Dishwasher tablets can clean coffee tarnished mugs, forge their way through lasagne smeared dishes and clear gravy splattered saucepans with ease.
So, it’s no wonder that people have started using dishwasher tablets to clean their ovens! After all, to have dirty dishes that need cleaning, they had to get soiled by food cooked in the oven first!
But, should you really be doing this?
You can clean an oven to a certain extent with dishwasher tablets, but you can’t really clean the whole oven with them.
What do I mean? In short, the glass inside an oven can be cleaned with a dishwasher tablet, and so can the racks and trays.
But you shouldn’t really clean the sides and floor of the oven with these tablets because you need to use a specialised product, or an actual tested method, to do it. If you do use a dishwasher tablet to clean these areas, you risk damaging them.
If you fancy giving this new trick a try, just follow the steps below.
Things to Remember
Before you start cleaning your oven with a dishwasher tablet, or two, you should consider the following points:
- Dishwasher tablets should be used and not dishwasher pods.
- You may need to use multiple dishwasher tablets to clean your oven.
- How long you take to clean your oven depends on how dirty it is to begin with.
- You shouldn’t apply loads of pressure to the glass, especially if you’ve got a drop-down oven door; this could put unwanted strain on the hinges!
- Always wear gloves when working with dishwasher tablets.
- Make sure the oven is off and is cold.
- Always read your oven’s user handbook before trying some unconventional cleaning technique – there are usually many dos and don’ts’ listed, and you should adhere to them or your warranty could be voided.
How to Clean an Oven with Dishwasher Tablets
If you want to clean an oven with a dishwasher tablet then you need to separate the task into two separate jobs. Follow my steps below.
Cleaning the oven door
One of the easiest places to start working with is the glass in the door. Plus, this is where you’re likely to see the reward for your hard work very quickly!
To clean an oven door thoroughly you need to split the task into smaller chunks: external oven glass, internal oven glass (splatters land here) and glass inlets.
Note: Glass door inlets can sometimes be removed from ovens, so if you’d prefer to remove this glass and clean it on a flat surface you can do so. Just read your user manual to remove the inlet carefully and then follow the cleaning steps below!
This may not apply to all ovens and you don’t have to clean this section if you don’t want to.
What you need:
- Warm water
- Dishwasher tablets (Finish Powerball All-In-One Max Dishwasher Tablets work very well, but other brands will also do the job).
Steps to take:
- Pop your gloves on and prepare your tools.
- Grab a bowl of warm water and unwrap a dishwasher tablet.
- Open the oven door.
- Soak the dishwasher tablet into the warm water very quickly. Don’t saturate the tablet or it will crumble very fast!
- Start rubbing the internal glass down with the dishwasher tablet.
- It’s easier if you hold the tablet in the palm of your hand and rub it flat across the surface.
- Continue to do this until the glass is clean.
- You may need to wipe the glass with a clean cloth from time to time to catch any watery drips.
- When the glass is clean, grab a clean cloth and soak it in some water. Squeeze the water out of the cloth and rub it all over the glass for one final ‘wipe down’.
Note: Although dishwasher tablets are good at removing grease from the glass that’s inside the oven, it’s not essential to clean the glass on the outside of the oven in the same way.
A quick wipe down with some hot water and a cloth should do the trick! Or you can use some glass cleaner. If the oven door glass is stained, check out our guide to cleaning brown stained oven door glass.
Cleaning the trays and racks
While a lot of the dirt in an oven lands on the glass and floor, the trays and racks also get dirty over a period of time. This is how you clean them using dishwasher tablets:
What you need:
- Trays and racks
- Hot water
- Dishwasher tablets
Steps to take:
- Pop your gloves on.
- Get your supplies ready.
- Pull your tray and racks out of the oven.
- Cover your trays and racks in foil. Wrap them up separately!
- Run a hot bath.
- Pop the wrapped racks and trays in the water. Weigh them down if need be to submerge them completely.
- Put a dishwasher tablet on each wrapped item.
- Allow them to rest for two hours.
- Return to the bath and remove the water and unwrap the trays and racks.
- Run a cloth over the items.
- Rinse them under more hot water and allow them to dry.
How Do You Clean the Sides and Floor of an Oven?
If you’ve followed the steps above, you’ll have a glowing glass door, and incredibly clean oven racks and trays. But what about the rest of the oven… Why haven’t I mentioned it?
Interestingly, a lot of oven manufacturers advise against using strong cleaners to clean down the insides of your oven, because you risk scratching the surface, or causing irreparable damage to the appliance.
Instead, they typically tell you to use actual cleaning products that are designed to clean ovens, or to follow more natural methods, like using bicarbonate of soda.
It may be a little time consuming, but the end results are very good if you follow the method! Plus, this is one of the last steps in the cleaning process, so it would be nice if everything in your oven looked fresh and clean! Not to mention how hygienic this’ll make your oven too.
Alternative Ways to Clean an Oven
Of course, if you don’t actually have dishwasher tablets at home this trick isn’t going to work for you. So, here are some alternative oven cleaning methods you can try:
- Homemade potions – Bicarbonate of soda and white vinegar mixes work well for oven cleaning.
- Specialised oven cleaning products – There are several different products to choose from and some yield better results than others. You can read about them in our guide to the best oven cleaner products.
- Professional oven cleaners – These services vary from company to company, so you should research them thoroughly before agreeing to any contracts. Check out our guide on average oven cleaning prices in the UK.
Bethan has a passion for exploring, reading, cooking and gardening! When she’s not creating culinary delights for her family, she’s concocting potions to keep her house clean!