Summer is here and you might be in the market to buy a new grill. There are different types of grills to choose from, and some people like to have more than one for variety. Here is an overview of some ways to cook outdoors and also some safety tips to keep in mind.

Popular Types of Grills: Charcoal Grill

Charcoal grills are considered the classic option because some people prefer the taste of cooking food over charcoal. You can find charcoal grills in the round kettle style or a rectangular model. It takes a bit of time and effort to get the charcoal hot enough to cook food.

To start the charcoal, use a charcoal chimney and newspaper. Let the coals burn for about 10 minutes until they are covered with grey ash, and then you can start cooking over them. While you won’t have the same instant gratification that a gas grill offers, many people enjoy the process of getting a charcoal grill going.

Gas Grill

Gas grills are popular because of their convenience. Lighting the grill is as easy as turning on the stove inside your house. If you like to grill out daily in the summertime and don’t have a lot of extra time to prepare for dinner, a gas grill is right for you.

If you have a natural gas line to your home, you can hook it up to your grill. Alternatively, you can use propane tanks bought from a hardware store. Use caution grilling with gas. You’ll need to check for gas leaks and always open the grill lid before igniting it to avoid a buildup of gas.

Electric Grill

An electric grill is portable and convenient as long as you have an outdoor outlet close by. Simply plug it in and it is ready for use. They are also affordable and easy to clean. One drawback is the size of the grilling area; electric grills tend to be smaller than charcoal and gas grills. This grill is a good option if you live alone or have a small family.


A wood smoker is usually most appreciated by a meat-smoking enthusiast who treats it as a hobby. Smoking meat with a wood fire takes attention to detail, time, and skill. The temperature must be managed by controlling the amount of wood burning on the fire and the meat needs to be smoked for the perfect amount of time.

There are now high-tech pellet smokers that take the art out of smoking meat and let you set and forget it. You can achieve delicious results without all the effort, but for a high price tag.

Safety Tips for All Types of Grills

No matter what type of grill you are using, always make safety precautions the top priority. Use the grill outside in an open area, not underneath a cover of any sort. Give the grill 10 feet of clearance away from buildings, trees, and fences. Use long-handled grilling utensils to prevent burns.

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You’ve worked hard to keep your curb appeal up all summer long, and now that the season is changing, you don’t want to lose it. You’ll need to adjust to the cooler weather and its effect on your home’s exterior. Follow these tips for fall curb appeal.

Replace Summer Flowers With Hardy Fall Blooms

If you planted annuals that bloomed over the spring and summer, they have likely wilted now that cooler weather is here. Plant fall flowers like asters, mums, and pansies. These colorful plants love cool weather and will continue to bloom well into autumn.

Spruce Up the Front Door

Your front door can make a bold statement on your home. Autumn colors like red and yellow are popular shades to paint a front door. A brightly-colored front door boosts fall curb appeal. In fact, a bold door makes your home look more inviting at any time of year. Add new hardware to the door, like a shiny knocker and kickplate. Place a pumpkin on either side of the door for a festive touch.

Decorate the Mailbox for Fall Curb Appeal

For most houses, the mailbox is the first thing that is visible from the street. A dented, rusting, and drab mailbox brings down the curb appeal of your whole property. Fall is a good time to evaluate whether your mailbox could use some improving. Maybe it just needs a new paint job and for the address numbers to be replaced. You could create a stone border around the base of the mailbox and plant some of the fall flowers mentioned above. You could even add a pumpkin or hang a fall decoration from it. If your mailbox is in really rough shape, replace the whole thing.

Pressure Wash the Driveway

When leaves start to cover your paved driveway in autumn, they get stuck to it and leave marks as they decompose. To improve your fall curb appeal, rent a pressure washer a few times throughout the season to clean the driveway of debris from leaves. While you have it, wash the sidewalks, deck, and patio.

Fall Curb Appeal Requires Raking Leaves

Raking leaves is one of the most time-consuming chores of the season, but it is important for fall curb appeal. Your grass will be healthier if leaves are not covering it, blocking the sunlight. Rake up the leaves that have fallen on your lawn regularly. Leaves make great compost material, so throw them in your compost pile. Your grass will stay green for longer if you keep the leaves raked throughout the fall.

Premier Home Inspection Services provides home inspections to Northern New Jersey. Contact us to schedule our services.