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How to clean the glass door of a wood stove

Updated April 17, 2017

Glass doors can be a beautiful addition to a fireplace, but they do require maintenance. When these doors become covered in a smoky haze, it might be an indication that fires are burning at a lower temperature. To get the doors clean and keep the fire burning bright, gather the proper tools and add a little elbow grease.

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  1. Collect a couple of sheets of old newspaper and wad them into a ball. Dip the ball into a container of warm water to moisten it. Next, collect some cooled ash onto the wet paper. Apply the ash to the door in a circular, overlapping pattern. Continue moistening and dipping into the ash as needed. The soot will be removed without much effort.

  2. To remove crusty, baked-on residue, lay a new razor blade flat against the surface of the glass. Begin scraping the areas that are covered with heavy build-up. Remember to keep the blade flat, to avoid scratching the glass.

  3. Mix 1 tbsp of dish soap into 1 cup of vinegar. Apply the mixture to the glass with old newspaper or a clean rag. The soap loosens the soot while the vinegar leaves the glass sparkling.

  4. Throw a handful of table salt onto the wood before lighting the fire. This not only loosens the soot on doors but helps to reduce the deposit inside the firebox.

  5. Use aerosol oven cleaner, an inexpensive choice that allows a user to simply wipe off the loosened grime. Before spraying, cover the area in paper or old towels. Cleaners can contain heavy lye, which will remove the paint or finish from your floors, fireplace and walls. Spray the cleaner onto the cooled glass and leave for five to15 minutes. Then wipe with old newspaper; the glass will be restored to like-new condition.

  6. Search for speciality glass door cleaners containing silicone. They come in a cream consistency and are applied with an old rag, before buffing off. They are effective at removing soot and leave behind a protective silicone layer that cuts down on future build-up.

  7. Obtain speciality "erasers: made of non-toxic, natural rubber, which are effective at removing light soot. After rinsing and being left to dry, they can be used multiple times.

  8. Warning

    Safety is the most important consideration when burning a fire inside your home. Unfortunately, if wood is not dry and seasoned properly, soot and creosote can accumulate in your chimney and on the surface of the doors, increasing the risk of a chimney fire. Burning hot fires will help decrease the dangerous build-up and make cleanup easier. If glass continues to accumulate excessive soot, research proper operating temperatures and procedures for managing air flow.

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Things You'll Need

  • Newspaper
  • Vinegar
  • Razor blade

About the Author

Macy McDonald has been writing and editing professionally since 2002. Her knowledge of home, garden, and travel topics led her to begin writing for Demand Studios in 2009 while continuing to provide private clients with marketing, technical and promotional copy. She is currently working towards completing her degree in communications.

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