How to Maintain Stainless Steel Appliances

Time: 20-30 minutes

Stainless steel is a popular choice for kitchens and even bathrooms because of its sleek good looks and excellent rust resistance. It may be stainless, but it's not invincible. Dirt, dust, and grime can actually put stainless steel at risk for corrosion, so it's important to maintain your appliances and fixtures regularly to keep them looking their best. Try these tips for routine cleaning and proper care to help keep your stainless steel looking shiny and new.

What's in it for you?

  • Cleaner kitchen
  • Longer lasting appliances
  • More attractive fixtures

How to Maintain Stainless Steel Appliances:

  1. Start with a basic cleaning. Stainless steel doesn't have a finish, so no need to worry about waxing or sealing this low-maintenance look. Still, you want to be careful not to scratch it with harsh cleaners and vigorous scrubbing. For routine weekly cleaning, simply mix some dish detergent into warm water and wipe onto your stainless surfaces with a clean soft cloth. Rinse with clean water and buff dry with a second clean cloth. That's usually enough to take care of fingerprints and water spots around appliance handles in high-traffic areas.
  2. Protect stainless with a dedicated product. Frustrated by smudges and smears? Try a special stainless steel cleaner and polish in one. Simply buff out fingerprints by rubbing in the direction of any "grain" on your stainless steel. These add a light, protective coating that helps prevent new fingerprints from dulling your appliances, so you may be able to go longer before you notice smudges.
  3. Absorb grease with baking soda. If you have a stainless steel oven or range, cooking stains and grease can stick to your stainless if they dry in place or get baked on. Make a paste of baking soda and warm water to apply to these tough stains. Let it set for a few minutes, then use a sponge or old cloth to rub the paste over the stain to dislodge it. Rinse clean. This very mild abrasion often does the trick but isn't harsh enough to scratch your appliances.
  4. Use oven cleaner for the most stubborn stains. For truly baked-on grease, use a scouring pad -- steel wool is too abrasive -- to scrub, making sure to rub along the grain. You can also try spray-on oven cleaner, which is handy for surfaces that you can't really reach to scrub.
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