Chances are that the interior of your oven is dirtier than you realize, requiring a thorough cleaning. So is it safe to use the self-cleaning oven function?
We recommend using the self-clean function only if absolutely necessary, as the extremely high temperatures can cause major damage to various oven parts.
Why It’s Not Safe to Use the Self Cleaning Oven Feature
#1 Damage to Locking Mechanism
During the self-clean cycle, an oven will automatically lock for safety reasons. It only unlocks once the cycle is complete and the oven has cooled down.
The 900° F temperatures can cause the locking mechanism to malfunction and remain locked. This requires a professional oven repair service to be remedied.
#2 Thermostat Malfunction
Another reason it isn’t safe to use the self-cleaning oven cycle is damage that can be inflicted on the thermostat or thermal fuses. These parts control conventional cooking temperature settings.
They are susceptible to ‘popping’ when exposed to extreme heat, which can cause an oven to not heat properly. You’ll discover the problem only after it’s too late and your food is over or undercooked. Again, this part failure requires a professional to fix it.
#3 Touch Controls & Electronic Boards Failure
These essential oven parts make sure your oven does what you want it too. As with other parts, they can be negatively affected by high heat, making it unsafe to use the self-clean oven feature.
Without a working control panel, your oven will be rendered useless. It will display error codes, turn on or off on its own, and possibly stop working altogether.
#4 Contact Terminals & Wires Damage
Your oven is controlled by several feet of wires and connectors. While normal cooking temperatures won’t harm these insulated wires, it is not safe to use the self-clean oven cycle because of possible wire damage.
As a self-cleaning oven must stay upwards of almost 1000° F for several hours, the wire insulation is likely to melt. This is not typically a problem that can be remedied on your own.
#5 Failure of Various Oven Parts
Virtually every part of your oven is exposed to extreme temperatures during the self-clean cycle. After using this convenient, yet dangerous feature, you may find that there is damage to bake elements, light bulbs, thermal sensors, or even the enamel of your oven walls.
If you’re handy, you can possibly replace some of these oven parts yourself. To avoid these problems, though, we recommend using a natural oven degreaser like Simple Green or making a homemade cleaner, like this:
Natural Oven Cleaner
Instead of potentially poisoning everyone in your home, try making a simple, all natural oven cleaner at home! It’s cheap, easy, fast, and will leave the inside of your oven spotless without harming you or your oven. Here’s what you’ll need:
- baking soda
- spray bottle
- damp cloth
Combine 1/2 cup baking soda with a splash of water, mix until it forms a paste, then cover the inside of your oven with the paste and let it sit overnight. Use a damp cloth to wipe away the paste the next day, then use a spray bottle filled with vinegar to do one more spray-and-wipe, and voila!