How to Clean Tile Backsplash Behind Stove

A kitchen backsplash is an essential functional and decorative element in any kitchen. Tiled backsplashes in particular are popular for their durability, ease of cleaning, and design flexibility. However, the area directly behind the stove tends to get greasier than the rest of the backsplash and requires more frequent cleaning. With the right techniques and cleaning solutions, you can keep your tile backsplash sparkling clean.

Why It’s Important to Clean Behind the Stove

The wall area directly behind the stove gets coated in a layer of sticky grease, oil splatters, food splashes, and dirt over time. This greasy film not only looks unsightly but can also become a haven for bacteria and grime if left unchecked. Here are some key reasons you should make cleaning behind the stove a regular habit:

  • Hygiene: Grease buildup behind the stove provides an ideal breeding ground for bacteria, mold, and other allergens. Regular cleaning helps promote kitchen hygiene.
  • Stain prevention: Letting grease accumulate can lead to stubborn stains that are tricky to remove later. Frequent cleaning prevents staining.
  • Avoid damage: Grease residue left for long can start breaking down grout and even tile glaze. Cleaning helps avoid permanent damage.
  • Look clean: Eliminating grease buildup keeps your backsplash looking shiny and new. This maintains the aesthetic appeal of your kitchen.
  • Easier cleaning: It’s quicker and easier to clean small amounts of grease regularly than tackling a thick gunky layer all at once.

Cleaners and Tools You’ll Need

Having the right cleaning supplies will make the job of cleaning your tile backsplash behind the stove faster and more effective. Here are some must-haves:

All-Purpose Cleaner

An all-purpose cleaner diluted with warm water is ideal for most backsplash cleaning needs. Opt for a grease-cutting formula. Stay away from harsh abrasives.


For tackling stubborn oil buildup, a heavy-duty degreaser is a must. Look for a commercial-grade formula made for dissolving thick grease.

Scrub Brushes

Have a few scrub brushes of varying sizes and bristle styles. Small bristle brushes are great for working into corners and grout lines. Sturdy scrub sponges also come in handy.

Microfiber Cloths

Microfiber cloths are excellent for wiping down tiles without leaving streaks or lint. They’re machine washable and reusable.

Spray Bottle

Use a spray bottle to dispense all-purpose cleaner and water solution onto the tiles for easy cleaning access.

Grout Brush

A small grout brush is useful for scrubbing dirt and grease out of the grout lines between tiles.

Protective Gloves

Wear protective waterproof gloves to keep your hands from getting grimy during scrubbing.

Cleaning Frequency

How often you need to clean your backsplash depends on your cooking habits. If you cook often and use the stove daily, aim to deep clean the backsplash weekly. For moderate use, clean it biweekly or monthly. Minimal stove use requires cleaning every 2-3 months.

Here are some indicators it’s time for a cleaning:

  • Visible grease layer over tiles
  • Oil splatters and food stains
  • Dirt and crumbs in grout lines
  • White haze dulling glazed tiles
  • Unpleasant grimy smell

Getting Ready to Clean

Follow these steps to prep your backsplash for effective cleaning:

  • Clear counter below backsplash so you can fully access the area.
  • Take out removable tiles or inserts if present.
  • Remove any décor, magnets, or art hanging on the backsplash.
  • Fill a bowl halfway with warm water and add a few drops of dish soap. Use this to hand wash any cooking ware nearby.
  • Dry the backsplash tiles using a paper towel. This prevents grease and water mixing into a harder-to-clean film.
  • Mix all-purpose cleaner and warm water in a bucket or spray bottle depending on your cleaning method.
  • Dip clean microfiber cloths in the cleaning solution to keep them ready to use.
  • Pull your hair back and secure any loose clothing.
  • If cleaning at night, turn on overhead kitchen lights for maximum visibility.
  • Optional: Wear goggles to protect eyes from debris and grime during scrubbing.

How to Clean a Tile Backsplash Behind the Stove

Cleaning your backsplash involves getting into all the corners, edges, grout joints, and textures. Follow these steps for a deep, thorough cleaning:

1. Remove Surface Grime

  • Use a damp microfiber cloth to wipe down all accessible tile surfaces behind the stove. This removes surface crumbs, splatters, and loose dirt.
  • Dip the cloth in your all-purpose cleaning solution as needed.
  • Switch to a dry cloth once grease is eliminated so you aren’t just spreading it around.

2. Scrub With Stiff Bristle Brush

  • Use a small stiff bristle brush dipped in the cleaner to scrub all over the tiles. Apply light pressure as you scrub but don’t scratch the tile glaze.
  • Work in a circular motion to help dislodge stuck-on grease and cooked-on food residue.
  • Get into inside edges and corners. Reach as far back behind the stove as comfortably possible.
  • Rinse brush in water if bristles get too greasy.

3. Clean Grout Lines

  • Scrub all grout lines using a small grout brush or toothbrush dipped in cleaning solution.
  • Use an up-and-down motion along each grout line to extract grime.
  • For extra dirty grout, use a diluted bleach cleaning spray after scrubbing. Let it sit briefly before rinsing.

4. Use Degreaser for Stubborn Grease

  • If any oily areas remain after scrubbing with all-purpose cleaner, apply a thick degreaser gel formula.
  • Let the degreaser sit for 5-10 minutes before scrubbing again with a stiff brush.
  • Rinse thoroughly with clean water to avoid residue.

5. Rinse and Dry

  • Once the tiles look grease-free, rinse the entire area with clean water. Use a spray nozzle for easier rinsing.
  • Wipe down with a clean dry microfiber cloth.
  • Check for any remaining shiny or dull patches. Re-clean if needed.
  • Remove washable degreaser residue with vinegar-water solution.

6. Finish Edges and Corners

  • Use a toothbrush dipped in cleaning solution to rigorously clean inside stove edges and tight corners.
  • Use cotton swabs for the narrow crevices where food gunk accumulates.
  • Rinse and dry completely.

Once done, your tile backsplash behind the stove will look sparkling clean again!

Extra Tips and Tricks

  • Use steam from your iron or a garment steamer to soften stuck-on grease before scrubbing.
  • Scrape off chunks of food debris using a plastic pan scraper before wiping tiles.
  • Use undiluted white vinegar and scrub with a toothbrush to dissolve mineral deposits and water stains.
  • Try baking soda paste with just enough water to form a thick paste. Let it sit briefly before scrubbing away grease.
  • Opt for stove backsplash tiles with textured surfaces. Glossy tiles show grease more.
  • Install an overhead kitchen vent hood over the stove. This traps some grease and steam.
  • Apply a silicone or other appropriate tile sealant to protect the grout. Sealed grout resists stains better.
  • Have backsplash tiles installed snug against the wall rather than set away creating a grease-catching ledge.
  • Adjust burner flame size to avoid excessive grease splatters while cooking.

How Often Should You Deep Clean?

Ideally, do a thorough deep cleaning session weekly or every alternate week. Here are some indicators it’s time for a deep cleaning:

  • Dull, greasy layer over tiles despite regular surface wiping
  • Staining and discoloration of grout lines
  • Smoke stains around stove ventilation area
  • Splattered oil reaching upper edges of backsplash
  • Grime visibly collected in grout and crevices
  • Sticky residue when you run your hand over the tiles
  • Unpleasant smells coming from backsplash area

Shoot for deep cleaning your backsplash when you notice two or more of these signs. Don’t wait until grease has baked on for months.

Daily Surface Cleaning

In between deep cleaning sessions, do light daily surface wiping to prevent heavy buildup. Here’s how:

  • Use a microfiber cloth or paper towel dampened with warm water.
  • Wipe the entire backsplash surface once daily after cooking.
  • Focus on wiping food splatters, water droplets, and light grease immediately.
  • Spray vinegar solution and wipe daily for hard water deposits.
  • If grease remains after wiping, use a bit of dish soap on a damp sponge for spot cleaning.
  • Take 30 seconds after each stove use for quick backsplash wipe down.

This quick daily cleaning ensures you’re tackling only light soilage during deep cleaning sessions.

Cleaning Behind Slide-In or Freestanding Stoves

Slide-in and freestanding stoves can be pulled out for easier backsplash access. Here are some tips for cleaning behind them:

  • Carefully pull stove away from the wall several inches.
  • Use microfiber mop to clean the exposed wall area top to bottom.
  • Scrub the gunky sections with a stiff scrub pad or brush.
  • Avoid brushing vigorously near wires or gas lines.
  • Use a vacuum crevice tool to remove chunks of food and dirt in crevices.
  • Scoot the stove completely back against the wall when done.
  • Avoid stressing hoses and cords when pulling out.
  • Have someone support the stove weight as you pull to avoid tipping.

When to Call a Professional

While DIY cleaning should get your tile backsplash shining, some cases may need professional help:

  • Grease stains have discolored or etched grout after years of buildup
  • Mineral deposits or hard water stains not responding to cleaning
  • Mold growth in persistently damp sections
  • Grime buildup in unreachable areas behind fixed stoves
  • Cracked, missing, or broken grout needing repair
  • Damaged tiles that need replacement

A professional backsplash cleaner has powerful cleaning solutions, tools, and expertise to address such issues and thoroughly refresh your backsplash.

How to Keep Your Backsplash Clean Longer

Combine your cleaning regimen with these daily habits to maintain backsplash cleanliness longer:

  • Use stove vent fan whenever cooking to reduce oil splatter.
  • Keep spray bottles of oil and pans tilted away from backsplash when cooking.
  • Cover items to avoid splashes. Or use a splatter screen.
  • Adjust flame so it doesn’t extend past cookware.
  • Wipe spills immediately before they congeal.
  • Remove any oil or food that happens to spill behind the stove.
  • Avoid hanging flammable items like towels on the oven handle.
  • Use back burners more whenever possible.
  • Consider adding a backsplash wall cover guard for problem areas prone to heavy soiling.


A clean backsplash transforms the look and hygiene of your kitchen. By using the right techniques and cleaning effectively behind your stove, you can keep this high-use area looking spotless. Frequent deep cleaning combined with daily surface wiping prevents grime buildup. With some diligent effort, you can maintain a backsplash that sparkles like new for years to come.

Frequently Asked Questions About Cleaning Tile Backsplash Behind Stove

Cleaning tile backsplash behind a stove is an important kitchen cleaning task. Here are answers to some commonly asked questions about the best way to clean a greasy, grimy backsplash.

How do I get baked-on grease off backsplash tiles?

Baked-on grease requires a powerful degreaser. Apply a thick gel degreaser and let it soak for 10-15 minutes. The grease will soften for easier scrubbing. Use a stiff bristle brush and some elbow grease to remove the softened grease residue.

Alternatively, place a grease-cutting dryer sheet on the area and let it sit for 30 minutes before scrubbing away grease. The antioxidants in dryer sheets help dissolve thick, stubborn grease.

What is the best homemade cleaner for backsplash tiles?

An effective homemade all-purpose cleaner combines:

  • 1/4 cup white vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon baking soda
  • 1 tablespoon blue Dawn dish soap
  • Warm water

Mix the ingredients, adding just enough water to form a non-drip consistency. Apply to backsplash and scrub before rinsing. The vinegar cuts grease, baking soda deodorizes, and dish soap lifts dirt.

How do I get food splatter stains off a backsplash?

For cooked-on food splatters like tomato sauce or oil, use a baking soda paste. Make a paste with 3 parts baking soda to 1 part water. Spread onto stain and let sit for 5 minutes. Gently scrub and rinse. Baking soda is abrasive enough to lift staining without damaging grout.

For raw egg splatters, wipe off any liquid egg first. Mix equal parts water and white vinegar and spray onto the dried splatter. Let it soak briefly before scrubbing with a soft brush. Rinse thoroughly. The vinegar dissolves egg residue.

What’s the easiest way to clean backsplash grout?

An old toothbrush dipped in vinegar is ideal for cleaning dirty tile grout. Use an undiluted white vinegar and scrub along each grout line. The mild acid in vinegar cuts through soap scum, hard water deposits, and grime in grout.

Alternatively, spray on a 50/50 vinegar water solution. Let it sit for a few minutes before scrubbing with a small nylon brush. The bristles help dislodge debris from grout crevices.

How do I get rid of grease on kitchen walls?

Grease and oil residue on kitchen walls need a degreasing cleaner. Opt for an orange-oil based, biodegradable degreaser spray. Spritz directly onto greasy spots and let it penetrate for 2-3 minutes. Use a sponge or soft brush to scrub away softened grease. Rinse with clean water and wipe dry.

For excessive grease, apply degreaser and place a warm wet towel over it. The heat helps cut grease for easier cleaning when you scrub a few minutes later.

Should I seal my tile backsplash after cleaning?

Sealing your backsplash can help protect it from new stains but isn’t mandatory. Use a spray-on grout and tile sealer a few days after deep cleaning once the tiles are fully dry. Reapply every 1-2 years for optimal protection.

Sealing is most beneficial for grout lines, which are porous. Sealed grout resists absorbing grease and dirt. It also makes cleaned grout easier to keep clean. If planning to seal, clean the tiles thoroughly first so you’re not sealing in dirt.


With the right cleaning techniques, a little muscle power, and some key ingredients like vinegar and baking soda, you can eliminate tough oil and grease buildup from tile backsplash. Consistent cleaning along with daily habits to minimize splatters will keep this high-use area sparkling.