just like anything else, there is a temperature range at which Traegers can be used. The 34-inch Traeger Pro Pellet Grill is another quality option for cold-season smoking, as it features a metal heating element that keeps the grill warm during cold weather. However, while this insulation layer around the metal heating element helps keep the grill warm, it also takes an additional 30% longer to reach its desired temperature in cold weather.
Cold weather and winter are perfect for cold smoking, as the cold helps keep the desired temperature inside. This means that you don’t have to worry about your food not tasting good. The colder outside air will actually help maintain a great flavor profile when grilling in winter! To do this, put your Traegers on low heat while continuously feeding with wood chips or pellets.
Is it OK for a Traeger grill to have snow on it?
Many people are curious if it is safe to have snow on their Traeger grill.
The answer is yes, but with some caveats.
However, you should keep the grill covered and clear of snow or ice during the winter months. If storing indoors is not an option, turn on and warm up the grill to de-ice it before using.
Snow in the pellet hopper causes similar damage and may delay you from actually cooking in your Traeger grill as mentioned earlier, so be sure to keep an eye out for that!
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