How Does Oven Cleaner Work?

(Last Updated On: June 19, 2022)
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When you think of cleaning your oven, you probably don’t think of using an oven cleaner. You might think of using a natural oven cleaner or even making your own. But If you’re looking for a cleaner that will make short work of baked-on grease and grime, you must try an oven cleaner.

Oven cleaner is a powerful cleaning solution that is specifically designed to remove tough, caked-on messes. And while it may not be the most pleasant-smelling cleaner out there, it is very effective at getting your oven sparkling clean.

However, it’s not as difficult to use as you might think. Here’s a look at how oven cleaner works and how you can use it to clean your oven.

How does oven cleaner work?

Oven cleaner usually works by dissolving the dirt and grime on the oven surfaces. This means it has the ability to break down organic matter, such as grease and food residue, through a process of chemical decomposition. 

There are many different oven cleaners on the market, so it is difficult to say which chemicals are in each one. However, most oven cleaners contain some type of alkaline substance like sodium hydroxide.

Moreover, the oven cleaner is a product of thick, viscous liquid that is applied to the oven surface and left to sit for a period of time. The active ingredient in oven cleaner is usually sodium hydroxide, also known as lye. 

Again, most oven cleaners have a pH of around 10 or 11. When you mix it with water, sodium hydroxide creates a strong cleaning base. This solution can break down grease and grime.

When you spray oven cleaner on a dirty oven, the sodium hydroxide reacts with the dirt and breaks it down into smaller pieces. At the same time, it reacts with metals to form a soap-like substance that can be easily wiped away. 

Does oven cleaner actually work?

Yes, oven cleaners can be effective at removing built-up grease and grime from ovens. However, it is important to follow the directions on the cleaner’s label carefully to avoid damaging the oven’s surface.

Oven cleaners contain a variety of chemicals that work together to break down the tough, baked-on grime that can build up on oven walls and doors. We already mentioned that the most common active ingredient in oven cleaners is sodium hydroxide.

This is a strong alkaline compound that can dissolve grease and burned-on food. Other ingredients in oven cleaners may include surfactants to help break down the grease, solvents to dissolve greasy deposits, and fragrances to mask the strong chemical odor.

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How do I clean my oven with an oven cleaner?

Before starting to clean your oven using an oven cleaner, you should remove all food and grease from the oven surface with a sponge and soapy water.

Then you should follow the following steps-

Step 1

Turn the oven on to the “clean” setting and let it heat up for about 30 minutes.

Step 2

Spray the oven cleaner onto the inside surfaces of the oven, focusing on the areas that are the dirtiest.

Step 3

Close the oven door and let the cleaner do its work for about 20 minutes.

Step 4

Open the oven door and use a sponge or cloth to wipe away the cleaner and the dirt.

Step 5

Rinse the inside of the oven with water to remove any residual cleaner.

Step 6

Turn the oven off and let it cool completely before using it again.

What are the benefits of using oven cleaner?

There are so many benefits of using an oven cleaner. Have a look-

1. Oven cleaners are designed to remove tough, burnt-on food and grease from ovens, cooktops, and range hoods.

2. Oven cleaners can save you time and effort when cleaning your oven.

3. Oven cleaners can reach into nooks and crannies that are difficult to clean with a traditional cleaning method.

4. Oven cleaners are typically safe to use on most oven surfaces.

5. Oven cleaners often come with a self-scouring pad or brush to help remove stubborn soils.

6. Oven cleaners can be used in a cold or warm oven.

7. Oven cleaners typically have a pleasant scent.

8. Oven cleaners can be purchased at most grocery stores or home improvement stores.

9. Oven cleaners are typically easy to use.

10. Oven cleaners can help keep your oven looking new.

Can I use the oven clean regularly?

No, oven cleaners should not be used regularly. Oven cleaner is designed to be used on ovens that have a build-up of grease and grime. If used regularly, it can damage the finish on your oven and cause it to become less effective at cooking.

Other drawbacks of using an oven clean regularly are as follows-

  • Oven cleaner is harsh and can damage your oven over time.
  • Sometimes difficult to use and can be messy.
  • May be toxic and should be used with caution.
  • Can emit fumes that are harmful to your health.
  • It May cause burns if it comes into contact with your skin.
  • It can be flammable and should be used with caution.
  • Can cause respiratory problems if inhaled.
  • Oven cleaner can be harmful to the environment if not used properly.

What are the alternatives to oven cleaner and how to use them?

As oven cleaners are not for every oven cleaning, you can go for the alternatives. There are many alternative oven cleaners, including: 

-Baking soda and water

Make a paste with baking soda and water, and apply it to the oven. Let it sit for a few hours, then wipe it away.

Vinegar and water

Mix equal parts vinegar and water, and apply it to the oven. Let it sit for a few hours, then wipe it away.

-Lemon juice and water

Mix equal parts lemon juice and water, and apply it to the oven. Let it sit for a few hours, then wipe it away.

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Why is it important to keep your kitchen clean?

How to keep your oven neat and clean?

Cleaning an oven can be a daunting task, but it is important to keep your oven clean to prevent the buildup of food and grease. Here are a few tips to help you keep your oven neat and clean:

  • Wipe up any spills or drips in the oven as soon as they happen.
  • Line the bottom of the oven with foil or a silicone liner to catch drips and spills.
  • Clean the oven racks regularly with hot soapy water or in the dishwasher.
  • Avoid using harsh chemicals or abrasive cleaners in the oven.
  • Use the self-cleaning cycle sparingly, as it can damage the oven over time.
  • When cleaning the oven door, be careful not to scratch the glass.
  • Once a month, clean the oven door gasket with a damp cloth to remove any built-up grease or food.
  • Check the seals around the oven door and window regularly to make sure they are clean and free of debris.
  • Vacuum the area around the oven to remove any dust or crumbs.
  • Schedule a professional cleaning once a year to keep your oven in top condition.

How to prevent burning an oven?

There are a few things you can do to prevent your oven from burning such as –

1. Use a lower temperature setting.

2. Place a baking sheet on the lower rack to catch any drips.

3. Use a cooking spray on the inside of the oven to help prevent burning.

4. Check the food regularly to make sure it is not burning.

To remove the brunt sugar from oven bottom, you can check out our How to clean burnt sugar out of the oven? (7 ways, tips & tricks)

Frequently Asked Questions

Does a self-cleaning oven use an oven cleaner?

No, self-cleaning ovens use high temperatures to burn off food residue.

Can you cook in an oven after using the oven cleaner?

Yes, you can. But it’s not recommended to cook in an oven after using the oven cleaner. The chemicals in the cleaner can be harmful if ingested, and they can also be released into the air when the oven is turned on.

How long should the oven cleaner stay on?

The oven cleaner should be left on for at least 15 minutes to be effective.

What happens if you don’t get all the oven cleaners out?

If you don’t get all the oven cleaners out, it can cause corrosion and damage to the surfaces it touches. Besides, you may end up with a chemical residue on your oven that could be harmful if ingested.

Can you leave the oven cleaner in the oven overnight?

No, the oven cleaner should not be left in the oven overnight. The fumes can be harmful if inhaled and the chemicals can damage the oven’s surface. Also, this cleaner will cause the oven to overheat and can damage the oven.

What happens if the oven cleaner gets on food?

Oven cleaner is a very strong chemical and can cause burns if it comes into contact with skin. If oven cleaner gets on food, it will most likely cause the food to spoil and should not be eaten.

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