How to Clean the Stove Top
Follow these steps for getting the most spatter-prone part of the oven sparkling again. This technique is meant for gas stove tops (for electric ones, scroll down).
Take off grates, griddles, and other removable parts. If the residue is not heavy, skip to the next slide. Should you have serious burned-on spills, place parts on a newspaper outside or in a well-ventilated area and spray with a commercial oven cleaner, following manufacturer's instructions. Let sit a few hours or overnight.
Wash grates in hot water and dishwashing liquid. Use a scouring pad on noncoated grates; for coated ones, use a sponge. Dry thoroughly before replacing. Sparkle scrub sponges (similar to shown), casabella.com.
Clean Fuel Ports
Clear any blockages with a pin or paper clip.
Soak a cloth in hot water, and place over the spill for a few minutes. Remove buildup with a rubber scraper. Pan scraper (similar to shown), surlatable.com.
Wipe the Surface
Use a damp sponge to wipe the surface clean. Be sure the sponge is not sopping; excess water can damage the igniter. On a glass or ceramic cook top, use a damp cloth. Pop-up sponges, $15 for 12, williams-sonoma.com.
Remove knobs, and wash with warm water and dishwashing liquid. Do not soak in water or use a cleaner that contains ammonia or abrasives, since doing so may remove the graphics. Dry thoroughly before replacing.
Using a cotton or microfiber cloth, wipe the stove top dry. (If it's stainless steel, wipe in the direction of the grain.)
Electric Stove Tops: Remove Coils
Remove the coils and reflector bowls.
Electric Stove Tops: Clean Bowls
Wipe coils with a damp sponge.
Electric Stove Tops: Wipe
Clean reflector bowls with hot water and a mild cleanser.
Electric Stove Tops: Open Top
Open the stove top, and wipe with a damp sponge. (To burn off residue on the coils, put them back on the stove; then run the exhaust fan and turn the burners to high.)