Keeping your oven clean helps it cook efficiently, prevents unsavory burnt food smells from seeping into your food, and prolongs its lifespan. Here’s everything you need to know about how to clean an oven.
If you’re looking for DIY options to clean your oven, look no further than your pantry and refrigerator. Chances are, you have everything you need to make a homemade, natural cleaner (that’s safe for you, your kids, and your pets). Using items like baking soda, vinegar, and lemons are effective, but they will take a bit of elbow grease to get the job done.
This is one of the easiest and fastest methods to remove heavy duty buildup of grease and grime in your oven. However, store-bought oven cleaners like ammonia or products with a high concentration of chemicals, can be caustic and cause respiratory issues. You will need to wear protective clothing, and make sure the room is well ventilated when going this route.
Many ovens come with a self-cleaning option. This is the easiest method to clean an oven because it doesn’t take much physical effort. It uses very intense heat to burn debris, grease, and dirt into ash. Self-cleaning ovens differ from model to model, so look at your owner’s manual for specific directions on how to clean your appliance.
Getting your oven racks squeaky clean is simple, but it does take some time. Here’s an easy method to get them clean without any harsh chemicals:
Oven knobs get handled often, leaving them covered with dirt and germs. They need cleaning more often than the oven. Here’s how to clean them:
Oven doors have three layers: an exterior layer, an interior layer, and an in-between layer. The outside and inside panels are easy to access and clean. Use vinegar to wipe the outside door and use the baking soda and vinegar method to clean the inside door—you don’t have to let this paste sit overnight (20–30 minutes will work).
The tricky part is cleaning the glass panel between the oven door. To clean the glass, you’ll need to remove the oven door. Look at your instruction manual for specific directions on how to do this before you start.
Just like the inside of your oven, it’s important to clean up spills and drips before they harden. Keeping the oven’s exterior clean will not only keep it in excellent working order, it will extend the lifespan of your appliance. Here are some tips to keep your oven’s exterior clean:
Spills happen, pies and casseroles bubble over, and pizza cheese will drip—don’t stress. If you can’t wipe up the mess right way, here are a couple of emergency oven cleaning tips that will save your clean-up time later:
Stay ahead of grime by preventing it in the first place. Cover pans with lids or aluminum foil when cooking to minimize splatter and place baking sheets on the bottom racks when baking to catch spills. If there is a spill, wipe it up as soon as the oven cools but before it hardens.
A heavily used oven needs cleaning every three months and a deep clean once a year, so work this task into a seasonal maintenance schedule.
Debbie is a content creator based in the metro Atlanta area. She covers a variety of topics including How-to’s, DIY, home improvement, parenting, crafting, travel, and shopping.