6 Easy Ways to Clean Stainless Steel Appliances and Sinks

“How do I clean stainless steel?” is a question we often get—it would seem that stainless steel appliances look great until you’ve had them for a week or so, and then you realize they can attract fingerprints and be hard to clean! To clean stainless steel, use one of the easy DIY cleaners below.

Bruce and Jeanne Lubin
2-minute read

Polish Stainless Steel With Olive Oil

Easy Everyday Stainless Steel Cleaners

Club soda is a terrific way to clean stainless steel sinks, dishwashers, ranges, and other appliances. The least expensive club soda works as well as the pricey brands; flat club soda is effective too. You can dilute rubbing alcohol (about 1 part rubbing alcohol to 4 parts water) or even use liquor like vodka or gin.

How to Get Rid of Fingerprints and Streaks

To get rid of those unsightly streaks and fingerprints, the secret is vegetable or olive oil (even an oil-based furniture polish like Pine Sol works). Put a little bit on a dry dishcloth, and rub down the appliance. Then buff with a dry paper towel or cloth for a glossy finish.

Remove Spots and Stains on Stainless Steel

If you have spots or stains on your stainless steel, dampen a sponge, then sprinkle baking soda on its surface, and rub it in a circular motion over the stainless steel (or, if it’s a flat surface like a sink, just sprinkle the baking soda over it rather than on the sponge). It will remove the stains, then you can clean with one of the everyday methods above. If you’re trying to remove a rust stain, use straight vinegar.

Prevent Spots on Stainless Steel

If you keep getting water marks on your stainless steel, grab a shower squeegee and use it to make sure you’re not leaving water on the surface. (Or, just use a dry cloth, which is not quite as fun.)

How to Get Rid of Scratches on Stainless Steel

If you find a scratch on one of your stainless steel appliances, buff it out with superfine steel wool, which you should be able to find at a hardware store. Rub in the same direction as the grain, at it will smooth out the scratch.

For more cleaning tips for around the house, check out our Cleaning Tips board on Pinterest. And don’t forget to sign up for our newsletter and follow us on Facebook and Instagram!

Image courtesy of Who Knew?

About the Author

Bruce and Jeanne Lubin

Bruce Lubin and Jeanne Bossolina-Lubin are the proud parents of three boys and more than a dozen books. After saving thousands per year using everyday tips and simple lifehacks, they started their own business in the hopes of sharing their knowledge with others. They have been known to go into their friends' refrigerators to turn their eggs upside down so that they last longer.

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