Stainless steel appliances are robust, versatile, and easy to clean. However, they can be prone to water spots, especially in areas where the tap water is harder than normal. You may end up with water spots on your range, refrigerator, dishwasher, or even your cooktop. How to remove water stains from stainless steel appliances, then? The experts at Appliances Connection have compiled this list of five tried and true methods of removing water stains.
For this stain removal method, you will need some white vinegar and some soft cloths. Cotton microfiber cloths are best, but you can make do with paper towels if necessary. You will also want a sprayer bottle.
Spray the vinegar directly on to the water stain, and let it sit for about five minutes. Then take your cloth or paper towel and gently wipe the sprayed area in the direction of the stainless steel's grain. Repeat this process until the stain has been removed.
Rubbing alcohol is another easy, at-home method of how to remove water stains from stainless steel appliances. Apply a generous amount of rubbing alcohol (also called isopropyl alcohol) to a soft rag or microfiber cloth. (A paper towel will also work for this.) Gently rub the water stains, always working in the direction of the stainless steel's grain. The rubbing alcohol will evaporate, meaning you don't need to worry about rinsing with this method, and it cuts through even the toughest water stains.
If your water stains have ruined your stainless steel's shine, consider removing the stains and restoring the stainless steel in one go. Dribble a small amount of olive oil onto a soft microfiber cloth or paper towel. Apply this oil to the stain, always remembering to rub in the direction of the stainless steel's grain. Then wipe again with a clean, dry cloth in order to remove the residual oil.
Baking Soda and Lemon Juice
This method of removing water stains from stainless steel is especially useful for horizontal surfaces. Sprinkle the area with a thin coating of lemon juice, and let it sit for five minutes. Next, sprinkle the area with a thin layer of baking soda. The mixture will get fizzy. Wipe the area down with a clean microfiber cloth or paper towel. Always rub in the direction of the stainless steel's grain. Note that you may need to apply more lemon juice as some of the baking soda dissolves. Wipe the whole area off with a clean, damp cloth, and allow it to air dry.
Stainless Steel Cleaner
If you have a stainless steel cleaner such as Bar Keepers Friend or Method, you can use this to clean water spots off your stainless steel appliances as well. Follow the directions that are provided with the cleaner, keeping in mind that with some cleaners you may need to wear gloves in order to protect your hands.
Does vinegar damage stainless steel?
Vinegar is an excellent all-purpose cleanser and is great for stainless steel. As long as you don't use it on stainless steel that has been scratched, vinegar won't damage stainless steel appliances.
Does hydrogen peroxide remove hard water stains?
Because hydrogen peroxide is an oxidizer, it can damage stainless steel by causing corrosion and rust. If you use hydrogen peroxide to remove hard water stains on stainless steel, you should rinse it away quickly.
Can I use Windex on stainless steel?
Because Windex and similar window cleaners contain ammonia, it's not a good idea to use them on stainless steel appliances. Ammonia can corrode stainless steel and lead to it rusting away.