Subject: THE OVEN
Products: Baking Soda, Soap, Vinegar
Method: Mix paste. Apply. Let sit for 8 hours. Scrub. Rinse. Done.
I have never cleaned an oven in my life and I had my work cut out for me when I started cleaning this beast. Just look:
See how black the oven light is!
There's wording on there but you can't read it.
Applying the paste was a little tricky. It was like spreading paint, when it's 100 degrees and it's dripping everywhere. I started with the top and I'm glad I did because a majority of it dripped to the bottom anyway. I used my hands to spread the mixture, which is probably a no-no but I didn't have a brush as suggested. I'll definitely be investing in one for next time.
I applied the paste around 11:30am and came back at 9:00pm to do a quick clean and be done. There was nothing quick about it. The oven door became a major obstacle in being able to scrub the oven properly. Finally, I decided to say the heck with it and just rinse out all the paste.
With each wipe of the oven, I only created more bubbles and soapiness. I soon realized that it was going to take me all night to rinse it out. I didn't have that kind of time. So I did the only thing I could think of. I grabbed a bucket, filled it with water and literally threw the water into the oven. Terrible, I know. But I had no idea how I was going to get the paste out without wasting a ton of water and using fifty washcloths in the process.
My little "trick" worked but unfortunately, yes, it did get water all over the floor. So I grabbed some towels to soak it up. I pulled the oven away from the wall to ensure I got all of the water off the floor. My oven does not sit flush with the counter so this is a simple task. But it's what I found when I pulled the oven away that made this story even better.
Sitting behind my oven was a packaged black mass and the label read "French Bread". I'm sure, at one time, it resembled that but "bread" had long since expired. I've lived in this house for eight months now and I've never bought french bread. I repeat, this is not my bread! Not only that, the house was vacant for quite some time before I moved in. Who knows how long that bread has been there? Eww.
The following day, my parents stopped by on my lunch break and I was telling them my tale. My dad walked over to the oven and opened the door. He then proceeded to pull the oven door off with ease. We started cracking up laughing. I hadn't even thought to see if the door came off. The biggest obstacle in cleaning my oven didn't have to be an obstacle at all! I felt so silly.
Since I hadn't been able to clean the oven the best, I decided to wash it out a little better later that evening. This time I took the door off and holy cow, it was so much easier! The finished product still needs a lot of work but this will have to do until I have the chance to clean it better.
Look, the light's not black anymore!
Now you can actually read what the door says. Very useful information!
Subject: OVEN RACKS
Products: Soap, Dryer Sheets
Method: Put oven racks in tub full of water with soap and dryer sheets. Let sit 8 hours. Scrub. Rinse. Done.
After the oven debacle, I still had to scrub my oven racks, which I had put in the shower with some dryer sheets and soap. Odd combination, I know, but it totally works.
I was too exhausted at this point to do any more decent scrubbing but I tried my best and wow, I used the dryer sheets and they took the gunk right off! Had it not been 10:30 at night, I would have scrubbed harder and I'm sure they'd be sparkling.
Didn't take before and afters of the racks but here you go.
After the success of cleaning the sink and oven burners, cleaning the oven itself was a bit of a let down. There is still a lot of work to be done on it but I know it looks way better. The process was tiring and trying but I definitely learned a lot from my day of deep cleaning. Next time, I'll be a pro. ;o)