How To Clean Stainless Steel Sink - Tip From Reader
Below I've gathered tips for how to clean a stainless steel sink, and then keep it looking good and shiny afterward.
This originally started with some really good tips sent in by a reader, Fiona, who lives in Egypt, but since then I've expanded the page as more and more readers have shared their best tips.
My kitchen sink is made of stainless steel. I've got a dishwasher, so usually most of the dirty dishes go straight in there. I have a large family and there's usually something going on in the kitchen which means the kitchen sink doesn't stay clean for long.
If it is really grimy, a squirt of Cif cream and a buff with a damp sponge, or a sprinkle of Comet, and a scrub with the damp sponge, before rinsing thoroughly will do the trick.
However, to maintain a clean sink on a daily basis, mix some baking soda with a squirt of Fairy Liquid, (I prefer the lemon one). Apply to your sink with a damp sponge, leave about ten minutes and rinse well with hot water.
Magically, all grease stains and tea and coffee splashes will have disappeared leaving you with a sink as good as new.
Thanks Fiona for sharing how you clean your stainless steel sink with us.
I'm not familiar with Cif or Fairy Liquid, I guess since I'm from the United States and you are from Egypt. If you want, tell me in the comments what these cleaning products are.
***Update: Fiona shared this with me in response to my question:
Well, I'm actually from the UK, and moved to Egypt only recently. I was happy to find that the cleaning products available here are about the same as in the UK. I've done a little bit of research on comparable US brands, and believe AJAX Cream or Power Scrub Cream to be similar to Cif, which is sold throughout Europe. Fairy Liquid is the UK's number one dishwashing liquid. A similar product in the USA would be Dawn Ultra. I do hope this helps!
Baking Soda Alone Or With Other Ingredients Is Great On Stainless Steel!
Basically what Fiona suggests is using homemade soft scrub for everyday cleaning, because she is combing baking soda with dish soap.
This is a great everyday option which is gentle enough, but still can get much of the general grime off, plus it uses ingredients you most likely already have on hand.
Similarly, other readers have seconded the use of baking soda, either by itself or in combination, for cleaning their sink on a daily basis.
For example, Lea says, "Just sprinkle baking soda like you would cleanser. It's nonabrasive, cheap and bio-friendly."
In addition, Momma-T said, "I clean my stainless steel sinks with a paste made from hydrogen peroxide and baking soda. Rub over entire surface with a damp cloth and rinse thoroughly. This method also works on stained pots and pans."
Now that I've mentioned some home remedies for cleaning up your sink, below I've got some suggestions for a good commercially available product you can use for this task.
Make Sure If Using This Product Not To Let It Sit Long On Your Sink
I got this comment from an SR101 Reader, who wrote in to share the problem she experienced when she used this product on her stainless steel sink. She stated: "Bar Keepers Friend discolored my stainless steal sink. It says in the tiniest letters on the can not to leave it on for more than a minute. When I did, my sink was discolored in tons of spots. When I called to complain they hang up on me!!"
This intrigued me, because I definitely don't want anyone to use the product improperly, so I will write out the exact directions it states on the can, since I have one in my home that I reference.
The back of the can's instructions state, in relevant part:
Sprinkle BKF on a thoroughly wet cloth and rub gently. If applying BKF directly to metal, porcelain or plastic, make certain surface is wet -- then rub gently until rust or discoloration disappears. Rinse. For difficult stains, rust spots, tarnished surfaces . . . make a paste by adding a few drops of water to BKF. Let paste remain on stain no longer than one minute before rubbing. Rinse immediately.
It seems they probably should have warned of discoloration if left too long. Don't have what happened to this reader happen to you! Make sure you follow the directions for the product.***End Update
***Update 2: Another reader, Mariana, also shared her secret for cleaning her sink made of stainless steel. She uses Murphy Oil Soap.***
Shining Up Your Stainless Steel Sink After Cleaning
Several people have suggested that after cleaning your sink, that you can make it shiny as well.
Shine It Up With Lemon Oil
The main suggestion has been to use lemon oil. For example, Vickie Cornejo, from New Caney, Texas, said, "After cleaning your stainless steel sink rub a small amount of Old English Lemon Oil all over the stainless steel. This removes any hard water spots and helps keep new spots from forming."
Similarly, Ann Margaret says: "I have a cleaning business and I use Comet or Barkeepers Friend, dry the sink and sprinkle lemon oil in the sink and rub it around. Simple. Easy. Effortless."
Finally, Sandra uses orange essential oil, but it is the same principle: "A bit of my dish soap and baking soda clean my stainless steel sinks wonderfully. I dry and rub on a few drops of orange essential oil, a lovely sheen and a great fragrance."
Rubbing Alcohol Works Well Too
In addition to lemon oil, another common suggestion to use is rubbing alcohol.
For example, a reader, Heather said, "Rubbing alcohol makes all my stainless steel soooo shiny!"
You can read even more about this suggestion here, where another reader suggested it to polish many types of metals, such as chrome as well as stainless steel.
So how do you clean and shine up your sink? I'd love to hear. You can share your own tips here, and I'll add them to the page.
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Comments for Shining Up Your Stainless Steel Sink After Cleaning
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CAUTION: This website is provided for informational purposes only. It is provided as is, without warranties or guarantees. Some stains and messes just won't come out, and are permanent. Further, some cleaning methods can harm your item, so if what you want to clean or launder is sentimental or expensive call a professional. See disclaimer of liability for more information.