How to clean a stovetop
How to clean a stovetop is much easier than it looks. A few simple tools and good kitchen soap is all you need.
You will need:
- A dirty stove
- A clean sponge
- Steel wool or a sponge with a good scrubby
- Instant Liquid Soap
- A dish towel
- Your favorite podcast, music, chatty person, and or whatever you like to listen to while cleaning
How to clean a stovetop step by step
How to clean a stovetop:
1. Make sure the stovetop and oven are turned off.
2. Remove all of the racks and burner disks. They should easily lift off. The following images are for a simple, basic gas stove.
3. Plug the kitchen sink with a drain plug and fill it with warm water. Add about a baking teaspoon squirt of Instant Liquid Soap while the water is running.
There are many different types of stoves. You may have a Sub Zero or an old fashioned commercial cast iron Franklin. Or perhaps you have an antique 1940's Chambers.
How to clean a stovetop may vary depending on the type of stove.
The newer Amana in the photos is a smaller basic propane stove. Instant Liquid Soap will clean any surface equally, since it is simple vegetable oil soap, aka old fashioned lye soap, aka Castile and not a chemical detergent that can have a chemical reaction.
See the caked on food?
Read your electric stove manual
Before removing any electric stove burner parts, please read the manual.
Older electric stove burners have a tray underneath that can either be carefully removed or carefully washed while in place. Read your stove instructions to see how it comes apart and if it's recommended that you do so for cleaning
Newer electric stoves, may have a smooth glass or ceramic top with the burners underneath. These stove tops do not need to come apart for cleaning. Simply make sure the stove is turned off and the stovetop is cool. Clean the whole surface.
Clean the burner racks
4. Carefully place the burner racks in the soapy water to soak.
5. Set the burner disks aside to be wiped off with a damp soapy sponge later. Do not submerge them in the soapy water in the sink.
The burner disks are sometimes 2 pieces. The image on the left is the flat cap that spreads out the flame.
The little disk with the hole in the center is the flame spreader and lifts off.
The flame spreaders usually lift right up.
6. While the racks are soaking, wet the sponge thoroughly and squeeze out 1/2 of the water.
7. Squirt about 1 baking teaspoon of Liquid Soap Refill onto the sponge. Squeeze the sponge to spread the soap around and activate the suds.
8. Add a little more water to the sponge, by letting it trickle over the whole sponge area. This makes sure all of the soap is getting diluted evenly.
9. Over the stovetop, gently squeeze out the soap and water out from the sponge, evenly distributing it over the stovetop. Avoid getting soap and water into the burner wells. Repeat this process until the stovetop is covered with about 1/8" of soapy water.
10. Let the soapy water soak on the stovetop for 10 minutes or more. This process will soften and loosen burnt cooked on food and debris, making for easy removal.
In the photo on the right, the stovetop is soaking in sudsy Instant Liquid Soap
11. While the stovetop is soaking, scrub the stovetop racks in the sink. Make sure you scrub both sides.
12. When all of the old hard debris is loosened and in the now dirty soapy water, drain the sink, catching all of the debris in the sink strainer. Rinse off the racks and set aside, while you clean the debris out of the sink.
13. Rinse out the sponge, and add a small amount of soap. Squeeze the sponge to activate the suds. One by one, place the stovetop racks back in the sink and wash them individually, again, like a dish. Rinse each one and place them in your dish drainer drying rack. Let them air dry.
14. When using natural soap, all of this used up soap and food debris can be be put in your compost bucket. This is the zero waste way to clean a greasy stovetop.
15. Get the underside of the racks paying close attention to where the welds meet and curves.
16. Stand the stove racks up and lean them against the dish drainer for faster air dry time.
Clean all of the pieces
17. While the racks are drying, and the stovetop is still soaking, rinse out the sponge again, and add a small amount of soap. Take each burner disk and wipe it off with the soapy sponge. Then rinse all of the soap and any debris out of the sponge and wipe all of the soap off each burner disk. Place each one in the drying rack.
18. While you are cleaning your stovetop, you may be inspired to clean your sink and counter tops also.
Dish soap and hand soap being the same soap, makes kitchen cleaning much smoother.
The actual stovetop
19. Now for the stove top, without all of the burner pieces, after it has been soaking for a while.
Take the sponge and soak up about 1/2 of the soapy water that has been soaking the stovetop. Gently scrub all of the loosened food scraps, and put them in the compost bucket. You may need a more robust scrubby, like steel wool, in the photo to the left.
20. When all of the excess debris is removed, soak up the rest of the dirty water. Rinse out the sponge as it fills up with the dirty soaking water, and remove all of the excess water and food scrap debris.
21. Rinse out the sponge, and wipe the stove top, gently removing stains and the last of the debris.
22. Rinse the sponge again, and squirt on a very small amount of soap. Wipe down the stove top one more time. Rinse out all of the debris and soap from the sponge, and wipe off all of the soap from the stove top.
23. Take care to soap under the flame spreaders without getting soap and water on the burner pipes underneath the stovetop