Best Way to Clean a Gas Oven
New cookers and ovens are all supplied with detailed instructions for cleaning them, but the older types are not so easily cleaned, and may have been neglected by previous owners. In this case the oven should be stripped down as far as possible and each part thoroughly cleaned.
Before removing any part of the oven, take careful note of its arrangement to make sure you will he able to re-assemble the parts. Detach theburners and cover them with boiling water to which should be added a good half pound of washing-soda to every gallon of water. Leave to soak or, if the stove has been very badly neglected, leave one burner in and boil the others in the soda solution. Boil the used burner when the others are clean. Paint all other parts of the stove with a proprietary cleanser, according to the directions on the tin. Most of these cleansers are caustic, and care should be taken in handling them.
When the gas burners have soaked, pour away the soda solution and cover them with hot water to which has been added some detergent or soap powder. Scrub each burner until clean with a stiff brush and wire wool. Clean any grease out of the holes with a pipe-cleaner. Dry each one well and polish with old newspaper. Finish by wiping burners with a cloth damped in a solution of equal parts paraffin and turpentine.
Wipe over and if necessary scrub with wire wool all the bars of the top of the cooker. Wipe dry and rub over with turpentine and paraffin solution. Before replacing the burners, examine the supply nozzles and if necessary clean out with a piece of wire, but take care not to enlarge the orifice. Clean the tray and replace the burners.
Wash every trace of the proprietary cleanser from the oven and dry with clean newspapers. Rub the oven racks with wire wool, and the turpentine solution. Lastly wipe clean the drip tray at the bottom of the oven. Dry and try each tap separately, to ensure that the burners are correctly connected.
Cleaning is much easier, when dealing with an enamelled or chrome oven. In a modern oven, it will be found that nearly all parts are removable and are easy to re-assemble. The finishing enamels used are durable and stain-resisting; cleansers containing coarse abrasives should not be used. Avoid using steel wool.
Commence by taking out all the removable parts of the hot plates, pan supports, hotplate top, burners, grill cover and grill frets; rub each over with a pad of newspaper to remove grease. Place parts in hot soapy water to soak for a short while, then rinse in clean hot water and dry each part thoroughly. Remove the oven shelves, grids and burners and clean them in the same way. The clip on the oven flue grill, mounted on the back plate, is also removable for cleaning. The oven walls and outside of the cooker finished in enamel should require nothing more than wiping over with a clean hot cloth and drying with a soft cloth. If spilled food has been allowed to burn on the stove, use a very fine abrasive or soap pad. If there is a very thick deposit of burned food, damp the deposit and scrape with a piece of wood, but never with a knife or metal object likely to scratch the enamel.
If the gas stove is of the type which has a heat-regulating dial, the thermostat rod which runs along the top of the oven should be cleaned but it must not be moved.
Should you suspect that the thermostat is not in order, test as follows: set the dial at a medium heat, say 7 or 8, light the oven, close oven door, wait 15 to 20 minutes, open the oven door and turn the dial to its lowest setting. If the flames decrease in size to the merest glimmer the thermostat is correctly adjusted, but if the flames do not reduce, or if they go out altogether, you can ask your Gas Company to adjust the setting (for a small charge).