How to Get Rid of Oil Stains on Stove Burners

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Oil stains on burners also marr the bottom of your cookware.
Oil stains on burners also marr the bottom of your cookware. (Image: Jupiterimages/Comstock/Getty Images)

Your last home cooked fried chicken or fish dinner might have been a tasty meal, but it may have also left your stove burners oily, greasy and grimy. The longer you let oil stains sit, the harder they are to clean. Get rid of those oily stains to keep your home from looking like a greasy spoon diner and to keep your stovetop burners looking clean and tidy.

Things You'll Need

  • Paper towels
  • Detergent
  • Nonabrasive scouring sponge
  • Baking soda
  • Newspaper
  • White vinegar
  • Spray-on cooking oil

Remove burners from the stovetop. Wipe them down with paper towels to remove as much oil, grease and grime from the surface as possible. Rinse the burners to loosen caked on oil using the sprayer on your sink faucet. If you don’t have a sprayer, run the burners under a medium to hard stream of hot water. Hold the sprayer or water stream against heavily caked oil longer to loosen as much oil as possible.

Lower the burners into the sink, plug the stopper, and fill the sink with hot, soapy water. Let the burners sit and soak for 15 to 20 minutes to loosen more of the oil and gunk buildup.

Lift up one burner at a time from the water to clean it. Squirt detergent onto a nonabrasive scouring sponge to remove remaining traces of oil. Lightly scour the entire burner to remove oily film deposits that may be on the burner.

Remove stubborn and hardened oil stains by making a paste of baking soda and water. Use 1 tablespoon of baking soda with 1 teaspoon of water. Add more water if needed to make the paste the consistency of toothpaste. Coat the oil stains with the paste and allow the burners to sit on top of newspaper on a countertop or flat surface for at least one hour. Leave the paste on overnight if the stain is old and deeply set. Spray the paste with white vinegar. This will create a bubbling reaction to loosen the oil from the burner grate. Let the solution sit for two minutes. Scour the burner with a nonabrasive pad to remove the oil stain.

Drain any standing water in the sink and rinse each burner completely under a medium to hard stream of cool water to remove all traces of soap, baking soda and/or vinegar. Dry each burner thoroughly with paper towels. Remove all water and moisture to prevent burners from corroding or rusting.

Flip the burners over and spray the bottom of the burners with a cooking oil spray. Use a light application and then blot. This will recondition the burners for exposure to gas flames. Set the burners back on the stove and resume use.

Tips & Warnings

  • A nonabrasive powder cleanser that does not contain bleach can be used as an option to baking soda and vinegar. Do not run burners through a dishwasher unless recommended by your stove manufacturer, as the water force and moist conditions during the drying cycle can rust or discolor the burners.

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