How to Clean Cast-Iron Stove Grates

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Stove grates are those cast-iron parts of an electric or gas stove that keeps pots stable and away from the burning flames. They help regulate the amount of heat that comes in contact with your pots and pans, which is why they can get particularly sooty after some time of usage.

Soot is notoriously difficult to remove. Couple that with burnt and baked-on food residue from cooking, and your cast iron grates no doubt due for a deep cleaning. Here's how you can easily get rid of those burnt bits without having to vigorously scrub your stove grates clean!

What You'll Need

You'll need two important ingredients in creating a cleaning paste: baking soda and white vinegar! The combination of these two ingredients creates a powerful paste that eats away at soot and stains. Add dish soap to the mix, and you've got a cleaning solution that will do all the work for you. Here's what you'll need to get started:

  • Dish soap
  • Hot water
  • Baking soda
  • Vinegar
  • Hard-bristled scrub brush
  • Sponge with a Scouring pad
  • Steel wool - for tough stains

How to Clean Cast Iron Stove Grates: A Step-by-step Guide

Step 1: Clean the Grease off the Stove Grates

First, clean stove grates as you normally would with some hot soapy water. The hot water would melt the grease, while dish soap would lift away the oils from the porous surface of the cast iron grates.

Step 2: Create Your Baking Soda Paste

Create your baking soda paste using three parts baking soda, one part vinegar, and one part dish soap. This solution should soften the grime, lift stains, and dissolve any remaining grease on the stove grates.

Step 3: Apply the Paste, and Let it Sit

Apply the paste on your stovetop grates, making sure to get the paste all throughout the surface. Use a brush to get the paste into the nooks and crannies of the grates. Let the paste sit on the surface for at least 20 minutes - the longer you leave it, the better the results. Make sure the paste does not dry out.

Step 4: Scrub Out the Paste

Use a scouring pad to scrub out the paste, as well as the remaining grime that has lifted out of your cast iron grates. Keep scrubbing until you no longer feel any sharp or pointed crusts on the grates, and you can see the soot lift out from the surface.

Step 5: Rinse and Repeat, then Dry

Rinse the grates over an empty sink, and repeat the process if not all the stains have been removed. Let the grates dry over a hot oven, or use a clean cloth to pat the grates dry. Make sure the grates are completely dry before you place them back on the stove.

Keeping Your Stove Clean from Grease

While you can't avoid getting soot and ash on your cast iron grates, you can avoid spilling food on them to minimize your cleaning. This way, you won't have to worry about food bits getting stuck on the grates, and burning each time you use the stove to cook!

  • Use an adequately-sized pan when cooking. Using smaller pans causes food to overflow and spill all over your cast iron stove grates. Opt for a large pan with a deep well instead.
  • Clean stove grates daily to remove any stuck on food while they're still soft, and before they crust up and burn on your cast iron grates.
  • Deep clean stove grates every week to remove excess grease, oils, and ash. These could potentially cause a kitchen fire, so it is best to clear these away before they accumulate.
  • Avoid using corrosive cleaners as they may eat through the cast iron, and cause rust to form. Same goes for storing stove grates while wet.
  • Avoid scratching the surface of the stove grates as scratches are where rust forms to start, and dirt accumulates.

Cleaning Stove Grates

Cast-iron grates are often overlooked in cleaning, especially as most homeowners can thrive with a general cleaning of their stove grates. However, when the cleaning chores become too much to handle, make your home maintenance hassle-free with Luce Home cleaning services! Our cleaners will be able to get the stains out of your home without a hitch.

Contact us today to hear about our full list of cleaning services, and schedule your next home cleaning with us! 

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