Old 03-28-2009, 08:38 PM
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Sydney, Australia
Posts: 3
Question New to Pizza ovens, mould problem after 1st use

Hello Everyone,

I am new to Wood Fired Pizza Ovens. I am not a handy person so my wife and I decided to buy a ready made pizza oven. We also wanted one that was portable so that we could move it around if the weather was bad.

We decided on a pizza oven manufactured in Western Australia and had it transported accross the Nulabor to Sydney. We realised when we got it that it was a very heavy oven and we weren't going to be able to move it around as we had first hoped.

Anyway on the first use of the oven I didn't get it quite hot enough and the pizzas didn't cook properly. Some cheese was spilt on the oven floor that I didn't realise. A couple of days after the first use I looked inside the oven and found mould growing in there. I removed the mould and cleaned the area with vinegar (not wanting to use and toxic chemicals). The mould grew back!!!!!

The floor of the oven is bricks sitting on what I think (remember I am not a builder or handy person) is fibrous cement. For that reason I don't want to go flooding the floor of the oven with huge amounts of liquid. One website I found recomended soaking a pizza stone with mould on it in bleach. Another website on building Pizza ovens recomends cleaning by heat, just build another fire.

Could somebody please help me!!!!!! Any information will be greatfully recieved.

Thank you

PS I posted this post before and I didn't see it come up on the forum so I did it again. I appologise if it did work and this is a repeat.
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Old 03-29-2009, 12:20 PM
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: kingston washington
Posts: 184
Default Re: New to Pizza ovens, mould problem after 1st use

fire it up. As long as it's cured then bring on the fire. This will burn of any cheese residue. The mold will also burn away. If the oven has not been cured properly and has moisture in it then you have to go thew a series of small fires to cure or dry out the oven.

I hope its not our in the rain unsealed and unprotected

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Old 03-29-2009, 01:39 PM
Jed Jed is offline
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Bend, Oregon; West Coast USA
Posts: 428
Default Re: New to Pizza ovens, mould problem after 1st use

Hi Paul,

I agree with berryst.

One of the bits of magic about the wood fired oven is that they are 'self cleaning'. The oven is designed to have a hot wood fire inside. The fire burns more or less around 1,000 degree's F. That will turn any organic material to ash. Your moss problem should go away with a good fire. I would avoid any cleaners in the oven. A hot fire should fix you right up, and get you ready to cook.

Now if your oven is new, you may need to go through the process of 'curing fires'. Because masonry ovens are made of 'masonry', they have cement, that uses water to make the mortar that holds the oven together. If you build a 'hot fire' before the water has 'cured' from the mortar, the water will turn to steam, expand, and risk cracking the mortar in the oven. Your oven manufacturer will have given you instructions if this step was necessary for your oven.

Do have fun with your new oven, it sounds like all is in order, just need to build some fires and get some experience with your new oven!

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Old 03-30-2009, 05:14 AM
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Sydney, Australia
Posts: 3
Default Re: New to Pizza ovens, mould problem after 1st use

Hello All,

Thanks so much for your help. I thought just starting a fire would be enough.

With the curing of the oven, the guy who made it said to set a small fire, let it burn out and you are right to go. I have done that, so hopefully that will be enough. If what he told us is all true (and I won't go into the long protracted story, its not for this forum but a legal one) the oven was made months before we recieved it, having taken a trip accross the centre of Australia should have dried it out anyway or the time since it was made.

As far as sealing it goes, I don't know if it has been or not. I will have to get in touch with the person who made it. If it hasn't been, can I use any sealer on it, or does it have to be a special one for this kind of application. Does the base of it have to be sealed too. I mentioned before that I think it is made of fribrous cement. Yes it is outside, no under cover. Do you recomend that I cover it, or will just sealing it do.

Thanks again for your help.

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Old 04-03-2009, 09:32 AM
Neil2's Avatar
Il Pizzaiolo
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Vancouver Island
Posts: 1,374
Default Re: New to Pizza ovens, mould problem after 1st use

Cover it with a sheet of poly (when not in use) until you can figure out a permanent cover.

Keeping moisture out is important. As pizza season approaches, I go through the step by step curing process every year.
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