How to Calibrate a Flat Top Grill

One of the advantages of a flat top grill is its remarkable heat performance. The best flat top grills can reach high searing temperatures with ease.

And when switching between cooking different dishes, adjusting the heat level is effortless. But only when the unit has the correct temperature calibration.

Therefore, you need to check on your griddle from time to time and confirm its calibration accuracy.

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Why Calibrate a Flat Top Grill?

The main reason for calibrating your flat top grill is to ensure that the temperature on the griddle plate matches that on the indicator dial. In other words, ensuring it gives true temperature reading. That way it won’t overcook or undercook your foods.

How Often Should You Calibrate a Flat Top Grill?

The frequency of calibrating a flat top grill is directly proportional to its intensity of use. Also, it’s never a once and for all adjustment.

With that said it’s wise to carry out the temperature check and adjustment every couple of months, say two to three months.

However, if you notice that your food always comes out of the griddle overcooked or undercooked, you must calibrate your griddle straightaway.

What Tools Do You Need to Calibrate a Flat Top Grill?

When calibrating a flat top grill with an analog temperature control unit you only need the following tools:

  • Screwdrivers with flat and star heads
  • Temperature reader having a solid surface grip probe
  • Pliers
  • Nut driver

How to Calibrate a Flat Top Grill

Clean the Flat Top Grill

Before calibrating the unit, clean the flat top grill[how to clean a flat top grill] to eliminate food and grease remains on the plate.

Confirm that the gas to the griddle is of the right pressure and quantity. If it’s electric ensure that the voltage to the flat top grill is adequate

Confirm the Temperature Probes are Mounted Rightly

The initial step is confirming that the temperature probes are mounted correctly. A loosely mounted probe can also cause false temperature reading.

That requires removal of the the front access panel. So, use the screwdrivers to remove the screws fastening the front face. Take care not to lose the screws, damage the switches or wires.

If the probes are loose, readjust with the pliers and then fasten back the front access panel back in place.

Place the Surface Temperature Probe in the Correct Position

To begin the calibration process, you need to place the temperature probe in the correct position on the griddle. Otherwise, it won’t give you the correct heat level reading.

So, position the probe around the centre of the griddle plate. At the same time ensure that the probe is lined up with the red alarm switch.

Switch on the Unit

Power on the flat top griddle, set it to a given reading and give it a few minutes to heat. That may take about 30 to 40 minutes, depending on whether it’s a cold or hot start. The heating period gives the flat top grill time for its temperature to stabilize.

During this time ensure the surface temperature probe is in place. At the same time don’t cook anything on the unit.

Compare the Readings

Once the reading stabilizes, compare the temperature reading set point on the flat top grill against that of the temperature reader.

If the two reading corresponds or has a deviation of plus or minus 15 degrees then it’s okay. In that case, you won’t need to readjust anything.

Calibrate When Necessary

However, if there is a wide temperature reading difference of more than 15 degrees, then calibration is necessary.

Take Off the Knob Cover.

Assuming the griddle has a dial surface, take-off the knob cover on the temperature adjustment knob. Then while holding the knob tightly, use the nut driver to loosen the nut in the centre of the knob by a couple of inches.

Readjust as Necessary

Having unscrewed the nut, it should feel easy to move the knob indicator to match the appropriate graduation mark. Adjust the indicator to align and reflect the correct temperature value and centre the mark to point at the middle of the new temperature range.

Retighten the Nut

Once you have finished the alignment, maintain your grip on the knob and tighten the nut in the centre. Replace the knob cover such that the marks on the cover and knob line in position.

Test After Calibration

To confirm that you have calibrated the equipment correctly, adjust the temperature reading on the griddle and wait for a few minutes. Then take note of the flat top grill’s set point and the reading on the temperature indicator unit.


Calibrating a flat top grill is a vital procedure that you should check on regularly. A griddle that is calibrated correctly makes temperature adjustment straightforward.

That way, whether you are cooking pancake on the flat top grill[how to cook pancake on a flat top grill], or any other dish, there is very little chance of the food coming out undercooked or overcooked. Fortunately, as the post reflects, you can accomplish it in a few minutes.