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The Surprise Cleaning Duo That Leaves the Glass on Electric Stove Tops Sparkling — Without Scratching

Plus, how to clean coil burners, drip pans and more — with stuff you've already got around the house

If you have an electric stovetop, you’re likely already familiar with the trials and tribulations of trying to get it clean. Unlike gas stoves where you can easily remove the grates and the burners, with an electric stove, you’ve got to contend with coils that are like a maze to clean around or glass tops which get easily scratched when scrubbing too hard. That’s why we asked the cleaning pros how to clean an electric stove top, whether made of glass or coils. Below find the expert tips to a more effortless clean up.

How to clean an electric stove top with coil burners and drip pans

A clean electric stovetop

Coil top stoves are classic: They’re easy to repair and relatively inexpensive, making them a sensible option. The downside to coil top stoves, however, is that their drip pans are crumb and grime magnets.

“Cleaning an electric stovetop with coil burners and drip pans requires a slightly different approach than other stove tops,” says host of the daily YouTube Show/Podcast: Ask a House Cleaner, Angela Brown, who has 32 years of experience as a professional house cleaner.

She recommends the following steps for getting your coil top stove nice and clean. First, always allow the burners and drip pans to cool completely before cleaning. Once cool, remove the coil burners and drip pans from their sockets. Then follow this 4-step process:

1. How to clean the drips pans: Enlist Bar Keepers Friend

Remove the drip pans, wet them and then sprinkle Bar Keepers Friend Powdered Cleanser (Buy from Amazon, $8.97). “The powder contains oxalic acid, which acts as a mild abrasive. This helps in removing tough stains, burnt-on food and other residues without scratching the surface,” Brown explains. Finger paint until the powder is mixed with the water. Let the mixture sit on the drip pans for 2 minutes to activate. Then, use a non-scratch scrub sponge to remove any stuck gunk t then rinse the drip pans thoroughly and let them dry completely before reinserting them.

Related: 11 Brilliant Uses For Bar Keepers Friend — Stainless Steel Is Only The Beginning

2. How to clean under burners on electric stove: Grab a Q-tip

Most electric stove tops lift up so you can clean underneath them, says Brown. Once lifted, use a dry paper towel or a soft brush to remove loose debris from the surface under the burners. Be gentle to avoid scratching the surface. Then dampen a cloth or sponge with a mild cleaning solution — you can use a mixture of water and a mild dish soap. Wipe down the area under the burners, says Brown. You can use Q-tips to get at any hard-to-reach areas or corners.

3. How to clean electric stove burners: Grab some aluminum foil

First, wipe off any crumbs or stuck pieces with a dry cloth. One easy way to get burnt food, gunk and grease off the coil burners and leave them shining? Aluminum foil! Simply cut off a piece of foil, ball it up a bit and use it to scrub the coils.

This YouTube video shows just how well it works:

4. How to clean the stovetop surface

Enlist the Bar Keeper’s Friend again, mix into a paste with water and let sit for two minutes to break up the food and burned residue. Wipe the stovetop with a damp cloth.

Once the surface is clean and dry, place the coil burners back in their sockets. “When you return the coil burners, make sure they are plugged in completely,” says Brown. “Otherwise, they won’t heat properly when the oven is turned on.”

How to clean an electric stove top made of glass

A clean glass stovetop

There are many advantages to having a flat top electric stove. They’re easier to clean than stoves with coils, and they usually have a sleeker, more modern profile. These kinds of stoves are more expensive, however, and are more prone to scratching, so you’ll want to be mindful of how you remove debris.

The must-have for getting the surface clean? “I always bring The Pink Stuff (Buy from Amazon, $5.97) with me on cleans because of its all-around use, plus it also works as a degreaser,” says Maria Zarate, a cleaning pro at BetterCleans. And Zarate is not alone, users on TikTok, YouTube and Instagram have proclaimed The Pink Stuff paste is equally effective as a miracle cleaner. One smart way to really scrub the electric stovetop clean? Pair the Pink Stuff with a Scrub Daddy.  

Related: Scrub Daddy vs. Scrub Mommy: Experts Weigh in on These Game-Changing Sponges

This YouTube shows the easy how-to:

Another trick that works great for cleaning your glass stovetop? “ A non-scratch scrub sponge and Bar Keepers Friend Powdered Cleaner,” Brown. “It is soft like flour, so it won’t scratch the stove’s glass surface.”

To use Bar Keeper’s Friend, first start with a cool stovetop, then remove any food particles using a soft, dry cloth or paper towel.

“Spray the top of the stove with water, then sprinkle BKF on the damp stovetop,” explains Brown. “Finger paint the top of the stove until the powdered cleaner is mixed with the water.”

Let the paste sit for two minutes so it has time to break up the caked-on grime. Then gently scrub the surface with a non-scratch scrub sponge in a circular motion.

Notice dirty spots that still won’t come off? “Use a razor blade at a 45-degree angle for stubborn spots to carefully lift off the residue,” adds Brown. “Be sure to keep the surface lubricated with water to prevent scratching.”

Finally, rinse the stovetop thoroughly with a clean, damp cloth to remove any cleanser residue and dry the stovetop with a lint-free cloth or paper towel to prevent streaks.

Related: Cleaning Pro’s Genius No-Scrub Hacks to Clean Gas Stove Burners, Grates & Heads

What *not* to use to clean a glass stovetop

“The biggest mistake people make when cleaning an electric stovetop is using the wrong cleaning tool,” says Brown. “Just because a pumice stone, for example, removes grit and grime from a barbecue grill, people think it will also work on a stovetop, and they scratch it to pieces.”

She also suggests also avoiding steel wool, sandpaper oven cleaners and toilet bowl cleaners to get your glass stovetop squeaky clean. Stick with one of the methods listed above for best results.

Related: Move Over, Magic Eraser: Cleaning Pros Reveal 11 Ways a Pumice Stone Works Better

For more tricks on how to clean kitchen appliances:

6 Brilliant Oven Cleaning Hacks That Will Make Your Life Easier

The Quick and Effective Way to Clean Your Dishwasher, So Your Dishes Stay Sparkling

How To Clean Oven Racks: 3 Easy Methods

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