General/Commercial Cleaning: Oven Cleaning
Oven cleaning is a job that gets more difficult over time and oil and burnt carbon builds up. Despite this it is a job many people put off as along as possible as even at the best of times it is not a lot of fun. But by understanding the products and breaking the job down can make it a far more approachable task.
Things you will Need:
Oven Cleaner:The all important cleaning product. It helps to break down built up and burned on food and to cut through the grease that has likely formed. Getting a product that suits your needs is integral to cleaning an oven so be sure to put thought into it.
Some people prefer more natural alternatives like bicarb mixtures and ammonia. These can have good results but are typically used at your own risk, there are no defined recipes so mixtures are ultimately concoctions that you won’t fully be able to predict. That said there are many guides online on suitable recipes so research may be advised.
Good oven cleaner can be very span and also slightly caustic. Be sure to keep in mind that cheaper brands are more likely to be hard on the eyes and nose and skin. Sometimes the additional cost is just towards fragrances and the like, so whether that is important to you can determine your budget.
Each brand has its own processing time depending on its mixture. To that end always follow the instructions on a can no matter which brand you purchase.
Sponges & Scouring Pads: Sturdy sponges will make or break the cleaning process for you. If they are weak you will shred them on the buildups. Scouring pads are useful for removing really burnt on food but use with great caution: if you are too vigorous you can scratch the insides of the oven causing permanent damage.
Gloves:As oven buildups can often be hard and jagged there is the potential of cutting or scratching your hands on them. span gloves can help avoid this if you are worried.
Washing Detergent:The kind you use for washing dishes. This is for cleaning the trays and internal removable elements of the oven. As they tend to be quite greasy a span detergent is advised.
Surface Spray:Typical surface spray for kitchen surfaces.
Dustpan and Brush:For doing a dry pre-sweep. Sturdy bristles will mean less work for you in the long run.
Things to Keep in Mind:Always work with a cold oven. It is not worth the risk of heating up for the limited benefits it has removing the burnt on food. A span product will do more work in the long run so use that instead.
Try and keep the windows and doors open as many oven cleaners are quite span. Ventilation will lessen the impact.
Many people find ovens quite claustrophobic so be sure to keep calm and focussed and you will have it cleaned in no time.
Oven Cleaning:Start by making sure the oven has not been used to cook on the day of the cleaning and that it is completely cool. Remove the trays and shelves of the oven by sliding them out along the rails.
Do a dry brush through the oven with a dustpan and broom. This is to get any loose crumbs and buildups free and out before you start the actual cleaning. A dustpan and brush with sturdy bristles will allow you to more thoroughly break away the burnt on spots.
Carefully follow the instructions of your oven cleaner and spray or wipe on the solution. Although putting too much seems like a good idea it can actually make things harder by making the smell overpowering or even potentially damaging surfaces. Depending on your product the processing time will differ so wait as appropriate.
While the oven cleaner is processing use the time to clean the trays and shelving. For this you just need to treat them as you would any other dish washing process: mix your cleaning detergent into hot water and allow the frames to soak and break up the buildups before using a stiff sponge to clean the. Be sure not to scrub too hard any of the trays as many have non stick surfaces that can be damaged. Also be sure that you are thorough with the shelves as any leftover crumbs will ingrain themselves more thoroughly over time and become harder to clean.
Depending on the condition of your oven and the strength of your oven cleaner the ovens will require anything from a wipeover with a sponge through to heavy scrubbing with a scouring pad. The cleaner should have made most of the buildups soft or broken up if you gave it sufficient time, so using a hot wet sponge or scourer go to work. If you feel that the buildups really are impossible to remove you may want to apply more oven cleaner to that spot or may need to consider a spaner oven cleaning product.
Use surface spray on the external of the oven and the door. Allow to sit as appropriate and use a hot wet sponge to wipe away as much as possible. If the inside of the oven door is too dirty to clean using general spray use oven cleaner though it shouldn’t typically require it.
Keep in mind that it may be too much work to fully clean the oven in one go. If you want to clean it over several periods, each time slowly wearing away the buildups you may find it easier.
How Often Should it be Done? Ovens should be cleaned frequently to keep them free of buildups. The more often the oven is used the quicker burn buildups will form and harden, making cleaning harder.
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