Introduction:If you are not lucky enough to have a self-cleaning oven, then this list will help you out greatly to get your oven sparkling clean.
Here is the latest on cleaning your oven with ammonia:
Heat your oven! Turn on the heat until it reaches 200 degrees, then turn it off.
Let it cool until it is warm enough so that you can touch it with your hands and not get burned! There must be a reason for this but all I can figure out is that heat (when the porcelain inside is warm) produces faster and better cleaning by far.
Now get a bath towel (I use an old one but it makes no difference) and wet it with warm water. Wring it out well. (Don't ask me what this does, but I cleaned many ovens in my day and found it works far better than a dry towel. I think it prevents the ammonia from soaking into the towel so quickly.)
Lay the damp towel on the bottom wire rack in your oven. Wet as many wash rags as you will need to plug up all vent holes in your oven. Dampness in the rags keeps the fumes in the oven and helps keep them out of the kitchen. But be sure to open the kitchen windows for your ventilation.
Now...pour ammonia over this wet towel in your oven. I used anywhere from one to two cups. The amount depends on how dirty the oven is, or how deep the carbon (the black and brown stuff on your oven walls and racks) appears.
Close the oven door and forget it for a few hours. Because the oven is still warm, I found that the vapors from the ammonia worked faster! If you smell ammonia fumes getting strong...perhaps you missed an oven vent somewhere! (some ovens have over 3 vents)
Soon all odors will leave. When odor evaporates, then start operation number three! But...let me tell you the easiest way I have found.
Before you do anything...remove that towel and one oven rack. Put the rack in your kitchen sink and lay the towel on top of it. Turn your water faucet over the towel until the water soaks it well. Then slightly wring the towel out. Wash as usual. It will be as clean as a whistle.
Now, get out some steel wool. I found it better not to use a soap-filled pad. A plain steel wool pad was better. I rinsed the soap out of the soap-filled pads under hot water to remove most of the soap.
If you have any great build-up of carbon on the rack, take the pad and gently rub. It comes off like magic! Repeat the process for all the racks.
For those who have very heavily coated racks (carbon again) I did find a better way to clean them. Fill up your wash tub or bath tub some time when it's not in use if you don't have a sink big enough to cover you racks completely with very hot water.
Add about a cup or so of detergent. Plunge the racks under the water and leave overnight. In the morning you will find the "goop" has worked itself off! Most of it is floating on top of the water. The rest can be wiped off with a vegetable brush.
The glass door on my oven came clean as a whistle! No effort at all. I just used a sponge dipped in a little water to which some vinegar had been added. Complete magic! Then I cleaned the inside of the oven with this same vinegar water.
Another way to clean the glass door of your oven is by dipping a washcloth in baking soda. Use this as one would ordinarily use a scouring powder. Wet the cloth and wring it out thoroughly, then dip in the soda. Scrub in rotary motion over the carbon spots. Works like a magic wand!
Get up out of that computer chair! Clean that oven today. Remember to open windows or doors for ventilation. And remember to keep it clean next time, use foil when you bake things!
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