How to Clean Darkened Stainless Steel


The name "stainless steel" is misleading, because it can, in fact, become dull over time or stained by heat and oily fingers. Due to its sturdiness and resistance towards corrosion, this type of steel is often used for sinks, tableware, utensils, appliances and countertops. If your stainless steel items become darkened over time, you can brighten them up and make them shine like new again. Homemade cleaning remedies and stainless steel polishes help remove any unsightly dark spots that may appear.

Things You'll Need

  • 1 tbsp. baking soda
  • Container
  • Water
  • Spoon
  • Sponge
  • Dry, clean cloth
  • Polishing cloth
  • Stainless steel polish
  • Mild dish soap

Baking Soda Method

  • Place 1 tbsp. of baking soda into a container. Pour a small amount of water into the container and stir it with a spoon. Continue adding water until the mixture resembles a thick paste.

  • Use a sponge or soft cloth to rub a liberal amount of the paste into the dark spots on the stainless steel. Rub in circular motions to buff out the stains.

  • Rinse off the paste with warm water. If the steel is still dark, buff it with the paste again before rinsing it off a final time.

  • Dry the stainless steel with a dry, clean cloth. Make sure it's completely dry to avoid hard water stains.

Stainless Steel Polish

  • Use a polishing cloth to rub the stainless steel polish into the darkened steel. If you are cleaning utensils, make sure that the polish is safe for use on those types of items.

  • Use a soft sponge and mild dish soap to wash the remaining polish off of the stainless steel. Rinse off the soap with warm water.

  • Dry the stainless steel with a dry, clean cloth.

Tips & Warnings

  • Avoid using abrasive sponges and steel wool on your stainless steel items. They scratch the surface, which makes the item more susceptible to rust.
  • Refrain from using chlorine and bleach on stainless steel. These chemicals break down its protective covering.

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