Need help building an outdoor cooking space? Here are five tips to consider when making your plans:
Find a location
The best location is an open space that is accessible to your kitchen or dining area. This will let you go in and out conveniently to prepare ingredients and serve cooked food. Choose a location where your grill is protected from too much exposure to sun, wind or rain.
An area away from trees, roofs, trellises and wooden structures is also a good location. Anything that can catch fire and burn is dangerous to be kept near your cooking area. If you have a patio, consider using that area. A patio already has flooring in place, so there’s no need to pay for materials or labor.
Develop a plan
Having a plan or design for a cooking area is important if you want it done right. It’s also friendlier on your budget since you’re less likely to make mistakes. Furthermore, construction is a lot less problematic since you’ll have the basic foundation in place before you complete the structure. The last thing you want to do is get into the middle of the project and realize it is not going to work.
Consider size and space
Consider the size of the cooking area you want to build and what its functions will be. Do you prefer a simple barbecue area or a bigger cooking center? An outdoor cooking area can be a simple open area with a barbecue pit or a more elaborate construction that includes a grill, cabinets, a food preparation table and even a refrigerator. Depending on your budget and creativity, your outdoor cooking area can cost from a $300 to more than $1000. Design for comfort and not just style, especially if you want the cooking area to double as an entertainment center. Consider space and size of your grill, countertop, and sink and storage area.
Consider your utilities
If you want to fully enjoy your cooking area, consider whether you’ll need provisions for utilities such as water or electricity. If you like to cook at night, for example, building a provision for lighting is a no-brainer. If you will be using electric appliances, outlets are a must. If you have a sink, you’ll need provisions for water supply.
Mind the code
Some areas require that you follow codes and obtain permits for your construction. If your construction includes plumbing or electrical work, for example, you will need to get a permit from your local municipality. Check your local government for zoning requirements to ensure that your outdoor area is built at the permitted limit from your area’s property lines.