7 Surprising Ways to Use Oven Cleaner
Some cleaning solutions can go a long way. The most obvious candidate is all-purpose cleaner, which you can use to spruce up a swath of surfaces in your home. But you might be surprised that some ultra-specific cleaners can play more than one role. Take Windex for example, which can clean anything from your kitchen floors to your backsplash. And then there’s the unsung hero that is oven cleaner. See, with the right protective gear (always wear gloves and ensure proper ventilation!), you can put a can of oven cleaner to work around your entire home.
Here are some creative ways to use oven cleaner — you know, beyond cleaning the oven.
1. Clean the outside of a dutch oven.
According to Reddit users (and confirmed by us here at Kitchn!), oven cleaner works like a charm to remove cooked-on grease and other stubborn residue from the outside of enamel Dutch ovens, without damaging the color or finish. It’s easy, too: Just spritz some cleaner on, let it sit for a while (ideally, overnight), and rinse away all evidence of grime.
2. Freshen up your glass baking dishes.
Say goodbye to yellow stains on your Pyrex. (Think about it — if oven cleaner works to get that greasy residue off your glass oven door, why wouldn’t it work on your glass baking dish?) Spray a bit on your stained dish, leave it on for 30 seconds to a minute, then wipe away with a paper towel. And, of course, wash thoroughly before you use the dish again.
3. Revive a cast iron skillet.
Whether you’ve received a hand-me-down cast iron that needs some love or simply want to re-season your existing pan, oven cleaner will do the trick. Spray yours generously with oven cleaner, then put it in a sealed plastic bag for at least eight hours. Remove the pot from the bag, scrub the oven cleaner, then wash the pan thoroughly with soapy water. Make sure to dry the cast iron thoroughly to avoid rust.
4. Clean grout lines.
Got grimy grout all around your bathroom or kitchen tile? Grab a pair of rubber gloves and spray the lines with oven cleaner. Wipe up the spray within about five seconds, then thoroughly rinse the grout with water. If you’re in a small bathroom, be safe by opening up a window and turning on the vent.
5. Remove bathtub rings.
As long as you’re in the bathroom with your oven cleaner, you may as well work on the tub. You can easily get rid of stains or rings around a porcelain bathtub (only white porcelain) by spraying oven cleaner on the affected area, allowing it to sit for a few hours, then rinsing it away.
6. Clean your grill rack.
If your grill grates are especially dirty, you may need to call for reinforcements (meaning, oven cleaner). Go outside, put the grates in a trash bag, spray them with your oven cleaner, and seal the bag. In about eight hours (or overnight), don some gloves and remove the rack from the bag, and spray it off thoroughly with your hose.
Note: This method isn’t for everyone, as some people may not want to use oven cleaner on a surface they eat off, and we recommend a good wash with soap and water after you try this method.
Related: The Easiest and Most Effective Way to Clean Your Grill Grates
7. Remove burned-on products from hot hair tools.
Got a flat iron or curling iron that’s covered in crusty hair gel or mousse? Spritz a bit of oven cleaner on the tool while it’s dry, then wipe it clean with a damp paper towel or cloth after allowing the cleaner to do its work for a few seconds.
Got any other tips to add to this list? Leave them in the comments below.