Why Does The Bottom of my Grill Rust Out?

There are many reasons why the bottom of your grill rusts out. Some of these reasons are due to design flaws, poor construction technique or materials used in manufacturing, and weathering/exposure to elements. A lot of it boils down to how long ago was this manufactured?

What materials were used in its construction? How exposed is it to weather and elements?This article will attempt to explain some of the design flaws and construction techniques often used. It will also discuss why some areas rust out faster than others, and on certain models; what the best way is to repair it.

Design Flaws:

A lot of charcoal grills on the market today are simply designed. The manufacturers realize that the end user, who is not a professional will be using this. So they design them with simple construction techniques to keep costs down.

But sometimes these design flaws are built into every model/brand of charcoal grills made by that manufacturer, or sometimes there are different types of construction methods used on an individual model.

There really is no cohesion within the industry about their designs or construction methods, except to keep costs down. So you have differing results in quality.

One company may use a different method for attaching the side tables than another one does on their model which is made of thicker steel and has bigger hinges and bolts than the other one does.

Construction Method And The Use of Thinner Gauge Steel:

The construction technique used can be a bit of a trade secret and not disclosed by some manufacturers. But more than likely, some companies may use little or no welding for connecting parts to each other.

Others will weld them at certain points but with smaller gauge steel. This will be the first place to rust out on a grill.The lower section of your grill is more susceptible to this as well.

The main reason for this is that the manufacturer uses a thinner gauge steel in order to keep costs down, and they know that many end users do not store their grills properly when not in use. The lower section has the most parts to it, and they know that if it is rusted out completely, many people will replace it with another grill.

So you can understand why they may use this method to keep costs down on these parts. These parts are mostly welded onto the frame work of the bottom section. But because of the design method used, it leaves these parts very susceptible to this type of failure.

Improper Storage:

But the main reason for the bottom section is rusting out has been from improper storage of the grill. This can be overcoming by simply doing what they say to do in their warranty information, which is to take your grill apart, or at least turn it upside down when you are not using it.

This will keep the bottom section from rusting out, or at least prevent some of it.And this is probably why one brand/model may have a better solution to repairing this problem than another. They use thicker gauge steel and more welding on their parts which will create a stronger grill structure in the end.

If the end user takes better care of the grill and stores it properly when not in use, they will probably never have to find out if their bottom section is welded on with thicker steel and more welding than another one does.


If you notice any of these things on your charcoal grill, it may be a good idea to repair or replace it before rust starts to form on the bottom of your grill.

A simple way to tell is to lift up on each side table and see if you feel any movement, or if the bolts and hinges are looser than you think they should be.

If so, then you may want to either repair the existing one with a good quality and replace it with a unit of better quality. Or replace the entire bottom section completely if it is too far gone to save.

How To Prevent Your Grill From Rusting:

The first step to prevention would be using common sense and store your grill properly when not in use. This includes getting the proper cover, the correct size for your grill, and storing it properly on a flat surface or hanging from a ceiling.

Another way to help prevent rusting is by purchasing a grill made of thicker steel (12-gauge or thicker) and using thicker steel parts on the bottom section. This may be too costly for some manufactures to do, but you will get better results in the long run by doing this.

If you live near salt water, then corrosion will take place faster than other areas that are more inland locations. So this is even more important to do this if you live in these areas.

And the last and final step would be to use a spray on bedliner or paint under the grate and inside of the lid. This will provide your grill with an extra layer of protection against rusting through.

The Benefits:

If you purchase a grill that has thicker steel, more welding, and have it designed to prevent rusting, you will get better results in the long run. And that is what you are looking for when buying a grill, isn’t it? You want something that will be durable enough to last you years of daily use.

So these are some ways to repair your existing bottom section of your grill, or at least keep it from rusting out completely. If you have any other suggestions on how to prevent the bottom section of your grill from rusting, please post them here so everyone can benefit from them.

But if it does happen that your grill does get too far gone for this method to work, then replace it with a new one that is of better quality. This way you can rest assured that your grill will last a lot longer, and be happy for years to come.

A Note of Caution:

If you think that your grill may fall into this category, then do not attempt to repair it yourself by trying to weld on any parts yourself, as you could end up burning the thin gauge metal and creating more problems for yourself.

If you are not an experienced welder, then take it to a professional who knows what they are doing. Some exterior body specialists could do this for you as well, or any other welding dealer that has experience in repairing grills. And if needed, contact with manufacturer and give them a chance to repair it under warranty before you replace it.

We hope you will find this article helpful if your grill is having rust problems.

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