There are some important factors to consider when buying a grill brush to clean your grill grate. Price is of course always important and the brand also can indicate the quality of the brush.
It’s also important to consider the design of the grill brush. But, one crucial question that you must answer is whether your grill brush bristles should be made of brass or stainless steel.
Brass or Stainless Steel: The Pros and Cons of Brass Grill Brushes
Traditional grill brushes use bristles made of brass and they remain quite popular today. Part of the reason for their enduring popularity is that a lot of grill manuals specify that you should only use brass bristles for your grill grates. When you’ve bought a pricey grill you don’t want to screw it up needlessly by buying and using the wrong sort of grill brush.
Many people consider grill brushes with brass bristles as the best option because it’s the safe choice. Brass is usually softer than stainless steel so you don’t run the risk of scratching the grate with your grill brush.
This is especially true when you have porcelain-coated grill grates that are a bit more fragile. It’s possible indeed that you can damage such a grill grate when you use the wrong type of grill brush with stainless steel bristles.
On the other hand, the softness of the brass bristles comes with their own set of drawbacks. One main drawback is that a grill brush like this doesn’t really clean the grate as effectively as the stainless steel version. That’s an important factor to consider.
Durability is also another consideration that you have to factor in. The softness of brass means that it doesn’t last as long as stainless steel grill brushes. They’re more likely to wear down sooner.
Also, unlike stainless steel, the brass is more susceptible to rust. You can delay this by drying the bristles properly when you clean it. But eventually, rust will become a problem and you’ll have to replace the grill brush.
The Pros and Cons of Stainless Steel Grill Brushes
In many ways, the grill brushes with the stainless-steel bristles are the superior choice. Stainless steel doesn’t rust at all so moisture isn’t a problem with the bristles at all.
Stainless steel is also generally tougher than brass and so it can remove the debris, grime, and grease from the grill grate much more effectively and often it takes less time and effort. The bristles are more resilient and yet stiffer; these characteristics can make it last much longer before you need to buy another one.
Yet the main problem with stainless steel grill brushes is that you may get one that’s just too hard. Many people avoid using these stainless steel bristles because they can damage the grates. That’s true for cast iron grates and for the especially fragile grill grates with the porcelain coating.
What’s the Best Choice?
Of course, your best option is if you can find a stainless-steel grill brush that won’t damage your grill grates. Stainless steel grill brushes can therefore work if you also have a stainless steel grill grate.
Yet if you do have a cast iron or porcelain-coated grill grate, it is actually possible to find stainless steel grill brushes that will not damage the grate. In fact, the best stainless-steel brushes are designed not to damage even non-stainless-steel grates at all.
Additional Buying Factors to Consider
You do have to make sure that you don’t just choose between stainless steel and brass grill brushes when you make your final choice. There’s more to picking a grill brush than the composition of the bristles. Other factors that should be considered include:
- The price. Usually this can go from $10 to $23. Some can go for $35 but that may be too expensive.
- Effectiveness. How well does it clean the grate? The bristles should allow you to put in some force into your cleaning without damaging the brush. The size of the surface area of the brush also matters when you want to save time.
- Handle length. It should be long enough so that your hands are safe from the heat of the grill when you use the grill brush. It should allow for a good angle to clean the grate and it should also be possible to use both hands on the handle.
- You should definitely check out reviews as to whether the bristles or other parts of the brush are liable to wear down too easily. You may check the warranty which can last from a year to even 10 years. However, it’s more realistic to expect a grill brush to last just a year or so; you can’t really expect it to last 5 years if you use it regularly.
So, get a stainless-steel grill brush that works very well. Check that it’s affordable and that it will last a long while and you’re good to go!