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Cleaning A Microwave: How To & Tips

Posted By Tipnut On April 14, 2011 @ 11:14 am In Kitchen | 50 Comments

Dried, crusty insides of a microwave are voila! a problem no more with these easy methods…and they work no matter how long it’s been since you last cleaned it ;).

How you do it:

Lemons & SpongesPlace a bowl of water inside (with a non-metal object such as a wooden spoon or stir stick in the water*) and heat for 3 – 5 minutes, depending how hard the crud is really stuck on.

When it stops heating, keep the door closed to give the moisture and steam the heated bowl of water generated to have time to work.

Remove bowl (careful, it’s hot) and take a moist, warm cloth to the inside walls of the appliance. The crud bits should wipe off easily.


  • Add a couple teaspoons of baking soda to a bowl of water and follow same process as above. The added baking soda will act as a deodorizer. If you’re brave, you can use the hot baking soda water to scrub, but be careful–it is HOT water. Use a thick sponge and make sure to keep water away from your fingertips. You could also add a splash or two of cold water to bring the temperature down.

You can also try:

  • Mix 1/4 cup of vinegar and 1 cup of water in a bowl and follow the same procedure as above. The vinegar also acts as a freshener and deodorizer. You can also use this water when wiping down, but again–the water is very hot. Be careful.

Another option:

  • Soak a thick sponge with vinegar and water (you can also use a hand towel instead of a sponge), set heat on high for 3 minutes. Let it sit closed for a few minutes once heating is done–allows moisture and steam to work into all the crust bits and splatters. Open appliance and use the sponge to wipe down insides. The sponge will be hot, so wear rubber gloves to help protect your skin from the heat.


  • You can throw a few slices of lemon in a bowl of hot water and then heat as above. This will help freshen things up as well.

Try it, I’m sure you’ll find keeping the inside of this appliance sparkling has never been easier ;).

*ETA: Read comment section below. Water by itself can ‘superheat’ and cause serious burns by erupting.

Removing Scorch Marks

*First published June 13th, 2007 and moved to this page for better organization

Kitty sent in this note:

I have successfully removed a scorch from the wall of my brand-new microwave!

It needs a 3 part approach:

  • try one of those magic eraser sponges.
  • then use toothpaste on an old tooth brush. You’ll need a lot of scrubbing with both of them to even lighten the scorch.

then, what worked the best:

  • take a paper towel and fold it into a square a little bigger than your scorch. Wet it with bleach (like clorox). Use full strength. No need for it to be dripping, just wet. Then press it against your scorch and leave it there a few hours. It will stick to the side of the oven just fine. (and come off later just fine). Check it from time to time.

My popcorn scorch took 9 hours to completely fade away, but it did go away!

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