Imagine this: you have finally moved to your new home, and you have already finished setting up your new stainless steel kitchen appliances, such as an oven, dishwasher, and stainless steel refrigerator, as well as other kitchen utensils. You beam with joy as you bask in the brightness of their pristine glow. However, days have passed, and you begin to notice their glow fading; water splatters are found everywhere, grease marks scatter all over the surface, and your hand and fingerprints have become visible to the naked eye.
Luckily, you don’t need to worry that much anymore because you will be seeing the glow back in no time. Stainless steel is a common material especially found in kitchens and bathrooms. Aside from hardwearing resistance and durability, it is a preferred material for products used to handle food because it can be easily cleaned without compromising hygiene.
Other than appliances and kitchen utensils, stainless steel is also used in sinks and even countertops. However, despite its suitability for kitchen use, it can also be damaged and prone to corrosion, especially when not taken care of properly.
So, hear us out. We will help you with your dilemma. Say goodbye now to dirty streaks and grease marks, and say hello to a much longer glow because below are the different tips for maintaining your stainless steel.
1. Easy for the Busy: Stainless Steel Cleaning Wipes
Remember that cleaning the stainless steel immediately after a spill or use maintains its new condition. Therefore, for homeowners with hectic schedules who have found themselves in the middle of a greasy crisis, you can use a specially formulated stainless steel cleaner, such as stainless steel cleaning wipes.
This quick and easy fix to clean accidental spills on the countertop or greasy refrigerator handles. All you need to do is to wipe and buff out the grease marks, and you’re done! Using stainless steel cleaning wipes will not just maintain the cleanliness of your stainless steel but also its shine and polish.
2. Stick with the Classic: Dishwashing Liquid and Cloth
Cleaning your stainless steel might sound difficult to accomplish, but sometimes it is just like doing your routine of regular dishwashing. All you need to do is find a good grease-cutting dish detergent and mix a teaspoon of it with a quarter of hot water. Then find yourself a good quality grit-free cloth, dip it into the mixture, and start rubbing off the marks from the surface.
The cloth’s quality and texture are important so as to avoid abrasions on the surface of your stainless steel.
After removing all the marks, rinse the area with warm water and then dry it using a clean and absorbent cloth. Don’t wait for the area to dry before wiping it with a cloth to prevent watermarks from building on the surface.
This method is best when dealing with dirt and grimes.
3. Pick another Classic: Mineral oil and Cloth
Aside from dishwashing liquid, another classic is also used to maintain stainless steel. Mineral oil can be used to buff fingerprints on its surface, specifically on refrigerator handles, oven handles, and even in your sink faucet knobs.
Just apply a very light layer of mineral oil and buff the area very well with a cloth to erase the prints and avoid getting a sticky residue. Also, it is important to note that food-based oils can’t be used as substitutes for mineral oil because doing so will result in a foul smell.
4. Consider Alternatives: Window Glass Cleaner
If the above three are unavailable at your disposal, you can also use other cleaning products, such as a window glass cleaner, provided that they are vinegar and ammonia-free. Spray an adequate amount of the product on your cloth, then buff the area until clean.
Bonus: The Don’ts in Maintaining your Stainless Steel
Now that appliances, kitchen utensils, and even the whole kitchen setup are made of stainless steel, it is important to know the basics of taking care of and maintaining them to prolong their use. Since we already have imparted the do’s in maintaining your stainless steel, let’s now proceed with the things you should avoid to make the best out of your stainless steel experience.
1. Stop using Abrasive Sponges and Cloths
Abrasions and scratches ruin the quality and condition of your stainless steel. It is now time for you to bid your goodbyes to your old abrasive sponges and cloth to ensure longer use of your appliances. Use microfiber cloths or those with a smooth texture and highly absorbent properties to protect your stainless steel.
2. Don’t Wipe Against the Metal Grain
Wiping against the metal grain’s direction can ruin your stainless steel’s finish. Do wipe following the direction of the grain to prevent surface streaks. You would know you’re doing the right thing if the wiping motion goes smoothly. Otherwise, there would be resistance.
3. Don’t Air Dry Your Stainless Steel
To maintain the quality of your stainless steel, do not allow them to air dry after they are cleaned. Do wipe the standing water or cleaning solutions left to prevent the formation of stains and watermarks. The leftover residue can also damage the surface of the stainless steel.
4. Avoid Chloride-containing Solutions
Using products containing chloride to clean your stainless steel can cause pitting, corrosion, and rusting. Refer to the tips above to know what safe solutions you can use in cleaning stainless steel.
5. Quit Doing Things on Your Own
When you don’t have any idea about how to clean your stainless steel, stop doing things on your own. Instead, go and look for the packaging or the manual of your appliances to know the proper steps for cleaning them. You can also search the internet for more information regarding the matter at hand.
The resistance and durability of kitchen products made of stainless steel have already been established. It truly is a good material for use in the kitchen. However, for it to better perform its purpose, your effort in its maintenance is needed.
Develop routine cleaning habits. That way, the maintenance of your stainless steel will be easier and more manageable. Remember, stainless steel doesn’t shine on its own; you’re the one in charge of making it and your kitchen glow.