May 03, 2019
Stainless steel is beautiful and on-trend, but if you've updated your kitchen recently or moved into a new home with stainless appliances, you may need some guidelines for cleaning.
Stainless can make your kitchen look modern and sleek, and you’ll want to create new cleaning habits that keep your essential kitchen tools looking as new as the day you got them.
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Hint 1: Use a Stainless Steel Cleanser
Smudges and fingerprints are the most frustrating part of owning stainless steel appliances. Win the battle against them by investing in a spray cleaner specifically designed for stainless. You can find these with the other kitchen cleaning supplies in most home and big box stores. Just spray on a cloth and wipe down gently, following with water.
Don't: Use Abrasive Sponges or Cleansers
Do not ever scrub your appliances with any abrasive sponge or a cleanser with bleach. Abrasive tools will scratch the grain of the stainless and make your beautiful new kitchen look dull, and no matter how much you think bleach might make the appliances shine, it will ruin the finish.
Hint 2: Go with the Grain
Much like with fine wood, you must go with the grain when cleaning stainless steel. Follow the lines of the grain, wiping on cleanser gently, wiping off and rinsing. Do not wipe in a circular motion (this is tough if you’re used to scrubbing in a circle!) – use long swipes instead.
Don’t: Let Grime Sit
Dirt, grime, kitchen grease and gunk tend to stick to stainless if left to dry. Your appliances will look new and fabulous longer if you wipe up gunk with a wet rag or paper towel before it has a chance to harden.
Avoiding scrubbing is the priority here - while you can scrub stainless, you want to preserve the gorgeous grain of the steel - so instead, clean small messes immediately with just a little water.
'Go Green' Hint: Lovin' the Oven
If you don't have a self-cleaning oven -- or even if you do -- there aren't many green cleaning options, and commercial oven cleaners tend to be caustic products with plenty o' toxic compounds. Even so, I'm skeptical of how easy or effective any natural cleaners might be at baked-on sludge.
Some folks recommend sprinkling baking soda on the oven, then sprinkling water on it, and leaving it to soak overnight. (No mention of how this will clean the sides of the oven, however.) Then, the next morning, scrub and scour like the devil in heat. Or, get a commercial oven cleaner, use it carefully, and don't feel guilty about it. Placing a layer of foil at the bottom of your oven will make this task easier next time.
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