Everyone knows about ovens. You find them in the kitchen, they get hot, you put things in them, the heat cooks food, and you turn them off – a relatively simple process. However, despite the ubiquity of ovens, many commercially available units come with technology most of us don't understand. From convection heat to catalytic liners, this technology comes replete with complex terminology. Luckily, understanding how a catalytic oven liner works proves relatively simple.

Modern design kitchen
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Ovens with catalytic liners are often simply called catalytic ovens.

Catalytic Technology

Catalytic technology appears in numerous applications and can mean a number of different things. The word "catalytic" arises from "catalyst," or something that causes or increases the rate of a chemical reaction. For instance, a catalytic stove traps smoke that rises from fire. By trapping the smoke, the catalytic device serves as a catalyst for the high temperatures within the stove, burning all the solid particles within the smoke. Catalytic oven liners work in a similar way. Catalytic technology also appears in numerous industrial settings.

Catalytic Liners

Catalytic liners differ slightly from oven to oven. They may cover the sides, back or top of an oven or all of these surfaces at the same time. Manufacturers generally make catalytic liners from ceramic so they can resist the extreme temperatures within ovens. Two basic types of catalytic oven liners exist, those you can remove and replace and those that you cannot remove and replace. Replaceable liners allow you to change your liner without purchasing a new oven.

What They Do

Catalytic oven liners work in an incredibly simply way. They contain no moving parts, consisting of nothing more than ceramic liners placed on the walls of an oven. Basically, catalytic liners catch food spills. If a dish in the oven bubbles as it heats, splattering grease, oil and other substances up and out into the oven, these materials land on the catalytic liner rather than the wall of the oven. This design prevents food from staining the inside of your oven and facilitates the cleaning process.

Catalytic Liners and Oven Cleaning

Catalytic liners exist primarily to help with oven cleaning. The notion of the catalyst enters the fray here because catalytic liners trap grease and similar materials so that ovens can burn them. When you run an oven at 200 degrees Celsius (approximately 392 degrees Fahrenheit) or warmer, the heat incinerates grease, removing it from your oven as a form of cleaning. Without a catalytic liner, grease becomes integrated with the material of your oven wall and requires rigorous cleaning to remove. You can also wipe catalytic liners down with towels or washcloths to remove grease. However, never use soaps, steel wool or other abrasive material on catalytic liners, as it can ruin the material and any laminate on it.