Advertisement

Cutting Through the Grime: Cleaning Glass Top Stoves

Keeping your glass top stove looking like new can be tricky, so be sure to clean up spills immediately.
Keeping your glass top stove looking like new can be tricky, so be sure to clean up spills immediately.
Hemera/Thinkstock

Most people would agree that the perfect kitchen appliance works beautifully and looks great, kind of like the perfect date -- intelligence plus good looks. At first glance, glass top stoves fit the bill. The continuous ceramic glass surface is contemporary, attractive and suggests unsurpassed ease-of-cleaning, inspiring daydreams of all sorts of extra time for fun and play. Since the heating elements lie underneath the surface, gone are your days of taking the stove apart to clean it, gouging food bits from nooks and crannies, and soaking drip pans to remove cooked-on grease. For a glass stovetop, a swipe with a cloth and some cream cleanser removes most spills.

Owners of these ranges will tell you, though, that there's a trade-off for this elegance. Like a second date when that perfect guy or gal begins to reveal a high-maintenance personality, maintaining these stovetops requires a little more vigilance than traditional porcelain stoves. But vigilance will pay off big time in keeping the surface free from stains and damage.

Advertisement

Advertisement

The most important rule for cleaning your glass stovetop is to clean up spills right away. While traditional stoves can weather splatters and spills through a couple of mealtimes, reheating food spills, grease and marks from pots and pans on a glass top stove can burn them onto the surface, making them harder to clean and possibly discoloring or damaging the glass.

Letting sugary spills -- such as jam, jelly, candy or syrup -- cool on the stovetop can cause pitting or cracking. This kind of damage is not usually covered under the warranty, and you may have to have the surface professionally repaired or replaced.

Advertisement

Advertisement

Another reason glass cooktops are higher maintenance is that they require special cleaning supplies, including the following recommended products:

  • Ceramic cooktop cleanser
  • Individual-use cleaning pads
  • Single-edge razor blade scraper

According to manufacturers like GE and Samsung, regular cleansers may not clean the surface effectively, and using a scouring pad (or reusing a sponge that may have picked up dirt from elsewhere) can scratch the surface. A scratched surface is more vulnerable to stains and permanent damage. Most manufacturers will sell you special cleaning supplies when you purchase your stove and throughout its lifetime.

Routine cleaning of the stovetop very simply involves wiping it down with the cleanser and a paper towel or cleaning pad. Rinse and repeat as many times as it takes to remove all the residue. Spills that are more serious, such as burned-on food and metal marks from pots and pans, may require a little more elbow grease but involve the same tools. The razor blade scraper comes in handy when the cleanser fails to remove all traces of burned-on food.

That's the down-and-dirty introduction to cleaning your glass stovetop. Read on for some other maintenance tips to keep your stovetop gleaming.

Advertisement

Now that you know how to clean up your drips and spills, here are a few more tips from manufacturers and owners of glass top stoves.

Always start with a clean surface

Advertisement

Advertisement

Don't fire up the heat on your stove until it's pristine. You may have to run your hand across the stovetop to feel if there are any bits still clinging to the surface.

Cooking and cookware

Most manufacturers suggest not using cast iron cookware on the stovetop because it can make black marks on the glass, and the rough bottoms can scratch the surface. The consumer forums I looked over revealed that cooks who love their cast iron just make more of an effort to lift the pots and pans from place to place on the stovetop rather than sliding them. This rule-of-thumb applies to any kind of pots or pans, but especially those with rough bottoms. Even foil can mark up the glass surface.

Take care to set other items like utensils gently on the surface, or set them on the countertop instead. Be especially careful with plastic, because it can melt on the stovetop.

Allowing pots or pans to boil dry on the stovetop can cause the surface to discolor, so check on your culinary creations regularly. Set a timer to remind yourself if necessary.

Green tip

Using flat-bottomed cookware with electric glass top stoves will allow more surface contact between the heating element and the pot or pan. This makes your cooking more energy-efficient.

 A shocking reason to maintain your cooktop

A cracked or pitted cooktop is a more than just an aesthetic problem. If liquids or food spills get past the surface and into the electrical system, they can cause electrical shock.

Advertisement

Related Articles

Sources

  • General Electric. "Range -- Cookware Used on a Radiant Smooth Glass Cooktop." (Nov. 7, 2010)http://www.geappliances.com/search/fast/infobase/10000221.htm
  • General Electric. "Radiant Self-Cleaning Convection Ranges: Owner's Manual and Installation Instructions." (Nov. 7, 2010)http://products.geappliances.com/MarketingObjectRetrieval/Dispatcher?RequestType=PDF&Name=49-88040.PDF
  • Samsung. "Electric Induction Range User Manual." (Nov. 7, 2010)http://downloadcenter.samsung.com/content/UM/200907/20090716113625000/FTQ307NWGX_XAA_DG68-00228A.pdf
  • What's Cooking America. "Using Ceramic Top (Flat Top) Electric Range with Cast Iron Skillets." (Nov. 7, 2010)http://whatscookingamerica.net/Information/CeramicTopRange.htm

Advertisement


Advertisement

Advertisement

Advertisement

Advertisement

Advertisement

Advertisement