Asked on Jul 2, 2013

What is the best way to clean stainless steel appliances?

Kathy BitzanPamelaCRNGaye Whittington


My stainless steel appliances have streaks that reappear even after I clean them. I have tried several products but nothing seems to keep the streaks from reappearing. Does anyone have a suggestion?
18 answers
  • KrysFL
    on Jul 2, 2013

    Sheila shine... its all I use. I used to buy it from a profressional cleaning supply store (my mom owned a cleaning business) but I saw it at HD just the other day! It seems kind of expensive at first (around $10 a spray can) but I've had the same can for over a year now and I've only used a 1/4 of it. A little goes a long way. But it works better than anything else and doesn't leave prints. Makes things like a beat up old stainless sink look brand new! Im sure it will work on your appliances.

  • Rosalie B
    on Jul 3, 2013

    Thank you KrysFL. I will look for this at my local HD.

  • Cynthia
    on Jul 4, 2013

    I heard of someone using car wax. Might want to test a hidden spot first or see if anyone else has used this successfully. Suppose wax and then buff to keep fingerprints away. Should work for streaks as well.

  • Rosalie B
    on Jul 4, 2013

    Thanks Cynthia. I'll certainly look into that.

  • KMS Woodworks
    on Jul 4, 2013

    a little rubbing alcohol...I use it on my Espresso maker which is polished SS.

  • David Moffitt
    on Jul 4, 2013

    After cleaning the spills and debris off the stainless steel surface with baking soda or vinegar, follow the treatment with a polish made of olive oil or club soda to remove streaks. Dampen a clean sponge or soft, lint-free cloth with a bit of olive oil or club soda, and rub it over the metal surface until the streaks disappear. When using olive oil, if the surface appears too shiny, absorb some of the oil with a dry, lint-free cloth or paper towel.

  • I found a blog post with suggestions for cleaning a stainless still grill. I'm sure some of the ideas would work for your indoor appliances also. You could sure give it a try...

  • Leslie D
    on Jul 4, 2013

    Straight white vinegar over spots where streaks, finger prints appear, then wipe with a soft, dry cloth. You can then use a stainless cleaner or a dab of olive/mineral oil. My housekeeper did that on all of my stainless in the kitchen on her first visit, and I was amazed at how much better it looked than when I did it using the windex/stainless cleaner combo.

  • Sherrie
    on Jul 4, 2013

    Stainless steel comes in different Gauges. The problem with cleaning stainless steel products every manufactor has different guidelines on cleaning. Here is the generic version of it. Knowing the manufactor is important. They seal them differently is my guess because there was a wide variety of differences in cleaning stainless steel. You can use dish soap rinse well. This is important to rinse it. Scrub in the direction of the grain. You can use a 3m scotch brite pad. Do not use if it has a mirror finish. Dry it. Every time it is wet or damp dry it. Do not use bleach, or acids on it. Do not use house hold cleaners they have chemical and can damage the finish. You can use club soda to make it shiny. You can use a drop of baby oil. Do not leave anything stainless steel wet. Vinegar I read the vinegar remarks. Most of the time I am anti vinegar because its being used wrong. They have specific instructions using vinegar. Vinegar and stainless steel can cause a reaction it can corrode it but saying that if you have mineral build up you can use vinegar diluted with water to remove mineral build ups. Do not use bleach, do not leave ketchup, mayo, acid, fruit acid anywhere near it. This is the generic version of cleaning stainless steel products. If you know the brand you can google the brand and cleaning guidelines. Every manufactor is different. That is why cleaning it is so confusing. What one says the other one absolutely says not to use. I hope this helps.

  • Sherrie
    on Jul 4, 2013

    I went to 10 different manufactors and combined the common cleaning solutions they had in common...if that makes sense.

  • Rosalie B
    on Jul 9, 2013

    Thanks everyone for the great information. I'm still trying different methods to see which one will work. Thanks Sherrie, good to know I will check out the web for my manufactor suggestion.

  • Karen
    on Mar 8, 2015

    Coconut oil -- read about it online. A small amount on a soft cloth then rub/buff well. Amazing!

  • Sabrown
    on Apr 26, 2015

    I use spray on olive oil and a micro fiber cloth.

  • Leslie
    on Apr 28, 2015

    Baby oil. If you are just giving it a quick wipe between cleanings use a dry cloth or it will streak.

  • Patrice
    on Oct 2, 2015

    WD40 works great.

  • Gaye Whittington
    on Oct 19, 2015

    I use 10W40 on mine & it works great!

  • PamelaCRN
    on Dec 23, 2015

    I use a dishcloth soaked in water with a little dab of dawn dish liquid. Polish with a microfiber cloth and no streaks or fingerprints.

  • Kathy Bitzan
    on Mar 4, 2016

    I heard the oil works great for this, good thing they are now making finger proof stainless steal appliances. I shied away because of the finger print issue and streaking.

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