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May 27, 2010 07:10 PM

Balcony charcoal grill in Manhattan?

I'm moving into my new apartment in the Union Square area and it's a 2nd floor apartment with a 10' x 8' rooftop patio. The current lessee has a propane barbecue on the patio right against the sliding patio doors and I was thinking of buying a Weber One-Touch charcoal grill for the summer when I move in.

I have read the fire code at which says that propane tanks are illegal in Manhattan but charcoal grills can be used on balconies as long as there is 10' of clearance from anything flammable.

I have also read that many people have grills in Manhattan and use them regardless. Anyone here have any experience with grills in Manhattan?

I suppose a lot of smoke is generated from charcoal grills compared to gas grills, and I'm worried the smoke will billow off the rooftop and others will see - not to mention the people above.

Really hope to get some good grilling going this summer. I appreciate your thoughts!

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  1. Have you ever heard of the BBQ police? As long as you are cool with your super, you are clear to grill.

    6 Replies
    1. re: princeofpork

      That's very encouraging! I'm definitely down with my super and considering the current tenant has a massive propane bbq on the balcony I'm sure I'll be fine.

      Still worried about all the smoke generated and if neighbors complain, etc... I guess I can give it a shot. Thanks

      1. re: classacts

        Think about buying yourself a big fire extinguisher the same day you buy the grill

        1. re: pbjluver

          Good advice. You'll probably never need to use it, but it shows that you are prepared and responsible.

      2. re: princeofpork

        Don't know about Manhattan, but we got BBQ police here in Hoboken. (Same rules apply, no propane, charcoal OK.) But sooner or later, someone will have something to say, just 'cause. Make sure you are in accordance with the law and you will be fine.

        1. re: ttoommyy

          I have both charcoal and propane on my 2nd floor balcony. While I love using the charcoal it gets a bit dangerous if it is windy. I use wood charcoal and a chimney to get the coal going. If it is windy I often get large sparks and or ash that flies off the BBQ. I stopped using the charcoal when it is windy for this reason. Just be careful...

        2. re: princeofpork

          yeah, the BBQ police are called 311, people call it all the time to complain about BBQ's...if somebody calls, the cops are coming......that being said I use my gas grill all the time and so do my neighbors - we are equal opportunity offenders I guess...Gracious Home used to provide a secret number of a guy that would deliver propane, btw....