Memorial Day weekend has come to a close and if you need to clean your grill after that big cookout, then there are some things you need to know about wire brushes.

I do a lot of grilling and slow smoking, so I'm no stranger to cleaning up a big, greasy mess following a big event. Currently, I use an Old Country BBQ Pits Pecos Smoker along with a good ole pellet grill I picked up from Tractor Supply some years ago. While both are fueled by different means, they each have grates that need a good scrubbing after a cooking session. However, I've recently seen some TikTok videos that suggest wire brushes shouldn't be used on your grill grates, which led me to research the above question in detail.

Matthew Hoggard Feature on His Business Hoggy's Grill
Getty Images

I've been using a wire brush for years with no issues. However, according to the Palm Beach Grill Center, grill brush bristles, on average, send 150 people a year to hospital emergency rooms. This is usually due to aging bristles that break and stick to grates, which are then transferred to food during cooking. These bristles have been known to cause severe damage to the esophagus, intestines, stomach, and even the mouth when such contaminated food is ingested.

WKDQ-FM logo
Get our free mobile app

While all of that sounds scary, it might surprise you that wire brushes can be a safe, effective cleaning tool. However, if you'd rather not take the risk, the ENT Health highlights some alternatives to wire brushes. They include stone cleaning blocks, wooden scrapers, nylon-fiber brushes, and even balled-up tin foil. If you plan to use a nylon-fiber brush, you'll need to make sure your grill has cooled before scrubbing, as the heat will melt the nylon bristles. If you'd rather do away with bristles all together, the BBQ Daddy is another option.

If you plan to stick to the old way of doing things, ENT Health recommends inspecting your wire grill brush before each cleaning for loose bristles. I replace my brush every grilling season with a new one to ensure the aged bristles won't break off and stick to my grates. Additionally, I'll wipe down my grates with a cloth after scrubbing them to ensure no bristles are left behind. That said, after hearing the damage wire bristles can cause, I'll definitely be monitoring my cleaning process more closely. Perhaps I'll even try out a few of the suggested alternatives.

Quick and Easy Pork Chop Slop Recipe

This pork chop meal is super easy to make and requires little work...oh, and it's delicious! Here's how to make Pork Chop Slop!

Gallery Credit: Travis Sams

The 10 Best BBQ Restaurants in the Evansville Area

Whether you're in the mood for pulled pork, smoked chicken, smoked sausage, brisket, or any other part of a pig, chicken, or cow that can be cooked low and slow and slathered in a sweet and smokey barbecue sauce, you won't go wrong stopping by any one of these restaurants southern Indiana or western Kentucky to get your fix.

Gallery Credit: Ryan O'Bryan

Does Toothpaste Really Clean Your Vehicle's Foggy Headlights? [Life Hack Test]

According to, cloudy headlights are a relatively modern issue. Originally, car manufacturers used glass domes for the front of their headlights until sometime in the 1980s when they switched to "polycarbonate or plastic" I assume because it was cheaper. Unlike glass, plastic is more susceptible to oxidation which is caused by the UV light created naturally by the sun. Dust, debris, and road grime also contribute to clouding up your lights.

They also say toothpaste can be used to clear that cloudiness thanks to the same mild abrasives that also remove plaque and other gunk from your mouth. As someone who has to see it or try it before I believe it, I decided to give it a shot by following their steps and seeing for myself if they were right.

Gallery Credit: Ryan O'Bryan

More From WKDQ-FM