The modern sleek look of stainless steel appliances is becoming a hot trend for kitchen décor, but keeping it looking clean is the key to the shine. Stainless steel is known for its ability to resist corrosion and rust while providing a clean look, however dust, dirt and even water can all wreak havoc on your beautiful appliances. Use these guidelines to keep your stainless steel, truly stainless.
The best rule of thumb is to start with the least abrasive and move up from there. Begin simply with warm water and a cloth to wipe down your appliances on a regular basis. You will be surprised just how much plain water can keep your stainless steel looking nice. Since water can deposit minerals, it is always best to wipe the surface dry with a clean cloth as well.
The last thing you ever want to use on a stainless steel appliance is anything abrasive as it will cause scratches. Steel wool pads and scrubbing cleaners will break down the surface. Also, even though it is in our sanitizing nature to use bleach on everything, chlorine is actually harmful for stainless steel. You will want to make sure to keep these two away from each other. Remember that chlorine and bleach are in many household cleaners as well.
If water alone is not removing the mess, start with a mild detergent such as dish soap. Remember from cleaning your dishware this past holiday season that Dawn Dishwashing Liquid is one of the best detergents for delicate surfaces. Always rinse between messes to ensure the dirt particles do not scratch the surface. Another gentle cleaning technique entails mixing a small amount of baking soda with dish soap to lift out water stains.
Treat it like glass
If you have children in your house you know all too well about fingerprints and nose smudges on the appliances. Since fingerprints have a touch of our natural oils on them, the best way to clean off fingerprints and smudges is with a window cleaner. Windex Glass Cleaner is the most loved glass cleaner out there. Windex comes in a variety of scents and formulas, though most reviewers tend to prefer the Mountain Berry version (94/100). Newer on the market as well is Windex Nature’s Glass, which also has reviewers raving with a high 97/100 rating. After the print is gone, make sure to rinse clean and towel dry.
Clean, Treat and Polish
Though stainless steel is supposed to resist staining and scratching, there may come a time when you get a blemish on your appliance by calling in a stainless steel cleaner/polish. The Weiman Stainless Steel Cleaner and Polish is one of the highest rated on the market with an exceptional 94/100 rating. The cleaner is affordable at approximately $4 per can and widely available at big box stores like Wal-Mart and Target as well as online. Just like the other methods, make sure to rinse well and towel dry. Standing water will not only streak up your shine, but cause staining.
“After using Weiman Stainless Steel Cleaner & Polish just once, I knew that I had a product that I’ll be using forever. I really liked that it was so easy to use and I was amazed at the way it made all my stainless steel appliances shine.” —jasyjen, Reviewer since 2008
While these cleaners are formulated for stainless steel, it’s always best to test it in an inconspicuous place to make sure it will not harm your appliance.
Stainless steel appliances look fantastic in the kitchen. While they take some regular maintenance to keep clean, doing so will have your kitchen sparkling, even if your pint-size chefs smear cake batter on the oven while they help you bake. What methods have you used to keep your stainless steel clean?