Making Smart Choices For Outdoor Kitchens

Making Smart Choices For Outdoor Kitchens
  • Opening Intro -

    Outdoor kitchens are rapidly becoming one of the most popular renovations in homes.

    But like so many upgrades, they are often derailed by well-meaning homeowners who get caught up in trends and don't make the best decisions about their project.


An outdoor kitchen must be carefully planned, wisely invested, and properly maintained. If it’s not, it becomes a waste of money. Homeowners who make a mistake in the process of building an outdoor kitchen usually fall victim to a few main errors.

Skimping On Materials

One reason many people choose to go with an outdoor kitchen is that their old one is too low-value for their tastes. They feel that a spacious, modern outdoor kitchen will give them a boost in convenience and living.

So they end up spending the appropriate amount of money on the appliances, then try to save money on the cabinetry, walking surfaces, and so forth. This is a mistake. There’s a reason for the use of durable stainless steel kitchen cabinets and quality flooring outdoors, and that reason is that the entire room is exposed to the elements year-round.

There is also sanitation to consider; stainless fixtures are easier to clean in addition to their durability in the outdoors. So while the popular stainless steel appliances are trendy for inside the home, the same material is a necessity outside. The same is true of ceramic tile, marble, and other materials that gained favor for their appearance inside but are in demand for performance outside.

Designing Poorly

Because the entire yard is your canvas, you may get caught up in the freedom of the space and end up making a bad design. Homeowners with spacious lots have the freedom to locate the outdoor kitchen in almost any part of the property, but there are some basic rules to follow to avoid disaster.

A sprawling kitchen complex located yards from the house may be inconvenient and costly. Think about the location of utilities. Will you have to make long runs of electrical, water, and gas lines from the main house in order to reach the outdoor kitchen? There is a significant cost associated with running these lines, and there are ramifications in building codes as well. Perhaps most important is the possibility that these lines are damaged by later excavation or repairs for other projects.

Also, consider practicality. Placing the kitchen near the house will permit easier movement in and out as you bring out supplies and utensils, and back in as you return with dirty dishes.

Installing On The Cheap

The temptation exists for most homeowners to do the installation themselves as a means of saving money or simply having an exciting challenge to meet. However, this can go off the tracks quickly if the homeowner is inexperienced.
Remember that utilities alone create a list of serious safety and health hazards. Improper installation of electricity can lead to damage to equipment, or to injuries of users. Gas lines can leak and cause fires or explosions. Faulty water lines can send contaminated water to outdoor faucets.

Installation must be done properly as well. As noted earlier, the weather is unforgiving. Not only must you be adept enough to complete the project before weather can disrupt it, you must also install it adequately to withstand the humidity, precipitation, wind, and temperatures that will beat away with unrelenting power.

Properly done, an outdoor kitchen can add value to the home, create enjoyable times for your family, and build great memories. If you don’t build it correctly, it can turn into an expensive and dangerous nightmare. Following these steps will help make sure it’s a positive experience.

Home Improvement reference:

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Last update on 2019-06-29 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API



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