Ahh summer! The time of year we don't have to wear 8 layers to grab the mail. The time of year we can stay up late and not have to turn on every light in the house. I love summer. Yeah, it has bugs. Yeah, it has scorching heat.

Do you know what it doesn't have? It doesn't have snowy roads and icy driveways. It's the easiest of the four seasons, and mowing the lawn is infinitely better than shoveling because fresh-cut grass smells amazing, and feels great when you're hanging out in your yard. Bring it on!

My favorite summer activity is grilling. Sure, you can try and grill in the winter, but it's not the same. You cannot linger outdoors and enjoy that grill smell. You certainly can't sit outside and bask in the glory of your hard, charred work. There is, however, something we tend to overlook when grilling. The cleanliness of our grills.

Yo, your grill is nasty

There are a lot of people that are team gas grill and a lot that are team charcoal grill. Regardless of what side you fall on, it's impossible to deny charcoal grilling smells both amazing and like summer down to a stereotype. However... it's not the cleanest way to grill.

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When it comes to grime and bacteria, both gas and charcoal grills can get gross. Like, really gross. In fact, the average grill can harbor 1.7 million bacteria microbes per square centimeter. Yuck. That's actually more than you'd find on the average toilet seat. Of course, you're not eating off your toilet seat, so it being nasty is far less jarring, right?

Photo by Joshua Kantarges on Unsplash
Photo by Joshua Kantarges on Unsplash

While you may think that lighting up your charcoal and letting the grill get hot is a great way to kill nasty bacteria, it doesn't do enough to make the surface grime free. Yes, it's an important step, but the only one you should take before dropping burgers, brats, and corn on your grill.

So, how do we clean our grill? It's become well-known that you should not be using a wire grill brush to clean the grates due to the risks they pose. Find a safe alternative, like a nylon grill brush or a heat-resistant fiber brush, and make sure you're using it between every lunch or dinner you throw on the grill.

Cleaning your grill is the best method and, while I'm super lazy, I'd rather spend 5 minutes cleaning off grill grates than get sick from eating something otherwise tasty.

What else is fun to do in the summer? How about a scenic drive?

Best scenic drives in Iowa

It's time to hit the road—Stacker compiled a list of the best scenic drives in Iowa using data from Tripadvisor as of March 2024.

Gallery Credit: Stacker

The Iowa Tenderloin Trail 2.0

Iowa's best food tour is the Iowa Tenderloin Trail, which was put together by the Iowa Pork Producers Association! Here are all 13 restaurants on the list:

Gallery Credit: Courtlin

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