With their sleek appearance and easy cleanup, glass stove tops are a popular choice. Compared to coil electric stoves, glass stove tops heat quickly and cook evenly – but they are not without their flaws! Due to their fragile nature, they are prone to cracking. These cracks can be very hazardous and may even render your stove unusable.
The following tips will help you understand why glass top stoves crack and how to avoid such a headache.
Please note that it is NOT safe to use a cracked stove! Even minor cracks increase the risk of electrocution. You may be able to replace the glass-ceramic surface for minor cracks, but larger cracks will require a whole new cooktop.
Like many glass products, the two main culprits for damage that we see are impacts and extreme temperatures. Understanding these risk factors will help you practice proper caution in the kitchen and keep your stove top crack-free.
- Glass-ceramic stove tops are durable, but not immune to the impact of heavy objects. Dropping or banging a heavy object on the surface will likely cause damage.
- When dragged across the glass surface, rough pots and pans create micro-scratches. When they accumulate over time, they can weaken the integrity of the glass to the point of cracking.
- Certain cookware sustains heat longer. This extended heat exposure can create enough stress to crack the glass.
- Food that has been cooked onto the surface can create hot spots that cause cracking. A similar effect occurs when substances, such as enameled cookware or plastic utensils, melt onto the glass.
- Thermal shock occurs when cool glass is exposed to sudden heat. A common cause of cracks is when hot pots are placed onto a cold glass surface. The damage is immediate and often extensive.
Now that you know the most common reasons that glass top stoves crack, here’s how you can prevent damage:
- Use the Proper Cookware
Use lightweight cookware with smooth, flat bottoms. Your best bet is pots and pans made from stainless steel or heavy-duty aluminum.
Cookware to avoid:
- Copper and enameled pots. These often leave behind residue that can build up on your cook top and eventually lead to further damage.
- Cast iron, porcelain and ceramic cookware is heavy and often has a rough bottom, increasing the likelihood of scratches when moved across the glass stove top surface.
- Clean After Each Use
Food spills should be cleaned up as soon as possible. However, to prevent chemical damage or burn hazards, be sure that the cooktop is off and has completely cooled first.
- Do not store heavy objects above your stove, such as glass containers or ceramic dishes that may fall onto the glass.
- Lift pots and pans on and off the stove top, do not slide.
- Keeping the bottom of your pots and pans clean. Also, use caution when moving pots between burners to avoid impact damage.
- Consult your manufacturer’s instructions for maintenance to maximize the life span of your stove.
Although most Glass Doctor® glass experts are not equipped to replace a cracked glass stove top, our local service professionals are available for all your other home, auto and business glass needs. Contact your local Glass Doctor to learn about available services in your area.