How to Clean a Glass Stovetop
There’s just something about glass stovetops. They’re sleek and modern. They manage to heat up pots and pans without the need for bulky grates or burners. However, anyone who has ever owned a glass stovetop knows that they have one downfall – cleaning. It seems like anything that gets on the stovetop instantly becomes fused at a molecular level and resists your cleaning efforts.
There’s good news. You don’t have to live with a dirty, stained stovetop. There are some simple, effective ways to remove everything from hard water spots to burned on spaghetti sauce, and we’ll walk you through what you need to know in this guide.
Why Should I Clean My Stovetop?
The simplest answer to the question of why you need to clean it is that all that grime is an eyesore. It detracts from the beauty of the stovetop and even the entire kitchen. However, there are other reasons, including:
- Severe buildup on or near the eye can cause foul odors or even smoke while you’re cooking.
- In some cases, the buildup can compromise stovetop performance.
- If not cleaned properly, it may cause scratches to the glass.
When Should I Clean My Glass Stovetop?
Optimally you should try and clean your stovetop after every use, as well as with a weekly maintenance cleanly. You may also periodicially want to deep clean your stovetop.
Glass Stovetop Cleaning Tips
Before we dive into the how-to portion of this guide, it’s important to cover some basic cleaning and care tips that will help ensure you’re able to clean it effectively.
- Always work on a completely cool stovetop
- Choose gentle cleaning products and use them lightly to avoid smelly, potentially caustic residue being burned off during use
- Don’t use harsh scouring pads or you could scratch the stove’s surface
- Do clean your stovetop daily (or after each use)
- Don’t use any cleaning product with ammonia, as it can discolor the glass
- Do use gentle cloths to clean
- Don’t use abrasive tools like steel wool that might gouge the surface (scratches will worsen over time, catching and holding debris)
- Do clean the bottoms of pots and pans very well to avoid scratches from debris
- If you have a handheld clothing steamer, you can use this to soften some hardened debris on the stovetop
Assemble Your Tools
You will need a few basic cleaning supplies for your glass stovetop, including the following:
- Microfiber cloths
- A spray bottle
- White vinegar
- Gentle dish soap
- A product like Affresh Cooktop Cleaner
- A razor blade (note that you can also buy razors specifically for cleaning glass stovetops that include handles for easier/safer use)
While most of us wish it were otherwise, it’s pretty much impossible to even boil water without some of it splashing on the stovetop. And, because your glass stovetop is black, it’s going to show up very well once it has dried. Make sure to give the stove plenty of time to cool down. This is particularly true with the use of microfiber cloths, as many of them are made from synthetic fibers that will melt when they encounter high heat.
Make time after every use to clean the stovetop using either a spritz of water and vinegar or just plain water, along with a microfiber cloth. Note that you can also use a an easy-use product like Affresh Cooktop Cleaner in place of the water and vinegar for quick cleaning.
Once per week, make time to thoroughly clean your stovetop. You will need a mild dish soap mixed with water, along with a sponge. Wet the sponge with soap and water, and then dampen the stovetop. Let it sit for several minutes and allow the water to penetrate the burnt-on debris.
Once the debris has softened a bit, use the sponge to loosen it and clean the entire stove. Use a microfiber cloth to dry the water. Inspect the stovetop for any remaining stubborn spots of grit. If you find any, use a spritz of vinegar – allow it to sit for a moment or two, and then scrub it with the sponge. Dry it with your towel when you’re finished.
If you want to go a bit deeper, sprinkle baking soda across the entire top of the stovetop with water. Take a large towel and soak it in hot water. Wring it out, and then lay that over the stovetop and baking soda. Let it sit for up to 15 minutes. Remove the towel and scrub the baking soda with a soft sponge. The gentle abrasiveness will help remove stubborn stains. Once done, dry everything with a clean microfiber cloth.
While daily and weekly cleaning will help keep your stovetop looking bright and shiny, they may not be enough to take care of some issues. If you end up with burnt-on food, some residue may stay behind even after a thorough cleaning with vinegar and baking soda. In this case, it’s time to get serious.
That razor blade we discussed at the beginning of this guide is what you will need to use now. Before you use it, check your manufacturer’s directions and confirm they recommend a razor blade for your specific stovetop.
Spray the surface of the stovetop with vinegar when it is cool to the touch. Then, get your razor ready. Hold the blade at a 45-degree angle to the surface of the stove, and gently move it back and forth across the glass, loosening hardened gunk at the same time.
When using the razor:
- Keep the razor level on the glass
- Do not use just the corner of the razor, as this could damage the glass
- Go slowly and chip away at serious buildup
- You may need to moisten with vinegar a second time for serious buildup
Once you have cleared away the gunk, wipe the top of the stove down with a clean microfiber cloth. Inspect it for any additional gunk. If you notice some areas that still need more cleaning, spritz them with vinegar and let them sit for a few minutes before using the razor blade again. Wipe the stovetop clean again.
Maintenance and Care Tips to Keep Your Stove Looking Great
Now that you have a better grasp on keeping your glass stovetop clean and free of debris, it’s time to talk about a few basic maintenance tips that can help ensure it holds up for years to come. Many of these are common sense, but some might surprise even long-time glass stovetop owners.
- Don’t use most cast iron pans. Their bottoms are often rough enough that they will scratch the glass when moved over the surface.
- Don’t put hot glass bakeware on a cool glass top – it can cause the surface to crack or chip.
- Don’t lay cooking utensils on the stovetop while you’re using it, as food/liquid from the utensil can adhere to the stovetop and add to your cleaning needs. Instead, use a spoon rest set to the side of the stove on the counter.
- Any sugary substances that might spill on a hot cooktop can cause permanent stains, so be careful when boiling or cooking with sugar.
- Buildup on the bottom of pans and pots can leave silvery rings around the stove’s eyes that may be difficult or impossible to remove.
While the steps and tips we’ve covered here will help you keep your stovetop looking great, understand that it may not be possible to keep it in pristine condition forever. Years of use will leave their mark. Be patient and flexible. If the deep cleaning didn’t leave your stovetop in great conditon, may be worth considering a gently abrasive compound, such as Bar Keeper’s Friend or something similar. These are designed for use on glass stovetops, but their mild abrasiveness may be able to get deeper marks out where razors and other cleaning methods cannot.
Finally, understand that the performance of your cooktop does not always depend on its visual condition. As long as the glass is clean, scratches and discoloration in the glass will not affect heat dispersal. However, deep gouges and cracks from the incautious use of heavy pots and pans will affect your stove’s performance. If you have any additional questions about keeping your appliances in great shape, reach out to us at AppliancePartsPros.com. We are here to help.