Cleaning the oven is a grubby, time-consuming and dreaded task that we all put off for as long as possible. However, if we want healthy and tasty food and an oven that works at optimum performance with increased longevity, then it’s a necessary evil. And if we’re using the right tools, with the right knowledge, then it shouldn’t be as bad as we are imagining.
Oven Cleaning at Home
Let’s take a look at some of the ways in which we can make this task as easy and effective as possible.
When it comes to cleaning in our homes, we all have personal preferences for particular cleaning products, routines and methods. When you come to clean your oven interiors, you may prefer to use home remedies, or you may prefer to use tried and tested oven cleaning products and brands.
Let us first look at the use of home remedies. This is a cost effective, fume free and eco-friendly method that uses natural ingredients. It does, however, need a fair amount of elbow grease and time! The two key ingredients that you will need are baking soda and white vinegar.
In addition to this, you will need access to water, rubber gloves, a clean damp cloth, a plastic or silicone spatula, and a trigger gun spray bottle. Following the deep cleaning steps below should result in an oven that is left sparkling clean.
1. Empty your oven of any oven racks, oven trays or anything else that is inside your oven and set them to one side.
2. You now need to make the baking soda paste. Mix 8 tablespoons of baking soda with approximately 3 tablespoons of water. It should resemble a spreadable paste, so adjust the ratios as needed to get this result.
3. Wearing gloves, coat the interior of the oven with the spreadable paste, making sure that you get into all of the nooks and crannies and pay special attention to any particularly greasy areas.
4. Now it’s time to let the baking soda work. Leave it to rest for at least 12 hours (you may wish to leave it overnight.)
5. In the meantime, clean your oven racks and trays. Soak them in hot water with washing up liquid for a couple of hours (or until the grease and grime starts to loosen) and then scrub them with a non-abrasive sponge. If the hot water and washing up liquid isn’t effective at loosening the grease, then you may need to look at targeted grill cleaners.
6. After the 12 hours contact time, take the damp cloth and wipe away the baking soda paste. It should come away with the cloth, however tougher deposits can be loosened with the spatula.
7. Add a little of the white vinegar to the trigger spray bottle and spray where there is still some of the baking soda paste lingering. The baking soda and vinegar will react and start to foam, which you can then wipe away.
8. Do a final wipe down, spraying the vinegar solution as much as is needed to wipe away all of the baking soda paste and get your oven clean and shiny.
9. Put back any oven racks or trays, and you should now have a sparkling clean oven!
Note: baking soda can also be used on your oven glass, working to remove grease and those burnt on brown marks.
Aside from home remedies, there are also lots of specialist products on the market that will help you to effectively clean your oven. Let’s take a look at 3 popular household oven cleaning products.
Pros: abrasive cleaning paste tackles tough dirt and grime safely and effectively with no harsh chemicals. Very cheap.
Cons: abrasive, so can cause scratching. Relatively safe to use.
It is important to note that most oven cleaning products on the market are corrosive to the skin and eyes. With this in mind, you should always read the label before use and make sure that you are wearing personal protective equipment whilst handling them. We suggest wearing gloves, eyewear and clothing that covers the skin to prevent any burning from taking place. In addition, you should make sure that the room is well ventilated whilst the oven cleaning product is in use.
So, whichever method or product you decide to use, make sure that you are aware of when you should clean your oven. Firstly, take note of your oven’s general appearance – are you noticing some crusting on the bottom? Is the oven door caked in grease or grime?
Secondly, pay attention to the odour – does a funny smell arise when you turn the oven on? And thirdly, look out for smoke – a clean oven should not emit any smoke at all. If you notice any one of these signs, then you know that it is time to clean your oven.