Tip & How-To about Grilling
Does your grill or pool heater have a yellow flame instead of blue? If your propane tank is not just about to run empty, then you can probably thank little spiders.
When a gas burning appliance sits idle for a week or more outdoors, spiders like to build nests in the venturi tubes (that's the tube with the holes in it where the combustion air gets sucked in). This changes the way the combustion air mixes with the gas and causes the gas to not burn completely. The incomplete combustion is not very hot, and so the flame appears yellow. This is not efficient. It wastes gas, is too cool for grilling steak and creates soot residues. This is very common on gas grills (bottled propane or piped natural gas). It also happens to pool heaters.
Fortunately, the fix is easy, and you usually don't need to take anything apart. Get a piece of stiff nylon string from a weed-wacker, about 12 inches long. With the burner cool, push the string into any hole in the venturi tube and spin it by rolling it between your fingers. The spider nests are sticky (made from the same stuff as spider webs) and they usually adhere to the nylon string.
Not sure what the venture tube is? It's going to be between the valve and the burner. The valve shoots a stream of gas into the venture tube through a pinhole nozzle called an "orifice". You can do a Google image search for BURNER VENTURI TUBE to see lots of different types. Every gas burning appliance uses some form of venturi tube.
Good luck. Al K
Posted by Al... on
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