It seems too good to be true. Just turn on your oven, press a button, magic happens, and BAM your oven is clean. I’m referring to the self-cleaning oven feature that is on most new appliances. This feature might be very convenient, but just know a few things before turning up the heat.
1. Beware of Carbon Monoxide
There is potential when using the self-cleaning feature that it will create carbon monoxide. This is a gas that can be harmful to breathe in for humans and animals. The baked-on burnt substances at the bottom of your oven can lead to the creation of the carbon monoxide. The other danger with the baked-on food at the bottom is that it can catch on fire!
We recommend to not heating up your oven when cleaning and use a wire scrubber and soap so you are not exposed to the hazardous chemicals. If you are going to use the self-cleaning feature, you can reduce the carbon monoxide by cleaning up the spills at the bottom of the oven before you turn on the cleaning mode. When you turn on the cleaning mode, make sure to open windows and turn on your exhaust fan or hood to prevent fires.
2. Your Animal’s Health
The carbon monoxide and other fumes emitted during the self-clean can harm your pets in your home. There are fumes called polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) toxicosis can be very dangerous for birds causing flight muscle damage or even death. If you insist on using the self-cleaning mode, make sure to have your pets be in another room from the kitchen that you can close the door. You can even put your pets outside in a safe shady spot to not run the risk of your pet’s health.
3. Blowing a Fuse or Control Panel
In the self-cleaning mode, the oven reaches very high temperatures. It can be hard for some ovens (especially older models) to produce the heat level needed for the cleaning mode. If this happens, it can cause the fuse to go out or even burn out the electrical control panel. You do not want to have this be a reason that you would have to buy an oven, replacing parts in your oven, or even replacing an expensive control panel.
4. Asthma or Respiratory Issues
If you or someone in your household has asthma or respiratory disease, they should not be in the home at all when running the cleaning cycle. Most ovens have a Teflon coating to help the oven stay intact in extreme temperatures. There is a Teflon fume released that can give people problems like breathing, coughing, chills, or even sweating. This can turn into a nightmare for people with asthma or respiratory issues. Don’t make them suffer. Just use a little elbow grease to clean your oven manually with soap and water.
5. Clean with Your Healthy In Mind
You just read the dangers of using the self-cleaning feature. These reasons might completely steer you away from using the cleaning cycle at all.
Cleaning your oven the old fashioned way might take longer to clean and you might get a little dirty, but it might be better for others.
Make sure to keep up with your oven maintenance. After using your oven and the oven is cooled off, remember to do quick wipe downs or cleans to avoid a big mess.
If you still think that you want to use the self-cleaning option, please be cautious. Before tuning up the heat, make sure to do a couple of things before starting the cleaning feature:
Take out the shelves and have them soak in soap and water and scrub them clean.
Make sure to scrub off burnt-on food inside your oven.
Turn your hood or exhaust fan on all the way up and make sure to open windows to allow better airflow in your kitchen.
Keep your pets and family far away from the kitchen while the cleaning is happening.
Be careful when turning off your oven and opening the door. The fumes and steam can get extremely hot!
Let us know if you have any questions about self-cleaning. Leave them in the comments section or give one of our stores a call and we can recommend a better option for you.