The best way to use a beautiful wooden deck is to invite your friends over and charcoal grill your favourite food. Charcoal grilled food is irresistible at any time of the year, summer or winter. Charcoal burns far hotter than a gas grill because it uses up pure carbon energy by carbonizing wood. There are volatile compounds in food that burn unevenly on charcoal heat giving it that extra burst of flavour. Sprinkle a few plain wood chips over the coals and the meat will retain all the compounds that they may lose during carbonization.

As the meat cooks, it releases juices containing sugars, proteins and fat on the hot charcoal and combust letting out smoke that mingles with the flavours, resulting in the delicious taste. While heating on a grill results in uniform, smokeless cooking, it is precisely for this reason that the food grilled in an oven is not half as delicious as the one cooked on smoking hot charcoals.

Is there a risk of fire when you grill over the live flame on a patio or wooden deck? Not if you take proper safety measures.

Grill Mat

To cook on a wooden patio, it is necessary to take the right precautions. The best way to do so is by using a grill mat. There are non-stick grill mats available to make the process of cleaning up after grilling much easier. Grill mats make sure that the small chunks of meat, fish and vegetables do not fall through the racks and they cook evenly. The grease stains are easy to clean up too. A grill mat is primarily a non-stick, dishwasher-safe hot plate made of fibreglass cloth and Polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) material that is quite like Teflon. They need to be placed about seven inches away from the heat source. While shopping, choose an FDA approved one that is heavy enough not to blow around your grill and has a wide base. It needs to be fire-resistant most importantly.


It is important to keep the grill free of grease and oil. Never place it too close to your home or place combustible objects within a three-foot radius, and never wander too far from it while cooking or leave it unattended after cooking. Keep an eye on the burning charcoal until it has completely gone out. Drip pans under the grill need to be thoroughly cleaned once or twice a year.

After Care

Keep a fire extinguisher and baking powder on hand to put out a fire in case there is one. Never make the mistake of putting out the fire with water. Try not to dump the hot ash into a plastic bin or garbage bag right after use. Wait about 24 hours and place the bag at the curb away from your home on garbage collection day.

Is your deck ruined from grilling on the deck or loose sections? Call TorOnCa Fence and Deck to fix it. Our warranty covers critical items such as post installation, structural integrity and loose sections for five years. We serve locations around the GTA in Mississauga, Brampton and Woodbridge. Have a look at our website to learn more.