I've tried scrubbing them with cleanser and steel wool and they just never seem to get clean.
Last night I decided to put one in a gallon size ziplock bag with pure amonia, ( I keep amonia in a spray bottle ), so I just sprayed into the bag so the grate was covered, zipped it up and let set overnight.
This morning I just used one of those heavy duty green scrubber pads, and with very little elbow grease, all the burned on stuff came right off. I now have another one soaking in the bag to clean this evening.
I've heard you can set a dish of amonia in your oven overnight to make cleaning easier, but it never worked that well for me. I guess the bag keeps the moisture in helping to dissolve the burned on grease.
Wow - thanks! I'll definitely try that. I have the gray grates, too
If/when I buy my next stove, I will go back to a no-nonsense stainless steel model with cast iron grates. I'm not looking for a status symbol, I just need a hard-working, easy-to-maintain gas stove that cleans up easily and lets me make huge pots of chili, soup, and/or plunk my 7-quart canning kettle on it without chipping the grates. Grrrrr.
I can't do anything about the chips in the enamel, but the stains drive me nuts and they are next-to-impossible to clean even with a box of SOS pads. I had all but given up on making them look decent again, so I'll try your advice this week.
ginlyn, I've got my third grate soaking in a bag - the same one I've soaked the first two, and will soak the last one in later today. (Yes, I'm too cheap to use four bags and two bottles of ammonia to do them all at once, lolol.)
Other than the powerful ammonia aroma when I open the bag, I am astonished at how well it takes off the stuff I'd spend HOURS trying to scrub off otherwise. My stove thanks you, and I thank you for a great tip!
Terry, I used the same bag for all four grates too. Unless one was in a hurry to get all of them done at once, there's no need to waste bags.
I couldn't get over the fact that most of the grime came off just rubbing your finger over it. The worst of course, needed a little scrubbing, but not much.
I think, that if it doesn't work for anyone, it might be because they didn't let it set long enough, don't you?
If you don't like ammonia, I think soaking them in a bag of some other strong cleaner will probably work too--the ammonia is extra strong so it may work a little better, but I bet you'd have good results with at least some other cleaners too.
wahhhh - that's like my old stove, that I didn't think I'd miss as much as I do ;o)
Seriously, I don't know - those are plain, uncoated cast iron grates, yes? If so, you might try a product made by Dawn called "Power Dissolver" (works great on outdoor grill grates, too.) It works good, but it just didn't have enough "ooomph" to get those blasted enamel grates clean like the ammonia did. But soaking cast iron in straight ammonia? I'd be a little afraid of creating a rust problem.
Well' I pulled the book out for the gas range and what do ya know, there under cleaning was how to clean those silly grates. If I would have read the book 2 years ago I may have found that out sooner::)) Our front burner won't ignite, it's not clogged, not the igniter must be a wire. The stove top will sparkling clean tomorrow. Took the trays out, put them in with amonia too. Took the top off washed it with soap and water and took a diaper rag and shined it right up, looks great so far. Thanks for getting me started on this much needed cleaning job. Now all I have to do is turn on the self-cleaning oven and whew la, fin'eshd.
The amonia trick I read about in a book written by The Queen of Clean.
And when I bought my gas range for the downstairs kitchen at the Lake I chose the racks that are porcelain coated because the sales person told me it is ok for them to stay in the oven during the self clean cycle. So far it has worked fine. The regular stainless steel racks turn blue if you leave them in during self clean.
The grates over the burners are cast iron ~ but they are in 3 pieces and perfectly fit in my dishwasher.
Since I've only cleaned mine, which are enamel coated, I wouldn't know how well the amonia would work on another finish. You might try a little spot first.
And yes, I just rinsed them off under running water using one of those green scrubber things in case there was a stubborn spot, but all the grime came off.
Ginlyn I cleaned mine too. Put one in the freezer bag with enough amonia to cover the grate. Put them on the back porch and let them sit overnight. I did one each night for 4 nights.
I didn't know there was so much crud on them. BTW, I used the same 1/2 gallon of amonia for all of them. I guess if you have a big bag, you could clean them all at one time.
Liz, did you really use a half gal of amonia ? I just put some into an empty windex spray bottle and sprayed into the freezer bag after putting the grate in. There probably was a quarter of an inch laying in the bag. Each time I put another grate in I sprayed some more.
I bet I didn't use a cup total. I made sure the top part of the grate was laying in the liquid.
I think the fumes did a lot of the work too.
clutterjunky, if yours are cast-iron (like an old-fashioned cast-iron skillet), I'm not sure I'd try this technique on them...that's what I had on my last range, and (confession time) I don't think I ever cleaned them...at least not with anything harsh. Ran 'em through the dishwasher occasionally if something had boiled over and made a big mess, but they never showed the burn marks or crusted-on junk like these enameled ones do.
Thanks to those who answered my questions directly. I will need to have my husband look at what the grates are made of. They definitely look different from the photos posted. It must be iron of some sort???
See what my husband says. I'll keep everyone posted and if I try something besides amonia, I'll let you know how it goes.
The book on my new range says my cast iron grate can be put right in the self clean oven. I do it every time I self clean.
They also are designed to fit in my dishwasher. They go in there . . . every big cooking job. Seems to me dish washing soap is harsher than amonia.
I just finished cleaning my first grate using the amonia method. I could not believe how easy it was to get it almost totally clean. I used a kitchen sponge with a "scrubbie" on the back. I have NEVER been able to get my grates really clean before and had largely given up. My grates won't fit in a gallon-size zip-lock bag, but fit nicely in an oven bag with a twist tie (the kind you can roast meat in). I left the grate in the bag with a little bit of amonia overnight (I don't have amonia in a spray bottle so I just poured some in).
After spraying my s.s. grill grates with "Dawn Power Dissolver", I left them in the sink to soak and thought I would catch up on DG. Wow, it is amazing that I went right to these post. I already called my dh and told him to stop at the store on his way home and get more Dawn. If mine don't come clean, I will use the amonia.
What great tips.
Will let you know if the dawn works.
You've done it to me. You convinced me to buy ammonia today. I have
a spray bottle all ready and will try this later on this evening.
On a side note, several of us in the chat room were discussing use of
ammonia, when someone mentioned their father had a terrible run-in with
bleach mixed with ammonia. Apparently it makes a toxic gas and is NOT
a good pairing.
I realize many may already know this, and some would never mix the
two, but if it reaches one person, well, you get the idea.
This method works, no doubt about it. But after witnessing other people having the same serious problems with porcelain-coated grates, I think I'm ready to throw in the towel and get a new range for two reasons:
a) we're re-doing cabinetry and countertops around the range, so it's the right time to switch to a slide-in model with a continuous grate system. (Lack of counterspace is a huge issue in my kitchen, and more models are featuring continuous grates, which will be a nice way to have full use of the cooktop surface area); and
b) my grates are disentegrating so badly I will have to buy a new range before we sell (still a few years down the road most likely) and I might as well get some good out of this investment instead of making-do until I buy a new one just in time to please a would-be-buyer.
But lemme tell ya, one of the first things I look at on every model is the grates. Anything other than cast iron, I move on - it doesn't matter how pretty it is, how many other bells and whistles it has that I want - if it doesn't have cast iron grates, it gets scratched off my short list.
I'm really surprised this issue has apparently not surfaced with Consumer Reports. I bought back into their month-by-month subscription so I could check out their recommendations for this and a new washer/dryer (when it rains, it pours.) Bottom line with Consumer Reports - no to the KitchenAid I was eyeing, as they seem to have higher-than-average repairs; I'm now leaning towards a Frigidaire with a convection oven.
I'm trying to clean my stove for resale. Everything looks great
except for the stainless grill where the oven vents. This is a slide-in
range where the oven vents from a small grate behind the burners.
The grill is attached to the porcelain stovetop.
The center of the grill is blackened. I've been rubbing on WD-40 for
days. It softens up the burned bits and the sides have cleaned up
nicely. But the center is still a blackened eyesore.
Do you think it would work to put an ammonia-soaked rag over it, then cover that with a garbage bag?
Have you tried the Dawn Power disolver? IT is very strong and worked well on my grill grates.
I have to admit the ammonia is much less expensive and probably about as effective. Do you have a pilot light? It wouldn't be safe to use if there is a flame nearby.
I've used the Dawn Power Dissolver and I like it for our outdoor gas grill grates (which are also porcelain), but I didn't find it to be very effective on the range grates. My stove is pilotless (I think that's the right word anyway - the burners have an elecronic ignition)
Terese, I think the sudsy amonia would work just as well. I haven't cleaned mine since August, and need to do it again soon.
I guess the only way to have a clean stove all the time is to never cook. Ginny
Thanks for all the great notes above...I have cast iron grates on my stove top, and after reading the thread here, did a little more research. I found buried on the Viking site a description of how they recommend cleaning the grates. I followed it today, and it worked amazingly well. Here's what I did:
1. Get yourself one can of Easy-Off oven cleaner, rubber gloves, and a bucket large enough to hold the grates. The instructions on the site call for newspaper to set the grates on, but I opted for the bucket.
2. Get outside...the fumes from the Easy-Off are mildy toxic and very irritating, so you dont want to breath them
3. Put on the gloves, then spray each grate, one at a time with the Easy-Off. When they are well coated, set them in the bucket (or on the news paper...make sure you are on cement, not black-top if you chose not to use a bucket or other container)
4. Let them site for a couple hours
5. Now for the fun part! Bring the grates inside (the fumes are gone) and rinse in a large sink or laundry tub. Once the initial rinse is done, lightly scrub each grate with a long bristle brush or the blue or white scotch -bite pad.
7. Look at your grates in amazement at how clean and new they look! If there are a few burn spots remaining, repeat the soak and rinse steps.
8. Now, you can put them back on the stove and be done, or, if you are really a clean freak, carry on to step 9
9. Place grates in oven at 200 degrees for 30 min
10. remove grates from oven one at a time, and lightly coat with mineral oil
11. Let cool, and use a clean dry cloth to remove any excess oil. You have now successfully re-seasoned your grates! Put the grates back on the stove
12. partake in an adult beverage or other indulgance of your choice and gaze proudly at your sparkling range!
I am so excited to find this tip. I have had a nightmare of a time trying to clean my stove grates since I bought my new stove. I thought the gray grates looked very nice with my kitchen decor :) but the time with a brillo pad my husband, son and I have spent with the grates to not really get them clean is too long to determine. I soaked each one and the top of the burner and the thingy around the edge overnight in the ammonia and practically everything went down the drain when I used the sprayer to rinse them! Just a little rub with a green scrubber and my stove looks new again. I wish I had found this 2 years ago when it was posted
Thank you Ginlyn for the tip on cleaning stove grates with ammonia. I'm trying to put my house on the market and the gas stove really needed cleaning. One thing I learned though - I will never buy a Sears product ever again. I own a Sears refrigerator, Sears dishwasher, & Sears stove and I found out that the grates cost $50.00 apiece to replace. Also, the round burner caps (where the flames come out off) cost about the same. One of my caps cracked and according to Lowe's and Home Depot, Sears/Kenmore brands are highly proprietary and not a whole lot of other companies carry their parts.
I have the gray porcelian grates on my stove, they had caked on, baked on, greese. I've tried scrubbing with sos pads, soaking over night in a sink of hot soapy water, my husband even tried presser washing them. Nothing worked. I came to this site and asked what is the easiest way to get them clean and there was only one person at the time that said to put them in the oven & press the cleaning button. I thought, thats too easy, it would never work. So after about a month still thinking about it and still not doing anything about it I finally decided to try it out. I could not believe how amazing they look. My stove looks brand new again. Thank you soooo much. I just had to let as many people know,if they have a busy life like I do, to stop scrubbing and just press the cleaning button.
I am sooooo trying this out this week sometime!!
I even thought about buying new ones but I think they were like $150.00
and I truly don't remember if that was just for one or not and I have two...
I've tried everything to...I "did" have little rubber things on the bottoms of them
and I did put them in the oven to "clean" them as well...and helloooooo
no rubber thingy's left!?!? Duh. And the oven didn't clean them like I thought they would either. Probobly baked the crud on more...ughhh...
I bought some old skillets that are supposed to be100 years old from ebay. I have been trying to clean those. Wonder if ammonia would work on them? They said they are tin. I bought a wire brush that hooks on to a drill was trying to use. It works ok, but it takes so long.
Imagine 100 years of grime. :)
I bought them because I was reading that many of our new metals we cook with can leach heavy metals that could be poisonous. So I was really planning to use these skillets for cooking. Also, tin nourishes the adrenal glands. Since I was diagnosed with lupus, I know my adrenals are weak and need all the help they can get.
In response to the questions about a way to eliminate streaks on your stovetop. I had the same problem and have discovered that good ole windex will do the trick everytime. But...do not get the potpurri blend. It has the opposite effect. Happy Cleaning.
Gotta'love ammonia. When my husband was in the service and we lived in base housing that is exactly how we were instructed to clean the stove racks and grates. They told us to put it all in a black garbage sack, add some ammonia and set the whole thing out in the sun for several hours. We left the stuff for about eight hours in the hot California sun and the stuff literally wiped clean with a rag. Stunk like crazy though!
I tried the ammonia method yesterday. Armed with ammonia, a spray bottle, a large plastic bag, an elastic band and a fair bit of scepticism, I took one of my really grotty stovetop grates, did as suggested and left it outside, in the the bag for 12 hours. When I took it out and started to clean it in the laundry trough, I was amazed. It really does work. I've got the other one out for the same treatment today. Brilliant. I'm so glad I discovered this thread.
Yes, thanks for reviving this thread. I want to say, I am scared of ammonia as I knew a woman that damaged her lungs using it. A couple of things I have found over the years.
Oven cleaner (used outdoors), even a cheap oven cleaner will work much better with using a garbage bag or even just covering it with a plastic wrap. As long as the cleaner stays moist, it will keep working. When it dries out, it quits. I do use oven cleaner on newly acquired old and nasty cast iron cookware slipping it into a garbage sack. It can sit for a long time like that and works great. I then scrub well and reseason.
I have a gas range and to clean the burner grates and even the burners, I remove two at a time and soak them in a stockpot of hot water with a dose of Dip It. Simmering for a short time and washing will clean them well. The reason I only do two at a time is so I can use a burner to simmer them. It will also do a good job of cleaning the stockpot too. Dip It is a commercial product designed to be run thru a coffee pot to clean it. Now, I wish I could put the whole oven in the stockpot! LOL If I recall, the cleaning instructions that came with my gas stove 20 years ago recommended Dip It. I thing that is how I discovered it. I may need to try a cast iron skillet in it and see how it does.
I have to say... after I found this thread last year... i have started using ammonia, vinegar and baking soda for most of my cleaning. I go thru A LOT of baking soda and vinegar, mostly because i add it when doing laundry.
the ammonia i keep in a spray bottle in my kitchen, diluted, and i use it for general cleaning in the kitchen. Amazing stuff.
as for the streaking on the stove... i use those microfiber clothes, and they nicely get rid of the streaks.
tsc, do you ever use the Arm and Hammer washing soda to clean?
When I make coffee I always pour it into a thermal coffee carafe as soon as it's done to keep it fresher.
Eventually the carafe does get a buildup of coffee stains, so I pour a little washing soda into it and add hot water. Put the lid on, give a few shakes and let it set for a few hours. You only have to give it a few swishes to get the residue off. I used to use baking soda for that, but found the washing soda works best for me.
tsc, this is not the Arm and Hammer laundry detergent, but you do buy it in the laundry soap isle. The box has the same look as the bk soda and detergent but it's called, All natural Super Washing Soda .Detergent Booster and Household Cleaner. It is not sudsy.
You can add it to your laundry to boost cleaning power or as a household cleaner.
Cleaned my grates in bags with ammonia a couple nights ago. Thanks so much for that tip ginlyn! Same night also poured ammonia on the sealed top getting it on the flame elements and all around. Covered with plastic wrap and let it set overnight got all the grunge off just wiping and didn't have to remove the elements just the grates! The stove was atrocious(sp?), looks like a new stove now :)
Wow, what a find this information is. I've been at my wit's end here trying to get these grates clean. I think they are the grates that are coated with something -- possibly porcelain and there are 2 continuous grates on each side of the stovetop. I tried the ammonia trick yesterday afternoon and went to check on them this morning. I was a little bit disconcerted when I found out that the liquid had leaked out. However, it still worked because the grates came out perfectly clean with only a little scrubbing. I have one grate left and need to find some way to keep the liquid in the bag. I used a white kitchen trash bag. Do you think a big black garbage bag would work and not leak? Because there are 2 grates together I can't use a Ziploc bag; they're not big enough. Hope someone has a good suggestion. Thanks.
Does anyone remember the old oven cleaner that come in a plastic jar with a brush that hung around the top of the bottle. That was the best stuff for cleaning the grates and white porcelain surfaces. They seem to have taken it off the market. I love the Dawn Power Dissolver. It works much like the old brush on stuff. I have gotten sprays on the wrong places and damaged formica surfaces even. So be careful with the stuff that works so well. (Wash hands really well - don't let anything stay under your wedding band.) Maybe it's like my son, the almost doctor says, "If the drugs work, there are side effects. If the drugs don't work, there are no side effects."
I'm almost looking forward to getting my stove dirty so I can try the ammonia on the grates. :0) Years ago my aunt told me that she cleaned her oven by putting a pan of ammonia in the bottom of her cool oven and letting the fumes soften the gunk over night. Sometimes the old ways are the good ways.
My aunt taught me the ammonia trick 20-odd years ago using a black garbage bag (sealed with tape), but with the extra kick of setting it outside in the sun for an afternoon. The crud should rinse off with the garden hose; if not, put back in the bag & reseal for another afternoon.
Has anyone tried that 3M Stovetop cleaner? I think it's great and use it on a lot more than just my stove top.
My brother in law talked my sister into putting the grills from outside barbeque pit into the dishwasher. It made a huge mess. It got greasy scum all over the inside of the dishwasher, the silverware and the dishes. DONT EVER DO THAT!!!
I told her about the ammonia in the black plastic bag.
I run my blk.stovetop grates through the dishwasher on a regular basis,before they get real bad,would never run the bbq grate through,I can only Imagine that mess,also I have used good old no fume easy off oven cleaner,Iam sure the amonia will work very well also,alot of fumes though.
I've never been in this forum before, but can tell it will be one of my favorites! All you out there, be careful with ammonia... It's nasty stuff. I work at a chemical company, trust me. And DON'T EVER mix it with another chemical.
The fumes are deadly - 13 people were killed in Houston when a tanker truck of ammonia overturned in an interstate intersection (US59 @ IH 610) years ago. - also it is heavyer than air.
Killed all the vegatation in that intersection, too.
yeah, it's really nasty stuff. we had it segregated in a separate room, away from any other chemicals in our building. Luckily, we don't use it anymore in any of our products. I personally would not ever use it for anything, but that's me. Too many horror stories.
Just stumbled on this thread (still going for almost 3 years!) and am excited to try the ammonia trick on my grates. Someone mentioned not being able to keep the ammonia in a garbage bag and that ziplocs were too small for the oven racks . . . Ziploc & Hefty both now make over-sized bags . . . I use them for storing baby clothes & extra bedding. I bet one of those would work great for cleaning all the grates and racks at once with ammonia.
I have a GE Profile Gas Range with the procelain coated grates (grey) in less than 3 years of use the grates have crazed with mini cracks which are now chipped leaving raw rusted cast iron showing through. What I've learned...they cannot go in the dishwasher, apparently that is what caused them to craze. Get this, GE says its because of high heat...Hello? They are gas burner grates???? Can't take high heat of a dishwasher but should stand up to gas flames????...GRRRRR!
With GE it's the consumer's fault I'm guessing, rationale thinking not allowed. Purchased at Sears with extended warranty...only thing not covered on range within warranty is the grids. Not acceptable to me for a $2K appliance, store manager agreed superceded on my behalf new grids are now on the way...parts cost $300+ for the three grids Sears is covering the cost. Had a GE gas range for 20 years with porcelain grids no problem...guess they don't make em' like they used to.
Thanks for the ammonia solution the new grids will forever more be cleaned this way by me can't take a chance on that high heat of the dishwasher again. :o) My question is this... does it harm the grids to sit in ammonia or should there be a container of sorts placed in the bag just to hold the chemical? Now I need to find a plastic bag large enough for grids as they are each 20" X10"
We're a retired couple that hoped this was our last range appliance purchase but now I wonder if it's going to be a huge headache...just wanted a range that would last 20 years...
There are bags that are very thick and have strong zippers. they come in very big sizes and are made by ziplock. I bought the first set of them in the camping department of walmart.
However, if you want to keep re-using them, maybe you should lay an old towel in the bottom so the grid won't make a hole in the bag in case it's got a sharp edge on it. I'm looking forward to getting my grids dirty just so I can try this method.
Oh - this is the coolest method. I did not scrub my grates for several weeks just so I could try it. And they were the dirtiest that they had ever been. I bought some huge heavy ziplok bags and put all 4 grates in there. I put a cotton towel in the bottom so they would not make a hole in the bag. Then I poured in about 1/2 cup of amonia and sealed it up. I left it to sit about 24 hours and when I removed them I held my breath. They came clean like magic. I rinsed the bag and towel really good and can't wait to do it again. AMAZING!!! I thought it would require scrubbing. I just came off like it was soap. My stove looks new now.
Wow, nobody knows the easy way. I was an appliance repairman for over thirty years and found the easiest way to clean grates was to take out the oven racks, lay the grates in the bottom of the oven and set it to self clean for two hours. After they cool simply wash them in soapy water and they look like new. I have been doing that with our grates for years. If your grates are not the heavy cast iron type you might want to try one first to see how it comes out. If you don't have a self cleaning oven (why not???) I guess the ammonia method is your next choice but ammonia makes me gag.
Also if you have a self cleaning oven and accidentally leave your racks in, during the clean cycle, you don't have to replace them because they don't slide in and out easily. Sure you have ruined the chrome finish but by simply soaking a paper towel with cooking oil and rubbing it on the side rails of your racks they will slide better than when new. DO NOT use spray oil. Then you can leave them in to clean again and just re-oil them when finished.
hello there cleaning gurus - I have a question for you. I have a 15-20 year old gas range top that came with my house. In the circular area between the actual range-top and the burner itself (the lowered depression around the burner) there is a black, flaky, sooty type residue. It basically covers the entire circles around the burners and almost seems like the metal itself is damaged or something. I have scrubbed with comet, bar keepers friend, 409, pine sol, even bleach water. Some will always come off (just wiping it will leave black marks on your cloth) but it does seem to all come off. I keep hoping I'll scrub enough that I'll find the metal underneath but it hasn't happened yet. Any suggestions?
I used this method to clean my stove-top grates and it worked fine. Use four bags, clean them and use them again for something else. I hope this addresses the issue for those who are too frugal to clean them all at once by using four different bags. I wish I had tried this before devoting time and effort using brillo pads. I just hope my renter appreciates a spotless stove and will keep it as clean as I have. I'll share this with him. Thanks for the tip.
Just FYI, to correct some misconceptions and add a few pointers
1. The ammonia shipped by liquid transport trucks is at a MUCH higher concentration than that sold as household ammonia.
2. If you leave your oven racks in during a self-cleaning cycle, they will "blue" temporarily, but are otherwise unharmed. Re-lubricate them by wiping the outer edges with a sheet of wax paper.
3. Porcelain coating of steel and cast iron is accomplished by applying a water suspension of ceramic and glass particles to the metal and heating it in an oven at 700F or higher for a sustained time, followed by slow cooling to avoid creating internal stress.
4. Cast iron stove grates and barbeque grates are dishwater safe, and self-cleaning oven safe, as are ones coated with porcelain, which is a glass-ceramic. The maximum temperature of a self-cleaning oven is approx 500F- well below the melting points of iron and glass.
5. Scrubbing porcelain, glass or enamel with scotch brite pads of ANY grade will scratch the surface, making it much more prone to cracking when repeatedly heated and cooled, food will get into the fine scratches and burn, making it much harder to clean.
6. Prolonged soaking of cast iron or bare steel in any liquid containing water will cause the outer layer to become oxidized (rusted). The rust is water soluble and will wash away, leaving the surface pitted and more prone to accelerated oxidation. Heat accelerates oxidation (rusting). The primary reason for "seasoning" cast iron is to prevent oxidation. Every manufacturer of barbeque grilles recommends that the grill/grates be preheated, residue scraped off at high temperature, the grates immediately re-tempered (lightly re-coated with oil) and cleaning/re-tempering to be done at the end of every cooking session.
7. The easiest way to minimize buildup on a oven racks, stove tops, stove grates, and drip pans is to apply paraffin or automotive paste wax to them while they are still clean. The wax will retard food from sticking to the surface, and if the wax is heated excessively, it will burn off leaving no residue (think candles).
8. While household ammonia will soften and assist in cleaning encrusted and scorched food, it is most effective on burners that have not been previously abraded by mechanical cleaning. If a burner's porcelain coating has been scratched through, water/ammonia soaking will cause the exposed metal at the bottom of the scratches to rust, expand, and worsen the cracking.
9. The simplest way to keep a stove or oven clean is - to keep it clean.
10. Most of this is covered in the owner manuals that are provided with cooking appliances. They are a more reliable guide to operation and cleaning of your specific appliance than advice from an appliance salesperson.
The grates on my stove have small rubber feet on the bottom of them. Does anyone know if the amonia will harm the rubber feet? Great tip. Thanks.
I put one grate in a plastic bag and put some ammonia in it and when I checked it the next morning most of the ammonia had leaked out. I used a large plastic storage bin that our grates barely fit in and put enough ammonia to cover one grate and covered the bin. It did require quite a bit of ammonia (2.5 gallons). The next morning I removed it and all that crud that was just impossible to get off just rinsed off with the garden hose. The little bit remaining just wiped off with virtually no effort and the grate looks brand new. It also did not affect the silicone feet on the bottom of the grate. The other grate is in the ammonia bath right now. Thank you ginlyn for the amazing tip. We had tried everything we could think of to clean the grates and nothing else even came close to gettings them clean.
Please be careful of Ammonia. My sister in law cleaned houses and used ammonia all the time and it ruined her lungs. I put my porcelain grates on my patio in a large garbage bag and sprayed each with oven cleaner that has no fumes. They all fit lying flat in the large bag. I used rubber gloves and sprayed each and then sprayed each burner top. Closed up the bag and left then for half the day and then cleaned them off at the outside faucet. Worked like a charm. Thanks for the tips on cast iron grates as I am getting a new stove with cast iron grates and wondered how to clean them. Can you put the grates on the bottom of your stove when using the self cleaning cycle and if so does it cause damage to the bottom of the oven?
to clean your grates use about a cup of fabric softener i the cheap stuff from the dollar store & hot water let soak for an hour the greasy gunk almost melts off just soak then wash no nasty fumes & EASY!!! works on lots of other burned on greasy things too im just finding out alllllll it works on lol use a fabric softener sheet & hot water in pots & pans & to clean the inside of your deep fryer are just a few
About 2 years ago I got on this forum and learned the ammonia trick...works wonderful...but will cause the enamel to crack and fall off after too many soakings! Just wondering if anyone has any other suggestions for cleaning them. Hate to keep soaking in ammonia as the problem of breaking off is getting worse with each soaking. I vaguely remember reading somewhere about baking soda and something, question is don't remember what the something was, and seems like it was stated to boil the grates and let soak till cool. Any one hear of this before?
I have done the ammonia thing twice and haven't had any adverse effects. I did it about every 6 months or so. From the things I have tried, only the ammonia thing works really well. Hope we don't have things start to crack...
I too have a GE Profile range that came with beige colored grates. After trying evey solution in the book, I researched Power coat and places that powder coat in my area. I found a small business that deals in specialty coating and he was willing to try painting my grates. Attached is a pic of the stove with the New/old grates. Now I don't have to completely clean the grates every time I cook or even warm up a small item. The have with stood a large family dinner, massive soup preps, (large pots, long cook time) without any flaking or discoloration. Evidently this process is a powder coat and is often used on race car engines. They look wonderful and don't look redone at all. The whole stove looks new again!
Feel free to contact me if you would like further information on this process. My set was prototype/experimental job so you would have to negotiate your own rate with the owner.
I bought a new stove for my mobile home a few months after I moved in since the original stove was left behind and only had 2 burners that actually worked. Can you imagine trying to cook on only 2 burners! I was constantly rotating my pots & pans. The new stove I bought from a local business near where I live is a "Frigidaire". The color is a light cream, black oven door and black enamel coated burner grates. I believe they are made of cast iron, since they're so heavy. I've cleaned them the old way of just scrubbing with cleanser and an abrasive pad which I can still feel some of the "grime" left behind. After reading some of these posts about using ammonia, I'll definitely try that method next time. One of the burner grates will fit easily inside a gallon ziplock bag. I've never noticed any of the black enamel color come off when I've scrubbed, thank goodness!!
This stove is like a luxury model for me ~~ it has all the functions to make my cooking and baking much easier. I love the built in features! :) Once I try this cleaning method, will post a "before and after" photo. Thanks for all the great ideas!
Last night while the oven cleaning cycle was going, I put the stainless-steel oven racks in a bag with ammonia and let them soak overnight. This morning I used a green scrub pad to take off the residue, then rinsed and wiped dry with paper towels. It worked great. The racks have small discolored areas where stuff was thickly burned-on, but all the gunk came off easily.
The only thing I would do differently is to do this OUTDOORS next time. Fortunately, the window over my basement utility tub can be opened, so airing out the fumes wasn't a problem.
The "fingers" of my now-clean Frigidaire Gallery cast-iron porcelain-coated grates are warped, which means my fried eggs head south (or wherever) on deposit, as the pan cannot sit even, but tilts back and forth at will.
These are the individual-style grates, one for each burner.
I bought the stove used, and they have been this way since I got it.
I am hesitant to force them in any way, for fear that the enamel will further crack or the finger end up breaking off.
I have a somewhat related question.. I have a black stovetop, black cast iron grates . However, the burner pan (non removable) always gets burned on junk (thanks Hubby and teenagers) that I can't get off. Any ideas?
I haven't seen it mentioned here , but Cascade JELL, painted on works to melt crud . I use it to clean filter vent over stove and drip pans under my electric burners . It's a blessing to be able to wipe it on the hood , underneath , to dissolve the built up grease and just wipe off .On the filter , I run a little hot water in the sink just to cover the filter , then squirt the jell on it and swish up and down . Instant clean . Saves hours of work . Used it on oven grates before I got a self cleaning oven and it worked there too.
Wow. Cleaning gas grill grates seems like a huge hassle. It sounds like even if you somehow manage to get them looking brand new again it takes considerable effort. And then how long is it before you have to go through all that hassle again? Unless you just put up with the grates looking crummy between cleanings? I've been thinking about replacing my electric range with a gas range (because it will be a little better for re-sale value down the road) but maybe it will be a mistake because I like to keep things looking as brand new as possible. My present ceramic smooth top electric range top looks as good as the day I bought it which was a good 10 years ago. Yikes, I guess I'd better think more about this because I just can't imagine fiddling around with ammonia & garbage bags all the time.
I don't have cleaning issues with smooth top . I have another electric in a winter home and hate the d- - - thing . The drip pans needed replacing after the first use . It's a high end stove with cheap pans . Couldn't they do a bit better ?I'll replace that thing as soon as I can afford it .
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You would have your hands full with my house and it would cost me a fortune . I don't clean before the cleaners get here , like my sister does .
It is a very good business for a man or woman to get into if they own the business . My B-in-L had an office cleaning business in Denver . Easy , cheap ,fast, and no personal dirt , except toilets .
For those of you who do not like amonia, take your burners outside and spray then down with WD-40 allow them to sit and soak, clean them off, this may take a few times depending on how much is built up, but it does take a lot off, gease reomoves grease. WD-40 is also great for built up scum on shower doors, spray on take a green scrub pad and wipe down with a clean cloth. Once this is done water will bead off for months. Just make sure you dont use on shower floor or you will put a new spin on slipping and a slidin.
Denim, it's an outright lie to say no one can use iron on a smooth top . Don't believe it ! I've had my one in Georgia for 13 full years and used my iron skillets , Dutch oven and other iron utensils all that time . You only have to be careful not to plop them down hard or scoot them across the top . Setting them down hard can crack them and scooting them can scratch the surface . The only damage I've ever done , and that was last year , was let jelly boil over and left two small areas of rough pits where the sugar pitted it . Each spot is smaller than one inch square . I just missed those places when cleaning up the mess . If I'd gotten them completely clean , it wouldn't have pitted .I happen to prefer the ease of the clean up and electricity over gas or propane cooking . If I ever went back to gas , I would choose a stove exactly like yours .I would compare the price to a nice used car and have no reservations about spending that much . Sooo , enjoy the stove while you're young enough to get years out of it . Cars lose value with age and that stove is an investment .Hugs , sweetie .
I like cooking on Gas/propane... I know others that also use CI on a glass top but they tell you not to so there must be a reason for it. I don't like the idea of having to watch every move I make on the stove I do a lot of canning & picking up a big canner to move it off the heat is not my kind of fun I like my castiron grates that I can slide my cast iron pots/pans across.
& with young grands learning to cook its much safer ...
I too used the ammonia fume method to clean my gray, enameled grates and am happy with the results. I purchased this appliance used,and some of the grates have chips that have rusted. Does anyone know what I should do to prevent the rust from getting any worse
I've been following this thread revival with interest. DD had porcelain grates that needed lots of work while getting her house ready for sale. I have a Viking gas kitchen outdoors and haven't had to clean the cast iron grates on the range. We have three ranges indoors, all electric, one coil burner, one glass top and one glass induction. so my comments relate to range preferences. The most recent is an induction range that we installed six months ago. I also have three portable induction burners that I've been using for several years. I'll never have a gas indoor kitchen after my experience with induction. The technology offers the control and power of gas without the inneficiency or pollution. It's instant on/off and faster than gas. I place a half sheet paper towel under cast iron (remember from the book it takes 451degrees to ignite paper). There is virtually nothing to clean since burner surfaces don't heat enough to fuse food to the glass. Just wipe spills with a sponge and polish glass as desired. The only downside I have found is canning but I'd be perfectly willing to buy a dedicated portable coil burner for canning. The energy efficiency of gas ra ges is around 40%. Standard electric is 70%. Induction is 80%. Euoropeans have been cooking with induction for years. The food programs that have chefs cooking on glass are using induction and most restaurant kitchens are adding induction. Pop up restaurants are heavily relying on portable induction because it is so safe that they don't have added fire code expenses or the ventilation costs of gas. I continue to support this technology but have not seen anyone else here who has tried it and am baffled as to why. Are people more willing to put high end gas appliances in new kitchens then make the same investment for new and better technology?
I have the portable induction but haven't used them yet . I need to get them out of the box and use for my jalapeno and marmalade instead of the glass top . All those years and no damage , then the syrup boiled over . What a mess .
I've always wanted to buy one of the portable ones. I have always hated the coil electric, so I have stuck with gas, which i do prefer [guess because the only electric i've used is coil ... though I rented a house for a month with glass top, and did not care for it.]
I would love an induction stove though. I know Bonnie - Greersfolly has one and just loves hers. We just moved into a new [resale] house, and no plans to re-do the kitchen.
Laurel , when I started looking for my new stove the first thing on the list was it was made in the USA... 36" ,I could use my cast iron on it & do my canning I have a friend that has started using induction hotplates but told me he had to buy new pots & pans I have seen them on TV but never used one
Well Whirlpool makes one of their own and brands one for Ikea. Frigidaire also makes one as does Wolf. Like other cooking modalities they each have interesting features that make them attractive. You can add two additional burners, either gas or electric on the Wolf component system. The Whirlpool allows you to bridge burners. Some of the dials seem better placed. They all have safety locks. Since it is impossible to start a fire with one I'd say they are the safest especially if children are learning to cook. I started with a $45 Aroma portable from Costco and still use that one the most. My son got a BOGO from a TV ad and they sat in the box 'til he saw me wailing away on mine. Almost every food I cook, flatbreads, tortillas, stews, browning and even fried rice in a huge Lodge cast iron wok is done on that diddly little burner. Cook, wipe and toss under the cabinet. For cookware you can pay a small fortune for induction All Clad, a bit less for some other brands, or go cheap with Ikea induction cookware. I went with a basic Ikea set (another $45) and added a very large stock pot, steamer tray and larger skillet than came with the set. I like the Ikea design and ergonomics very much. I have a lot of Le Crueset and cast iron as well. The disadvantage to a cheaper portable burner is a pan over ten inches might slide enough to melt the plastic trim. In some units the plastic trim slants away from the glass so it's not an issue. It won't ruin the unit but it will no longer be pretty. Having done that, I now make extra sure to have a piece of paper toweling under the pans. Also, as with all glass units, a liquid overflow can cause the pan to slide. Another reason to have a bit of toweling underneath. Unlike gas or electric the time it takes to get things going is so fast that you can't be gathering ingredients while preheating is happening. The response time is so fast that once on you could not touch the bottom of a cast iron pan within a few seconds. Range units have better temperature control nuances than the portables but that's barely noticeable. I can actually see the practicality of a kitchen where a stove top was stored in a drawer with this technology. As for the portables, I have taken mine outside and set it on a patio table to cook fish or entertain table side. No special extension cord required since it's 110. That's cool.
Interesting , Laurel , I'll drag mine out now for deep frying fish so not to have the spatters on my glass top .Newspaper on the countertop should solve that problem . I'll probably get addicted to the portable for other things too .
I should get forty lashes for derailing this thread so badly. Maybe we ought discuss the pros and cons of induction on another thread to see if it attracts attention of other users.
I too inherited a glass cooktop in our current home (white no less). It was not for me at all. My kitchen is large enough to have it installed on the opposite side. It's used as a warming plate for keeping foods hot when entertaining or if I'm catering and need to keep things at simmer while using other burners for cooking. Otherwise it is covered with a big cutting board and not noticeable. I originally wanted a Wolf gas range top but the range is on an open peninsula and I'd have had to install a large vent system that would have obstructed the open view of our glass breakfast area. So I settled for coils. I'd been anxious about what to do if/when the JennAir goes but now that we installed induction in the downstairs kitchen it's a no brainer for me. SO told me he was reading about a new, continuous surface induction unit the other day. Since the electrons are excited by the ferrous metal it only works where the pot is placed. The key is ferrous metal, aka one that is magnetic. That is why most stainless doesn't work. I don't know who is making this continuous unit but we are on the verge of a cooking technology revolution equal to the invention of the microwave.
I have an intentional semi-retro kitchen that includes my original Amana Radarange Touchmatic. It is the very first microwave ever made and still works like a champ. There is my exact model in the Smithsonian! It's from the mid-seventies. I have GE double ovens from the same era. But I also have a Viking outdoor kitchen, Subzero fridge and freezer and the induction range plus two convection ovens. I would restore my old appliances rather than replace them. Very sentimental.