Can You Grill Under a Covered Patio or Porch? (Best Practices)

Grilling is a popular pastime, especially during warm holidays. However, sometimes it’s not always possible to grill outside, especially if the weather is bad or if your home doesn’t have a spacious backyard. This is where covered patios or porches come in handy – they offer a sheltered space that can be used for grilling, rain, or shine.

But is it safe to grill under a covered patio or porch? This is a common question that many people ask, and rightfully so. In this article, we’ll explore this topic in-depth and provide you with all the information you need to know. Whether you’re a seasoned grill master or a novice, it’s important to understand the potential risks of grilling under a covered patio or porch.

So, let’s dive in and find out if it’s safe to fire up the grill in this type of environment.

Can You Grill Under a Covered Patio or Porch?

If you’re planning on grilling under a covered patio or porch, it’s important to be aware of the potential safety concerns. Grilling can be a fun and tasty way to cook outdoors, but it can also pose some risks if not done properly.

Fire Hazards

One major concern is the risk of fire. According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), there are an estimated 10,600 home structure and outdoor fires involving grills during 2014-2018 in the US. Besides, gas grills are involved in a majority of these fires due to leaks or breaks – 8,900 home fires per year caused by gas grills compared with 1,300 by charcoal or other solid-fueled grills. Various factors, including worn or damaged hoses, loose connections, or faulty regulators, can cause gas leaks.

Carbon Monoxide Poisoning

Another safety concern to keep in mind is the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning. Carbon monoxide is a gas that has no color or smell, and it’s produced when you burn fuel like wood, propane, charcoal, or gasoline. It can be very dangerous if it builds up indoors and people breathe it in. Symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning can include headache, dizziness, weakness, chest pain, and confusion. In fact, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), at least 420 people die in the U.S. every year from accidental CO poisoning that’s not linked to fires.

Safety Tips & Requirements for BBQ Under a Patio Cover or Porch

To mitigate these safety concerns, there are several things you can do.

Using a charcoal grill instead of a gas grill

First, consider using a charcoal grill with an under grill mat instead of a gas grill. Charcoal grills are less likely to cause fires than gas grills. An under-grill mat is made from materials that can withstand high heat and help protect your patio or deck from any grease or ash that might fall during grilling. The mat can also help prevent damage to your deck or patio from hot charcoal embers that may escape the grill and has an anti-slip effect.

If you already own a gas grill, it’s always a good idea to check the gas tank hose for any potential leaks before firing it up. You can easily do this by applying a light soap and water solution to the hose. If there’s a propane leak, you’ll see bubbles forming, which means it’s time to fix the issue.

Where to place your grill on the patio

Make sure to keep the grill a safe distance away from the house and any combustible materials such as wood or vinyl. The NFPA recommends a minimum of 10 feet of clearance between the grill and any structure.

Besides, keep your grill at least 60 inches away from any structures overhead. If your covered patio or porch is made of flammable materials, you should also install an exhaust hood above the grill’s cooking surface to protect the area from potential fires.

Proper ventilation

To reduce the risk of CO poisoning, it’s important to ensure proper ventilation when grilling. This means grilling in an open area with plenty of fresh air, rather than in a confined space. You can also use a carbon monoxide detector to alert you if CO levels become dangerous.

Additional tips

1. A grill should never be left unattended while in use, as it only takes a moment for a fire to start and get out of control.

2. Children and pets are naturally curious and may be attracted to the grill, which can be dangerous. Keep them away from the grill while it’s in use until it has completely cooled down. Make sure they know not to touch the grill or get too close to it.

3. It’s always better to be prepared for the worst-case scenario. Keep a fire extinguisher nearby while grilling in case of a fire. Make sure it’s easily accessible and that you know how to use it. If a fire does break out, the first thing you should do is turn off the gas or remove the fuel source. Then, aim the fire extinguisher at the base of the flames and spray it until the fire is out. Remember to call the fire department if you cannot put out the fire or if it’s too large.

4. It’s a good idea to check for local rules or guidelines before grilling under a covered porch or patio. Some homeowners’ associations or local governments may have safety regulations in place to prevent fires and protect everyone.


While grilling in a confined space like a covered patio or porch is possible, safety concerns and potential damage to the area should always be considered. Remember, safety should always be the top priority when grilling. If you have any doubts about the safety of your grilling setup, it’s best to err on the side of caution and move the grill to an open area. Ultimately, grilling outdoors in an open space is the best way to ensure safety and enjoy a delicious meal.

I’d love to hear your thoughts and insights on this topic! Happy grilling!


1. Is it Safe to Grill Under a Carport?

Grilling under a carport can be dangerous, as the carport’s roof can trap heat and smoke and increase the risk of fire or carbon monoxide poisoning. Additionally, the carport’s structure may not be designed to handle the heat and weight of a grill, which could cause damage or collapse. It is generally recommended to avoid grilling under a carport and instead to grill in a safe, open area away from any structures or flammable materials.

2. What type of under-grill mat should I use for my charcoal grill?

When looking for an under-grill mat for your charcoal grill, choose one that is specifically designed for high heat and can withstand the temperatures that your grill produces. Look for mats made from fiberglass or silicone, which can protect your patio or deck from grease or ash that might fall during grilling. Additionally, choose a mat that is easy to clean and can be removed easily to make cleaning up after grilling much easier.

3. What are some signs that my grill is not safe to use?

Several signs indicate that your grill may be unsafe to use, including rusted or corroded burners, cracks in the grill’s body or lid, and damaged or worn-out hoses or connectors. Other signs to look out for include flames that are too high or too low, difficulty lighting the grill, and excessive smoke or unusual odors. If you notice any of these signs, it may be time to replace your grill or have it professionally serviced.

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