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How to clean your stove top naturally - without using harsh chemicals

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Written by Vera C. Last updated on .

Glass stove top

Yes, it is possible to clean your cooktop really well without using harsh chemicals. Maybe you have kids or pets that you want to keep safe, or maybe you want to just be generally healthy and be more environmentally friendly. No matter the reason, here is a step by step illustrated guide for how to clean your stove top safely.

The overall gameplay behind this cleaning method

Have you noticed that it's possible to get even the dirtiest of dishes clean in your sink without using strong chemicals?

You'd never use some of the harsh specialty cooktop cleaners on plates you actually eat from, right?! If you don't know what I'm talking about, it's products such as this Weiman glass cook top cleaner from Amazon.com shown below. There's nothing actually stopping you from using it to clean your stovetop, but I'd only recommend it if you're really stuck. It has a chemical smell and it takes forever to remove.

Fortunately, you don't need to use any of that. Here's the illustrated guide on how to clean stove top glass naturally and safely. Let's go!

1. Wipe the knobs and display area

Get a sponge and put a bit of detergent on it, wipe it over the display area, the top ledge of the display area, and all of the knobs. Then rinse out the sponge and wipe with just the damp sponge (no detergent).

Wiping the display area of the cooktop - how to clean your stovetop

If you're doing the whole method weekly or every 2 weeks, you should never wind up with anything that won't come off on the display area (yay!) But if it's been longer and you need to do a deep clean, you may need to repeat this step an extra time before going on to the next step - use plenty of scrubbing in that case.

2. Squirt detergent over the stove top, then gently spread around with a sponge

This is the easiest and most fun part! Just get your detergent and squirt it over the stovetop - a zigzag or crisscross pattern is fine. Then very gently spread around the detergent with a sponge to ensure that all parts of the cooktop surface are in contact with the detergent.

To use our dish cleaning analogy, this is like leaving a dish to soak in detergent.

Squirting detergent on stovetop to clean it

The type of detergent doesn't matter. I've done this with whatever detergent I happen to have on hand - as you can see, in this case it was Ajax. But I've used various types and they've all worked fine - environmentally friendly detergents, regular detergents, anything.

3. Leave for 5 to 10 minutes

Fix yourself a cup of coffee! Or make a start on another chore while you're waiting.

If you have kids under the age of 5, if the kids don't need you right away then definitely fix yourself coffee or just relax with your feet up!

Remember, this is like soaking a dish, so we do want to wait to be sure that the detergent comes in contact with grease and will start breaking it down. The surface will look a little bit watery and blah like in the image below - that's normal, it shouldn't have lots of foam or bubbles.

Letting the stove top sit with detergent on it

Don't be tempted to rush this step - it's an important part of how to clean a glass stove top naturally.

4. Using a harder sponge, scrub in all directions

Once the wait time is over, grab a slightly harder sponge. Do not use steel wool or a steel or metal scrubbing pad! Those will damage your cook top. If you don't have a hard sponge, or if you're worried about accidentally scratching your stovetop, simply use the same sponge as before but apply more force.

You'll want to scrub in all directions. This brings the dirt to the surface. Your cook top should look something like this:

After scrubbing the cooktop - how to clean your stovetop

In our dish cleaning analogy, this is like scrubbing our soaked dish really well to remove stains. Use plenty of elbow grease - it's the key for how to clean stubborn stains on a glass cooktop.

5. Using the soft sponge, wipe up the foam and the dirt that comes with it

All of the dirt will be in the foam at this point, so wipe it up with your soft sponge. This will take many goes! If you have a light-colored sink that you're rinsing the sponge into, you may notice that when you rinse this sponge or the last one, that dirt is actually coming off. You may see a slight amount of light brown or gray color. This won't be visible if you're using a standard stainless steel sink, but rest assured you are removing dirt and grease!

So gently wipe up the foam, rinse the sponge, and repeat until there's no more foam left. In our analogy that's like washing the dirt off a dish in the sink.

Even if you don't see the dirt, it does work! The result is a nice, clean stove top.

Clean stovetop

Yes, it's easier than you thought to clean a greasy stove top.

I hope these stove cleaning tips were helpful to you in making your cleaning safer around kids and pets. If you're looking for discounts and deals on kids clothes, you may like to check out my article on the 6 best budget-friendly kids clothing stores - all of these are style-conscious and will have your kids looking great.

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