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How to Clean a Microwave After a Fire

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Written by:

Updated 6:09 pm
Difficulty Simple
Steps 4
Time Required 30 minutes or so
Tools Needed

If you recently experienced a real kitchen disaster, you may wonder how to clean a microwave after a fire. The best microwaves may be of exceptional quality, but they cannot normally resist the ravages of fire. Additionally, you might want to know how to fix a microwave door hinge, if it’s been affected by a fire. Keep reading to learn how to get your microwave oven back in tiptop shape after it has been exposed to flames.


  • To clean a microwave after fire, start by pouring white vinegar into a microwave-safe bowl along with a cup of water.
  • Microwave on high for several minutes until boiling, leave the mixture inside the oven cavity for 20 minutes, and use a dry cloth or paper towel to wipe and clean the microwave.
  • If you have stubborn soot stains or a lingering smoke smell, apply acetone nail polish remover before repeating the above process.

Should You Just Get a New Microwave After a Fire?

Not necessarily. Many microwaves will receive only cosmetic damage after being exposed to fire, so it will be financially acceptable to simply clean the microwave and continue using it. If the fire was simply too severe and the microwave was damaged, you may want to learn how to dispose of an old microwave. Alternatively, if you simply want to replace it, then learn where to donate a microwave.

For more great guides, check out what a magnetron does in a microwave and learn about useful microwave oven cooking accessories.

Insider Tip

Depending on the severity of the fire and damage to the microwave, you may need to repeat the cleaning process numerous times.

How to Clean a Microwave Oven After a Fire

Tools Needed: Microwave-safe bowl, white vinegar, sturdy sponges, rubber gloves, clean dishtowels

There is no reason why a kitchen fire should put your microwave down for the count. Here is what you should do to clean that appliance.

STEP 1 Prepare Your Cleaning Solution

  1. Gather all of your various tools and cleaning ingredients.
  2. Pour the vinegar into a microwave-safe container along with a cup of water.
  3. Don rubber gloves and other appropriate pieces of safety gear.

STEP 2 Microwave the Vinegar Mixture

  1. Place the vinegar cleaning solution inside of the microwave and heat it on high for several minutes, allowing it to boil.
  2. Leave the vinegar and water mixture inside the closed microwave for 15 to 20 minutes or so, to allow steam to travel throughout the interior.

STEP 3Clean the Interior

  1. Carefully remove the bowl from the microwave with your rubber gloves on to avoid residual heat.
  2. Use sturdy sponges dipped in the vinegar mixture to clean both the interior and the exterior of the microwave, vigorously scrubbing any burn marks or other fire-related damage.
  3. Don’t forget about the handle and door, in case you are wondering how to clean a microwave glass door.

STEP 4 Wipe and Dry

  1. Use damp and clean cloths to wipe down and dry the microwave.
  2. Leave the door open for 24 hours to dry the interior.
  3. If you still notice soot stains, repeat the process.
  4. You can also get rid of soot stains with pure acetone nail polish remover.


How to get rid of smoke smells out of a microwave?

Smoky smells are annoying. To get rid of a smoke smell or any unpleasant odor from a microwave, you can use a variety of cleaning methods, including cleaning with warm vinegar.

How to prevent a smelly microwave?

You can eliminate a smoke smell or other types of smells by cleaning the oven cavity with a bowl of water and baking soda. You can also use a mixture of water and white vinegar, with hot water or warm water working best.

What are the safety precautions for using a microwave?

Do not place metal or other unsafe items inside of a microwave and be sure to read the instructions before use.

STAT: In 1945, the heating effect of a high-power microwave beam was accidentally discovered by Percy Spencer, an American self-taught engineer from Howland, Maine. (source)

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