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Pre-season Outdoor Heater Maintenance

General tips for preparing your outdoor gas heater for use after winter storage.

It is fast approaching spring and it’s time to think about spending more time outdoors. Evenings are still cool, but the warmth of an outdoor heater lets us stay on the deck or patio longer. After being indoors for the last few months it’s so nice to enjoy some fresh air, and after preparing the BBQ for summer why not light it up now!

You will also need to give your outdoor heater a good clean and check before use to ensure it is operating safely.

Here are some key points to remember:

  • Firstly, ensure the gas is disconnected before you begin.
  • Clean the entire heater of spider webs, small insects and debris using a soft brush. In particular ensure the gas orifice and burner is clear.
  • Clean the exterior of the heater using a warm soapy water solution (do not wash near the burner and ignition assembly area), rinse thoroughly and dry immediately. If the gas control is exposed to water in any way, do NOT try to use it.
  • If you have stainless steel panels on your heater, use a stainless steel cleaner for best results. Note that if you use a cleaning agent it must be of a non-combustible and non-corrosive nature.
  • During the cleaning process if you notice any parts have deteriorated ensure you contact your local retailer for replacement parts or repair.
  • IMPORTANT: Check that there are no gas leaks in the hose connections. Using a soapy water solution spray or brush the liquid onto the connections. If bubbles appear when the gas valve is opened then you have a leak and should re-tighten the hose using a crescent. Never check for leaks with an open flame. Repeat this process whenever you change your LPG cylinder.
  • Light your heater and check that the flame pattern at the emitter grid does not extend beyond the surface of the grid. If this occurs or if black soot is accumulating on the grid or reflector, turn the heater off immediately and arrange for it to be serviced.
  • Only use your heater outdoors in a well-ventilated area. Ensure it is set up well away from combustible materials and is on a flat, non-combustible surface. Take care to ensure the heater is not set up in a windy area as it may blow over.
  • Use a cover to protect your heater from the elements when not in use – this will prolong the life of your heater and make cleaning and maintenance much quicker and easier.

Note: This is a general guide – ensure you follow manufacturer instructions when cleaning your heater.

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