How to Use Vegetable Oil to Polish Your Range Hood

When you walk into your kitchen, which spot is usually the dirtiest of them all? For anyone who owns a range hood, that’s probably the answer. While it’s doing its job by extracting smoke and odors from your kitchen, your gas stove’s range hood — no matter how well-built — can become dirty extremely quickly. A lot of people skip over cleaning the range hood simply because it’s out of the way and draws a lot less attention than spots like the countertops. After weeks or even months without cleaning, your range hood may get a dull, grimy, and greasy look that’ll totally ruin the clean and tidy aesthetic of your kitchen.

The fix for this might be quite surprising. Instead of using chemical cleaners or other fancy solutions, vegetable oil can do wonders. Add a few droplets to a clean, dry cloth, then wipe down the surface of the range hood. In just a couple of wipes, the hood should be clean.

How does vegetable oil take out grime and dust?

person working with range hood

Using vegetable oil to take out the stubborn grime on your range hood might seem counterproductive at first. After all, cooking oil fumes are a big part of what your range hood is sucking up to begin with! However, there’s a scientific explanation for this handy trick, summed up nicely by the phrase “like dissolves like.”

The grimy layer that accumulates on range hoods is primarily a mix of grease and dust particles that have clumped together over time. Since vegetable oil is lipid-based, it can naturally dissolve other lipids, such as the grease that accumulates on the hood. When you apply a bit of vegetable oil to the range hood, it works to dissolve those greasy particles and forms a coating around the grime to help loosen it from the surface.

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Cleaning with vegetable oil holds one extra secret benefit, too. If your range hood is made of stainless steel, using cooking oil can actually restore its shine. Just as you’d season a cast iron pan with oil to protect it, the same principle applies to your range hood. The oil creates a shiny, protective layer that not only enhances its appearance but also shields it against future dirt, grime, and even fingerprints.

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