All About Appliance Repair Daily

How to Clean a Commercial Oven

Jan 21

Restaurant and bakery owners know they have to regularly clean their commercial ovens. Unfortunately, this doesn’t always happen on time. All the bacteria in the dirty oven is evident of the sticky grime that coat the interior. And for a really busy restaurant, there’s no way that the oven is getting cleaned anytime soon. Don’t forget that the oven’s interior is made of thin metal so burned food that accumulates will add an undesirable taste to food.

So, before your dirty oven starts to smoke and emit potentially toxic emissions responsible for health problems (and awful quality of your turkey roast), it’s time to get those cleaning supplies and start getting your oven back to its hygienic and pristine condition. 

Self-Cleaning Commercial Ovens

Many commercial ovens today are equipped with self-cleaning features, much to the delight of chefs and kitchen-hands alike. Many of our top brands have optional self-cleaning kits available as add-ons. These include PrimaxFagor and others.

See a short video of the Primax oven’s auto-cleaning function here -
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=259HJrYAj9Y

And here is a slightly longer video of the Fagor oven range’s auto-cleaning functionality -
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MLlopcFtKRY

Cleaning Your Commercial Oven Manually

If you decide not to get an oven with a self-cleaning feature, we have still compiled the top tips on how to clean your oven manually.

Experts advise to manually scrub down the inside of any oven every once in a while to help spills and debris  from accumulating and hardening. You can find commercial-grade oven and grill cleaning products here. Remember that a clean oven will help cook food evenly so you can save time perfecting that roast.

A good tip to help clean your oven is to set very high (above cooking) temperatures of about 471° C or 880° F for more than two hours, depending on how dirty the oven’s interior is.. This burns leftover spills, grease and crumbs inside the oven and turns them into a fine dust. All you have to then do is to wipe away the ashes once the oven cools, and you’re ready for your next pot roast.

Another method of cleaning is by using steam. Add a cup of water at the bottom of the oven and select the steam clean option. Special cleaning tablets or soaps are added to the inside of the oven, which softens the grime and debris for about 30 minutes. You then need to sponge out the softened food soils at the bottom and sides to clean it thoroughly. Steaming uses lower temperature compared to dry-heatself-cleaning.

Cleaning Your Oven Using Soap and Water

This is one of the cheapest but safest way of getting the soil from your oven cleaned up. Take out the racks and then splash hot (not boiling) water inside to soften the gunk. Follow it up with soap and start scrubbing the spots inside. Don’t forget to clean the racks too. Finish it by rinsing the oven thoroughly. Then leave the oven door open to air-dry.

This method works best for regular cleaning and preventing spill buildup. Though it can use up much of your time when done regularly, hand washing can save you from getting inhaling toxic fumes that come from turning on the self-cleaning feature of your oven. And make sure that the oven is thoroughly wiped and cleaned so no residue is left and would combine with what you’ll be cooking.

Tip: If you have trouble pulling the oven racks out, rub a considerable amount of baking or salad oil on the side rails. Remember to clean the oil after.

Cleaning Your Oven Using Baking Soda and Vinegar

There’s no limit to the wonders that baking soda can do. From polishing teeth to relieving insect bites, who ever thought that this can be used in cleaning the oven? Simply mix baking soda and water to form a paste-like texture. Then coat the interior of the oven, applying more heavily on  mounds of charred grime. After two to three hours, spray vinegar and wait for a few minutes before scrubbing the surface covered with the pasty texture. Some chefs let the paste stay overnight for the solution to better soak. Splash water in the oven and wipe it out until dry. This makes a more effective potent solution for clearing the carbon stuck in your oven.

Tip: You can also use a microfiber sponge to remove the burnt chunks stuck on the surfaces.

Cleaning Your Oven Using Lemon

This method is perfect for those who want to eliminate hard-to-remove scum when cleaning their oven. Lemon has antibacterial properties so it is added in most kitchen and bathroom cleaners. In an oven-proof bowl, add two halves of lemons and water. Place it inside the oven and heat for an hour or two. Open the door and while waiting for the oven to cool, cut a lemon into half and remove the seeds.

When the oven is ready for cleaning, scrub the lemon halves onto the interior. Wipe the surfaces without leaving any greasy spot.

Tip: You can also make a lemon juice-salt mixture that you can spray inside and outside the oven. This takes away any rust stains that have formed. And if your oven is still smelling stinky, spray the baking soda-water mixture and leave it overnight.

Cleaning Different Types of Ovens

The above recommendations will surely work for most commercial ovens. But there are different types of ovens that need special care when cleaning. Below are a few more tips: 

Convection Oven

  • Always use wet paper towels to wipe the glass window. This will help remove water stains that may form after you have cleaned the interior of the oven.

  • Use a small wire brush for hard-to-reach spots that need scrubbing.

Combi Electric Oven

  • Because different dishes can be cooked in this type of oven, leftover odor can affect the next food you place inside. Add a few drops of vanilla in a bowl filled with water. Heat it in the oven for an hour or two, and you’ll be surprised to smell the difference.

Conveyor Oven

  • The many parts inside can be a hassle to clean, especially the fingers and belt. Remove them and clean separately instead. This will ensure no spot is left out.

  • Vacuum inside for any leftover debris.

  • Clean the exterior with a stainless steel polish.

Pizza & Deck Oven

  • When your oven has stones, NEVER use any liquid to clean the surface as this may cause the stones to crack. Check the manufacturer’s manual for instructions.

  • Use an oven brush to clean debris such as hardened dough.

Impingement Oven

  • Always remove the oven’s conveyor belt and fingers when cleaning.

  • Loosen the grime on these parts by soaking them in a water with any of the solutions above for about 30 minutes to an hour.

While culinary school students are taught the rule, clean as you work, this should always be followed by businesses too. Food spills require immediate cleaning so you can save thousands of dollars from having your oven fixed by a repairman when grime and soil start affecting the oven’s performance. Make it a habit to give your oven a much needed good scrub, hard scraping, and well-deserved polishing.