Preparing your oven for the holidays
With the long awaited Thanksgiving feast drawing near, you may be scrambling to get everything ready to wow your family with a perfectly cooked turkey. Your oven takes center stage for that one special day, and probably works a lot harder than normal. Here are a few maintenance tips you should consider before your oven will be turkey ready.
Avoid the Self-Clean Feature!
Cleaning your oven is probably one of the first chores you want to complete before preparing the Thanksgiving meal, but we recommend that you don’t use the self-cleaning setting on your oven at least 2 weeks before the big day.
Why? Because the self-clean feature causes the oven temperature to raise up to 1,000 degrees, and may cause failure of the thermostat, circuit board, or fuse. If you must clean your oven close to the big day, use a non-abrasive cleaner to remove cooked on food.
Getting a proper clean
If you own a self-clean oven, make sure to run it at least 2 weeks before Thanksgiving to avoid an unexpected breakdown.
If it’s too close to the big day, then use vinegar steam to clean your oven naturally. Put a bowl of white vinegar in the oven and set the temperature to 270F.
After the oven is preheated, turn it off (but don’t open the door). Let the vinegar sit for several hours. When you open the oven, you should be able to wipe off the food residue without much elbow grease needed. Then, when the holiday is over, run your self-clean cycle.
For the exterior of your range, it is best to take the knobs off and let them soak in warm soapy water. Never spray the knobs directly with cleaning solution, as this may damage the switch and wiring.
Testing the temperature
An oven that runs at just the right temperature is important when it comes to cooking, especially fragile recipes such as breads, cakes, custards and pastries. The oven temperature should be accurate within 25 degrees of your desired temperature.
If you’re an avid cook, it is important to routinely measure your oven temperature and have the unit calibrated if the measurements are off. Use these simple steps to measure your oven temperature:
#1. Thermometer Test: For best results, purchase an oven thermometer to measure the accuracy of your oven. Start by placing the thermometer in the center of the oven, and situate it in a place that you can see when the door is closed.
Turn the oven to 375 degrees, and then wait for the oven to fully preheat. Once the oven is preheated, read the thermometer. Write the reading on a piece of paper. (Don’t open the door!)
#2. Keep Reading: Next, set your kitchen timer for 20 minutes and wait. When the timer goes off, take another reading. Repeat this step two more times so that you have four readings taken in 20 minute intervals.
#3. Do Some Math: Calculate the average temperature of the four readings [ (The sum of all 4 Readings) ÷ 3) ]. The result should be 350 – 400 degrees. If the temperature is outside of this range, contact a repair specialist to calibrate the oven.
If your kitchen appliance needs service near the holiday, contact Tampa’s leader in appliance repair for fast, affordable service.