Re: Cleaning electric stove's steel plates
I faced the same situation a month back. It's not easy to clean those steel plates and make them look like new.
We bought a set of new plates from Walmart. They are available in the Kitchen Gadgets aisle. One set with 2 small and 2 big plates was about $17. We needed 3 small and 1 big plate so we had to buy 2 sets. But the big plate did not fit and I had to clean the old one. I did my best with an oven cleaner spray that I got from Dollar Tree.
You need to spray the oven cleaner over the steel plate covering it completely in the foam. Do this outside the home if possible, or in the kitchen sink. Leave it to stand for at least 10 minutes, I would recommend that you leave it for an hour. Then push up your sleeves and scrub! I used a new piece of Scotch Brite to scrub and managed to get out most of the black deposit. My husband also lent a hand when I needed a break. It was hard work for just one steel plate.
I suggest that you replace the plates with new ones. It's really not worth all the effort to scrub all the plates. But if you decide to try scrubbing, wear rubber gloves to protect your hands. Open all the windows in your house before using the oven cleaner. Its fumes are really strong. If you have children in the house, I suggest you don't use this.
I tried soda bicarb/baking soda to clean the steel plates. It didn't work for me.
When we moved to a new apartment, I covered the plates with aluminum foil before I started using the stove.
Change is the only constant.