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Remove oven cleaner damage from aluminum

Q. Aluminum turkey fryer pot cleaned with oven cleaner [this product on eBay or Amazon affil links] . Other than pin holes anything to be aware of before using for crawdad boil?
Best way to recondition it before said boil?

Spidey the wonder mutt
- Wisconsin. USA
May 16, 2023

Ed. note: This forum enjoys 30 years of warm & friendly aloha sort of incompatible with anonymity.
Without name & town, you're not quite part of it, and others may be less likely to engage with you :-(

A. Hi. I would suggest scrubbing it with cream of tartar [this product on eBay or Amazon affil links] as discussed in thread 41066. Good luck.


pic of Ted Mooney
Ted Mooney, P.E. RET
Striving to live Aloha - Pine Beach, New Jersey

⇩ Related postings, oldest first ⇩

Q. I am inquiring as to how to remove oven cleaner after it has come into contact with an aluminum surface. The surface to which I am referring is polished billet aluminum. Some of the oven cleaner landed in some hard to reach places. How can it be removed?

Todd Tucker
hobbyist - Florence, South Carolina

A. Oven cleaner is water soluble and will wash off, Todd. Just use a water hose.

However, that may not really be your question. Oven cleaner dissolves aluminum, and should not be used on aluminum except in very special cases. You may be asking how you can restore the damage that has been done. If you can't reach the area to do mechanical polishing on it, you probably can't fix the etched surface.

Ted Mooney,
Ted Mooney, P.E.
Striving to live Aloha - Pine Beach, New Jersey

December 11, 2012

Q. Hello. I cleaned my oven this evening with Easy Off and shut the door, as instructed but when I opened it up to clean it, discovered that the aluminium edges of my oven door have gone white and discoloured. (I only realised afterwards that it's aluminium and not stainless steel!) Oops! Is there anything I can do to clean it and bring some of the shine back?

Thanks in advance!

Louise LaRosa
- King's Lynn, Norfolk,England

A. Hi Louise. You can't fix it chemically, but you may be able to polish it. Try a metal polish like Mothers Mag & Aluminum Polish [this product on eBay or Amazon affil links] , preferably applied with a buffing pad mounted on a battery operated drill, rather than by hand. (Make sure the oven cleaner is well washed off first). Good luck.

Aluminum trim inside an oven, with this predictable result, is typical of today's appliance designs. Engineers: You know better! Have the integrity to Just Say No when asked to participate in shameless designs.


Ted Mooney,
Ted Mooney, P.E.
Striving to live Aloha - Pine Beach, New Jersey
December 11, 2012

Q. How to paint (food-safe, oven safe) aluminum toaster oven drip tray damaged by oven cleaner.

Sheila Gonzalez
- La Porte, Texas, USA
August 25, 2019

A. Hi Sheila. If it's a drip tray I don't understand why it needs to be 'food-safe'. Paint is a bad idea, and having a ceramic coating applied will be prohibitively expensive. Why not just use it as is? Good luck.


pic of Ted Mooney
Ted Mooney, P.E. RET
Striving to live Aloha - Pine Beach, New Jersey
September 2019

Q. Stupidly my kid was too helpful and used oven cleaner in our mini oven. The inside now looks horrible. Is it safe to still use the oven or has it been ruined now the aluminium has been ruined?

Haizel Feild
- Auckland, New Zealand
October 4, 2019

A. Hi Haizel. Oven cleaner can completely dissolve aluminum, so a dangerous pinhole is not impossible; although I don't know much about microwaves I would not use it myself.
You didn't note your kid's age, so we should mention that the label probably says "keep out of the reach of children"; I'm reasonably sure oven cleaner in the eye can blind a person.


pic of Ted Mooney
Ted Mooney, P.E. RET
Striving to live Aloha - Pine Beach, New Jersey
October 2019

April 25, 2020

Q. I have a waffle iron from the 1960s. The plates seemed dirty so I thought oven cleaner might help. Now I find after they have dried, there is white residue that after rinsing seems to be gone but comes back once the waffle plate dries.

waffle iron damaged by oven cleaner 32537-1b   waffle iron damaged by oven cleaner 32537-1a   waffle iron damaged by oven cleaner 32537-1c  

Is there anything that can be done to get this off and restore for use?

Jules Goodman
- Third Lake Illinois USA

A. Hi Jules. Threads 34157 and 41066 describe & illustrate the use of cream of tartar and other approaches to restore aluminum damaged by dishwashers. It sounds like a lot of work but not impossible to clean these waffle iron plates that way. Good luck!


pic of Ted Mooney
Ted Mooney, P.E. RET
Striving to live Aloha - Pine Beach, New Jersey
April 2020

thumbs up sign Thanks

Jules Goodman
- Third Lake, Illinois USA
April 26, 2020

Belling oven front ruined by oven pride cleaner

Q. Hi am so sad - I cleaned the interior of my belling range oven with OVENPRIDE and unfortunately accidentally got some on the exterior which has spoilt the original silver finish -is there anything I can do? -- maybe respray it? Paint over it? HELP!!

Janice evans
- Nottingham, england
November 1, 2020

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