What Are The Most Frequent Causes Of Oven Fires?

Household fires can be absolutely devastating, particularly if they aren’t contained or dealt with swiftly. Unsurprisingly, one of the most common places for a blaze to begin is in the kitchen. With naked flames from gas hobs and 200 degree heat being produced by the oven, there is massive potential for accidents to happen.

When it comes to oven fires, there are a number of key contributing factors that could act as a trigger. These include the following:

Technical malfunctions

Due to the extreme heat within an oven, malfunctions are an ongoing risk. There isn’t a great deal that you can do to avoid any such issues, except to ensure that the appliance is serviced regularly or to report any potential issues that you spot – including erratic temperature variations or small flames and sparks.

Cleanliness

Of all the potential causes of an oven fire, this is perhaps the most avoidable. There really is no excuse for allowing your cooker to get to a state where it is so full of oil and greasy deposits that it is actually deemed unsafe to use. However, it does happen.

Every year thousands of fires are triggered by the residue of past meals. This is why it is so important that you take the time to clean your oven or choose an oven valeting service to do the work for you. Not having enough time really is no excuse for causing needless danger to yourself or your family; a few hours is all it takes to clean your oven and prevent a minor issue developing into something more serious.

Forgetfulness

Unfortunately a lapse of concentration can be critical, especially if you’ve left something in the oven. At best you might get away with blackening your shoulder of lamb or reducing your beef joint to inedible charcoal, at worst though it could mean a fire ripping through your kitchen.  Again, it’s not something you can necessarily guard against; after all it can be easy to get distracted by children, phone calls and everything else that goes on in the modern home. The only advice would be to always take care to double check, even when you’ve finished cooking that there are no issues.

What happens if you notice flames?

Whilst prevention is always better than cure, if you look through the oven door and notice that there are flames (or larger flames than usual in the case of a gas oven), switch off the oven and allow it to cool down. Don’t open the door, as this may only serve to add oxygen to the flames and could cause you to get burnt.

You should never attempt to tackle fires yourself unless you have been trained to do so effectively. Therefore, before you do anything else, assuming the fire hasn’t subsided, make sure you call the emergency services and request assistance.

The biggest lesson here is to always keep an eye out for technical issues, never forget that the oven is on and make sure that it is kept clean. A build up of grease and other materials isn’t just unsightly, it can also be dangerous too. So don’t take your health and safety for granted, make sure you clean your oven regularly and thoroughly.

Even in this age of austerity, where educational budgets are being slashed, there are still certain jobs that need to be done within schools. The cleaning of ovens is one such example. Leaving appliances to accumulate grease, spillages and other grimy substances can be damaging to both the effectiveness of the cooker and the health of users. So whilst cuts may need to be made to spending, this shouldn’t be to the detriment of hygiene.

In primary and secondary schools throughout the country, millions of students are honing their cookery skills in home economics classes. With the ovens being used once or even twice a day, they can become overloaded with muck in no time at all. Whilst most schools will look to carry out spot cleans to clear surface debris, this won’t always eradicate all of the spillages and largely unseen build-up. Over time this is only likely to worsen, which is why having ovens cleaned professionally can really provide major benefits.

Whist education is clearly top of any school’s agenda, the safety and health of students is a very close second. A dirty oven won’t necessarily be a source of widespread contamination, but as part of a preparation area, it has the potential to contaminate any food. This risk is only going to be heightened as time goes by and the problem is allowed to build.

For instance, imagine how bacteria can form and spread during the warm summer months when ovens will be out of use. This is the perfect environment for them to really thrive, meaning that the appliances could be filthy by the time they return from holidays in the autumn. As such, it is at this time of year that schools really ought to be giving serious thoughts to having all ovens, including those in canteen kitchens and classrooms, cleaned thoroughly and professionally.

All educational establishments need to adhere to hygiene and comply with government legislation relating to health and safety. This is why most employ a team of cleaners to give the classrooms a thorough clean once every evening. However, this won’t always include more specialist areas, such as the ovens. Now this certainly isn’t the fault of the staff, however it is an oversight that needs to be addressed otherwise you could be doing more than simply risking the health of the appliances.

With students away for almost two months, the summer holiday presents the perfect opportunity for schools to carry out refurbishments, redecorating and a thorough clean from top to bottom. If you’re unable to do the ovens at this time as you don’t have the staff available, then this shouldn’t be used as an excuse to ignore it entirely. Cleanliness is next to godliness, so don’t leave appliances unattended and building up with bacteria. Bring in skilled cleaners who can remove all of the grease and grime without any of the hassle.

This will help any school or college to maintain the highest standards in all departments and ensure that it is a safe environment for students to learn.

Anybody who lives beyond the boundaries of a major city will be fully aware of just how difficult it can be to secure certain services. Whilst plumbers, electricians and others may be available, there are other things, including oven cleaning that are decidedly more difficult to track down. So what can you do?

Well, the Internet has made a huge difference in the way we search for information – it has impacted communication, education and entertainment. Therefore it makes sense for the World Wide Web to be your first port of call when searching for oven cleaning services within your region.

For obvious reasons, most cleaners will work within a specific area; otherwise you’d have people travelling hundreds of miles for a basic service. Therefore you should search for the service and add a location – be it a town, city or county. You can either use a search engine or a business directory that you trust to find one or maybe a few oven cleaning services in your area. Using this, you can then contact them directly to find out more about price and availability.

At Ovenu we have a huge network of valeters working to our exacting standards. These are dotted right around the British Isles providing support to hundreds of customers every week. This means that we are able to service more ovens and get to places that others can’t reach without having to cover the vast distances mentioned earlier. Therefore, if you can find a larger company that has this kind of network of support, it will stand you in good stead – wherever you may be located.

Even if there are relatively few people offering these services near to where you live, it’s important that you take the time to make sure that they have the necessary skills, experience and insurance to carry out the work effectively. As in any industry, there will always be some people who are prepared to cut a few corners at their customer’s expense. So have a look to see if there are any reviews available online and even check out their website to find out more about how they operate.

Of course you can use any techniques that you’re comfortable with to find an oven cleaning service. For instance, if you’ve always relied on the Yellow Pages and prefer to speak to providers directly before making any decisions, then that can be equally effective as the Internet. You might even choose to combine the two, heading online to seek a few reviews before picking up the phone.

As mentioned, insurance is something that you should really demand of any oven cleaner. Whilst a professional using non-toxic chemicals should have no issues getting your cooker looking like new again, accidents can happen. If they do, then you want to know that you’re not going to be left with a massive bill after they leave.

So, regardless of how remote your location may be, there ought to be an individual, franchise or company that can help. We have a growing network of oven cleaners right around the country helping tenants, homeowners, professional kitchens and even schools to get their appliances up to scratch. Therefore if you’re not sure where to turn, you should take a moment to review our UK branches and see who’s available in your area.

As most are probably well aware, ovens need to be cleaned regularly in order to maintain optimal functionality and to avoid a number of unpleasant side effects. However, whilst this knowledge may be at the forefront of most homeowners’ minds, some may not be able to identify all of those tell tale signs that something is amiss.

So, to give you a better idea of what you should be looking out for with your own oven, here are four clear indications that it’s time for a clean.

Loss of Heat or Functionality

Over time you may notice that your oven takes longer to warm up and may even be unable to reach the maximum temperature. Whilst this can be indicative of fundamental issues with the appliance, it could also highlight the fact that grease and grime has penetrated the working parts – including the fan.

Before you decide to throw out your oven and buy a newer model, make sure you consider giving it a comprehensive clean. This may unblock certain issues and leave you with an appliance that works just like new.

Dark Smoke

One of the more obvious issues that will often arise whenever you’ve forgotten to clean your oven for a while will make its presence felt every time you have the misfortune of opening the door.  If you’re met with a wall of smoke, then there’s a good chance that grease and dirt are the culprits.

Spillages are an unfortunate by-product of cooking. Fat can spit all over the inside of your oven too, creating a near invisible layer of grease. Therefore, without regular cleaning, it’s easy for this to build up and cause issues – including smoke.

Unpleasant Smells

Another issue that you may encounter as a result of this accumulated detritus is a rather unpleasant smell. Once it builds up and is then heated, this can cause an odour to be emitted, which can make the kitchen a no-go zone. Obviously it will take time to get to this kind of level, but you should still keep an eye on things, or, more accurately, a nose.

Remember, these odours can be a sign of bacteria building up, particularly if the oven goes unused for a significant period of time. So it is worth making sure that your oven is cleaned and all grime is removed from the surfaces.

Visible Grime

This brings us nicely on to the final sign, which is when you can actually see the accumulation of dirt. Whether this is through a muddied window or small mounds of detritus at the bottom of the oven, as soon as you begin noticing that this has gone from a few spillages to a major pile-up, it’s time to take action.

So if you’ve left your oven cleaning for a while and are in need of a major spruce up, make sure you get it done as soon as possible. Even if you don’t have the time to take care of it personally, you can always choose a professional cleaning service such as the one we offer here at Ovenu.

As we all know, having a dirty oven with ground in grease and grime is rarely a pleasant sight. After use, you will often find that all of this debris creates more smoke than usual and can often result in an unpleasant smell. In the summer months, when your kitchen is naturally warmer, this can become increasingly unbearable throughout the day.

Whilst cleaning an oven takes a fair amount of elbow grease and requires a little waiting around, it’s important that you don’t put it off any longer than necessary. For both hygiene and functionality reasons, summer presents the perfect time to spruce up your cooker and wipe away all of that nasty grime.

Homes are generally heated throughout the year, particularly during the evenings and occasionally in the day when the weather takes a turn for the worse. Whilst temperatures rarely soar in Britain, even during the peak of summer, it is consistently warmer. Again, as mentioned previously, this creates the perfect environment for germs to spread. With leftover food and other spillages on the hob and within the oven itself, this can become home to millions of microscopic and potentially harmful bacteria.

Therefore, it is extremely important that you take time to wipe down surfaces after preparing a meal, just as you would do with dishes and cutlery. However, even when you manage to remove the visible dirt, some bits can still be left behind. Over time these can build up and create the rather unpleasant scene described at the beginning of this blog post. It is for this reason that it is recommended that all homeowners and tenants ensure that their oven is fully cleaned, including all surfaces and trays with reasonable regularity.

If you walk into the kitchen and are met with an old food odour, then the time is probably right to do something about it. As we’ve covered, heat is certainly a contributing factor when it comes to building up and distributing the smell of greasy spillages within the oven, making summer primetime for a far from pleasant pong in the kitchen.

Cleaning an oven isn’t always the prettiest or quickest of jobs. It will usually require the usage of some chemicals, which will strip away the grease without damaging the surface. On a hot day in July, this might not be top of your list of preferred activities, but that doesn’t mean it should be ignored entirely.

Unsurprisingly, we receive a lot of requests for our oven cleaning services at this time of year; with many people realising that it needs to be valeted, but would rather someone else took care of it on their behalf. This includes landlords, exiting tenants, schools and homeowners. Everyone wants a fully working appliance and most would like to ensure that their kitchen remains bacteria and smell free when preparing food, which is why calling in the experts to get things spick-and-span once more is no bad idea. It’s an easy solution to a major inconvenience.

As well as providing students with a quality education, schools are also charged with their care throughout the day. Therefore, providing a safe and hygienic environment for pupils is absolutely essential. This is easier to achieve in some departments than others.

Just as science teachers and technicians need to ensure that dangerous chemicals are handled properly and cleaned away, so the home economics department must take care to ensure all surfaces and appliances are germ-free. With dozens of students passing through, using knives, chopping boards and ovens, it’s easy for dirt and harmful bacteria to build up. This is why a major emphasis is placed on cleanliness and ensuring everything is washed up ready to use again.

However, whilst you can easily wash plates, cutlery and utensils, the major appliances can prove to be a slightly tougher proposition. First of all you have to wait until the appliance has cooled down sufficiently before even attempting to wipe it all down. Secondly, the chemicals often used can be harmful and therefore should only be handled by professional cleaners or experienced staff. Lastly, ovens can cost a lot to replace, so if in the process it gets damaged, the school will have to foot a hefty bill.

Many educational establishments will choose to clean all appliances in one fell swoop, often over the weekend or during holidays. It’s essentially though that this is done regularly, even during periods of apparent inactivity. Just as your cooker at home can become clogged up with dirt and grime, the same is true of those in a home economics classroom.

During long periods of inactivity, such as the summer holidays where temperatures can soar, it’s easy for bacteria to spread. As such, ensuring that they are cleaned fully before, during or even towards the end of these breaks is essential. Some technicians and cleaning teams within the school may well be able to carry out such duties, but it is a time consuming process and one that is far from pleasant.

As such, drafting in a trained individual or even a team of oven cleaners to carry out a full valeting service on the appliances may prove to be hugely beneficial. Depending on the level of usage, this may only need to be one once or maybe twice a year. Following a comprehensive clean, you will be able to enjoy using hygienic ovens that work to their full potential.

Remember, after a full deep clean, ovens can potentially enable them to operate more efficiently. As a result top temperatures can be reached and in a much quicker time. If they are in regular use, as they are likely to be in a school environment, this can help to save time and money on your energy bills.

So there are a number of potential benefits for schools who are looking to have their ovens cleaned professionally. Budget will of course be a major factor, but by bringing in trained, insured professionals, you will always be assured of a great result. Ultimately hygiene has to be the top priority within an educational environment, so it could prove to be a worthwhile investment if you are unable to carry out the work through internal cleaning teams.

For anybody that is in the catering industry or prepares food for others, such as childminders, achieving certification of cleanliness is essential. Whilst it may not appear to be the biggest priority, particularly if you are looking after children, ensuring that your place of work/your home is spotless will enable you to continue doing what you love.

Cleanliness is an absolute necessity when caring for others, especially when you’re in charge of inquisitive toddlers and hungry youngsters. This is why a great deal of importance is placed on achieving and maintaining a certification of cleanliness. But how clean does your home need to be?

Ideally, the answer should be spotless. However, even the most dedicated of cleaning regimens can leave behind some mess – in fact it’s almost unavoidable. But there are plenty of things that anybody can do to get things up to scratch, one of which is to have your oven cleaned regularly.

The oven and surrounding area can be a hotbed for invisible germs and bacteria. As this is where many meals are prepared, ensuring that any mess is dealt with swiftly and hygienically is absolutely essential. However, when you’ve got your hands full, it can be tempting just to give everything a quick onceover and make sure it appears to be clean.

Whilst there is nothing wrong with regularly wiping down surfaces and using anti-bacterial sprays to remove any germs, it won’t necessarily eradicate everything. This is where an oven cleaning service can really help you out.

By scheduling regular, or even just occasional cleans, you can ensure that every surface and all working parts look like new. But even better than that, they will be free from the grease and grime that can act as an incubator for all sorts of potentially harmful germs.

When it comes to ovens, cleanliness won’t just ensure that hygiene levels are maintained at all times, it will also ensure that it continues to operate efficiently. If fans become clogged, it can impact the thermostat – taking longer to warm up and costing more to operate. Therefore you can save yourself a lot of unnecessary hassle by getting a professional to sort it out on your behalf.

The good thing about having your oven cleaned by a professional is that you can continue with your daily work as they get on with their job. So you don’t need to be unduly disrupted whilst bringing your home up to code for a certification of cleanliness inspection. So all in all, it can really prove to be a good investment, especially for those childminders and carers who don’t have a great deal of time to do everything. Essentially it’s another job you can cross off your list and one less headache if you are seeking a certification of cleanliness.

More often than not, when we clean appliances and surfaces, we generally focus on the areas we can see. After all, that’s where most dirt is attracted and will have the greatest impact on the appearance of your home.

However, sometimes this isn’t enough. For instance, you can vacuum your carpet as often as you want, but it won’t always get rid of that ground in dirt that can cause discolouration. For this, you need to shampoo it fully. Another classic example is when you come to clean your oven.

Some people choose to do this themselves. This is fair enough of course, it only takes a little elbow grease and some cleaning products to get the surfaces sparkling again. However, as with the previous example, this won’t account for all the built-up grime that can get into the nooks and crannies.

Take your fan for instance. If you have a fan operated electric oven, then it’s just as easy for dirt and grease to penetrate this area. Over time, this can cause unpleasant smells and may begin to impact performance too. Therefore, every time you wipe down the surfaces of your oven, you could be forgetting about this equally important area.

However, it would be unwise to attempt to get into any such mechanical areas within your oven without proper training or a full understanding of what you’re doing. This can potentially cause more problems than you solve, particularly if you damage thermostats or other heating elements that may be contained. So either make sure that you tread carefully or call in a professional oven valeting service provider.

When we carry out a full service on an oven, we really do mean a full service. This means that we don’t just mop up the mess on your surfaces and shelves, we will actually get into the hard to reach areas and clear out all of the mess. This is done just for the sake of a little extra work.

When dirt is allowed to build up within any kind of working mechanism, and particularly ovens, it can have a major knock-on effect in performance.  When it comes to your cooker at home, this may mean that as well as producing more smoke than it did in the past, you may also find that it takes longer to heat up too. This is usually as a result of grease penetrating the working components and slowing them down.

This loss of efficiency can be costly and could even result in a full break down of your oven if it isn’t treated. Therefore, having your oven professionally cleaned every now and then can help to cut down your energy costs and make sure that you don’t experience a loss of functionality at any point. After all, you don’t want to keep having to adjust your timings when preparing food or wafting away the smoke as you do so.

In an age of austerity, many of us are trying to cut costs wherever possible. So whether we’re buying non-branded products at the supermarket or taking on jobs around the house that we might ordinarily get the experts in to do, every penny really counts.

Unfortunately, taking the cheaper option sometimes proves to be something of a false economy. For instance, how many horror stories have you heard about homeowners attempting to rewire rooms, do a bit of plumbing work or carry out a little renovation themselves, only to cause more damage? In these cases, most would be better calling in the professionals before attempting any kind of DIY efforts.

However, if you’ve finally decided that it’s time to give your oven a thorough clean, should you choose an oven cleaning service or just do it yourself?

Well, a lot will depend on your circumstances. After all, cleaning an oven fully can take hours to complete, involving plenty of stretching, bending and potentially harmful chemicals. This means that those with mobility issues or very little spare time may struggle to complete the cleaning process themselves. Therefore, the oven is either left to build up more dirt and grease, or you have to find someone else to do the job for you.

At Ovenu, we help hundreds of homeowners to get their oven glistening once again. But whilst our oven cleaning services are highly affordable, they do have a small cost attached. It is for this reason that some choose to simply do it themselves.

However, for this cost you can sit back and relax as a trained professional tackles your oven cleaning on your behalf. As all our employees are fully insured, you won’t even need to fret over damage. If an accident does occur, which is extremely rare, then it will be covered on our policy – not yours.

On the flipside of this, if you were to crack the oven door glass whilst scrubbing away at the filth and grime that had built up inside, you could be facing a very costly repair. Most oven windows are strengthened and reasonably well protected so it would be highly unfortunate if you did manage to crack it yourself, but that isn’t to say that it would be impossible to do so.

We also use non-corrosive cleaning agents, ensuring that your oven won’t be left with any lasting reminders of our visit. These are also often more effective than the products that you might find in your local supermarket, meaning a better finish without any of the risk.

However, even though we offer top quality oven cleaning services, we do realise that they aren’t for everyone. Some people would rather put on a pair of marigolds and spend an hour getting their own kitchen shipshape and shining again, which we certainly have no issue with. But if you need to get your oven clean in a hurry and you’re not able to do it yourself, then we’re here to help – maybe even saving you costs on repairs and damage in the process.

British Summer time is upon us, and for the domesticated people of this world, that means one thing…it’s time for a spring clean. Sure, you’ll no doubt ensure the whole house gets a good tidy and thorough clean; that means the living room, dining room, all the bedrooms, but most importantly, the kitchen.

If you think about it, the kitchen gets the most use out of all the rooms in your home. Not only that, but it gets quite messy in there too. Now if you consider that the kitchen needs to be a place that is regularly cleaned, for health and hygiene reasons, then when it comes to spring cleaning, there’s no better time to make sure you give it a through clean. It’s not just the cupboards, floors, walls and appliances, but also the most important appliance of them all, your oven.

Whatever type of oven you have, the spring poses the best time to don your marigolds and give your oven a good clean. This also means that if you own an AGA oven, you shouldn’t neglect its cleaning needs either.

Now, one of the best times to clean an AGA is during the spring & summer because it’s a time when you can switch it off, let it cool, and give it a good clean before switching it back on over the autumn and winter period. It’s near impossible to thoroughly clean your AGA during this period; you wouldn’t get a very thorough job done – mainly because it’s so frequently used and relied upon as a source of heat for your home. Therefore, the spring and summer poses the best possible time to get this done.

So how should you go about cleaning your AGA?

Well, due to its effective but unusual design, many owners actually choose to get their AGA ovens professionally cleaned. Many oven cleaning companies notice that the summer months are particularly busy when it comes to AGA’s and so you should consider choosing this time to get yours cleaned too.

It’s important that if you do decide to clean your oven yourself, or you choose a professional oven cleaning company that they use only approved AGA cleaning products. Due to its enamel surface, the AGA oven needs a cleaning product that doesn’t corrode or cause excessive damage to its surface, which is usually what happens with strong acid based solvents.

AGA cleaning products need to receive approval of the Vitreous Enamel Association (VEA) if they are to be used on their surfaces. So be sure to use these or ensure that your oven cleaning service uses them too. If you do carry out the work yourself, be sure to follow the manufacturer’s guidelines because once the enamel has been damaged, it’s far from easy to get this put right.

On the other hand, if you do decide to use an oven cleaning service, ensure they’re accredited and check what cleaning products they use. At Ovenu, we specialise in AGA cleaning services, and all of our cleaning products are approved by the VEA.