Stovetops can be a headache if you don't clean regularly.

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Cooking is a messy task, but it is easily controlled with quick daily cleanups. Grease is one of the ­major culprits behind the grime that accumulates on cooktops. But we'll show you how to tackle grease and other culprits that mess up your cooktop.

Ceramic Cooktops

The ceramic cooktop is a glass cooktop with electric heating elements under the glass. While smooth tops may appear to be easy to clean, special care must be taken to avoid damaging or discoloring the ceramic surface.

The best way to clean ­a ceramic cooktop is to sprinkle a nonabrasive cleanser or baking soda over the surface and rub with a synthetic scouring pad or sponge. Rinse well with clear water, and buff with a soft cloth for a clean finish. Here are a few other handy suggestions:

  • Wait until the top cools to wipe up spills. Never use a wet sponge or cloth on a hot panel.
  • Don't set soiled pots or pans on the surface; they can mar it permanently.
  • Abrasive cleaning products will scratch the surface, discoloring it and making it difficult to keep clean.