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I have a wire oven shelf (rack) which has some burned-on grease:

enter image description here

The shelf is covered with chrome so I cannot put it in my oven when going through the pyrolysis cycle (apparently there would be toxic fumes) and normal washing does not help.

I noticed that the stains can be scraped with a knife so I was wondering whether I could go ahead with a metal brush. I feel that this would endanger the chrome coating. I do not care that much about the coating itself, aesthetically-speaking, but rather for its protective and somehow anti-adhesive properties.

Is there a standard way to clean such shelves?

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    Are you sure it's chrome? Could be stainless steel in the picture. Mine looks exactly like that, and I scrub it with a stainless steel scrubber. – RedSonja May 4 '17 at 11:22
  • @RedSonja: this is what is mentioned in the manuel (as well as the warning about not putting it into the oven when pyrolizing) – WoJ May 4 '17 at 11:24
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The simplest, most effective way to clean the rack without damaging the chrome plating is probably commercial oven cleaner in a spray can. Follow the instructions on the can and you'll probably get a very satisfactory result.

Most any "hacky" equivalent to oven cleaner is too hazardous to recommend -- it would involve lye, which can blind you instantly or cause serious chemical burns on contact. These methods (oven cleaner or lye) work by converting the grease component of the grime on the rack to soap, which then dissolves in water. Oven cleaner (usually a spray foam), however, controls the lye it contains so as to be reasonably safe to use.

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You will need:

  • A bathtub to soak the racks
  • Towel
  • Dish soap
  • Dryer sheets
  • Drain filter

Place an old towel on the floor of the tub and place the dirty oven rack on top. Fill the tub with very hot water while adding enough the dish soap to completely cover the racks. The water should completely cover the racks. Put a few dryer sheets in with the racks (4-6) and let the racks soak overnight. You can also put a filter over the bathtub drain incase there is some larger debris that separated from the racks. Use the dryer sheets to scrub the remaining grease from the racks.

  • You can use baking soda if you dont want to use soap. – arana Jan 11 '18 at 21:30
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Try the cleaning sponges marketed as "magic eraser," or the generic version of these. Get it damp and squeeze out all the water you can. Then just go after the grease residue and give it plenty of elbow grease. I've been amazed at what those sponges can remove when all else fails!

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