Self-Cleaning Your Oven: Yes or No?

Self-Cleaning Ovens

Many customers ask us if we recommend using the self-cleaning feature on an oven. Our answer is, no.

There are a couple of reasons why. One of which is service, chances of blowing a fuse or control panel are very high and is one of the most common service calls for ovens. It’s hard for ovens to handle the extreme levels of heat produced during the self-cleaning cycle, often with temperatures that go over 1000°. Manufacturers do know this, and they understand that self-cleaning cycles are a problem. However, customers demand self-cleaning options. So being that it is such a highly desired feature it’s very difficult to sell an oven without one. It is pushing an oven to do something that is very extreme and difficult to engineer.

Potential Hazards of Self-Cleaning

Carbon monoxide, a hard-to-detect gas that is extremely toxic to humans and animals. It’s the baked-on foods found on the bottom of the oven that can start the creation of carbon monoxide. For those who insist on using your self-cleaning feature, know that there is no way to ensure zero-percent carbon monoxide emissions.

PTFE fumes created during the oven’s cleaning cycle can be especially hazardous to the health of any pets you have in your home, especially dangerous to birds. Polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) is a synthetic polymer that is useful for its thermal stability and lubricant (antistick) properties. It is used in various products, including nonstick cookware, ironing board covers, and heat lamp bulbs. PTFE is most commonly marketed under the trade name Teflon. Pet birds are susceptible to developing PTFE toxicosis.

What Should You do?

At this point you must be asking, then how are we to clean our oven? The answer? Well, the easy one is: Just don’t use your self-cleaning cycle. I myself have never used it. I remember as a child, my Mother using it, I vividly remember getting headaches and hating the smell. It took over our house all day, it was horrible! When I had to clean my own oven for the first time, google was not a thing, I just knew I there was not one thing in the world to make me endure those fumes ever again.

I thought to myself if the water and lemon work for a microwave, I wonder if it will for my oven? It did, worked wonderfully and it filled my house with a wonderful sent of lemons instead of harsh chemicals that can kill small animals. I easily was able to wipe my oven after letting it steam for about 45 min at 250 degrees.

I Got Baking Soda

If you have a real baked on mess baking soda can help. In We all know this household staple does a great job removing stains from grout, cleaning grit from the slow cooker and even yes it can even tackle oven stains. To us this method, make a thin paste of 3/4 cup baking soda and 1/4 cup warm water. Remove oven racks, then coat the inside with the paste and leave it on overnight. In the morning, scrape off the paste, wipe out the oven with a damp towel and voila—an immaculate oven. If this method needs an extra boost for even extra baked on mess, spritz some vinegar on the paste before wiping it off. When baking soda (a base) and vinegar (an acid) are combined, the mixture fizzes up and works wonders on tough stains.

Save yourself from the damaging effects of that self-cleaning feature and clean your oven the modern much more efficient way. Your family will thank you. If you absolutely must have a self-cleaning function that you can use, ask one of our appliance specialists which brands or oven models are the safest option.

cleaning oven

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