Cleaning Stainless Steel Appliances
Stainless steel appliances are incredibly popular and with good reason. They’re sleek, simplistic and give any kitchen a contemporary look. Unfortunately, cleaning stainless steel appliances can also be quite the chore. In addition to being a canvas for a variety of smudges, watermarks and fingerprints stand out as if they’re the star attractions of your kitchen.
Are you cleaning stainless steel appliances the right way? Check out the following do’s and don’ts for some advice on keeping your kitchen looking sharp.
DO Check the Manufacturer’s InstructionsThere is a wide range of commercial and do-it-yourself products that can be used to remove fingerprints and water marks from stainless steel products. However, the manufacturer’s instructions may be very specific about what cleaners you should use on your stainless steel appliances. (Some brands even recommend avoiding certain cleaners in nearby areas of the kitchen as the fumes can damage the stainless steel finish.) Go rogue, and you risk voiding your warranty. As many larger kitchen appliances are quite pricey, you probably don’t want to do that, so take some time to read the care instructions before you clean your refrigerator or oven.
DON’T Use Abrasive ProductsBecause they’re made of metal, many people are under the impression that they can use anything for cleaning stainless steel appliances. However, this simply isn’t the case as the material is actually quite easy to scratch. Because of this, you want to avoid abrasive cleaners or tools, such as steel wool, scrubber pads, bleach, scouring powders, ammonia, oven cleaner and so forth. You may also want to consider using distilled water when cleaning your stainless steel appliances if you have hard water in your area. It might not damage your steel, but it can leave unsightly streaks and spots.
DO Know Which Homemade Stainless Steel Cleaners to Use
So, what products can you use when cleaning stainless steel appliances? Well, we’ve got three DIY options for you.
Note: Regardless of which homemade stainless steel cleaners you opt for, you want to perform a spot test on a small, inconspicuous area of the appliance before fully cleaning it.
Cleaning Stainless Steel Appliances with Vinegar and Olive OilYou’ll need:
- Distilled white vinegar in a spray bottle
- Microfiber cloths
- Olive oil
- Look at the stainless steel closely to determine which way the “grain” runs. You’ll want to clean in this direction.
- Spray the appliance with distilled white vinegar.
- Use a microfiber cloth to wipe the vinegar off, following the direction of the grain.
- Dip a clean microfiber cloth in the olive oil.
- Restore shine by rubbing the olive oil into the appliance. Here again, work in the direction of the grain.
Cleaning Stainless Steel Appliances with Dish Soap and Baby OilYou’ll need:
- Mild dishwashing liquid
- Warm water
- Baby oil
- Microfiber cloths
- In your clean kitchen sink or a bucket, mix the dishwashing liquid with warm water.
- Dampen your microfiber cloth with the soapy solution and use this to wipe away smudges and remove fingerprints. Make sure you work in the direction of the grain.
- Once the appliance has dried, dip a fresh microfiber cloth in baby oil.
- Bring back your appliance’s shine by rubbing the baby oil into the metal, following the direction of the grain.
Cleaning Stainless Steel Appliances with Club SodaYou’ll need:
- Club soda
- A spray bottle
- A microfiber cloth
- Gently pour the club soda into a spray bottle.
- Spray the soda on the sides of your stainless steel appliance.
- Following the grain of the metal, use the microfiber cloth to wipe the soda away.