DIY Cleaning Methods: Cleaning Your Kitchen

Cleaning a glass cooktop with a turquoise rag.
  • 1-4 hours
  • Beginner
  • 15-50
What You'll Need
Non-abrasive scouring pad or sponge
Dish detergent
Clean towels
Baking soda
White vinegar
What You'll Need
Non-abrasive scouring pad or sponge
Dish detergent
Clean towels
Baking soda
White vinegar

The kitchen is the one room in the home where cleanliness is a must, for the obvious reasons. But, it’s also the one room that doesn’t get the cleaning it deserves on a routine basis. If you do it right, it really won’t take that long.

This guide is designed to help you clean your home thoroughly, easily, and quickly, using tried and true techniques that have been proven effective for generations. After reading this guide, you’ll be better prepared to:

  • Clean your kitchen
  • Remove food stains
  • Remove pet stains
  • Clean your carpet
  • Clean your furniture

The Cooktop

Grease and other types of grime can easily accumulate on cooktops over the course of preparing a meal. These surfaces typically range from modern ceramic/glass cooktops, to traditional baked enamel finishes on electric or gas ovens. Special attention is necessary for each type.

Cleaning a Ceramic/Glass Cooktop

Wait until the cooktop is completely cool and then sprinkle baking soda (or another non-abrasive cleaner) on the surface. Use a damp synthetic scouring pad or sponge to rub the surface. Rinse with clean water, making sure you get all of the debris up, and then buff the surface with a clean cloth until it is finished.

Do not use abrasive cleaning agents or steel wool scouring pads, as they will permanently mar the surface.

Cleaning a Baked Enamel Cooktop

Washing the surface of a baked enamel oven or stove with warm soapy water after each use will help maintain a pristine cooktop. Avoid using abrasive cleaning agents and steel wool pads, as they will damage the surface finish. Reflector bowls, grids, and drip pans should be washed in soapy water whenever anything is spilled on them.

To clean a gas stove or oven, use a thin metal wire (avoid using toothpicks as they can break off) to clear the holes on the burners.

To make cleaning the cooktop easier, remove all of the plastic knobs and soak them in warm soapy water while you clean the surface. After washing the knobs, dry them with a clean towel and reinstall them.

The Countertops

For routine countertop cleaning, a mild dish detergent works wonderfully. Before you begin, remove all of the appliances and cutting boards. Wash the entire counter with a soft sponge and warm soapy water. Allow it to sit on one section of the countertop while you move on to the next section. Use clean hot water to thoroughly rinse the countertops and buff them dry with a clean towel.

When replacing the appliances you removed earlier, be sure to wipe down the bottoms prior to setting them back on your clean counter.

The Sink

If your sink has dried food sticking to the sides, fill up the sink with hot water prior to cleaning it. This will help make it easier to get the food particles off the stainless steel or porcelain. Next, sprinkle baking soda or your choice of non-abrasive cleaner and scrub everything down with a non-abrasive scouring pad. Baking soda offers a double benefit, as it not only cleans well, but also helps to control odors after it’s rinsed down the drain. After rinsing the sink, wipe it down with a clean dry towel. This will help prevent water spots from forming on your stainless steel sink.

The Appliances

Baking soda can not only get your kitchen appliances looking and smelling their best, but in the right solution it can even bring back the brightness of their white exteriors.

For general cleaning, mix ¼ cup of baking soda with ½-cup of white vinegar in a gallon of clean hot water. Scrub the appliances with a non-abrasive scouring pad or sponge and then rinse it with clean water and dry.

For improving the white exterior of appliances, mix ¼ cup of baking soda with 2 cups of warm water and wipe the exterior down with the solution. Allowing it to stand on the appliance for about 15 minutes. Rinse the solution off with clean warm water and you should notice an improvement in the whiteness of the appliance’s exterior.

The Cabinets

Cabinets can easily become smudged with dirty fingerprints, food and grease, and the longer you let them go between cleanings, the harder it is to get them clean again. For routine cleaning, a simple solution of warm water and liquid dish soap will do the trick. But, for heavy duty cleaning, a commercial cleanser will work better. When using stronger agents, always test the solution out on an inconspicuous part of the cabinet first, to make sure it doesn’t ruin the finish.

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