Stainless steel can still corrode and stain, but regular cleaning and maintenance can prevent them from happening. Stainless steel countertops are very easy to clean, and this is one of the reasons why they are the preferred countertops for use in restaurants and professional kitchens.|
On its own, steel is durable, heat-resistant, and is an excellent electrical conductor. However, it is prone to rust and corrosion. Adding chromium to it gives it its ‚stainless‚ qualities. The chromium in stainless steel combines with oxygen in the air to form a protective layer called chromium oxide. This protective layer makes stainless steel countertops resistant to stains and completely waterproof. Instead of seeping into the stainless steel, moisture just beads on the surface. This prevents the steel from corrosion and rust, as well as preventing the proliferation of bacteria and mildew. Despite this layer of protection, stainless steel countertops can still accumulate dirt on the surface. Food and grease can build up make the surface look dull and sticky.
How to clean your stainless steel countertop
Cleaning your stainless steel countertop is quick and simple.
1. Wipe the surface down using a nonabrasive rag or sponge and warm, soapy water. You can use a cleanser to clean it with, just make sure to get a mild one with a pH of around 7. Ordinary dishwashing liquid can also be used if this kind of cleanser is not available. To clean the buildup from the surface, wipe the rag along the grain and against it. Rinse thoroughly with water and wipe dry to avoid water stains. The surface can look a bit dull but this is only because the buildup and soap residue have just been lifted from it.
2. To make it shine, apply stainless steel polish on the surface. Be sure to wipe off excess polish right away to avoid buildup. Wipe along the grain until the surface shines.
3. Dry and buff the surface using a nonabrasive dry cloth. Your stainless steel countertop can streak and retain fingerprints because of its chemical makeup and because moisture beads on the surface instead of seep into it. To get rid of streaks and fingerprints and keep it sparkling, wipe the surface with a mild glass cleaner.
What not to do when cleaning your stainless steel countertop
1. Never use an abrasive cleaning tool for scrubbing a stainless steel countertop. This can wear away the chromium oxide layer on the surface and expose the sensitive steel inside to moisture and rusting.
2. Do not use highly acidic cleansers or those that contain chlorides like bleach when cleaning your stainless steel countertop. Hydrochloric acid, commonly used in cleaning bathroom and swimming pool tiles, can quickly destroy the chromium oxide layer on the surface.