Splattered soup? Caked-on casserole? We asked professional oven cleaner, Mark Woollard, from Kent-based The Ovens and Hobs Cleaning Company about how best to clean a mucky microwave.
The secret to a stain-free microwave oven is a splatter guard (a cover). Place one over everything you’re heating to reduce the damage done by both predictable splatter and unexpected explosions.
Trader tip: Grubby buttons and dials can be cleaned with a damp cloth that includes a splash of vinegar.
Try to get into a habit of wiping away spills and splashes before they get stuck on. Some surfaces can be stained by ignoring an acidic or colourful sauce splatter.
Mark recommends using an all-natural means of loosening stuck-on grime before wiping it away:
A kitchen spray can be used but, says Mark, 'be sure to follow the grain of the surface you’re cleaning to avoid scratching it.'
Many glass microwave plates are dishwasher-safe, but often a soak in soapy water is enough.
The glass in microwave oven doors can be more challenging if heavily stained. Microwave oven doors which aren’t covered in a mesh can be tackled with careful use of a hob scraper. These are stocked by larger supermarkets or easy to find online. 'For a sparkle, polish with a glass cloth afterwards,' says Mark.
If the glass is covered in a mesh on the inside, it cannot be cleaned with a hob scraper. In these cases, a green scouring pad and a bicarbonate of soda paste will lift away the muck.
'Most microwaves have a grate on the back for ventilation and another on the interior,' says Mark. 'Be careful not to allow any water or cleaning products to get inside the grates.'
Plastic exteriors require little else than soapy water and a cloth to remove grime that might have accumulated from a nearby hob. A stainless steel finish should be carefully wiped, following the direction of the grain in order to retain shine.