Learn how to remove, clean and replace the grates and emitter plates on a Char-Broil TRU-Infrared Gas Grill with these 5 easy steps.
Some Char-Broil grills use what’s called TRU-Infrared cooking technology, which is great for preventing flare-ups, eliminating hot & cold spots on the grill, and cooking juicier, more flavorful food. TRU-Infrared grills actually have more than just a set of grates, using what’s called an emitter plate that’s located above the burners & heat tents but just below the grates themselves, allowing the grill to retain & radiate heat back to the food for a forgiving grilling experience and delicious food every time.
For these Char-Broil TRU-Infrared Gas Grills, you’ll want to be sure to check out the grates & emitter plates annually — either cleaning them or replacing them when needed to ensure your grill is looking & cooking like new.
Prep Time: <5 Minutes
Work Time: Varies
Total Time: Varies
TRU-Infrared Grate Cleaning Tool (came with the TRU-Infrared Grill)
Flat Head Screwdriver (Not required but makes things easier)
Step 1: Remove the grates from the Char-Broil TRU-Infrared Grill.
The grates for most Char-Broil TRU-Infrared Grills are made out of porcelain coated cast-iron which is fairly heavy. Despite the weight, these grates a pretty easy to remove from your grill. To get started, use a flat head screwdriver (or your fingers) to lift up the edge of the grates. Once you’ve got enough space, pick the whole grate up with your hand and set aside. Depending on the size of your TRU-Infrared grill, you may have 2, 3 or even 4 grates that will need to be removed.
Note: Take care when handling and setting down these grates, you will want to avoid damaging them (or other things such as a wall).
Step 2: Remove the emitter plates from the Char-Broil TRU-Infrared Grill.
Once you’ve removed the grates, the emitter plates will be visible. Your Char-Broil TRU-Infrared grill should have originally arrived with a TRU-Infrared cleaning tool (pictured to the left) and we’ll use this to get started removing the emitter plates. Insert the edge of the cleaning tool between the grill’s firebox and emitter plates and push down to lift the edge slightly. Similar to what we did with the grates, once there’s enough room between the emitter plates and the grill, use your hand to lift the emitter plate up completely. Depending on the size of your TRU-Infrared grill, you may have 2, 3 or even 4 emitter plates that will need to be removed.
Note: Take care when handling and setting down these emitter plates. The edges can be sharp and you will want to avoid damaging them (or other things such as a wall).
Step 3: Clean (or dispose of) your grates & emitter plates.
With the grates & emitter plates now removed, you have a decision to make. Will I clean the grates & emitter plates or will I dispose of them all together? If you’re planning on cleaning them, follow these deep cleaning instructions next! If you’re planning on throwing them out — do so and proceed to step 4.
How to deep clean all types of grill grates
Mix one cup of vinegar and two cups of baking soda together and pour the solution into a garbage bag or container large enough to fit your grill grates. Place the grates in the solution and let them to soak overnight. Be sure to put a cover on the container and/or fasten a garbage bag using rubber bands.
The next day, remove rubber bands or uncover the container and lift the grates out of the solution. Rinse very well with a garden hose and most of the dirt, grime and stuck-on food debris should easily fall off. If needed, scrub with a stainless steel bristle-free or nylon brush (depending on the type of grates you have) and rinse again.
Pat the grill grates dry and apply vegetable oil for rust prevention. There we go, all clean!
IMPORTANT: Read Your Instruction Manual. Some grates are very fragile (looking at you porcelain coated grates) and easily damaged from scrubbing and scraping. Be sure to read and follow the manufacturer's instructions down to the very last detail or you might end up voiding your grill’s warranty.
Step 4: Find & order replacement grates & emitters from Char-Broil.com
Head over to www.support.charbroil.com and use the website to lookup the part list for your grill’s model number. This is pretty easy-to-do via the website but if that’s giving you problems be sure to use their call center at 1-866-239-6777 (The call center is open Mon-Fri: 9AM - 7PM EST Sat: 9AM - 3PM EST).
Once you’ve found the right parts, order the correct number of replacement grill grates & emitter plates.
If you’ve cleaned your grates & emitter plates, skip this step and proceed to Step 5.
Step 5: Reinstall the grates & emitter plates.
Once your new grates & emitter plates have arrived (or once they’re clean), the last thing to do is to reinstall them in your Char-Broil TRU-Infrared Grill. First you’ll put the emitter plates back into the grill over top of the exposed burners & heat tents (shown in middle of the adjacent image). These emitter plates should be marked with words saying “this side up” for directions. Once all of the emitter plates are in, you’ll lay the porcelain coated grates on top of them.
Once everything has been reinstalled, you’re all set to start grilling up grate food again!