How to Clean your Oven
It's a nasty task.
We all know that oven cleaning is not fun, but it is not the awful task it once was.
Self cleaning ovens, and commercial oven cleaning products such as easy off, make what once was an incredibly difficult task a breeze.
Keeping the Interior Clean:
Your oven may be a self-cleaning oven, which is not exactly true, but it does come close. Regardless of the self clean feature, you do need to maintain the interiors cleanliness.
Self cleaning technology helps but big spills and splatters will smoke and burn and get baked on if not wiped up after they've happened. A little dishwashing soap and water will clean spills.
To save on cleanup time when you know you will be cooking a large meal, cover the bottom of the oven and/or pan with aluminum foil. Do not let foil touch the heating element because aluminum will burn too. You could also use an aluminum lined cookie sheet underneath the rack or the dish you are cooking with to help with spills.
Self Cleaning Ovens:
Self-cleaning ovens heat to a very high heat for a few hours to burn off spills and stains.
First remove the wire racks (otherwise the metal could expand if left in the oven, damaging the interior). Lock the oven door and turn on the self cleaning mode.
The oven usually shuts off automatically, approximately within 2-6 hours your oven is done self cleaning.
After the oven temperature has cooled down to room temperature, wipe the oven interior with a damp cloth. The self-cleaning oven turns food spills into a gray ash that can be wiped away easily with a damp sponge.
Do not forget to wipe up spills on the inside of the oven door. Wipe the seal around the door with a gentle cleanser and the gasket with a damp sponge.
Most oven exteriors can be easily and quickly wiped clean with a gentle cleanser, or even glass cleaner.
- Do not clean the exterior with a cleaning solution if the oven interior is hot. The heat with quickly evaporate the cleaning solution.
- Wipe up spills as soon as you can and be careful when and if scrubbing is required so you do not damage the exterior surface.
- Soak the burner racks in warm, soapy water. If you have a stove with a flat top, simply spray with a gentle cleanser and wipe dry.
Using Oven Cleaner:
If you don't own a self-cleaning oven, you can get store-bought oven cleaner. Get those cleaning gloves out and get prepared to scrub.
Follow the manufacturers instructions very carefully. Oven cleaners are either cold-process, or one that requires the oven to be pre-heated to start the process. Some cleaners take a few hours, and some work overnight.
Remember to use hand protection. This is an acid. If the cleaner spills on you, you might not notice it immediately but meanwhile the acid is actually burning your skin slowly. By the time you notice that your skin is irritated, the damage has already been done. Seriously- It's happened to our maids more than once.
You may need to scrub a little when the oven cleaner has done it's work, but there shouldn't be much to clean off. Wipe out the oven completely to get rid of any cleaner and residue.
Depending on how often you use your oven, you should usually clean your oven every few months. If you spill a large amount of grease or sugary substances, clean it more frequently.