When I had my house built eight summers ago, I never suspected the wind — and the wind damage — we were in for. We’ve lost shingles, given up siding, and been struck by lighting. For a Toolmonger who likes to grill out, the wind also hit me where it counted — the grill itself. We generally stored it by the fence to prevent accidents, but storms seemed to hit us during the few times we left the grill out on the patio. After purchasing two cheaper replacement grills which both subsequently ended up wind-totaled, last year I decided to buy a new grill and protect it to be sure it’d last.
My final decision was to build a paver stone “one-ton wall.” After checking with the company that installed the paver patio to ensure there was enough base/foundation to hold such a structure, I selected some pavers from the local big box that matched the existing colors and style. I picked them up myself so I’d get good quality pavers versus having to pay extra and returning the ones I didn’t use.
Donning leather gloves and loading up my daughter’s ever-handy Radio Flyer wagon to cart the pavers the 200 feet from the minivan, I found assembly to be a breeze. I simply followed the dummy-proof existing straight patio lines for alignment, then fit the pavers together with landscape adhesive using my ridiculously old, craptacular caulk gun.
Once capped off with some 12-inch by 12-inch step stone-style pavers, the wall was complete. The wall faces directly to the west, where the most damaging winds seem to come from. Plus, it’s the exact spot we loved to park the grill before I built the wall. Now I was able to assemble my new Weber E320 propane grill and leave it on the patio without worrying that wind would knock it over.
In a final effort of grill protection, I procured a Weber grill cover. After a year of use I’m happy to report that there has been no further grill damage, and I’ve had the pleasure of using the grill many times. The “one-ton wall” even helps out as a place to store platters, beverages, and grilling utensils not in use — definitely an added benefit for our patio. And with only the use of my van, a pair of leather gloves, my daughter’s wagon, and some landscape adhesive, it’s definitely a project anyone could do. Perhaps even a paver pavilion is in my future.
What lengths have you gone through to protect your grill? What efforts have failed, and what efforts have worked? As grilling season arrives upon us your words of wisdom could save someone’s most prized summer joy.