Stainless steel is one of the most sought out materials when it comes to equipping your kitchen, from your pots and pans to stainless-steel countertops. Without forgetting every other kitchen utensil or appliance, this resistant material is super versatile, resilient, and without any doubts a safe and good choice.
However, if you want every stainless-steel object in your household to last as long as possible, you are going to have to avoid some usage and cleaning mistakes. You can find many articles online on how to clean stainless steel, but what about the “don’ts”?
Find out seven things you should avoid if you want to keep your stainless steel spotless and intact.
1. Don’t use bleach on stainless steel
There are many appropriate cleaning products that you can use to clean stainless steel, and there are even good recipes on how to make your own cleaning products at home, which can also be quite effective. But the real question here is: should you use bleach on stainless steel? And the answer is a big “NO.” While people seem to think that bleach is the most effective and versatile cleaning product in the market, bleach in stainless steel can be quite a disaster.
Bleach, as well as other common household cleaners, often contain chlorine, and this can cause a lot of damage to your stainless-steel kitchen wear. If you happen to accidentally drop a little bit of bleach on a stainless-steel appliance, please be sure to rinse it off immediately to prevent further damage.
2. Always rinse it out properly
Stainless steel appliances look very pretty and modern in any kitchen because of the shiny finishing. However, even if you use the best stainless steel cleaner available in the market, if you don’t rinse it out properly, you may still cause damage to your surfaces, appliances, or utensils. So, always keep in mind that one of the most important aspects of how to safely clean stainless steel is the rinsing.
3. Avoid steel wool and steel brushes
If you want to brush your stainless-steel pots and pans to perfection, keep steel brushes and steel wool away. These two cleaning accessories will leave behind tiny particles on your stainless-steel accessories that may rust eventually, causing the surface of the steel to get rusty. Plus, brushed stainless steel might get scratched, so it’s always better to opt for softer alternatives, like a scrubber or a soft microfiber cloth.
4. Don’t blame the stainless-steel cleaner
If you notice a stain on your stainless-steel appliance even though you followed through with every step, don’t automatically assume that it is because of the cleaner you are using. There is a good chance that water (especially hard water) can be the element staining your shiny accessories and appliances. You can prevent this issue by using a soft towel to dry the steel out after rinsing off the cleaner.
5. Avoid scrubbing against the grain
This is one of the stainless-steel cleaning hacks you should pay attention to. If you look closely at your stainless-steel appliances, you may notice tiny lines in the metal forming this sort of brushed look. This is called the grain. If you want to keep your appliances shiny and looking as good as new, you need to always scrub, polish, and wipe in the same direction the grain is going. Rubbing against the grain can cause damage to the texture of the steel and ruin the original finish.
6. Don’t add oil to a cold pan
As everyone knows, metal expands when it’s exposed to heat. If you let your stainless-steel pan heat up before adding any grease, the surface will be less sticky than if you start with the oil or any grease already in the pan. Plus, it can be quite hard to get rid of grease stains and burned oil, so it’s better if you prevent this issue altogether by having a proper cast-iron skillet for deep frying.
7. Don’t add salt to water before boiling it
If you are going to put saltwater in a stainless-steel pot, be sure to let the water boil beforehand. Why? Because adding salt to a stainless-steel pot filled with unboiled water can result in little rusty spots on the surface that cannot be fixed. Make sure to follow our advice and share it with the people you care about!