Are you a talented cook? If so, you likely know that a chef is only as good as the tools they equip themselves with. There are a lot of fancy gadgets out there to assist in the cooking process. Food processors make preparing large amounts of garlic, herbs, and other ingredients a breeze. Automatic pot stirrers allow you to multitask rather than being glued to the stovetop. Special slicers allow you to cut vegetables in seconds. These fun gadgets and many more make cooking a breeze.
But the most important gadget you need for cooking is your oven. A quality oven is essential for a chef, and that is why it is important to care for this appliance. Many people do not realize how much maintenance ovens require. This results in costly repairs later down the road. To avoid regular repairs and appliance failure, check out our top six oven maintenance tips!
1. Deep Clean Twice Annually
Wiping down your stovetop after cooking a messy meal is not enough to keep your oven clean. An important part of oven maintenance is cleaning your entire appliance, including the inside. Unplug your oven, then pull out your oven racks for a soak and scrub. While your oven racks are out, you can wipe down the top, sides, and bottom of your oven with a gentle cleaner made of vinegar and baking soda. (You can also buy an oven cleaner, but we advise steering away from ones that use a lot of harsh chemicals.) Once everything is dry, you can reassemble your oven and plug it back in.
2. Leave Your Knobs Alone
Some homeowners make the mistake of removing their oven knobs and cleaning them with chemicals. This is a bad idea for two reasons. First, chemical cleaners will cause damage to the wiring behind the knobs. Second, you may electrocute yourself. Do yourself a favor and wipe down your knobs without removing them. Warm, soapy water or a gentle vinegar solution are both acceptable options for a cleaner.
3. Keep an Eye Out For Damaged Burners
Over time, coils and heating elements sustain damage as they age. You can keep an eye out for signs of deterioration, such as a single deep red spot when cooking, a weaker glow, or ineffectiveness at heating food. If you notice something is wrong with your burners, make sure to contact a professional for a replacement right away.
4. Don’t Overuse Your Oven’s Self-Cleaning Function
It is nice to have the oven’s self-cleaning function for when you have a major spill that is too overwhelming for you to handle on your own. However, you should not overuse this function. The self-cleaning function subjects your oven to extremely high temperatures, up to 600 degrees. Repeated subjection to this much heat may cause damage to your oven over time.
5. Inspect Your Gasket
All ovens have a rubber strip around the door to keep heat sealed in. This is called a gasket. If your gasket becomes damaged or worn, then your oven won’t be able to retain heat properly. This will result in poorly-cooked meals and a rise in utility bills. If you notice any holes, tears, or other forms of damage, then you should replace your gasket before using your oven again. If it isn’t damaged, make sure to wipe it down with a warm, soapy cloth. Keeping it clean will help maintain its safety.
6. Be a Careful Cook
You won’t have to use your self-cleaning function if you avoid any big spills. You can easily do this by cooking responsibly. If you have a dish that might bubble over such as a lasagna or casserole, place it on a cookie sheet before popping it into cook. This ensures you will not return to find a bubbling mess at the bottom of your stove.
We Can Help With Oven Maintenance and Repair!
We hope our oven maintenance tips have helped you learn how to care for your appliance. Oven maintenance is essential if you want to extend your appliance’s lifespan and avoid excess repair needs. However, no amount of oven maintenance will completely prevent the need for repairs. Every appliance needs fixing at least once during its service. If you have a malfunctioning oven, contact the team at Appliance Repair Weston today for assistance!