induction stain w carbon steele wok

bonesodaJuly 16, 2012


I did a bit of stir fry for the first time on the wok and i am still learning so cannot comment on it.

But after cooking to my shock the wok left a hazy ring underneath it on the glass surface (induction cooktop). I usually clean the cooktop with soapy water and that's it. The stain is not getting out.

The wok is a carbon steele very thin and is induction compatible i am wondering if i shouldn't use the wok or its just the stain is created by very high heat i was using boost as well.

Any recommendations on how to get the mirror finish back without scratching the surface>??

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Cooktop cleaner. I use Weiman's. You may need to apply a bit of elbow grease, but you certainly won't have to use a razor blade scraper. I've owned the same bottle of cooktop cleaner for years since I only use it every month or two. The carbon steel and high heat are fine.

    Bookmark   July 16, 2012 at 4:51PM
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I've used Cerama Bryte, both their cooktop cleaner and yellow cleaning pads, to get off the sort of haze you describe. I believe the E'lux manual suggested Cerama Bryte, because I'd never heard of it. Anyway, it seems to work well for the sorts of stains that don't just wipe up with a cloth.

    Bookmark   July 17, 2012 at 1:36AM
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thanks chac mool and jxbrown. I will have to invest in these then... i hate looking at the haze!!!

I wonder where i can buy these in canada one vs the other...

    Bookmark   July 17, 2012 at 2:20PM
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The stain is not from the high heat. Actually, it is not a stain. It comes from rubbing the pan across the ceram surface.

Was this a new wok? You might have had a deposit of some kind on the carbon steel bottom. It has been awhile since I had a new wok, but I kind of recall them coming with a protective, food safe coating that had to be scrubbed off before use. If there was still some on the pan, it might have rubbed or melted off. Cerama Bryte and similar products should clean it off the cooking surface. If you can feel the "stain" with your finger tips, you want to get a razor blade to scrape it down and then use the ceram cleaner product.

The other possibility that occurs to me is that shaking the pan while cooking might have rubbed a bit of metal oxide off the bottom of the pan. Similar things happen on radiant-burner ceram cooktops as well as porcelain sinks when bare carbon steel, aluminum and cooper pans are dragged across their surfaces. It is kind of like dragging a silver crayon. Again, cleansers like Cerama Bryte will probably clean it off. Some people avoid this problem with induction cooktops by placing a paper towel or piece of parchment paper beneath the wok while cooking. (Something you can do with induction burners that you cannot do with radiant burners). The paper may scorch if your pan gets very hot, but the paper keeps the pan from rubbing on the ceram. This trick also works to keep rough-sufaced uncoated cast iron from scratch the sooktop surface.

    Bookmark   July 17, 2012 at 2:39PM
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I think Lowes, here in Oregon, carried the Cerama Bryte stuff (you'll need pads and the cream cooktop cleaner).

When I put paper towels under my pan, and had the hob on boost, they scorched. This left a smokey haze on my cooktop that I could not feel. So the thing with paper towels under pans on induction is cool and all, but it works better with less-than boost heat and for relatively short periods. You may not be able to start a fire, but you can make a mess.

    Bookmark   July 17, 2012 at 3:00PM
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I agree with chac_mool, do NOT use paper under a pan with high heat. It will scorch or char, or even catch fire. I had a paper towel under a pot on high which dissolved into burnt flakes. This made a much worse mess than just the pan.


    Bookmark   July 17, 2012 at 3:20PM
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The same warning goes for silicon pads. They will melt with high heat and make a big globby mess.

    Bookmark   July 17, 2012 at 4:14PM
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thanks JWVideo... i will get it cleaned.

I actually used paper towel and a towel and they both scorched for me so i wont be using them.

i have the cleaning of the top down to a science but the haze is a new hurdle!!!

    Bookmark   July 17, 2012 at 5:35PM
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I also had the "film" happen with the Ikea wok, which is listed as usable on induction. I will try some Ceramabrite. Thanks.

    Bookmark   July 17, 2012 at 7:34PM
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If it is within the first year or within the service agreement period(warranty), I would call the dealer.

    Bookmark   July 17, 2012 at 8:17PM
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If it is within the first year or within the service agreement period(warranty), I would call the dealer.

    Bookmark   July 17, 2012 at 8:18PM
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It's soap or cleaning product residue that's been cooked on by the high heat. You'll find that it occurs after you've cooked with high heat or with low heat for extended periods. Otherwise, it will just slowly appear. It will buff right off with cooktop cleaner sold for conventional glass top ranges. Use a dollop about the size of a quarter (or a loonie!) Any brand that you can find should work just fine. I apply mine with a clean dishcloth and just rub until the haze is gone. My cooktop came with a little sample bottle which was enough for the first year or so! I suppose that if you used the cooktop cleaner for routine daily cleaning you would never have any haze, but life is much too short for that.

There is no need for paper towels, silicone pads, etc. I'm very careless and haven't scratched my cooktop yet even though it's almost 7 years old.

    Bookmark   July 17, 2012 at 10:53PM
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If you are using very high heat with induction (which is to say, heating your pan over the proverbial Fahrenheit 451), then the paper "trick" will be a mess as weedmeister, chac-mool and jadeite correctly point out and as jsmith's experience bears out. Liekwise, going to pan heat over 450 degrees is definitely asking for trouble when using silicon cooking disks mats, cut-outs, etc. Even when the coktop is not hot, the pan certainly will be.

Recognizing those limitations, the point about carelessness and not marring the coopktop surface seems to be true for some folks and not others, at leaat in my experience. I've got friends who use old Lodge cast iron pans (the ones with casting rings on the bottom) on radiant-electric cooktops. Some of them have have worn away the surface burner makings. Others have done the same thing and their cooktops look showroom new. My suspicion is that that the folks with the pristine cooktops rarely shook or slid their pans around on the cooktop. Some say they do and some say they do not. So far, I have not found a correlation to cooktop surface marring.

Can you shed any further light on this?

    Bookmark   July 18, 2012 at 2:18AM
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Ok, Jmith, here goes. A few months ago I noticed a dulling of my hob, bosch ind., in a quarter circle pattern. I used normal cleaning and dont have cerambrite or ceram cleaner. It is still there. I dont know how it got there. I do tend to forget about it.

Also a few months ago the appliance service guy was here looking at my fridge. I asked him to look at the smudgie on the hob. He quickly said, oh, its cosmetic, why dont you just get a new glass top? I said, nah (brilliant of me).

I have 4 years of ext. warranty beginning middle of 2011. I am not too worried. Performance is unaffected. I dont know how or what happened. I dont cook much and dont use high heat except for boiling and a bit of searing, but not for long periods of time.

I fully expect this cooker to sear for long lengths of time, generally cook at high heat, etc., that's what it's for. I would like to know what happened-if I replace the top, will it happen again, and why.

I dont know if we have the same malady, but i sure hope yours wipes off with the right cleaner.

I am happy for you. You wrote a wonderful appraisal of your cooktop. Special because you are an experienced pro-and your opinion counts.

    Bookmark   July 19, 2012 at 3:28AM
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All this talk about paper toweling scorching -- I really don't get it when people say that only the pan gets hot, not the burner. Not so true....

My burners get hot,hence the "hot" indicator comes on after cooking -- they may not stay hot as long as a normal electric burner but I sure as heck wouldn't put my hand on it after removing a pan!!

    Bookmark   July 19, 2012 at 10:00AM
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Okay, infelicitous choice of words. Nobody really meant to say or suggest that induction cooktops cannot get too hot to touch.

And, in point of fact, it is not the induction burner that gets really hot but, rather, the ceramic/glass surface undeneath the pan.

What we are trying to express is the difference between radiant and coil burners that come on and radiate a lot of heat into the pan versus an induction burner that induces heat in the pan. Radiant and coil burners work by cycling on and off to produce an average level of heat. When they are in the "on" part of the cycle, they might as well be an open flame. That's why you can't put a paper towel or parchment or baking mat over them. Because Induction is generating heat in the pan rather than cycling the equivalent of an open flame, you do not have the same problem. As long as the pan is not heated over Fahrenheit 451, the pan cannot radiate enough heat to ignite the paper or melt the baking mat.

Clearly, the pan can radiate heat back into the cooktop and nobody considering induction should think otherwise. Remove a hot pan pan and the cooking surface will still be warm or hot, and maybe too hot to touch depending on how hot the pan was. Put your hot pan on a ceramic pad or metal trivet and it can get hot, too. But "too hot to touch" is often a good deal less hot than the ignition point of paper. Which is why you can use paper with induction when you cannot do so with a radiant electric cooktop.

That clear enough now?

    Bookmark   July 19, 2012 at 5:55PM
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@JWVideo: My kitchen is new and i am a bit anal about keeping it "gleaming" so a little haze is very irritating. I did purchase crema brite i think it was fairly cheap 9 bucks for a litre of liquid, i have not tried it yet but will soon.

Thanks for the kind words. I think people in profession and enthusiasts and foodies and general home cooks cook differently we just use it as a "tool" but other people can appreciate and tweak it more.

I must say the induction is always the centre of talk in my kitchen when someone new comes over and i feel like a kid with a new toy.

    Bookmark   July 20, 2012 at 12:02AM
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JW video, I would agree with you about the not moving the pans around. I must admit, I am careful with moving my mineral steel pans on my cooktop, and do so minimally (to avoid scratches). That said, I'm not a "shaker" cook!

    Bookmark   July 21, 2012 at 10:54PM
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Jxbrown, I bought the Weiman's yesterday with the scrubbing pads. It took a lit of work to get the front large burner clean which is the most used, but the Ikea wok haze removed very easily. Thank you for the recommendation. It looks like brand new. I really had not realized how much haze had accumulated.

    Bookmark   August 5, 2012 at 8:00AM
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Update on the stain... i bought Ceramabrite from Home depot and i just got to clean it and the stain is gone... it took a few cleanings i was using paper town and Ceramabrite. I had to do it 4-5 times to get the stain out COMPLETELY.

Lesson learnt, next time i have the stain i will clean it the same day with Ceramabrite.

I also found that Ceramabrite and the weimans cooktop cleaners to be available at Walmart & lowes. The Ceramabrite bottle is huge for the same price.

Thanks for the recommendations.


    Bookmark   August 13, 2012 at 7:10PM
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Perhaps for the 451F crowd, silicon pads should be replaced by pads cut from the ceramic fiber cloth sold at plumbing supply stores to protect things from torch use in confined spaces. Such an application would require some investigation to ensure that particles or fibers weren't likely to detach.

Dedicated concave wok hobs set the pan slightly above the ceram by using a metal ring at the top and having the wok radius of curvature fit the hob radius of curvature.


    Bookmark   August 13, 2012 at 10:33PM
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