Christmas is the time of year that your oven gets its biggest workout ever! Not only will it be expected to run for many hours, it’ll also be crammed packed with meat and all the trimmings that accompany a festive feast.
With the increase in ready meals, microwave usage and takeaways, many people only use their ovens for heating up food instead of actually cooking from scratch. So, when it comes to the big day, they may have not used their oven for a while and may not be aware whether it’s functioning properly or not.
To avoid your oven breaking down and giving you a meltdown at the same time, here are some tips that’ll prevent your Christmas feast becoming a disaster…
- Give it a good clean
Did you know that one of the most common reasons for a breakdown of your oven is excessive dirt and grease? Excess grease can cause all sorts of problems, such as not getting the oven temperature high enough, blockage of fans and seizing up of control buttons.
Don’t leave it to chance – give it a really good clean about 3-4 weeks before the big day. You can do this thoroughly and cheaply by using a mixture of baking soda and water.
Remove all the racks and trays first and then mix the baking soda and water into a paste. Spread it all over the inside of your oven and leave it overnight to do its magic.
The following day, put some vinegar into a spray bottle and spray over the baking soda paste. It’ll foam up initially, which will help lift the grime and dirt from the surfaces of the inside of the oven. Then simply remove the vinegar and baking soda mixture with a damp cloth.
Clean all the knobs and buttons thoroughly and check that they’re all working correctly.
- Do a test run
Your oven may not have been used for a while and most proabably won’t have run continuously for hours on end, as it will be expected to over the festive period.
It’s always prudent to do a ‘test run’ before the big day to ensure that it’s behaving itself and it’ll be able to stand up to the rigors of strenuous use when you need it to. If, for any reason you’re not sure that it’s running correctly, you’ve still got enough time to get an expert in to solve your problem.
Prevention is better than cure, so a bit of time taken to check out your Christmas Day ‘workhorse’ beforehand is certainly worth it!
- Check out your tin foil placement
One of the most common reasons why ovens ‘break down’ or don’t function properly on Christmas Day is because the tin foil covering your turkey has been blown off by the circulating air and sticks to the fan. This will stop the fan from working and eventually, the oven will shut down as it will consider it a hazard.
We’ve known many people that’ve had their oven shut down right in the middle of cooking their turkey. And most of the time, it takes them hours to eventually figure out why!
So the moral is, keep your tin foil where it should be – on the turkey! By keeping it well secured, you’ll avoid the embarrassment of a half cooked turkey, a disastrous dinner and very hungry guests!
- If it really breaks down on Christmas Day
The thought of our oven breaking down on Christmas Day when we’ve got 8 hungry guests round the table, full of anticipation, sends panic and despair through the majority of us! If this happens – don’t despair! Our best advice would be to have a VERY LARGE swig of your Christmas tipple, get out the gas barbecue and cook your turkey in it. It takes about the same amount of time as it would in the oven. And you could transfer your vegetables to the hob to cook instead.
So, in conclusion – the moral of the story is ‘don’t leave it to chance’ on the big day! Give your oven some tender loving care and a test run well in advance of the 25th December. Love your oven and your oven will love you back!
We are Power Point – Gloucestershire’s Domestic Appliance Specialists for Domestic Appliance Repairs, Spares and Sales. For more information, visit our website www.powerpointglos.co.uk or give us a call on 01452 730 874. We wish you a Merry Christmas and Happy Cooking!