Outdoor Living Spaces: Common Outdoor Kitchen Mistakes
Kitchens are popular features of outdoor living spaces. They are great for entertaining or a different way to experience meal time, especially in the warm seasons. Creative designs will set your outdoor kitchen apart, but watch out for common mistakes. Here are a few things to watch out for.
Use Outdoor-Rated Appliances
Make sure the appliances purchased are rated by the manufacturer for outdoor use. Appliances that are made for indoor use only will not endure the outside environment. The appliances may change appearance from the elements, fail, and the warranty will be voided.
Don’t Put Your Refrigerator Next to the Grill
A hot appliance next to a cooling appliance causes issues with proper operation and safety. When designing your outdoor kitchen, plan areas for different types of appliances. When maximizing the space available, make sure there is at least one foot of space and a barrier between appliances.
Include Counter Space
Counter space is an important element in your outdoor kitchen. It makes cooking and entertaining convenient. You may need to transfer food from the grill or set up dishes and cutlery for guests to serve themselves. Make sure enough counter space is included when designing your outdoor kitchen. You’ll need it for prepping food, serving, eating and keeping utensils readily available.
Properly Plan Storage
Enclosed storage components may not work under a sink or grill. You need to account for plumbing under the sink or gas lines under the grill. When designing your outdoor kitchen, determine where drawers and doors will be placed and whether enclosed cabinets will work in your space.
Know Exact Appliance Dimensions
You have the perfect outdoor kitchen design and the appliances you want. Problem is, the appliances don’t fit when the time comes to install them. Either measure appliances yourself or consult a sales representative or the manufacturer before planning island or countertop cutouts. Then double and triple check the measurements.
Include Sufficient Lighting
Outdoor kitchens present challenges with lighting, particularly at night. There are sometimes no walls or ceilings, so the kitchen design should take lighting into account. The lighting fixtures need proper placement so you can see while prepping and cooking and guests can see while eating.
Use an Insulated Grill Jacket
Insulated grill jackets are necessary when building an outdoor kitchen with combustible materials. They are jackets that surround the grill to keep it cool and prevent warping, burning, and fire in your outdoor kitchen. A grill jacket will also help your grill last longer by protecting the undercarriage from corrosion and other effects of the weather. Make sure the grill you purchase offers an insulated grill jacket.
Properly Ventilate Your Outdoor Kitchen
Proper ventilation is needed when using a gas grill. Otherwise, gas could build up and cause a damaging explosion. Vent panels should be installed every four to six feet. Natural gas rises, so be sure the vents are installed high on the island. If using propane gas, you want to install vents low. Propane is a heavy gas that sinks.
Outdoor Living Spaces with Landscape Solutions
When it comes to designing and installing your outdoor kitchen, professionals such as Landscape Solutions & Design will make sure it is properly planned and completed. With our experience and expertise, we’ll help you design and install your outdoor kitchen. Call us to request a quote.