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O SNAP! A CRACK! Will I POP?

While cleaning out my oven I noticed that there were some chips in my pizza stone (the one below is about 1.5" long). I would like to know what the impact is, if any, of worn pizza stone.

  • What degree of wear and tear is to be expected, and what is dangerous or otherwise the point at which you just need to get a new one? (I.E. Do I need to replace mine for what appears to be such a minor, superficial problem?)
    • Is there anything that can be done to repair cracks, or is it even necessary or advisable?
  • What would be the impact of those varying degree of wear and tear, be it uneven heat transference or the likelihood of it cracking in half?
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What are you expecting to happen? It's a piece of stone! –  TFD Mar 1 '12 at 19:16
    
@tfd While I'm not expecting anything crazy, I guess I want to know what the impact of varying degrees of wear would be; edited question –  mfg Mar 1 '12 at 19:21
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@TFD: If this has happened, does it mean there might be invisible cracks elsewhere? If there's one down the middle, might it catastrophically fail? –  Jefromi Mar 1 '12 at 20:09
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I'm more concerned that your pizza stone appears to talk to you - particularly that it talks in pink word bubbles. –  rfusca Mar 1 '12 at 20:46
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@TFD: Well, catastrophic failure doesn't necessarily mean exploding everywhere; it could mean dumping pizza on the bottom of your oven. In any case, it sounds like you might want to just write an answer! –  Jefromi Mar 1 '12 at 21:35

1 Answer 1

up vote 5 down vote accepted

Pizza stones are typically either:

  • Refractory ceramic with a high thermal conductivity, moulded into a useful shapes. Fired, but unglazed
  • Diamond saw cut slabs of suitable natural stone

Either type will respond well to heating and cooling in a normal oven. And take reasonable amounts of general wear and tear

Both types will chip on the edges if whacked, and will develop cracks over time that will cause it to split, normally only into two pieces

If they crack during normal use, and are fully supported by a metal oven rack, they will still perform fine, and may even continue to be used in the future

Warning: Natural stone that has been submerged in water for a long time may explode when next heated in the oven. But normal washing and care should not cause this situation

Note: According to many recent studies and famous books like "Modernist Cuisine", a pizza stone is not enough, you really need a large slab. e.g. a 10 kg steel sheet

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