I haven’t used my good ol’ Weber charcoal grill in a while, but since my BBQ smoker pellets arrived early, I thought I’d fire it up.
But as I was wiping the dust off the grill, and preparing it for the grilling session, I noticed a medium-sized hole at the bottom of the appliance.
What’s startling is that my charcoal grill was covered and stored in my garage all this time, so now I have many questions—how to fix a hole in the bottom of a charcoal grill, and what causes holes in a charcoal grill.
If you notice a hole at the bottom of your charcoal grill, there’s no need to break a sweat just yet, because there are several ways to fix it including the easiest way with epoxy.
Table of Contents
- 1 Do Charcoal Grills normally have a Hole in the bottom?
- 2 How to Identify the Hole that Needs Fixing?
- 3 How to Fix Hole in Bottom of Charcoal Grill?
- 4 How to Test the Fixed Hole in the Bottom of the Charcoal Grill?
- 5 How to Use a Charcoal Grill with a Hole in the Bottom?
- 6 Can I line the Bottom of My Grill with Foil?
- 7 Can I Use JB Weld on a Grill?
- 8 Final Thoughts
Charcoal grills do have holes in the bottom, which are known as grill vents. Grill vents help circulate air inside the grill and allow you to control the grill temperature.
You can lower the heat by partially closing the vent and raise the heat by opening the vent. These vents are provided by the grill manufacturer, but other holes in the bottom of the charcoal grill indicate damage to your grill.
These holes are generally caused by rust over time, and can be fixed easily as long as the damage isn’t too extensive.
How to Identify the Hole that Needs Fixing?
To identify the hole at the bottom of your charcoal grill, you have to do two important things—place the grill in a bright open area, and remove everything inside the grill including the grill grates, and charcoal.
It’s also recommended that you flip the grill over so that it’s easier to fix the hole at the bottom of the grill.
How to Fix Hole in Bottom of Charcoal Grill?
Fixing a hole at the bottom of your charcoal grill is straightforward, but does require a fair bit of skill and elbow grease. I also recommend getting an extra pair of hands to help with the task.
There are three ways to fix a hole at the bottom of your grill, some which may require expert help.
1. Welding holes in the grill
Welding is perhaps a permanent fix for a hole at the bottom of a grill. It also is the strongest option but you will need some experience in welding to get the job done.
Welding is a great option if you have one or two large holes at the bottom or the bottom is completely damaged. You can apply a new layer of metal to the bottom, to reinforce its durability, effectively making it stronger than it was originally.
2. Epoxy or tape
Epoxy and tape are two of the most common, no-weld hole repair options. They are great for repairing small holes at the bottom of the grill but aren’t a good option when trying to fix large holes.
When you fix a hole with epoxy, it can be a permanent solution, depending on the quality of the job.
After you apply epoxy, apply a coat of primer to the area to seal the area and prevent the hole from reforming.
3. UV repair
UV repair patches are a more durable and permanent way to fix holes at the bottom of your charcoal grill or gas grill.
These are nearly instant fixes, so you can get back to grilling almost instantly. UV repair patches are basically a cloth-like material that can conform to the bottom of your grill for a perfect fit.
In this article, I will show to use a UV repair patch to fix the hole at the bottom of a charcoal grill since that is what I had done too.
What do you need?
- Safety glasses
- UV repair patch
I used the RapidFix UV repair patch to fix holes at the bottom of my grill, and the results were phenomenal.
Made from robust fiberglass re-enforced polyester fabric, this UV repair patch bongs to most surfaces, and dries solid.
Once you repair the hole at the bottom of your grill with this UV repair patch, you can sand and paint if you’d like.
Made in the USA, the RapidFix UV repair patch offers a fast-curing patch between 5 – 10 minutes and is resistant to many common chemicals, solvents, and oils.
Cleaning the charcoal grill
As mentioned earlier, it’s highly important to clean your charcoal grill thoroughly before performing any repair work.
Remove the grates, any movable parts, and charcoal and set them aside. Next, take a grill brush and scrub the interior of the grill, while focusing on the bottom to get rid of any ash, dirt, and debris.
You can now use a soft damp cloth to wipe the grill, and let the grill dry for 10 minutes.
How to fix the hole?
Fixing the hole at the bottom of your grill is easy, where you first.
- Open the pack and remove the patch.
- Cut the patch a little larger than the hole, and seal the remainder in the pack.
- You can cure the UV repair patch with either a UV flashlight or sunlight. After placing the patch on the sole, simply place the grill under the sunlight for 5 minutes or 50 minutes on a cloudy day.
You can buy a UV flashlight for under $20 and cure the UV repair patch in under 5 minutes.
- Repairs can immediately be sanded, painted, or drilled after curing.
How to Test the Fixed Hole in the Bottom of the Charcoal Grill?
There are several ways to test the fixed hole at the bottom of your charcoal grill, and perhaps the best way to do it is by simply taking a closer look at the hole. If the hole isn’t visible, you’ve done the job right.
For more surety, you can run your finger through the hole to see if it goes through. Be gentle though as you don’t want to damage the UV repair patch.
How to Use a Charcoal Grill with a Hole in the Bottom?
It’s highly recommended that you fix the hole at the bottom of your grill before using it.
Even though you can still grill with a hole at the bottom, doing so may create flare-ups, and needless to say, cause food drippings and grease to leak all over the floor, leaving you with a big mess to clean up later.
Can I line the Bottom of My Grill with Foil?
The short answer is absolutely not, and here’s why! You shouldn’t line the bottom of your grill and the grates with foil because it could restrict the airflow inside the charcoal grill, which can lead to a dangerous situation and lead to damage to the internal components.
If you line the bottom of your grill with foil, it can collect grease, especially in the corners, which can cause flare-ups and a potential fire. Regardless of the type of grill you have, you should never lay foil anywhere when grilling.
Speaking of foil, I’ve seen many cooks line the slide-out grease tray with foil, perhaps as a time-saving method for cleaning, but again this too is a big no-no.
The bottom trays of most grills are specifically designed to maximize the flow of grease to the catch pan. Foil has several ridges and creases, which can create barriers and affect the smooth flow of grease to the catch pan.
Can I Use JB Weld on a Grill?
You can use JB Weld on a grill, and in fact, it works great to repair holes, small gaps, cracks, and much more on outdoor grills, fireboxes, etc.
JB Weld can also withstand heat up to 500-degrees F, which is another reason why it’s great for grills. But that’s not all, JB Weld will also not catch fire or emit harmful fumes, making it safe to use on your grill.
If you’ve got a hole or a few holes at the bottom of your charcoal grill, there’s no reason to take it to the trash just yet.
There are several products available in the market to fix holes at the bottom of the grill including UV repair patches and JB Weld.
These are DIY products that do not require any skills for applications and can fix holes without a welding machine.
You should ideally get some help when fixing holes at the bottom of the grill, and always wear gloves and safety glasses.