It can generally go without saying that most people don’t really want smoke in their house. Smoke smells bad, and it can leave stains on your walls and ceiling, depending on just how much smoke there is. Thankfully, there usually isn’t any reason for there to be smoke in your house. That is, unless you have been having issues with the oven lately.
One of the many complaints that people occasionally have with their ovens is that they tend to smoke a lot. Ovens, for the most part, really shouldn’t be smoking. To get your oven to stop smoking though, you have to figure out why it is smoking. There are a handful of reasons why your oven is doing this, and thankfully, most of them are relatively easy to fix.
When it comes to fixing a burning stove, there are a few things that you need to think about to determine what the cause is. You need to think about what type of stove you are using, what you were doing to make the stove start smoking, and when the stove was last cleaned. Usually, the answer will be found in one of these few questions.
Making Sure the Oven Is Clean
One of the most common causes for a smoking oven is burned food that has been stuck inside of it and is beginning to cook for a second, or even a third time. Whether you just bought a used oven, or your oven of many years is beginning to smoke, this is going to be one of the most common culprits to the problem. There’s a better chance that this will happen to you if you broil high-fat foods, or if you tend to cook messy foods without any sort of baking sheet underneath.
If this is the cause of your smoking oven, it will end up being fairly obvious, as you will be able to see the burnt pieces of food, well, smoking. In very rare cases, these can end up catching fire and becoming an even bigger hazard for your home. This is one of the many reasons why you should thoroughly clean out your oven every so often. Speaking of cleaning out an oven, that is the solution to this particular problem.
If your smoking oven is caused by chunks of large food, then the easiest solution is just going to be to turn off the oven, wait long enough for everything to cool down, and then simply clean the large chunks of food out of the oven. While this might delay your meals a bit, it will be well worth it not to have an oven that begins smoking.
Once this is done, you will want to manually clean out the oven to make sure that there are no lingering grease stains or anything similar. You can use any natural agent to do this. Natural agents include white vinegar, baking soda, water, and so on. This will safely clean out your oven without leaving any more risk of food burning from inside of it.
You should always keep in mind not to use chemical cleaners for your oven. These cleaners can leave behind a chemical residue, which can sometimes begin burning. Because chemical residue can have unsafe chemicals in it, you will need to snuff out the smoke as fast as you can if you know that this is the cause of your smoking oven.
One more thing to pay attention to is how long you run the self-cleaning cycles. If you have already washed the oven, you should only run the self-cleaning cycle for as short a period of time as you can.
When you clean your oven in this manner, the best way to go about doing it is to remove as many food pieces as you can on your own with a water-dampened rag, start the cycle for the shortest possible duration that your oven will allow, and see if that cleans everything up.
Making Sure the Oven Is Working
Another reason your oven might be smoking is because it is simply not working as it should. While this might mean that there is a lot more work involved in getting the oven to work again, it can make you feel better to know that it is something that can still be fixed, most of the time. There are a few things that can go wrong to cause a smoking oven.
If your oven is electric, then there is a chance that it might be a faulty heating element. In these ovens, smoke would arise during the self-cleaning process due to too much heat building up. Generally, when this happens, there will be a buzzing sound before the heating element begins producing smoke and promptly short-circuiting.
The easiest way to fix this is to wait for it to cool down, unplug the oven, remove the screws and wires connected to the heating element, and replace it with a brand-new one. Of course, doing this yourself is going to be significantly less expensive than relying on a professional, but if you are ever unsure about doing things yourself, you should always rely on the expertise of someone who does this kind of work for a living. Letting a professional handle the replacement will cost about triple what it would to replace it on your own.
On the other hand, with gas ovens, you will need to pay close attention to the gas pressure. If there is too much gas pressure, it can cause taller, hotter flames to generate. When it comes to these flames, they can end up being taller than the main burning of the oven, causing a considerable amount of smoke to form. This is also a massive fire hazard, and you should immediately take precautions to ensure this doesn’t happen if you have a gas oven.
The way to fix this is to contact either the person who installed the oven in your house, or the person who provides the gas for the oven to come over and correct the conversion. You should never, ever try to handle it on your own, as this has the potential to go horribly wrong. With gas, you should always, always rely on the professionals who know what they are doing. By doing so, you can ensure that you won’t have to worry about smoke coming from your oven for a long, long time.
Make Sure You Break the New Oven in
New ovens tend to have a few more problems to deal with than older ones, simply because of the coatings in the oven. New ovens tend to come with a factory coating that can leave a nasty taste in food, and if you are purchasing an oven that is brand new, this is something you will need to be aware of.
Because of this factory coating, the best way to go about making sure your oven doesn’t smoke when you cook, and that your food tastes exactly the way you want it to, is to let the oven run for a little while. This is known as “burning in” the oven, and it essentially entails just letting it run so that the factory coating can burn off without any issues.
The way you go about doing this is, once all the pots and pans have been removed from the oven, you should close it and set it to its “bake” setting. Your oven should have a manufacturer-recommended burn-in temperature as well as a recommended duration for how long you should let the oven run. Usually, the temperature will be between 400 and 600 degrees Fahrenheit, and the duration will be between 30 and 60 minutes.
Doing this will ensure that any factory coating inside the oven will be burned off and that there will be no more smoke whenever you try to cook something inside the oven. Doing this will also ensure that your food tastes exactly the way you want it to taste.
Make Sure You Treat Your Oven Right
Ultimately, you will always want to make sure that you treat your oven right. Not treating your oven right can end up causing a number of issues that range from a poorly cooked meal to smoking coming out for seemingly no reason. To prevent these things from happening, you should make sure that you are maintaining your oven exactly as the manual and common sense dictates you should.
For instance, you should make sure that you prevent as many spills and stains as you can by using baking racks, broiling pans, and oven-safe pans to keep all the juices of meats and toppings of pizza off of the oven’s bottom. This will prevent food from sticking to the oven, which will prevent the food from burning and smoking. If you have an oven that has several levels, you can place an oven-safe mat on the lowest level to catch food drippings.
Additionally, you will want to make sure that you don’t place your food too close to the heating elements in the oven, especially in electric ovens. If you place it too close to the heating element, there’s a definite chance that it will start smoking, and even a good chance that it could catch on fire. For gas ovens, you will want to make sure that your food has the same distance between the bottom of the oven and the top of the oven so that it is cooked evenly, and that there is no chance of it burning.
You should wipe down the oven after every use to make sure that nothing sticks to the oven and that nothing is left behind. Every month, you should clean out the interior of the oven and the racks of it so that food doesn’t build up and become something that can burn into a smoky mess. You should only use the self-cleaning feature no more than five times a year if you want to keep your oven looking healthy.