Degrease the Stovetop

Grease, grime and dirt are just par for the course in most homes and keeping things clean takes skill and planning. But in your kitchen, all that greasy build-up can be tough to handle and could even cause health problems. Whether you’ve been putting it off for a while or you’re just looking for quick and easy ways to clean your stovetop, we’ve found the best ways to degrease the stove top. We’ve also included a couple of tips for other hard-to-clean areas, all using homemade cleaners.

Electric Coil Top

Here’s what you’ll need:


  • Newspapers
  • Toothbrush
  • Vinegar
  • Baking soda
  • Dish soap
  • Lint-free cloths
  • Sponge


If your coils and drip pans have caked-on grease and grime, start by heating the coils on high for a few minutes to burn off residue. After letting them cool completely, remove the coils and drip pans. Wash the drip pans with warm soapy water and then cover them completely with a mixture of 2 parts baking soda and 1 part vinegar. Let the drip pans sit for at least 15 minutes so the cleaning concoction can do its job.

While the drip pans are “self-cleaning,” lay out some newspaper, grab your coils and a dry toothbrush. Gently brush the coils over the newspaper to clean off that crusty layer of dried grease and grime. Wipe the coils with a damp cloth and then dry them with a towel. Put them aside and get back to your drip pans.

Wash the baking soda and vinegar mixture off the drip pans and give them another wash with warm soapy water. Rinse thoroughly and dry them off with a lint-free towel and rub them to a nice shiny finish. Before you put everything back together, let’s tackle the stovetop.

To degrease the stovetop, start by wiping it down with a damp cloth to loosen up the top layer of residue and then wash thoroughly with a soapy sponge to cut through the grease. For tougher stains and greasy build-up, turn to your homemade vinegar and baking soda mixture. Spread your cleaning paste over the entire stovetop and let it sit for at least 15 minutes. Gently scrub the whole area and repeat the application for those really tough spots. Dry the stovetop, replace the drip pans and coils and you’re done.

Gas Stovetop

Here’s what you’ll need:


  • Soft scrub brush
  • Dish soap
  • Lint-free cloths
  • Baking soda
  • Vinegar
  • Large food storage bags
  • Sponge


Remove your grates and place them in a sink of warm soapy water. Let them soak for a few minutes and then use a cloth and the soft scrub brush to remove the residues and caked-on grime. If the grates are too dirty for this method, grab your vinegar and large food storage bags. Place each grate in a bag filled with vinegar and let sit overnight.

The next morning, carefully remove the grates and rinse them off thoroughly and dry.  

Next, wipe off the burner covers gently with a damp cloth. If the build-up is too bad, you can soak the burner covers in warm soapy water and gently scrub with the soft scrub brush. Rinse thoroughly and make sure they are completely dry before replacing them.
While you have the burner covers off, inspect the burners and make sure there aren’t any food particles or crud blocking any of the holes. If the burners need it, a bent paper clip is perfect for making sure all the holes are clear.

Before you degrease the stovetop, wipe down the surface with a damp cloth to remove food particles and then wash thoroughly with a soapy sponge. Wipe up all the soap and residue with a clean damp cloth. If you have spots that just won’t come clean, you can use 2 parts baking soda and 1 part vinegar to create a paste and apply it to the tougher spots. Give it about 15 minutes to bust up all that grime and then gently scrub. You may have to repeat this process for some stains. Remove all the cleaning paste by wiping the stovetop with a clean damp cloth. Make sure everything is nice and dry before putting everything back together.

Smooth Stovetop

Here’s what you’ll need:


  • Vinegar
  • Baking soda
  • Bath towel
  • Stiff non-scratch scrub brush
  • Pan scraper


Smooth top stoves aren’t as delicate as you may think, but you have to be careful to not scratch the surface when you’re cleaning them. While the build-up of grease and grime on a ceramic or glass top stove can seem to be permanently sealed to the surface, with a little patience and elbow grease, you can get that smooth top looking great again.

We’ll be using our trusty homemade cleaners of baking soda and vinegar to degrease the stovetop but with a slightly different application. First, wipe down the whole stovetop with vinegar and then wipe with a damp cloth to remove debris and residue. Cover the entire surface with baking soda. Grab your bath towel and get it wet. Wring out most of the water and place the towel over the stovetop and let it sit for about 15 minutes. The mild alkali in the baking soda, along with moisture from the towel, will break down grime and crud.


Remove the towel and grab your non-scratch scrub brush. Now start scrubbing! It may seem like all that build up will never completely come off, but with some perseverance and elbow grease, you’ll get there. Remove any leftover baking soda and crud with a damp cloth until everything is removed. If there is still some baked-on crud that is being stubborn, dampen the stove top and go to work with the pan scraper. Finish the job with one more application of vinegar with a damp cloth and buff with a dry cloth for a sparkling shine.  

Final Touches

Regardless of which type of stovetop you’re cleaning, it’s often the final touches that make your stovetop sparkle. If your knobs are removable, pull them off and let them soak in warm soapy water for a few minutes and then wipe them clean with a cloth or sponge. For buildup on the backsides of the knobs, you can use a toothbrush. Rinse the knobs thoroughly and make sure they are completely dry before replacing them.

For the stovetop, you can finish things off with a good wipe down using a clean cloth and rubbing alcohol. This will remove any streaks and smears left over and give your stove top a squeaky-clean shine. If you’ve come this far, you might as well clean your oven too! Here are some great oven cleaning tips to help you along.

Bonus Tips for Other Hard to Clean Appliances

Dish Sink

That sink may look clean after you’ve rinsed it thoroughly, and you have been filling it with soapy water after all! But all that soap and rinsing can still leave a residue that might go unnoticed. This biofilm can contain bacteria from raw meat or chicken, germs from a variety of sources and other unhealthy stuff. Here’s how to get your sink clean and healthy.

Whether you have a stainless steel or porcelain sink, baking soda is the perfect cleaner for removing stains and grime without scratching your sink’s surface. Rinse out the sink, liberally pour baking soda all over and scrub with a cloth or sponge. For tough stains, it may help to let the baking soda sit a little longer. Wipe dry and you’ll have the cleanest, healthiest sink ever.

Refrigerator Shelf Seams

We’re talking about those popular glass shelves here. You probably keep the outside of your fridge clean and shiny most of the time. You even pull everything out and give the inside a complete cleaning once in a while. But when was the last time you cleaned the seams where the glass shelves fit into their frames? While this very specific cleaning task may seem a bit much, consider that these small crevices can harbor mold, bacteria and germs and these contaminants can spread under the right conditions. Here’s how to clean this often overlooked area.

Remove all of your glass shelves and move them to the sink area. Rinse thoroughly with hot water from your sink sprayer or faucet with a focus on the seams. Make a paste of equal parts water and baking soda and gently scrub the seams with the paste using a toothbrush. Make sure you get all the debris and crud removed both from the top and bottom of the shelf. Now wash the shelves in warm soapy water, rinse completely, dry and replace them in the refrigerator. Now you’ll have crystal clear glass shelves and a healthier refrigerator.

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