Do you dread cleaning your oven? You’re not alone. In fact, you’re in the majority. Most homeowners procrastinate when it comes to giving their ovens a good scrub because they genuinely despise doing it. However, if you follow our suggestions in this blog post, you’ll discover how to clean your oven in a way that’s actually much less painful than you’re used to.
So, let’s get started!
1. Clean your oven every three months if you use it frequently, or once a year if you only use it on occasion.
2. Know the signs that your oven is dirty and needs a scrub:
- Dark grease splatters on the inside of the door
- Crust or grime on the bottom
- Strong odor when it heats up
- Smoke when it heats up
3. Don’t always rely on the self-clean function. The self-clean function drives up your oven’s internal temperature to 550° F and literally melts away the crud lining your oven. However, this only works if your oven is lightly to moderately dirty. If you use your oven frequently and there’s a good amount of grease and residue coating the inside of your oven, then the self-clean function may actually backfire on you, creating tons of smoke or even starting a fire.
4. Short on time? Use a store-bought cleaner. Don’t be shy. They’re more powerful and faster acting, so if the time commitment is what turns you off from cleaning your oven, then this is the route you want to take. (Note: You’ll need to wear protective eyewear and rubber gloves when using store-bought cleaner.)
5. Not in a time crunch? Go the DIY route with a mixture of baking soda, water, and vinegar in a spray bottle. This method is definitely less harsh than store-bought chemicals, so it’s safer to use around kids or anyone who’s sensitive to fumes. However, be warned: After you apply the mixture (which is like a paste), you’ll have to let it sit for 10-12 hours before wiping it off.
6. Regardless of which cleaning solution you use, follow these same basic steps:
- Remove all items, including racks, from the inside of your oven.
- Spray the cleaning solution all around the inside of your oven, covering the top, sides, door, and bottom.
- For gas ovens, don’t spray where the gas comes out. For electric ovens, don’t get cleaner on the heating elements. Spray underneath them, instead.
- Let the cleaning solution sit (20-30 minutes for store-bought cleaner; 10-12 hours for homemade).
- In the meantime, spray oven racks (outside if using store-bought cleaner) and place them into a garbage bag. Tie the bag and let them sit for the same amount of time as the oven.
- After the time has passed, use a damp rag to wipe off the cleaning solution. If you encounter any particularly sticky spots, use an abrasive object (e.g. pumice, Brillo Pad, microfiber sponge) to give them an extra scrub.
- Dry off the racks and the inside of the oven.
- You’re finished!
7. The key is letting your oven and oven racks soak in the cleaning solution for the instructed amount of time. After a good soak, all that grime and grease is much easier to wipe off—which means a lot less scrubbing for you.
See? When it’s all laid out like this, it doesn’t seem so bad. Like any other household chore, the mental hurdle is much tougher than the job itself.
As your local appliance repair specialists, we at Morris County Appliance Service see firsthand how regularly cleaning your appliances can have a positive effect on their performance and lifespan. So, make sure you get the most out of your oven by giving it a good clean every once in a while!