How to Clean Electric Stovetops and Gas Stovetops: Tips for Glass, Ceramic, Coils, and Metal Burner Grates

Alison Kasch
Written by Alison Kasch
Updated September 6, 2022
A senior woman preparing dinner in her stylish kitchen
Photo: 10'000 Hours / DigitalVision / Getty Images

Stay on top of your stovetop cleaning with these quick tips

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Your made-from-scratch pancakes are perfection, but those splatters and charred remnants on your stovetop aren’t nearly as pleasing to the eye. Whether they have tricky burners or a flat glass surface, stovetops call for regular, careful cleaning to avoid unsightly smudges, crusty spots, scratches, and other lasting damage.

No matter the method, speedy cleanup is key for stress-free stovetop maintenance, with minimal elbow grease required. Here’s how to clean electric stovetops and gas stovetops to keep them looking pristine, meal after meal.

Why Is It Important to Clean a Stovetop Regularly?

Cleaning your stovetop regularly carries benefits far beyond the spick-and-span aesthetics. Greasy residue and food particles can become stuck-on messes once you heat the stovetop back up, and they can also invite ants and other pesky insects to your kitchen. Certain spills can even become acidic and damage the enamel on your cooktop over time.

On top of that, your stovetop can be a haven for germs and bacteria, especially when raw meat is involved, so regular cleanups are necessary for safe and hygienic food prep. 

How to Clean a Stovetop Step by Step

Before getting to work on the stovetop, make sure the stove is off and cool to the touch. Then, give the stovetop a quick wipe-down to clean any large crumbs and spills before moving on to more detailed cleaning. After that, here’s how to clean electric stovetops and gas stovetops based on the type.

How to Clean Electric Stovetops With Coil Burners

  1. Clean or vacuum burned food if your stovetop lifts, avoiding the burner connections.

  2. Turn your stove burners on for about three minutes to burn off food and debris on the electric coils (open your windows, as the smoke could set off your smoke alarm).

  3. Let the coils cool down completely, then gently remove them. 

  4. Remove the drip pans, and let them soak in hot, soapy water for at least 15 minutes.

  5. Avoiding the electrical connection, use a toothbrush dipped in soapy water to clean the coils carefully and brush away ashy debris.

  6. Clean the empty stovetop with a non-abrasive scrubbing tool and water mixed with dish soap (or the manufacturer's recommended cleaner).

  7. Let all the parts dry, and then reassemble them.

How to Clean Glass and Ceramic Stovetops

A woman cleaning a glass induction stovetop
Photo: staticnak1983 / E+ / Getty Images
  1. Use a plastic scraper to remove crusty messes, or a metal scraper or razor blade if the manufacturer’s instructions recommend it, taking care not to scratch the surface.

  2. Spray the stovetop with vinegar, allow it to soak in for a few minutes, and wipe it clean.

  3. Use the damp towel to scrub and wipe the surface clean, rinsing it often. 

  4. Polish the surface clean with a dry microfiber cloth. 

How to Clean Metal Stovetop Burners and Gas Cooktops

  1. Remove the metal burner grates and the caps that cover the gas outlets.

  2. Place the grates and caps in hot, soapy water and allow them to soak for around 15 minutes.

  3. While the grates and caps are soaking, clean the stovetop with a damp sponge and either vinegar or soapy water.

  4. Dry and polish the stovetop using a dry microfiber cloth.

  5. Scrub the grates clean, using a non-abrasive sponge if they have a protective coating (see manufacturer’s instructions for cleaning to avoid scratching).

  6. Dry the grates and caps and place them back on the stovetop.

The Best Way to Clean a Stovetop With Stubborn, Cooked-On Food

If basic cleaning methods aren’t cutting through the burnt-on messes, try cleaning with baking soda and vinegar:

  1. Spray down the area with vinegar.

  2. Sprinkle baking soda on top of the vinegar.

  3. Soak a towel in hot water and wring it out completely.

  4. Place the hot towel over the baking soda and allow it to sit for about 30 minutes.

  5. Wipe the stovetop clean with a damp cloth or sponge. 

  6. Dry and polish off the surface with a dry microfiber cloth.

DIY vs. Hire a Pro

Keeping up with cleaning your stovetop can be tricky and even trickier once the splatters become stuck-on messes. If you’re having trouble staying on top of it, consider bringing in a professional cleaning service to help out. You’ll likely need a deep cleaning instead of a regular cleaning, as it’s a more labor-intensive job, but it’s well worth it if it’s within your budget. Get in touch with a local house cleaning service to learn more and request a quote.

Frequently Asked Questions

To keep your cooktop clean and germ-free, wipe it down after every use using an all-purpose cleaner and a microfiber cloth. Aim to do deeper cleanings every week.

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