The Great Appliance Clean-up: How to Clean Your Oven and Stove

For the past couple of weeks we have talked about How to Clean Your Dishwasher and How to Clean Your Washer and Dryer. This week we are diving into the oven and stove - because no matter how clean you are, inevitably you will end up with a drip between the glass.

How to Clean Your Oven and Stove: Overview

Whether you have a stand alone range or a cooktop and wall ovens, there is no other appliance in the home that gets as dirty as the oven and stove. Unless you eat fast food for every meal, or live off of cereal, you've no doubt dealt with dirty burners and drips between your oven glass. Luckily, the internet is full of tips and tricks to get your oven and stove looking great again. 

How long does it take to clean your oven and stove: Depending on how dirty your oven and stove are, it can between one to two hours. The most basic clean-up requires a minimum of 1 hour.

How often should you clean your oven and stove: Basic cleaning should be done on the stove after every use. Basic oven cleaning should be done monthly or bi-monthly depending on the amount of use.

How to Clean Your Oven and Stove: The Stove

How to clean the stove: Gas Stoves

Although I am no longer to own a gas stove in my small town (which doesn't have gas lines), the knowledge imparted to me by my mom is still stuck in my memory.

  • Fill your sink with warm, soapy water. I recommend using Palmolive.
  • Remove the grates and reflectors from the stove and place them in the soapy water. Let them soak for 30 minutes.
  • While the grates and reflectors are soaking, remove any caked on debris from the stove using a non-abrasive sponge (the blue ones) and warm/soapy water. For stubborn, stuck-on food/debris, grab a plastic utensil and scrape it off. Note: If you use silverware, it will scratch the surface of the stove. If the first two options don't do the trick, grab the trusty baking soda. Mix 1/2 cup of baking soda and 1/4 cup of water to create a paste. Apply the paste to the stove. Allow it to dry and then scrub area with non-abrasive sponge. After scrubbing, remove debris with a damp cloth.
  • After the grates and reflectors have soaked, clean them with a non-abrasive sponge. If necessary, scrub the reflectors with the baking soda paste, rinsing with warm water after cleaning.
  • Clean burner holes with a pin or pipe cleaner to remove any debris/food.
  • Wipe entire stove with a dampened rag followed by a dry rag (to polish it off and remove any streaks).

How to clean the stove: Electric Stoves (Ceramic)

The ceramic stove. For those of us stuck using electric we were so happy to have them replace the coil stoves - until we had to clean them... or the first time you dropped something on it and it cracked (been there, done that).

When it comes to cleaning a ceramic stove, would you be surprised that you will use, wait for it, baking soda and water. Is there anything it doesn't clean?

  • Combine 1/2 cup baking soda with 1/4 cup water (use more if needing to cover a large area).
  • Place the paste on the stove and allow it sit for at least 15 minutes. 
  • Scrub the stove with a non-abrasive sponge (the blue ones).
  • If you have burned on pan residue, several websites recommend pouring olive oil on the residue and scrubbing with a stainless steel spoon. I can't personally recommend this as I've never used or tried this method. 
  • Wipe entire stove with a dampened rag followed by a dry rag (to polish it off and remove any streaks).

How to Clean Your Oven and Stove: The Oven

Oh the oven... one meal that bubbles just the slightest, or one pizza that drips cheese and you're stuck with this: 

Luckily, when it comes to cleaning the oven, you don't have to use harsh chemicals. I know I'm starting to sound like a broken record because, again, baking soda is the key to a clean oven.

  • Remove racks from the oven.
  • Loosen stuck-on debris with a spatula or knife.
  • Remove debris with a vacuum or damp sponge.
  • Sprinkle enough baking soda on the bottom of the oven and door to cover it well. 
  • Place vinegar in a spray bottle and spray all of the baking soda (it will bubble up and amaze your kids).
  • Let sit for 15 minutes then grab a stiff brush or mesh sponge and begin scrubbing. If you need to clean the sides/top of the oven, create a baking soda paste (1/2 cup baking soda mixed with 1/4 cup of water) and scrub with stiff brush or mesh sponge.
  • If the above doesn't work, you can repeat the steps above but allow the mixture to sit overnight. 
  • Wipe entire oven with a dampened rag followed by a dry rag (to polish it off and remove any streaks).

How to clean your oven: The Oven Door

I have a confession: until a few months ago, I didn't even know you could clean inside your oven door. I thought it was some necessary evil you had to deal with. Of course, I love Hometalk and follow them on Facebook and was surprised when I saw this:

Image courtesy of  via  Hometalk

Image courtesy of via Hometalk

I was so excited. And then I read it. I felt like such a dummy for not realizing how simple this was to do. 

  • Unscrew the screws at the top of the oven door. Be sure you have someone hold the door so the glass does not fall out (apparently this happened to a few Hometalkers). 
  • Vacuum/wipe out any debris/crumbs.
  • Create a baking soda paste (1/2 cup of baking soda, 1/4 cup of water) and scrub the oven glass. If you have really stuck-on gunk, allow the paste to sit for at least 15 minutes.
  • Wipe door/glass with a dampened rag followed by a dry rag to remove excess baking soda mixture.
  • Clean with glass window cleaner.
  • Replace the screws and clean the outside glass with window cleaner.

How to Clean Your Oven and Stove: Conclusion

As with most appliances, cleaning your oven and stove consists of nothing more than baking soda, a sponge and your time. Using the tips above, you will have a clean oven and stove in no time.