If you live in a rural area where the electricity often goes out in the winter, you may have chosen a gas cooking stove so that you will always be able to cook for the family, even when storms are raging outside. These convenient stoves are easy to use and require very little care. They do, however, require regular cleaning to keep them operating at peak performance. Here's what you need to know about cleaning your propane range.
Surface cleaning refers to the day-to-day upkeep of your gas range. This includes wiping down the outside of the stove and cleaning spills and splatters on the range top. You can use a soft cloth or sponge with dish detergent, a paper towel and all-purpose cleaner, or a spritz of white distilled vinegar to keep the surface clean and shiny. Wipe it down with a soft dry cloth after cleaning.
Cleaning the Burners
The burners on your gas stove require some special care. They are designed with tiny holes that channel the correct amount of gas to the burner. These holes also channel the flame from the pilot light to the burner when you turn on the stove. If the holes get clogged or blocked, your burners may not light or the burners may have lopsided flames. Keeping them clean is important. Here's what you need to do.
- Turn off the gas to the stove.
- Remove the burner grates and place them in a sink filled with hot, soapy water. Let them soak while you clean the burners and then scrub them with a brush. Wipe them dry with a soft cloth and replace them on the stove after you clean under the stovetop.
- Clean the drip pans with grease-cutting detergent or ammonia. If they are severely soiled or have stuck on grease and stains, use an old toothbrush to scrub them clean. Wipe them dry with a soft cloth.
- Remove the burner caps, if your model has them. These typically lift or pop off the top of the burner.
- Remove the burners. Refer to your owner's manual for instructions. The burners on some models lift off while some screw off.
- Clean the burner with a brush and grease-cutting detergent. Use a pin or needle to clean the holes and remove any debris. Dry the burner thoroughly.
- Replace the burners and burner caps.
Cleaning Under the Stovetop
The area beneath the stovetop often collects bits of food and crumbs that have spilled during cooking. Follow these steps for cleaning under the stovetop.
- Lift the stovetop before you replace the burner grates. The stovetop is typically spring loaded with metal guides to prop it open.
- Brush away loose crumbs or large pieces of debris.
- Vacuum the area to remove any loose debris.
- Wash the area with a scrubbie or brush if you notice stains or a grease buildup.
- Wipe it down with a soft cloth and close the stovetop.
Attacking the Oven
Cleaning the oven on a propane stove isn't that much different from an electric range. Follow these basic steps.
- Remove the oven racks, and brush or scrape any loose debris from the oven.
- Spray the inside of the oven with oven cleaner, using care to cover the floor of the oven and the inside of the oven door. You can use one of many commercial products sold for a few dollars at the hardware store or use a home remedy, such as baking soda and vinegar.
- Allow the oven cleaner to set for the appropriate amount of time. Some oven cleaners require sitting overnight, while some newer versions take less time.
- Wipe down the oven with a soft, damp cloth, paying close attention to stubborn stains or grease spots. Use a scrub brush or scrubbie to remove stubborn food stains and grease.
Keeping your propane stove clean will extend its life and prevent costly repair calls. For more assistance, contact an appliance company like Goldman Appliances Inc.