Ever since its introduction, black stainless steel has been a success with consumers. People love its unique aesthetic and the fact that it’s more fingerprint resistant than most luxury alternatives. Though it has yet to unseat traditional stainless steel as the most popular finish in high-end appliances, it’s certainly moving up in the ranks. Because the manufacturing process differs a bit from stainless steel, caring for this newer finish is also a bit different. Here we’ll tell you how to clean black stainless steel appliances.

What is Black Stainless Steel?

Black Stainless Steel Finish

Black stainless steel isn’t all too dissimilar than its traditional counterpart. At its core, it has the same composition of iron, chromium, silicon, and nickel. What sets it apart is the application of a protective black polymer coating that mutes the finish. The result is a more anti-corrosive finish and a subtly elegant look as opposed to the cold sterility of conventional stainless.

How Not to Clean Black Stainless Steel

Let’s start with the “don’ts” when it comes to cleaning black stainless. Because of the aforementioned top coat, it’s imperative that you don’t do anything to scratch this finish, otherwise you’ll expose the burnished steel beneath. Therefore, do not rub the surface with any abrasive materials such as steel wool or scouring pads. Even newspaper and paper towels have the potential to do damage. Also off limits are most standard kitchen cleaning products such as powdered soap, baking soda, abrasive liquid soap, ammonia, window cleaner, anything acidic such as vinegar or lemon, oven cleaner, or, and this sounds counterintuitive, stainless steel polish. These will dissolve the black coating.

How to Clean Black Stainless Steel

How to Clean Black Stainless Steel

The best method for cleaning black stainless steel is the simplest. Just use a soft, absorbent cloth towel or table napkin with warm soapy water. By using these to gently, and the operative word is gently, rub the surface with the grain of the finish. Any stains will disappear within seconds. Afterward, you can use a dry microfiber cloth to dab dry.

How to Perform Minor Repairs on Black Stainless Steel

Repairing Black Stainless Steel

The technology in the production of black stainless steel has been advancing quite swiftly so as to make it less prone to damage. Some brands are even boasting scratch resistant surfaces. However, some older black stainless appliances are still vulnerable. Should your black stainless surface suffer a minor scratch, a good quick fix is to scribble over it with a black permanent marker. Before the ink dries, you can softly buff it with a microfiber cloth to blend the color. Afterward, no one will notice the scratch unless they were intently looking for it.

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