How to Clean a Toaster with a Hair Dryer—Yes, We Said Hair Dryer

This simple hack makes it easier to keep your toaster looking spotless.

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Your toaster gets a lot of use, especially if you’re a regular breakfast person or like to make a toasted sandwich for lunch. But does anyone think about cleaning their toaster? And if so, how often should you clean it? Think about the last time you cleaned your toaster. Was it last year? Two years ago? Last month? Believe it or not, cleaning this kitchen appliance regularly is important to avoid build-up. Too much crumb build-up can prevent your toaster from toasting bread evenly or even start a toaster fire.

With so many other appliances and home items to keep clean, it’s easy to forget the small stuff. Thankfully, learning how to clean a toaster isn’t complicated with a helpful hack.

How to Clean a Toaster with a Hair Dryer

You may have never thought about breaking out a hair dryer to clean an appliance, but thanks to a hack from TikTok user @mama_mila, it won’t be long before you know how to clean your toaster with one. In the video, @mama_mila shows how to clean a toaster with this tip.

@mama_mila_ So easy, you can do it while dinner is cooking ? When was the last time you cleaned your kettle and toaster? #cleaninghacks #cleanhome #hometips #kitchenhacks #homesweethome ♬ So Fresh, So Clean – Outkast

To start cleaning your toaster with a hairdryer, first, unplug your toaster. You don’t want any accidents to happen. Next, plug in the hairdryer and aim it into the toaster slots to dislodge any stuck crumbs. Although the TikTok creator doesn’t specify how long you should use the dryer on your toaster, it’s easy to see if it’s working when you see crumbs moving down. Give it as long as it needs, and then turn off the hair dryer.

From there, remove the crumb tray from the bottom of your toaster. After you pull it out, wash it off in your sink to eliminate the crumbs. Once you’ve rinsed the toaster’s tray, dry it off with a paper towel and put it back inside your toaster.

If you’re looking for other cleaning tips on TikTok, be sure you tread carefully; there are some “CleanTok” dos and don’ts you should check out before you try a dangerous hack. Also, try this cleaning hack of putting a ball of aluminum foil in your dishwasher.

Does It Work?

Using my hair dryer, I followed the steps from the video. First, I pointed the hair dryer into the machine and watched as crumbs began to fly. After doing this for about two minutes, I turned off the blow dryer. Inside my toaster did look a lot cleaner as far as the toaster slots were concerned. Next, I removed the tray and dumped the crumbs before rinsing and drying it. Count this among one of the craziest cleaning tips that work because my toaster was almost spotless after this hack.

My only concern is for people who haven’t deep cleaned their toaster in a long time. You, like myself, might notice some caked-on messes inside that you can’t dislodge with a dryer. If you need to give your toaster more of a scrub, don’t be afraid to do so; there are hacks for that, too.

How to Clean a Toaster Without a Hair Dryer

The hair dryer hack should work for most toasters, but if you need a little extra help for an especially dirty one, there are a few options you have to choose from. From a quick scrub to shake down, try adding one or more of these to your kitchen cleaning checklist.

The Toothbrush Method

This is the way to go if your toaster needs a good scrub down inside. Start by unplugging your toaster. Then, remove and clean the crumb tray. Set the tray aside and mix equal parts of vinegar and water. Once you’ve got your cleaning solution, dip the toothbrush in the liquid and use it to scrub down the inside of the toaster. Be gentle with the electrical components (again, don’t do this with the toaster plugged in!). Once it looks clean, dry the inside with a cloth or paper towel. Make sure you haven’t left behind any linty bits, though.

The Quick Clean

Maybe you don’t have a hair dryer handy and need to give your toaster a quick clean. If that’s the case, the easier way to dislodge those pesky crumbs doesn’t require any equipment. First, unplug your toaster, then take it to your kitchen sink. Remove the crumb tray, clean it off, and set it aside. Next, take the toaster in both hands and dump it upside down over your sink. Give it a shake and watch as the crumbs fall into the basin. Shake the toaster as much as needed until no other crumbs are falling out. Once you’re done cleaning it, reassemble your toaster. This method is also helpful if your toaster doesn’t have a crumb tray and it’s a good cleaning habit to do on a routine basis.

Dry Brush the Inside

What do you do if your toaster is moderately dirty, but there isn’t anything that needs scrubbing? If you don’t have a blow dryer, try using a bottle brush. Start by unplugging the toaster and cleaning off the tray. Then, take the dry bottle brush and insert it into the toaster slots. Gently brush around to remove stuck crumbs. After you’re done, insert the tray back into the slot.

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Cianna Garrison
Cianna Garrison is a California-based freelance writer who covers everything from food news to tech to lifestyle. Her work has appeared in Elite Daily, How-To Geek, Review Geek, Truity, and other publications. She received her Bachelor's degree from Arizona State University in 2018. In her free time, she likes to read, write fiction and poetry, and perform in live theater.