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Cleaning gas range grates

dixiegal Jan 21, 2014 12:37 PM

I have moved into a new house (well new to us. the house is about 7 years old) that has a gas range. This is my first experience with a gas range and I am LOVING it. However, the grates have some build up of grease that I would like to clean off. Not sure how the best way because I don't know what the grates are made of. They look and feel like cast iron. And I don't know if they are coated with anything. I have put some 409 on them and scrubbed with a green scrub pad. It helped, but I would still like to get some of the sticky off. It reminds me of when I don't leave my CI pans baking long enough and the seasoning layer is sticky, instead of hard.
I have considered oven cleaner, and clean it like a regular grill, but I am afraid of damaging it. The previous owners did not leave the owners manuel, so not sure how to care for it.
I am also feeling my way through baking in a convection oven. (Lucky for me it also will bake like a regular oven) Another new path for me. AND I have a dishwasher that I am quickly getting the hang of. (Though I still find myself hand washing a lot of things.) I am also adapting to granite counter tops. Another strange thing for me. But I think I like it. (unlike the garbage disposal that I do NOT like. For it is a vicious thing. >:o/) Just trying to learn how to best care for the granite. I find myself constantly putting mats between the granite and what ever I am setting on it.

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    zackly RE: dixiegal Jan 21, 2014 12:41 PM

    I don't know if it's considered a proper method but I put my grates in a sink full of hot, soapy water using dish detergent and let them soak awhile using a nylon scrubbie if necessary

    1. s
      sparrowgrass RE: dixiegal Jan 21, 2014 01:04 PM

      Put them in a plastic bag, pour a cup of ammonia in, seal the bag and let them sit for a few hours. Outside is good, black plastic bag in the sun is better.

      2 Replies
      1. re: sparrowgrass
        fldhkybnva RE: sparrowgrass Feb 5, 2014 10:12 AM

        This works like a charm

        1. re: sparrowgrass
          GeorgieGirlOne RE: sparrowgrass Feb 7, 2014 08:29 PM

          The ammonia works like magic!! I put mine in a large garbage bag and pour in a cup of ammonia. I sit it out on the patio over night. In the morning, the ammonia has just disappeared and there is no smell. I rinse the grates in the sink and just wipe away the few spots that don't rinse away down the drain. They look like new. No scrubbing and no mess. I can't imagine using and scrubbing the stuff that will eat your skin!! There is no reason to use that!!

        2. r
          Raffles RE: dixiegal Jan 21, 2014 01:14 PM

          We do ours outside with oven cleaner and garden hose...yours I do not know.

          We also run our grates thru dishwasher.

          Convection makes a nice crispy chicken skin! Yum!

          Granite countertops are hard on glasses is what I find!

          Never did like garbage disposal, we compost.

          Enjoy your new home!

          9 Replies
          1. re: Raffles
            dixiegal RE: Raffles Jan 21, 2014 01:45 PM

            >We also run our grates thru dishwasher<

            Do they not rust? This is a Kitchenaid range. Don't know where I might find the model number. Maybe I could look up a manual for it.

            Oh. And I am puzzled about the exhaust fan over the stove. It does not go anywhere but blows out above the cabinets. I have 10ft ceilings, so there is maybe 2 ft or so of space above the cabinet. But what good is an exhaust fan if it does not exhaust outside the house? Reminds me of smoking sections in a restaurant that was in the same room as the non smoking section. How does that help anything? The smoke is still in the room.
            Anyway. Not using the exhaust fan. I have no desire for smelly, damp, greasy air to blow out on my cabinet tops and ceiling.

            1. re: dixiegal
              sr44 RE: dixiegal Jan 21, 2014 02:08 PM

              For the model number, sometimes they're on the inside side of the oven or broiler door. My Maytag has a set of informative labels on the upper left rear of the control panel. They swing up when you need to check them.

              There are a lot of manuals online, and I suspect you'd find yours there as well.

              1. re: sr44
                dixiegal RE: sr44 Jan 22, 2014 09:43 AM

                >For the model number, sometimes they're on the inside side of the oven or broiler door.<

                My stove is separate for the oven. It's strange. The stove is gas and made by Kitchenaid. The oven is electric - Jen-Air. Not sure about the built in microwave. The refridgerator, which I don't like the style of (don't like the freezer drawer on the bottom, AT ALL), is Amana, the disposal is Kenmore and the dishwasher is Kitchenaid. I guess they were not hung up on any particular brand. LOL. Except the Jen-Air oven. Previous owner said she would def get another one. She loved it.

                Thanks for all the cleaning tips. I will be waiting until the weather warms up, so I can take the grates outside. But I so love the gas range. My favorite thing in the kitchen. Like cooking over a camp fire or something. Oh and there is a wood burning stove for heating in the family room. Can't wait to set a pot of beans or stew on that baby. The 'polar vortex' hit before we could get the chimney cleaned and some wood brought in. So it may be next winter before we can put that to good use.

                1. re: dixiegal
                  chicgail RE: dixiegal Feb 7, 2014 05:45 AM

                  Nothing strange about that configuration. You want a gas range and an electric oven, because both are more precise for their purposes.

                  And all the brands you have are very good. Sounds like you've never used a gas range before. You are in for a treat. Better than camping for sure.

                  I have a nice kitchen (Viking range; GE electric oven), but I have a deep case of kitchen envy from your description

              2. re: dixiegal
                Vidute RE: dixiegal Jan 21, 2014 07:08 PM

                more than likely your "exhaust" fan is there to draw the grease into its filter instead of having the grease spread throughout your kitchen. it, also, probably has a light fixture in it so that you have better lighting while your cooking.

                1. re: dixiegal
                  autumm RE: dixiegal Jan 21, 2014 08:37 PM

                  Our "exhaust" fan vents to our attic space. We never use it. I'll deal with a messy kitchen and stinky in the house to avoid funk in the attic.

                  1. re: autumm
                    Raffles RE: autumm Jan 29, 2014 04:26 PM

                    and burn your house down,,,, have it fixed!!!!

                    1. re: Raffles
                      autumm RE: Raffles Feb 8, 2014 09:32 PM

                      Only 2-3 k to have another hole drilled through the roof. I'll hold off on the frying till I get my permanent kitchen in 10 years or so

                      1. re: autumm
                        JayL RE: autumm Feb 16, 2014 06:51 AM

                        $2-3k to drill a hole and extend the exhaust a few feet? It's seriously JUST a hole, a piece of pipe, and some flashing.

                        Has someone actually priced this for you? Seems like $2-3 hundred at best.

              3. t
                ThanksVille RE: dixiegal Jan 21, 2014 03:40 PM

                We inherited a well used restaurant range that was covered with years of cooked on grease. Before we moved it into the house we applied multiplel applications of a heavy duty degreaser (Johnson Brand I think). Coupled with nylon scrubbing pads and hours of rubbing we got the stainless steel portions back to something that shined again. The cast iron grates took three or four times as long with even more applications of the degreaser using metal scrubby pads (not fine Brillo pads but much much coarser ones). Wear HD gloves and goggles as the degreaser can dissolve away skin. In the end it was worth a weekend for an 8 burner with 2 ovens that looked well seasoned but clean.

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                  akachochin RE: dixiegal Jan 21, 2014 03:46 PM

                  Look up a local restaurant supply business. Go there and buy a can or cans of Carbon-Off. That product and considerable patience will restore CI and porcelain-coated CI to whatever state they are in after all the abrasives have been used.

                  1. s
                    shikken RE: dixiegal Jan 21, 2014 06:41 PM

                    TST(tri-sodium-phosphate).buy at a hardware store.Its granular like laundry detergent.The eco friendly phosphate free TSP works well too.You also can use this for gas burners that you can remove.Use very hot water and add the TSP.Let the grates or burners soak 12-24 hrs,rinse with water and shake off excess water.Let dry 24 hrs(for the burners) and reinstall the burners.Grates just wipe dry or maybe a quick wipe with soft cloth.

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                      acgold7 RE: dixiegal Jan 21, 2014 10:38 PM

                      Your grates are almost certainly coated with porcelain, and the best way to clean them, as noted above, are with Carbon-Off. It comes in spray and brush-on versions; the brush on is less damaging to your lungs and is more economical as it won't get everywhere. It is extremely noxious but very effective.

                      You get it, as previously noted, at restaurant supply stores. Do not get it on yourself. It will peel your skin and also any painted surface but will not hurt metal, porcelain, cloth or natural wood. You must use an all-natural bristle and wood brush. Do not use nylon or any type of plastic with it. Do not get it on the paint of your stove. You can use it as an oven cleaner.

                      But before you do this you should look up your range on the Interwebs and find a manual to confirm the material.

                      If your vent fan blows out into the kitchen it's probably going through a filter and you're fine. Run the filters through the dishwasher often.

                      2 Replies
                      1. re: acgold7
                        dixiegal RE: acgold7 Jan 22, 2014 09:29 AM

                        >If your vent fan blows out into the kitchen it's probably going through a filter and you're fine. Run the filters through the dishwasher often.<

                        There is some kind of filter and a light over the stove. When I was cleaning the tops of the cabinets, it was a bit sticky and beginning to collect a lot of dust. So the previous owner used it. I need to take the filter down and have a look at it. Ahhhh and running through the dishwasher sounds great. Another fun use for the dishwasher. I am having so much fun with that dishwasher. Especially now that I discovered that putting the rinse aid in there really improves the performance. We have a well for our water and the previous owners installed a water softener system for the water. I guess the water has high mineral content. Anyway, it seems to clean everything so much better. The dishes and my clothes. I just have to remember to use a lot less detergents. Same for shampooing my hair. I love the well water, but do have some concerns about the softening system. It is done with salt and I can't help but believe that we are drinking sodium in our water. The water even has a slight salty taste. I will have to investigate that more. Also got to figure out how to get the water tested for harmful things. It sure does taste good though.

                        1. re: acgold7
                          MSK RE: acgold7 Feb 7, 2014 08:51 AM

                          Funny this topic just came up as I received my Carbona 2 in 1 two days ago and have been deciding what to do. Wolf has some confusing verbiage on their website and it recommends the product for stovetop grates.
                          When the box arrived, I could not see anywhere on the box that it was OK for cast iron. I contacted Carbona and they replied "The 2in1 Oven Rack & Grill Cleaner cannot be used on cast iron unless the iron has been covered with enamel."
                          So........ it is NOT appropriate for regular cast iron but would be OK for porcelain/enamel coated cast iron.
                          Mine are not coated so back it goes.

                        2. law_doc89 RE: dixiegal Jan 29, 2014 09:29 AM

                          If they are bare CI, just put in the oven on clean cycle.

                          1. mudcat RE: dixiegal Jan 29, 2014 03:20 PM

                            When my son washes our vehicles with his pressure washer he also does the stove grills and our charcoal grill. Works great.

                            1. JayL RE: dixiegal Jan 29, 2014 05:12 PM

                              1) Why don't you know if the cast iron grates are coated with anything? They are either bare iron or not. This is really a simple thing to figure out.

                              2) Convection ovens aren't that wacky. A little common sense goes a long way. You'll figure it out.

                              3) The granite is pretty resilient. Don't worry about setting stuff on it.

                              4) The exhaust hood vent...figure out if you can plumb it to an outside wall or through the attic and out a vent in the roof.

                              5) Can't help with your opinion of the fridge. We love having the freezer on the bottom. We "may" access the freezer once a day...sometimes every couple of days. Whereas we go in the fridge many times a day. It's nice having the most used items higher up. We don't like side-by-sides because they feel too cramped...to us.

                              1. t
                                TrueBlue RE: dixiegal Feb 7, 2014 10:18 AM

                                Re the water softener: we just switched from using salt to potassium which is healthier and better for the environment & only marginally more expensive to use.
                                Re: granite care: do not allow any acidic spills to stand long as this will etch the surface. This includes OJ, tomato juice or sauce, lemon juice. Also, beware of placing any hot plate directly on granite, it may crack the plate!
                                Re: garbage disposal: if you use this, ensure all food is completely ground and flushed away or it will backwash into the dishwasher.

                                1. k
                                  kseiverd RE: dixiegal Feb 8, 2014 05:21 AM

                                  You can pretty much find manuals for any applicance (small or large) on-line. Somewhere (hopefully on side of oven door or other convenient place) you should find a model/serial number. Or search by make/model name... a EG-X15 (I made that up!?!).

                                  When stove top need a REAL cleaning, and not just a good wipe down, I put EVERYTHING in dishwasher. The 4 grates are heavy... like some kind of enamel coated CI?? They're a little beaten up & chipped in a few small places, but dishwasher doesn't seem to be damaging them at all. The small chipped places never rust... guess cuz they never stay WET.

                                  1. t
                                    therealdoctorlew RE: dixiegal Mar 9, 2014 12:31 PM

                                    We've always had good luck and good cleaning by putting the gas cooktop grates in the oven when doing a self cleaning cycle. The residual ashes rinse off in the sink.

                                    1. b
                                      beachmemaw RE: dixiegal Jun 19, 2014 01:25 PM

                                      I am looking for the same thing!

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