My Oven Smokes! What Am I Doing Wrong?

smoke is coming from the oven

If your oven is showing signs of smoking, then it needs to be addressed. For a start, smoke in the oven can negatively impact the flavour and taste of your food, and you don’t want to waste a good meal. Secondly, smoke in the oven can be a sign of oven failure or a fire. Smoke coming out of the oven can also have an adverse impact on people (or pets) with respiratory problems as well as creating an uncomfortable atmosphere.

So, if smoke is coming from the oven, check to see if it is one of these possible causes and how to stop it.

Why Is My Oven Smoking?

The oven is new

If you have a brand-new oven, then you will be relieved to hear that a smoking oven is perfectly normal, to begin with. In new ovens, manufacturers cover the heating element in oil. When you switch the oven on for the first few times, the oil burns off creating smoke. You can stop the smoke by setting the oven to a baking temperature for around an hour to burn off the oil.

There’s leftover food in the oven

A common reason for a smoking oven is when leftover food spillages remain in the oven, and they burn onto the surface causing smoke. It is important to regularly clean the walls, roof and shelves of the oven to get rid of any leftover food debris and grease. If cleaning is neglected then the stains will dry and burn and be harder to remove, furthermore, it can emit smoke and even catch fire. The best way to clean an oven is to use a natural agent such as white vinegar, baking soda and water.

It smokes in self-cleaning mode

If your oven has a self-cleaning mode, then smoke appearing is usually food debris that remains in the oven. As the self-cleaning mode uses a high heat, it can cause leftover food to burn and cause smoke. You should let your oven cool down and then wipe away any debris and start a new self-clean cycle.

You’ve just cleaned the oven

If you have used an oven cleaning solvent to clean your appliance and you have turned the oven on, then it is likely the residue of the chemical is burning off and creating smoke. As soon as you spot this, turn off the oven immediately to prevent you and others from inhaling chemical fumes. Once the oven is cool, clean it thoroughly with a damp cloth.

Remember, if your oven has a self-clean function, you shouldn’t use a chemical solvent to clean your oven as it can cause damage to the enamel.

Faulty heating element

If your oven is still smoking, despite there being no residue in the oven, then it may be due to a faulty heating element. Before failing, a heating element is likely to emit a buzzing sound and smoke. You can check the heating element by turning it off and one. The element at the bottom of the oven in ‘bake’ mode should glow red, and the element at the top should glow red in ‘broil’ mode. If they do not, then the heating element probably needs replacing.

High gas pressure

If you have a gas oven, then excessive pressure can cause more smoke. If the flame reaches higher than the oven racks, then the gas pressure is too high. You can call a team such as Just Fixed to correct the conversion and reduce the gas pressure for you.

Top tips to reduce smoke in your oven

  • Use a non-stick oven mat to catch food debris
  • Clean your oven regularly using a damp cloth
  • Ensure there are at least three inches from the heating element and food
  • Conduct a self-clean less than five times a year
  • Conduct a monthly clean of the oven racks.