Cleaning done right
Areas that are tough to clean – whether it’s because they’re tough to reach or take too much attention to detail – are often the most in need of a scrub.
You probably use your oven several times a week, so it’s essential to keep it tidy – especially since it’s easy for food to spill over the edge and bake onto the floor and generate a lot of smoke, explains Sean Parry, founder of Neat Services. “If the spillage isn’t cleaned after cooking, repeated use of the oven will further bake on the burnt food, making the problem worse and worse,” he says.
Here’s how to clean your oven: Remove the racks and then mix two to three tablespoons of water with baking soda until you get a paste; coat the inside of your oven and let it sit for a bit (even overnight) and then wipe it down. Finish the job by spraying on some vinegar (it will foam a bit where it comes into contact with baking soda) and scrubbing the stubborn spots. And don’t forget to clean the racks, too!
For the hood and screens, Debra Johnson, Merry Maids’ home-cleaning expert, suggests placing the screens in a pan or sink of hot, soapy water. “Lift the filter up and down under the water to work the suds through and let it sit while you tackle the inside and outside of the hood,” she says. “Hot, soapy water and a non-scratch scrubby sponge will do the trick or you can use a multi-purpose cleaning spray if you prefer.”