Oh god, is it that time again?

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One of the least enjoyed of household cleaning tasks - and that’s saying quite a lot - luckily ovens don’t have to be cleaned very often. However when they do need it, you should make sure you do a good job, or the results could make you ill.

Ovens are usually made dirty by bubbling food, spills and burnt-on bits of stuff.

First of all - what tools will you need?

Scrubbing Brush - for scrubbing the dirt! The kind of thing you use for washing dishes will work just fine.

Paper Towels - cover the floor with these and you can avoid spreading mess from the worktops onto the floor. They’re also great for scooping up bits of debris.

Rubber Gloves - no matter what cleaning product you use, you should be wearing rubber gloves, but especially if you use a chemical product.

Brush - you can use a paintbrush or toothbrush, the main objective is to have something with bristles that canĀ  get up into all the nooks and crannies. Perfect for applying a cleaner with, too.

The removable bits of the oven (the shelves etc) can luckily be taken out and cleaned in with the usual dish washing water - soapy water is probably the best, although it never hurts to leave it to soak.

For the interior however, you’ll need something a little more heavy duty. You can choose to go for a spray which is choc-full of chemicals, and will do the job quickly and efficiently - just make sure to keep it away from pets, small children and pregnant women. If that kind of warning puts you off, you’re like most people, who choose to go with more natural, citrus-based products.

Alternatively, you can easily make your own cleaning product at home. Try mixing together white vinegar with twice as much baking soda. Add a drop of dishwashing liquid and water so a thick paste is formed, then smear the paste over the inside of the oven, paying special attention to any burnt-on bits of carbon.

You can also include a few drops of an essential oil if the smell of vinegar is too much for you.

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Remember that stains only get so bad in an oven when they’re cooked over and over again. As soon as the oven is cool enough to touch you should work on removing any stains or spills, but one or two uses won’t damage it too much.

Health and Safety

We wouldn’t want you to get hurt while cleaning you oven, now would we?

- Wear rubber gloves and maybe goggles

- Open windows, especially if using chemicals

- Don’t clean directly onto the heating elements

- Don’t use the oven for as long as you can after cleaning

Yes, oven cleaning is a huge pain, but it’s better than getting cancer from the burnt-on carbon! If you’re simply too lazy to go to these efforts, you always have the choice of calling in some professional oven cleaners.