In this post, we review all of the tips and tricks that will help extend the life of your product by maintaining the nonstick surface. Everything from placing and serving on the plates, to how best to wash is covered, so you can get all the information in one place. If you're still having issues maintaining your finish, we recommend calling our Customer Care line at 1-800-947-3745.
The first and absolutely most important point in maintaining the finish on a George Tough™ nonstick cooking surface is to completely avoid metal utensils of any kind for placing, moving or serving food. Even if you don't visibly mark the plate when a metal utensil touches it, the surface may be weakened; then, each time you wash the plates, the weak point will get larger and your cooking surface will start to be affected.
While it's sometimes tempting to just stab your steak with a fork and pull it off the grill, particularly if you're in a rush, this can affect the life of your grill in the long term. Even if you're rushing, always make sure to use non-metal utensils to avoid marking the surface in any way.
Using the spatula provided with your grill will help extend the life of your grill. (and make serving easier!) Our best recommendation is always to use the accessories provided with your grill. Not only is the custom spatula safe to use with the nonstick surface, it actually makes it easier to remove the food since it fits along the ribs on the plate. If you've lost your spatula, it can be replaced by calling 1-800-947-3745; just use the part number listed at the front of your Use & Care manual.
If you don't have the spatula or prefer to use utensils of your own, just make sure they're made of the right material. Any heatproof plastic, nylon, silicone or wooden utensils are acceptable. Silicone utensils are the most highly recommended because of the generally superior quality to resist heat and discoloration.
The second part of maintaining your nonstick cooking surface comes in cleaning. Never use harsh cleansers, abrasive scrubbers or brillos, or any metal scrubbing pad. Since the George Tough™ nonstick coating is designed to provide easy cleaning, you shouldn't need these anyway, even when removing tough stuck-on food. In most cases, you can just clean your grill plates with a damp, soapy sponge and then dry with a soft cloth. If you need more scrubbing, a few simple wipes with a plastic, silicone or other nonmetal scrubbing pad should do the trick. For the soap, always choose standard dish soap, and not one that includes abrasive scrubbing crystals.
If your grill has removable plates, these can absolutely be washed properly in the dishwasher without damaging the nonstick surface. You may notice white spots on the plates when you pull them out of the dishwasher, but these are harmless water droplets dried on the surface. The white, dried water spots can be easily erased simply by rinsing the plate and drying it thoroughly immediately.