If you need a new tank of fuel, go grab it before you marinate those chops (and consider a backup tank so you never get caught short in the middle of a fleet of sausages.)

If briquets, wood or pellets are your fuel of choice, lay in a supply of those. Jay Buzaid, owner of Powerhouse Appliances in New Milford, Connecticut, says that if you use hardwood charcoal or pellets, then take a close look at any unused fuel from the previous year. If there's any mold, it all needs to be tossed. If it's clean and dry, use it.

"In the summer, extreme temperature fluctuations from hot to cold cause moisture to build up, and sometimes the hardwood pellets and charcoal get wet from condensation — especially if the grill is in the sun," he says.

He tells customers that wet hardwood charcoal can be dried out, but he recommends tossing wet pellets. Regular grill use can help prevent this problem, and he also suggests storing pellets in the manufacturer's bag, which is designed to help them stay dry.

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