The kitchen is the center of the family. It is in this room that a family prepares meals, shares meals and chats together during the day. It’s the guest room where friends play games around the kitchen table and where parents can enjoy some quiet time at the end of the day. It is also one of the main places for house fires, accidents or foodborne illness germs.
Every homeowner needs to be aware of kitchen safety issues. Many housewives neglect regular cleaning and maintenance of kitchen appliances, preferring to cover dirty burners or toaster ovens to give the false impression of cleanliness, but leave debris and residue behind. Grease accumulates on these surfaces.
Others hate cleaning their oven with passion for nothing else and put off this chore for as long as possible, even if they own a self-cleaning oven. Safety in the kitchen is the furthest topic from their minds.
However, food spilled or burned on the hob or oven surface and not cleaned is the leading cause of kitchen fires. Spills in the oven, microwave, or hob can ignite quickly and spread as quickly as curtains, towels, or walls. Grease and grease on the floor can cause people to slip and fall; and stale, spoiled food on counters and tables are sources of bacteria that can contaminate raw food and utensils.
If young children are crawling or stepping under their feet and grabbing every visible object they like, tasting as they go, it’s even more important to keep everything clean in that central spot.
Kitchen cleanliness is all about kitchen safety, not just keeping a clean house to impress the neighbors.
A regular to-do list is the best way to get into the habit of kitchen maintenance. Writing down each small task and when it needs to be done will help form habits that keep the whole family safe and healthy.
Tables and sinks should be wiped down at least once a day, if not after every meal. Spills should be cleaned up immediately in the microwave (Try the Fuller Microwave Cleaner), a regular oven, or on the stovetop. The cutting board should be cleaned after each use.
To control splashing and residue from cooking fumes, the entire kitchen should be cleaned with a good degreaser at least once a week. Filters and hoods are part of this maintenance, as are the dustbin and blender.
Any equipment that is frequently left on the counter should be cleaned at least once a week, if not after each use. Make sure every surface in the kitchen is thoroughly cleaned at least once a month. (Try Fuller Cooktop and Countertop Cleaner.) The whole family should be aware of the importance of these tasks and encouraged to clean up their mess.
A good, easy-to-use oven or stove cleaner can make these essentials more delicious. What is the best oven cleaner? Look for one that doesn’t need to be left overnight but works within a few hours. Many stove or oven cleaners produce less toxic fumes than previous versions. Also, new recipes won’t work, but will stay fully soaked and loosen burnt food. (Try the Industrial Oven Cleaner or the Fuller Brushless Oven Cleaner).
Wipe off food residue with a damp cloth or sponge, then spray cleaner. Leave the cleaner on for 30 minutes to several hours, depending on how dirty the area is or according to the product instructions. The floor should be so soft that it can be easily wiped with a damp cloth or sponge.
If stubborn, burnt food is present, follow the oven manufacturer’s instructions for an abrasive you can use safely and without damaging the cooking surface. If you leave the product on for too long and dry, try spreading a damp cloth over the area for a few minutes to soften the product for easier removal.
There are products on the market that help keep food from sticking to cooking surfaces, preventing these appliances from getting dirty to the point of being difficult to clean. One product that can save you hours of cleaning time on your next oven cleaning is the Fuller Brush Oven Cleaner.
This product should be sprayed onto the surface of the oven after it has been cleaned. Again, check with your oven manufacturer to see if it is compatible with your oven surface. With good habits or a fanatical adherence to to-do lists, your kitchen can become the safe and enjoyable gathering place it is. Safety in the kitchen will become second nature to you and your family.