How to Use an Oven Liner to Keep Your Oven Clean

Oven liners also known as oven protection sheets offer a solution for baked on food spills and drips. Cleaning the oven is a tough task but keeping it spotless is practically impossible. One of the biggest culprits for a dirty oven is food drips and crumbs that collect in the bottom of your oven and become baked on grime.

This is where oven liners come in. Oven liners also known as oven sheets are mats that are placed near the bottom of the oven when cooking to catch any falling food. These liners can be easily removed and cleaned, helping to keep your oven cleaner for longer. In this blog, we look at what oven liners are made of, how to use oven sheets and what problems you may run into when using oven liners for fan ovens.

pizza in oven dripping onto oven liner at bottom of oven

What is an oven liner?

Oven mats or liners are usually made of food-grade silicone, which is non-stick and heat-tolerant. Many liners also have a Teflon coating and are labelled ‘PTFE-coated’. Non-stick oven liners are very effective. The maximum temperature varies by manufacturer, but they are usually safe up to 260C (500F).

Important: Do not use the liners above their maximum temperatures. This can cause dangerous fumes to be released.

Make sure you buy an oven mat and not a silicone baking mat. These thinner mats are designed to be used at the bottom of cake tins in place of greaseproof paper and are not heavy duty enough to catch drips in hot ovens. There are many different supermarkets that stock oven liners, some of which can even be purchased online. If you are looking for a non-stick oven liner, you can go into a store or simply search online for oven liners Tesco, oven liners B&M, oven liner Asda or oven liners Wilko to find the nearest shop to you that sells them.

How to Use Oven Liner Mats

It’s best to always use oven protector sheets before cooking. You should always trim the oven liner with kitchen scissors to fit your oven. Make sure there is a gap of one inch around the edges to ensure good air flow.

Some liners may be placed on the base of the oven unless your model has a heating element at the bottom, which may melt the liner. In that case, place the oven mat on the lower shelf at least one inch from the bottom. Ensure that no air vents are covered.

Most liners are dishwasher-safe, or you can wash them in warm, soapy water. Oven liners are fantastic oven protectors.

Should you line the bottom of your oven?

Lining the bottom of your oven depends on the type of oven you have, you should check to see if it is a fan, electric or gas oven with floor heating. In this case lining the bottom of the oven can cause heat to be trapped and cause damages, if not then it is safe to line it with protective oven lining to stop spillages.

One of the biggest problems with oven liners is them melting and sticking to the bottom of the oven. This happens when the oven’s heating element is underneath the oven floor. These ovens heat up from below and this high, direct heat is too much for oven mats to stand.

Important: Before you use an oven mat, always check the manual to ensure your oven doesn’t have a hidden bottom heating element. It is very difficult and potentially expensive to remove a liner that has stuck to your oven base. Some liner types come on their own shelf and can be used in bottom-heated ovens.

Self-Cleaning Mode

Always remove the oven liner before starting an oven’s self-cleaning programme. The high heat can degrade the mat and its coating may damage your oven.

Using Aluminium Foil

We often hear of people using a sheet of aluminium foil as an oven liner. However, we don’t recommend this on the bottom of ovens. Aluminium foil can easily burn and melt, and its lightweight nature means it flaps about in fan ovens. However, you could consider lining a baking tray with foil and use this on the bottom shelf.

Oven Liner Frequently Asked Questions

What can I line my oven with to catch spills?

You can line the bottom of your oven with aluminium foil or an oven liner mat to catch spills and drips. Both options are heat-resistant and can be easily removed and replaced as needed, making cleaning the bottom of the oven easier. However, avoid covering the entire oven surface with foil, as it can restrict airflow and affect cooking performance. Instead, place foil or a liner on the bottom rack beneath the food you are cooking to catch any spills. As always, remember to follow the manufacturer’s instructions for your specific oven model.

Are oven liners safe?

Oven sheets are generally considered safe when used properly. They are typically made from materials such as PTFE (polytetrafluoroethylene) or silicone, both of which are heat-resistant and non-toxic when exposed to normal cooking temperatures. However, it is important to follow the oven liner guidelines for safety.

  1. Place the liner also known as an oven protection sheet on the bottom rack of the oven, not directly on the oven floor. This will allow correct airflow and prevent interference with heating elements.
  2. Trim the liner to fit your oven properly, ensuring it doesn’t obstruct vents or touch the oven walls.
  3. Make sure the oven liner is rated for the temperatures your oven reaches during cooking. Most liners are safe up to 500°F (260°C), but it’s essential to check the manufacturer’s recommendations.
  4. Regularly clean the oven liner according to the manufacturer’s instructions to prevent the buildup of food particles and grease.
  5. Keep an eye on the liner for signs of wear or damage. If it becomes excessively worn or damaged, replace it promptly to avoid potential hazards.

Where do you put an oven liner in an electric oven?

In an electric oven, place the oven liner on the bottom rack, beneath the food you are cooking, but not directly on the floor of the oven. You can buy oven liners for bottom of electric oven from homeware stores such as B&M and Dunelm.

Can you put an oven liner in a gas oven?

Similar to an electric oven, when using an oven liner mat in a gas oven, place it on a low oven rack but not directly on the bottom of the oven. This will allow the liner to catch any food debris but still allow the oven to function correctly. If you don’t want to use an oven liner in a gas oven, then instead use an old baking tray to catch spills.

Can you use oven liners in a fan oven?

Some thin oven mats can flap in fan ovens and even float out when you open the door. Some users recommend weighing them down with baking cutters on the corners, but the best advice is simply to buy a heavy-duty liner. The best oven liners for fan ovens are typically the extra thick heavy duty style sheets, which can be ordered on Amazon.

Are oven liners a good idea?

Yes, but you should check whether your oven has floor-based heating like some electric ovens have. In this case an oven liner can trap the heat and become damaged by the build-up of temperatures. But for most ovens it can save on cleaning, especially when used often by multiple people.

What are the best Oven Lining Sheets?

The best oven lining sheets should be:

  • Heavy duty to not flap about in an oven
  • Large enough that it can be cut to size for your oven
  • Washable
  • Temperature resistant
  • Non stick

Deep Oven Cleaning

No matter how careful you are, your oven is bound to get dirty and grimy over time. When this happens, you can try and clean it yourself, or call in the professionals!

Ovenclean specialists can clean any oven and hob with our no-added caustic cleaning system. Get your oven sparkling clean and good-as-new. Call us today, on 0800 840 7127 or complete our online form for your free quote.

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