Cleaning the oven of greasy stains and soot after cooking is a laborious task. Modern ovens solve this problem with a catalytic (low temperature) self-cleaning system. What is it and how it differs from pyrolytic high-temperature cleaning, we will consider further.
What does catalytic oven cleaning mean?
Catalysis is a process that speeds up chemical reactions, and in the case of oven cleaning, this means the accelerated conversion of fats released during cooking and settling on the walls into water and soot (carbon). This process occurs due to the fact that the inner surface of the oven, namely the back and side walls, and sometimes the convector blades, are coated with the following composition:
- Porous fat-absorbing enamel.
- Catalyst in the form of oxide of manganese, cerium, cobalt or copper. Its particles, which fill the pores of the enamel, help accelerate the breakdown of fat adhering to the walls of the cabinet, splitting it into carbon, organic residues and water.
- Absorbent containing nano-particles.
Catalytic cleaning is carried out automatically during the maximum heating of the oven — at temperatures of 200-250 ° C. So, it happens during the baking of the dish, and you will not need to wait for extra time or turn on a special mode. After the cooked food has been removed, all that remains is to wipe the back and side walls of the cabinet.
Features of ovens with catalytic cleaning
The bottom of the cabinet has a regular surface. This is due to the fact that self-cleaning enamel is afraid of sugar, and when baking pies or other products with a sweet filling, the risk of leakage is very likely. Also, surfaces with such enamel do not tolerate dairy products. So, the bottom of the cabinet from dirt should be cleaned with a soft sponge with any detergent.
Manufacturers of such ovens recommend purchasing an additional grease filter. After installation, it needs to be cleaned periodically, and you can even wash it in the dishwasher, you just need to make sure that there are no other dishes and food debris in it, as they can get into the filter cells and it will stop working.
The fat-absorbing coating of ovens wears off over time, so after about 5 years the side walls will need to be replaced. The instructions for this household appliance have a section explaining how to do it yourself, you can also call a specialist from the service. In some models of ovens, the side panels come with double-sided enameling for self-cleaning, after abrasion of one side they only need to be attached with the back side, so you do not need to purchase new walls.
Recommendations for operating the oven with catalytic cleaning
So that over time, catalytic cleaning does not lose its speed and efficiency in breaking down fats, you should follow the following recommendations:
- take care of the catalytic surface, refusing to use hard sponges to clean fat after oxidation;
- if sugar accidentally gets on the catalytic surface during cooking, it should be cleaned in the classical way, that is, using a gentle detergent and a soft sponge;
- when manual cleaning, abrasive detergents should be completely abandoned, as they will destroy the enamel.
Advantages and disadvantages
Catalytic purification has the following strengths:
- all chemical processes take place automatically under the influence of high temperature and catalysts in the pores of the enamel;
- it is possible to reduce energy consumption, since cleaning takes place directly during cooking;
- for the human body, catalytic purification is absolutely harmless;
- slightly increases the cost of the oven.
As for the cons, they are as follows:
- it is necessary to manually wash the baking sheets, grill, lattice guides;
- the bottom and the inner surface are not treated with enamel, so they will also have to be cleaned manually;
- sweet and dairy products quickly destroy the protective coating on the side walls;
- effectively breaks down fat only with constant use;
- there is a need to replace the plates after 4-5 years of operation, as they lose their properties.
Pyrolytic, catalytic or steam cleaning — which is better?
Pyrolytic cleaning, in contrast to the catalytic method, is more aggressive, and during it the combustion of food residues occurs at a temperature of 500 ° C. During the cleaning process, the door is blocked, accumulated fats and dirt are completely removed from the inside of the oven. This cannot be said about the catalytic method, in which if during cooking there are many large stains of fat on the walls of the oven, after one cleaning they may remain, and they will need to be removed manually.
But ovens with catalytic cleaning do not consume electricity, since it is produced simultaneously with the preparation of the dish, and the front wall of the cabinet does not heat up to high temperatures.
Steam cleaning (hydrolysis) cannot be called automatic, since it is carried out according to the following scheme:
- After the cooking process is completed, water is poured into a specially provided tray together with hydrolysis-enhancing agents.
- The device turns on for a certain period of time specified in the instructions.
- After heating the cabinet, the water turns into steam, which affects the fatty accumulations located on the walls of the appliance, they split and drain into the pan, taking the place of the evaporated moisture. If the cabinet is very dirty, then manual cleaning after this method cannot be avoided.
Catalytic cleaning can be used in electrical and gas cabinets. This is a convenient way to keep the appliance clean, however, it is as effective on heavy soiling as the pyrolytic method, but not as aggressive. This system does not increase the cost of the selected oven, but after purchasing it, it saves energy and time for cleaning the kitchen.
Consultant in the field of household appliances. I help guests of the SovetExpert.ru project to choose the right product and save money when buying. I have an unbiased opinion. Ready for dialogue.