If you believe in green home cleaning alternatives, oven cleaners are a serious concern. Oven cleaners (also sold as “oven degreasers”) are one of the most toxic household cleaning products available today. While these products quickly get rid of burnt-on grease and oven build-up, the chemicals that make them so effective also make them dangerous.
Thankfully, tried and tested green home cleaning strategies exist for oven cleaning, even if they might take a little more time and a little more effort.
Oven Cleaners are the Opposite of Green
So how toxic are oven cleaners? Oven cleaners contain an array of toxic and dangerous chemicals. Sodium hydroxide, a.k.a. “lye”, is a highly caustic chemical that produces severe, often fatal, chemical burns. Ethylene glycol is the same chemical that makes anti-freeze lethal to ingest. Petroleum solvents produce volatile fumes that can be fatal if breathed in. And these are just some of the toxic chemicals in oven cleaners.
While oven degreasers are great for cleaning your oven, they’re bad in almost every other way. They can lead to severe or fatal side effects if they come into contact with skin or eyes, are accidentally ingested, or if their fumes are breathed in. They’re also bad for the environment, releasing toxic fumes into the air and introducing poison into landfills if not disposed of properly.
Self-Cleaning Cycles Aren’t Green Either
If you think that the self-cleaning feature on your oven is a safe alternative, you might want to think again. Self-cleaning cycles regularly produce carbon monoxide, an odorless gas that can be lethal if inhaled in high amounts.
Worse yet, most modern ovens contain Teflon coatings. The extreme heat of a self-cleaning cycle causes the polymers in Teflon coatings to break down and release toxic fumes. If inhaled, these can lead to a condition known as polymer fume fever, or “Teflon flu,” leading to chills, headache, chest tightness, and high temperatures.
Green Home Cleaning for Ovens
The good news is there are perfectly green ways to clean your oven. Here are three you might want to consider for a safer, more eco-friendly clean…
- Make a paste of baking soda and water, apply it generously to your oven’s interior. Allow it to sit overnight. The next day, use vinegar to wipe the baking soda away, then use water to wipe the interior of your oven clean.
- Some supermarkets carry green oven cleaners that you can use instead of harsh chemical cleaners. Read the label on these products carefully, and make sure that any product you select carries certification from a trusted source.
- Hire a green home cleaning service and have them perform a green cleaning of your oven. Your local Maid Right® cleaning team offers cleaning services that are perfect for households that prefer a green approach.
Learn more about green home cleaning services offered by your local Maid Right® by calling (855) 624-3744 today.