In this era of inflation, everyone is looking for a way to save a few dollars, either by purchasing preloved furniture or utilizing one household product to perform several tasks. In this respect, many people have been seen to use oven cleaners to wipe off the grease stains from their kitchen countertop.
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No doubt that the oven cleaners are super effective at removing stubborn stains but don’t forget that they have this powerful stain-removing power due to being loaded with corrosive chemicals. Whenever you use the oven cleaners to clean the kitchen tops, you’ll sacrifice their longevity and lustre.
On consistent use, you’ll notice that your countertops have started to lose their colour and are getting corroded super fast. Wondering why it’s happening? Read the article to know the effect of oven cleaner on kitchen countertops in detail. Also, we’ve shared some restoration hacks to address the damaged countertops.
Effect of Oven Cleaners
Effects on Countertops
As stated before, oven cleaners may cause your countertops to lose their colour and strength but the extent to which the harsh ingredients of the cleaner affect a countertop or how a countertop reacts to the toxic composition of cleaners depends upon its material.
For example, the marble and granite countertops tend to get tarnished on being exposed to high levels of sodium hydroxide, present in your oven cleaner. However, due to being tough, these natural stone countertops won’t wear out entirely but still, they would start looking faded and old. Have you ever go with your friends on trip then you need to see the Best Dutch Ovens for Camping
On the other hand, if you have quartz countertops in your kitchen, chances are they might start degrading and losing their colours in just a few months. Why? Because they are manmade and have synthetic dyes that can leach out on getting exposed to the harsh chemicals of oven cleaners.
Likewise, the colour and finish of stainless steel and Formica countertops also degrade when you wipe the stain off of them using oven cleaners. And when this protective finish melts away, the cleaners seep down to the countertop material, deteriorating its structure and making it more prone to food and moisture contamination.
Effects on Human Health
Besides risking the sturdiness and charm of your kitchen tops, oven cleaners may also prove extremely hazardous to your health. Some of the ingredients present in the oven cleaners are carcinogens while some others can be harsh enough to burn your skin and risk your eyesight. For instance, the corrosive reagents present in the oven cleaners can lead to chemical burns on contact.
AOn the other hand, the volatile organic compounds that get converted into fumes on attaining a little bit higher temperature, may cause dizziness, headaches, and other respiratory disorders on being inhaled. Similarly, the petroleum distillates, that make the volatile part of oven cleaners, may cause eye irritation, drowsiness, skin irritation, and throat irritation. Therefore, it is strictly advised not to use oven cleaners for anything other than de-staining your oven.
How to Restore your Chemically Damaged Countertops?
If you have been using oven cleaners to remove stains from your kitchen countertops then chances are, this toxic cocktail of chemicals might have damaged your countertop, either partially or completely. If it has gotten damaged completely, there’s no way other than replacement.
However, if you have used the oven cleaners only a couple of times then you can restore the original strength and gloss by using the following methods.
Removing white stains
As we’ve discussed by now, the chemicals of the cleaner attack the sealant and protective coating first. So, if your countertops show a white stain, when dry, it means the layer of sealant and protective film has melted away. Are you missing this: Kitchen Waterproofing is Important?
To fix this problem, all you need to do is to apply a new layer of wax and sealant. The solution for protective coating can be found easily at any local hardware store and the product also comes with the application instructions. Once you’ll apply the new sealant, try to keep it away from chemical contamination so it can last longer and keep looking as glossy as day one.
Treating etched countertops
If your granite countertops have been highly etched by chemical contamination, you can restore them by using some simple ingredients. First of all, you need to wipe the entire countertop with a damp rag. Then, remove the existing finish by sanding the countertops. Don’t use steel wool for this purpose as it can leave scratches. After removing the finish and debris, wipe it off with a damp rag.
Once done, add epoxy into the etchings and divots to fix them, using a knife or any sharp-edged thing. Once the epoxy would dry out, apply the new sealant.
Restoring a chipped Formica countertop
If the harsh chemicals of oven cleaners have made their way down the core material then your Formica countertop would probably be looking chipped. To fix this, you first need to clean the entire countertop with acetone. After this mask the area, around the chip, with masking tape and apply laminate paste or filler to the chip.
However, make sure the laminate filler you purchase should match your existing countertop colour. To apply it, you can use a putty knife. Fill the chipped area and let it dry for some hours. Once done, add sealant to lock the repair.
Homemade Countertop Cleaners
Yes, saving your precious, hard-earned money is still the goal so we are going to recommend you buy a special countertop cleaner. The good news is, you don’t need to either! You can make your kitchen counter cleaner (regardless of which type of countertop you have) using the basic ingredients that every kitchen has. How? Let us explain!
Isopropyl and water solution
A 50:50 solution of isopropyl and water is the best to disinfect the dirtiest surfaces. At the same time, it will retain the original luster of your granite countertops. To see its magic, all you need to do is to mix both ingredients in equal quantities, spray it on the dirty surface, wait for five minutes, and wipe it off.
Warm water and dishwasher
Make a solution of dishwasher soap and warm water and wipe the countertop down using a soaked microfiber cloth. This solution will be enough to remove all the food and grease stains in seconds. Besides this, you can also make a paste of water and baking soda to remove harsh stains.