The stove gets a lot of wear and tear with the evidence of thick, baked on grease and grime.
Do not panic if you have left yours go. Many of us have. Our stoves are a useful investment in every home because we cook all our food in or on top of it. Sadly, many of us have left things burn and cake until it has a layer of thick black spots of grime.
Have no fear-there is hope!
For this segment I wanted to use inexpensive, more natural options that anyone may have around the house. After doing much research I found several methods that people were talking about...
- Dawn dish soap- squirt the straight dawn onto the grime and leave it set overnight. Next day wipe clean-NOT! I found this to be a mediocre method at best. I had put my whole body into scouring, and yet there was much grime remaining. Not my first method of choice.
- Rubbing Alcohol-take a rag that has been saturated with the rubbing alcohol and simply dab over the problem areas. Leave this soak overnight and the grime will just wipe off with no effort. SORRY, No go! This was the worst advice I found. Nothing came off at all. It was if I never did a thing after scrubbing for 10 minutes. It seemed to set the grime in stone.
- Baking Soda and Vinegar Paste-make a paste combining baking soda and vinegar. Smear the paste over the baked on surface of your stove. Let set for several minutes (I left it overnight to be sure). Using a non abrasive scouring pad, gently work the grime off the surface-FRUSTRATING! No, this just does not do the trick. Maybe if you use that method after one fresh spill of goo, but sorry, my stove that has withstood years of caking and baking in, it is a FAIL.
- Ammonia!!!! There was nothing on the internet that told me how to use ammonia on the cook top, so I experimented. I doused a rag in ammonia (it is a very strong vapor, so please use caution!!!), set it on the affected areas, covered the area with a bowl, and let it set overnight. The fumes from the ammonia break down the grime like nothing else. By morning, a gentle rub of my non abrasive pad took everything off!!! It was amazing to me. And easy! Ammonia is super cheap. I bought a half gallon jug at the dollar store for a dollar and it is the best stove cleaner ever.
NEVER use ammonia with other household cleaners, especially bleach! Combining it with bleach will make a chemical reaction where the fumes are deadly. Here is more information on the safety of ammonia please read this article...http://www.wisegeek.com/is-ammonia-a-safe-cleaning-agent.htm
It is safe to use on most surfaces and is effective. Never have small children near the ammonia. If used once a year to detail your stove, and by using proper care, you will not have a problem.
After a good nights rest, I placed another trash bag on my counter top for a protective barrier. Out of the trash bag came these filthy looking grates. Not for long! I used a wire brush to work off the grime which virtually flaked off in chunks. For harder spots I used a plastic scraper. This was super exciting for the girls and I. For some reason or other, effective cleaning methods make us giddy. While we took breaks from filming, the girls and I went to work on these grates. We were sort of fighting over the worst grates because the thicker grime was more fun to peel off with our tools. After getting the worst of it off, we gentle rubbed it over with a damp scouring pad and then with a rag. Wow! The results were amazing.
The oven grates were not as receptive to the wire brushes so we got out the old wire scouring pad. That worked so much easier because you can wrap the fibers around the long, thin, metal bars and power it off to a shine. The results were much the same-amazing.
Inside the stove we placed a rag and poured a cup of ammonia over it. Then we let it set over night for the fumes to penetrate the grime. It worked so well. All the grime came off the window. We could see all the way to the floor through it. Everything just wiped off pretty easy without too much elbow grease. I suggest putting a sheet of aluminum foil at the base of the oven as a preventative step. *Check your owners manual if any of these methods are okay to use in your stove because stoves may vary on the care. Any food that should drip or bubble over, will drop on the foil instead of the bottom of your stove. It is much easier to toss the foil into the trash than to go through this process all over again. My grandmother always said...
An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure!
The last step was to spray and wipe down the entire exterior of the stove to make it shine. I made a homemade spray cleaner by combining 2 cups vinegar with 2 cups of water. A 1:1 ratio. Spritz the entire top, around the controls, the buttons, and door to complete the shine. Stand back and watch how it sparkles.
To keep the stove clean, simply wipe down the stove top after each cooking session. The grime will come off with very little effort. Watch for spills and pay close attention to the grates as well. This wipe down will only take about 2 minutes a day. 2 minutes a day will save hours of detailing.
I hope you enjoyed this weeks cleaning project. Tune in for next week when I detail my messy refrigerator.