Each year, there are more than 37,000 fires in homes across the United Kingdom. The causes of these fires vary, but cooking appliances are a primary cause of house fires. Dirty ovens are one of the appliances that can cause a house fire. Food scraps and other debris can spark up, starting a small fire. Additionally, grease splattering on your stovetop can result in a fire. One way to avoid an oven fire is to clean your oven. It may seem like a simple solution to solve a potentially disastrous problem, but there are certain tips and tricks to keep in mind when cleaning your oven. So how often should you clean your oven?

The quality and efficiency of your oven can decrease if it's dirty. Excess debris and residue that's built up in your oven can make your food taste bad. It'll also result in your oven working harder to bake or cook your food to the proper temperature. As your oven works harder through grime and grease, its lifespan will decrease. Unforeseen problems in the future can arise, including a grease fire or oven failure.

This guide will go over how often you should clean your oven, how to clean your oven, and other useful information.

How Often Should I Clean My Oven?

You should deep clean your oven at least once a month. However, a general rule of thumb is to wipe down the door of your oven around once a week. The longer you leave residue on, the harder it'll be to get off.

The cleaning shouldn't be limited to the inside of your oven either. The entirety of your stovetop and oven interior should be scrubbed and cleaned.

Your oven does a lot of work on a daily basis. Just like with any other appliance or piece of equipment you use regularly, it requires routine maintenance. Regular cleaning is vital for your oven. If you can’t remember the last time you got it cleaned, it's probably the best time to clean your oven!

happy couple cooking in the oven after cleaning

Can't I Use the Self-Cleaning Function?

Most modern ovens come with a self-cleaning feature to help make your job easier as you keep your house clean. Unfortunately, the self-cleaning aspect of your oven can do more harm than good.

The high temperatures needed to self-clean your oven can damage different parts of the appliance. The temperature can get over 500°C in order to thoroughly self-clean the oven.

When you run your oven in self-cleaning mode, it can release major odours, smoke, and carbon monoxide. If there are large pieces of liquid or food debris still in the oven, it can cause dangerous smoke. This smoke might even set off your smoke alarms.

Additionally, this feature of your oven can also be a fire hazard in itself. Even if you've taken out all of the bigger pieces of debris, there may be oil or grease splatters that need to be burned off. The high temperatures coupled with food residue can result in a fire.

Manually clean your oven or schedule a professional oven cleaner to come in to take care of your oven. You'll avoid damage to your oven or any unforeseen problems.

How to Clean Your Oven

Cleaning your oven doesn't have to be an overwhelming task once you're equipped with the right tools and knowledge to get the job done. There are a variety of ways to clean your oven, either with a store-bought oven clean or with products right out of your pantry.

Below are some items you'll need to clean your oven:

  • Store-Bought Oven Cleaner: Most store-bought oven cleaners such as Elbow Grease can be dangerous and caustic. Use hot soapy water or look for eco-friendly versions that aren't harmful to you to breathe in.
  • Vinegar, Baking Soda, Water, and a Spray Bottle: For a DIY option, make sure you have natural ingredients such as baking soda and vinegar on hand
  • Safety Goggles: If using store-bought oven cleaner, wear protective goggles to shield your eyes
  • Rubber Cleaning Gloves: Use heavy-duty rubber gloves, especially when using store-bought cleaner
  • Paper Towels or Old Newspapers: Pad the floor underneath and around your oven to catch anything that drips out
  • Large Garbage Bag: Use a garbage bag to clean the racks of your oven
  • Damp Cloth Rags: You'll use this to wipe off the debris and grime once you've applied the oven cleaner
  • Microfiber Sponge or Scouring Pumice: These tools will help you get rid of lots of debris buildup

While you may not need all of the above items when cleaning your oven with a DIY solution, they're good cleaning tools to have on hand for a variety of different projects.

Steps for Cleaning Your Oven with an Oven Cleaner

If you want to clean your oven fast and you have a large amount of grime and grease, you may want to opt for cleaning with a store-bought cleaner. Follow the below steps to effectively clean your oven.

  • Open the oven and take everything out of your oven, including oven racks
  • Lay the paper towels or old newspaper on the floor underneath your oven and oven door
  • Put on your safety glasses and gloves
  • Spray the store-bought oven cleaner on the inside of your oven, including the sides, back, top, door, bottom, corners, and crevices
  • Note: If your oven is electric, don't spray the heating elements (you can lift them up and spray the cleaner underneath)
  • Close the oven once you've sprayed the interior
  • Let the oven cleaner sit for 20 to 30 minutes, or however long the instructions on the bottle say
  • While the oven cleaner works, take the racks outside and spray them with the store-bought cleaner
  • Put the racks in the garbage bag and tape it shut
  • Once the cleaner has been on for the proper length of time, wipe down all the surfaces of the oven with a damp rag
  • If there's an area with a stubborn spill, use a microfiber sponge or pumice stone to remove the grease and grime
  • Take the oven racks out of the garbage bag and rinse them with soapy, hot water
  • Dry the oven racks and put them back in the oven

Like we said earlier, many store-bought oven cleaners can have harmful fumes. We sell our own specially formulated eco-friendly oven cleaner. Get in touch with us if you'd like to purchase a bottle.

man with a rubber glove wiping down the oven

Steps for Cleaning Your Oven the DIY Way

If you have lots of buildup in your oven but don't want to use an oven cleaner, this is a great option. Keep in mind that it'll have to sit in your oven for longer than other cleaning methods.

  • Take everything out of your oven and place the paper towels on the floor underneath the oven
  • Mix 1/2 cup of baking soda with two to three tablespoons of water in a small bowl
  • Note: You may have to tweak the proportions in order to achieve a spreadable paste
  • Put on your rubber gloves and use your fingers to spread the paste throughout the interior of your oven
  • Note: Don't put it on the heating elements of your oven if it's electric
  • Close the oven and let the paste sit for 10 to 12 hours, or overnight
  • Put your oven racks in your bathtub or sink
  • Sprinkle your racks with baking soda and pour vinegar over the top, causing the baking soda to foam
  • Once the mixture stops foaming, plug your tub or sink and fill with hot water until the racks are fully submerged
  • Let the oven racks sit for the same length of time as your oven
  • Once the appropriate amount of time has elapsed, put your gloves back on
  • Using a damp rag, wipe down all the surfaces of the oven
  • Use your microfiber sponge or pumice stone on stubborn spots
  • If there are places where the paste won't come off, spray with vinegar and then wipe off with a damp cloth
  • Scrub the oven racks until clean
  • Dry them and put them back into the oven

No matter which way you decide to clean your oven, regularly cleaning it will ensure you avoid the buildup of grime and grease. You'll also decrease the likelihood of an unfortunate grease fire occurring in your kitchen.

When creating your household cleaning routine, be sure to slot in a time for deep cleaning your oven each month. Wipe down your oven at least once a week, so you don't have to tackle large areas of stubborn build-up.

Hire a Professional Cleaning Service to Tackle Your Oven

If your oven has a large amount of buildup, it can be intimidating trying to figure out the best way to clean your oven. Leave it to the professional oven cleaners at A Cleaning Service to deep clean the entirety of your oven. Our eco-friendly and bio-degradable products will clean your oven while being safe for you and your family.

Contact us today for a free quote.